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blogs: they're what's for dinner

I went from Friday through Monday without seeing a news report, picking up a paper or reading a blog. Whatever news I heard came in bursts of clips from the car radio on the trips back and forth from the old house to new. When I got back to work yesterday morning, I couldn’t wait to catch up on the news. I hit the television sites; CNN, FOX, MSNBC. Then I hit the “paper” sites; NYT, WaPo, etc. I read the top stories, I searched the archives and read stories that I missed since Friday. I read the editorials and opinion pieces. After consuming all that news and digesting all those voices, I felt like I just ate ten bags of potato chips and called it dinner. Empty, useless calories, void of nutrition, substance or taste that left me feeling bloated and cranky. Really. What my news diet was missing was not the old stalwarts of major news media. I was missing blogs, of course. So I brought up the links list, chose ten of my favorite* blogs and read four days worth of archives on those sites. In addition, I followed all the links to other blogs, read those posts and often strayed ten or twelve blogs away from where I originally started. When that was done (obviously, I didn’t get a lot of office work done on Tuesday), I felt as satisfied as if I just had a steak and lobster dinner, complete with grilled veggies, a glass of wine and dessert. Full, yes. But a good kind of full. The kind of full where you sit back, light a cigarette (or cigar) take a deep drag and exhale deeply and noisily. The smoke of the satisfied. [Well yes, I could have easily gone with a sex metaphor here, but I chose the path of least undesirable Google searches.] That’s all. No long, drawn out post here where I spend ten paragraphs extolling the virtue of blogs. Three or four is enough, as I am preaching to the choir. I just wanted to say thank you to all of you who take the time each day to not only report the news, but dig deep into the facts, blend it with your opinion, back up your statements and show me the links. Or any combination of those things. Far more entertaining, informative and honest than any big news site out there. [Also, old media should learn from this that blogs are a formidable thing to be reckoned with.]

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» Sgt. Hook, My New Best Friend from Various Orthodoxies
I remember reading Sgt. Hook a while back. I read him again today through Michele, and posted the missive below. Then I kept reading, and came across this. Sgt. Hook is going into my Everyday Reads section, just on the... [Read More]

» Sgt. Hook, My New Best Friend from Various Orthodoxies
I remember reading Sgt. Hook a while back. I read him again today through Michele, and posted the missive below. Then I kept reading, and came across this. Sgt. Hook is going into my Everyday Reads section, just on the... [Read More]

Comments

Of course, all the mainstream media sources you mentioned are controlled by GOP campaign contributors and have a right-wing bias. That may be why you got that greasy salty junk-food feeling.

What's the centrist media for you, Don? The Nation? You need to get some prospective (and some therapy).

I hope you remembered to read at least one cat blog, for balance.

'Course, I should get some spelling lessons, I meant "perspective", obviously. (Although having a sense of "prospective" isn't a bad thing)

That is sooo funny. Just last night a liberal friend of mine asked me where I got all my news because I seemed to be better informed than the TV news shows she watches. I told her, "I read blogs for my news." I realized as I said it that I had a sort of epiphany. I realized that it was completely true; Broadcast TV News (and CNN, MSNBC, et al) is an anacrhonism. Only the Brokaws and Jennings types do not realize it. Newsprint is dead too. All that old media is horribly partisan and they cannot hide it however hard they try to claim they are 'moderates.'

Prospective is a beautiful thing, J, and don't you forget it.

No, I don't consider the Nation centrist. To be honest, I don't seek out a 'centrist' media so I'm not even sure how to answer that. 'Centrist' makes me think of those miserable wretches chasing the flag around the entrance to Hell in Dnate's Inferno because they would not take sides---chasing an illusion they'll never abtain and that isn't worth the effort.

