Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Just the Dramas Ma'm, not the Facts

"In which NPR's Carl Castle outdraws me and my DeWalt cordless drill. I am killed."

"Gunmen shot and killed..." I am reaching for the radio off switch.

"Raising tensions..." Ahhh! Two shots, right to the stomach.

Didn't Carl see Ken Burns Civil war? "If I'd a known you gunmen was comin', I'd uh saved my money" said a slave who'd bought his freedom to Union troops.

But "raising tensions...", in that sonorous, worried, we know it all voice. Gag me! Raised from what to what, where to where? Flood waters rise and fall. Tides come in, go out. Demands for electricity rise. Snows fall. Tensions? How many amps? Joules? Inches of mercury? Poker players raise. Pole vaulters raise the bar. String players and piano tuners increase and release tension on bowstrings and wires.

This reporting is just guesses of what someone, probably themselves, feels. Feelings I can get anywhere. This reporting I can also get anywhere. And when they, (you know, the they), aren't reporting feelings, they are reporting polls about feelings. And on the third day, they descend into fingerpointing and malevolence, that special circle of Hades outfitted for journalists reporting on feelings.

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