I'm a complete optimist about this. I think it'll--I think it'll work. [Emph. Added]
He's our Oscillating Orwell! ... P.S.:At an L.A. appearance last week, Christopher Hitchens, declared that "of course" the anticoalition forces would be defeated. So there appears to be an intra-Orwells schism on this issue. For the moment. Tomorrow is always another day at andrewsullivan.com. ... 10:57 A.M. link
Jon Klein Rule #1: Make Jon Klein Look Good! Harry Shearer on the silliness of CNN chief Jonathan Klein's latest goo-goo pleasing pronouncement. ... (Klein said "we should have just covered the beginning and the end" of the Michael Jackson trial. Why not cover the evidence as it developed? Because that would be ... storytelling!) 1:38 A.M. link
Quayling Kerry? Many Democratic friends have assured me that John Kerry--whether he knows it or not--won't be a candidate for president in 2008. Lack of fundraising support will force him to drop out before then, according to this theory, just as it forced Dan Quayle to drop out the year before the 2000 primaries. But something's changed since 1999--namely the ability of candidates to raise money in small chunks over the Internet. If Kerry can raise enough Web cash early enough, he won't care if the big donors don't want him. Perhaps that explains why I seem to get a Kerry Internet fundraising appeal every other day. (It's actually about every other week.) Kerry's permanent campaign is a way to keep on raising money while he still has Web celebrity value, before his rivals declare. Then nobody will be able to Quayle him. ... 1:18 A.M. link
Jill Stewart, the exact last person in the world the LAT will hire to write their editorials--they'll let their readers do it first!--writes a good one, attempting to educate California voters who still seem to believe that a) California is near 'the bottom' in school funding, and b) the main issue in education is whether we pour more or less money into it. Neoliberalism has yet to reach Sacramento, in many ways. That is what Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is up against if he calls for a special election on his budget initiative. ... 11:40 P.M. link
More LAT Pathos:1) The New York Times beats Los Angeles Times by a day on the possible actions of prosecutors against aggressive paparazzi. It's not as if the prosecutors were Los Angeles prosecutors. ... Oh, wait ... 2) Fishbowl LA notices the NYT's Laura Holson cleaning the LAT's clock on the Halo-movie rights story. The LAT's version is dull, but at least it misses the point! ... It's not as if ... 7:31 P.M. link
Make-up call: On Friday the L.A. Times ran a huge front-page (A-1) photo of an empty freeway--it had been closed for an hour after a shooting incident. Was the paper clumsily trying to make up for its embarrassing and emblematic failure to give any prominence to a far more dramatic and disruptive, nationally-covered freeway chase and four-hour closure two days before? You make the 'make-up call' call! ... P.S.: The photo's caption roped in the earlier incident, noting, "It was the second freeway closure this week. ..." This is classic LAT behavior. Don't report the news when it happens. Any newspaper can do that! But only magisterial, monopoly newspaper can ignore the news when it happens and then provide readers with an analysis of what the trend in the ignored news means a few days or weeks later! Coming soon: A Sunday thumbsucker on "Freeway Closures: What They Say About Southern California's Identity." ... Update: Here's another front-page story the LAT buried on B-3-- rich Malibu homeowners hire bulldozers to scoop up the public beach and move it onto their private property. No tabloidish populist potential there! ... Note how the Times reporters stoke the drama of the story by calling it "as predictable as the spring tides" in the first paragraph and belittling it as a "brouhaha" later in the piece. ... The thoughtful analytic distance of the Pulitzer-winning Los Angeles Times enables it to see that what seemed like uniquely infuriating, mobilizing news--actual taking of beach!--is really just "the latest chapter in a long-running clash over public access and the private-property rights." The LAT formula for excitement! ... No need for citizen involvement. It's all being taken care of by the lawyers. ... Suggestion to fellow Angelenos: Get your L.A. news from L.A. Observed! Kevin Roderick links to the Times stories worth reading, and you don't have to bring a soggy stack of paper into your house. He covered the Tuesday freeway drama on ... Tuesday! 1:46 P.M. link
Deep Throat--The Prequel: Why did Mark Felt leak to Bob Woodward ... about the Wallace assasination attempt? Mark Blumenthal puts together the evidence. The result? Felt looks considerably more non-venal than has recently been charged, while the allegedly reformed Chuck Colson looks like a tendentious faker!10:18 P.M. link
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