In general, I think the mainstream media is guided by the profit motive instead of ideology. That's why all the major networks contribute to the Bush/Cheney campaign and suck up to the White House.If I HAD to break down the media by ideology, it would look a bit like this:

FAR RIGHT-WING: Newscorp (Fox, Gannett, HarperCollins), NewsMax, Front Page

RIGHT-WING: Viacom (CBS, Simon & Schuster), Disney (ABC), GE (NBC), ClearChannel, NPR, Bertlesmann (Random House)

LEFT-WING: Alternet, BuzzFlash, Guardian (UK), Ted Rall

FAR LEFT-WING: Revolutionary Worker, me

CBS leans left. New York Times, WaPo, LA Times all lean left.

Places like Alternet, Buzzflash and NewsMax, I don't consider real media. They are agenda driven sites.

New York Times? The same paper that reprints Chalabi's White House memos verbatim as news and runs William Safire on Tuesday?

If the NYT leans left, it doesn't lean very far, Michele.

cbs right wing? the one with the 60 minutes infomercial for dick clark's book?

and saying fox news is as far right as revolutionarly worker is left i would say is a skewed perception. but i don't read rev worker much, so maybe they are much more moderate than initial impression.

and the nyt runs safire, as well as krauthammer, dowd, krugman, etc etc. i believe the cover story a day or two ago was on the "horrors" the american military has commited in iraq, based on the word of a suspected terrorist. presenting the speculation of the enemy as fact isn't even left or right, it's just a silly attack on the war.

You should check out the Revoultionary Worker, Francis. It does skew about as much as Fox. The big difference is that Fox fights foor the powerFUL, while R.W. fights for the powerLESS.

You should read Clarke's book as well, Francis. Of course, Clarke is hardly the only person who claims that Bush is bungling the fight against al Qaeda, but he does offer a lot of proof.

Apparently the current defintion of "liberal bias" is "not reading White House press releases verbatim and thes shutting the hell up."

Don Myers must be listening to a different NPR than I am.. right wing?

You've misplaced the center, dude.

=darwin

Actually, Darwin, FAIR did one of those content reviews of NPRs major news shows and discovered that partisan sources—--including government officials, party officials, campaign workers and consultants—--Republicans outnumbered Democrats by more than 3 to 2 (61 percent to 38 percent).

Nope, not a typo. Republican voices outnumber Democratic voices on NPR by a wide margin. Check out http://www.fair.org/extra/0405/npr-study.html for all the details.

Bottom line: NPR is middle of the road corporate sponsored radio. Liberal, my ass.

NPR is liberal Don Myers ass? Interesting. I always knew it was liberal, but that liberal? Ouch!

I WISH my liberal ass got the ratings NPR does!

er..wait a minute...

NPR is quoting more Republicans than Democrats when talking about government and using government sources BECAUSE ALL THREE BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENT ARE CONTROLLED BY REPUBLICANS--SO THEY CAN ACTUALLY ANSWER THE QUESTIONS. Dim bulb.

don, i will check out r.w. at work tommorow, i want to learn more about it. honestly, i'm not expecting to be very impressed with their politics (i'll admit up front i'm biased) but i will read more about it just to see what it's honestly about.

but i do listen to npr, and read what i can of the nyt. i actually don't watch fox news, i don't have tv.

the reason i think i won't like r.w. is, as you say, they fight for the percived "powerless", whom i believe are not nearly as disenfranchised as the far left would have us believe. my right wing values come into play here, and i have a reaction of "stop looking at us to solve your problems, in this country you can fix them yourself"

i'm sure that you will probably disagree with that statment, but i firmly believe that it is not only true, but the heart of what this country stands for.

but i will check out the page. and btw, i don't know how much they get into foreign policy, but the first time i find them advocating loss of american or coalition lives in iraq, i'm gone. no apologies, that's just an uncrossable line for me.

Actually, JW, FAIR's content review discovered that there have been more Republican voices than Demcratic voices on NPR since 1993. When a Democract is in the White House the margin isn't as wide, but it's still significant. Perhaps you should have checked it out for yourself before hitting the 'caps lock' key and calling people dim.

I needed a break from the news and blogging. Last week I didn't watch the news or read a newspaper or have access to a computer. When I got back from vacation, I didn't know what was going on in the world. It was the best feeling I've had in months.