Saturday, August 07, 2004

With great power comes great responsibility

Any idiot can start a blog. I'm proof positive of this. The danger inherent in this freedom is that because most blogs aren't edited, pretty much any piece of information--no matter how ridiculous or false it might be--is available for public consumption.

Since most blogs languish in obscurity, this is generally not too much of a concern. Most bloggers never hit the big time because of the vast number of blogs, and also because the blogosphere controls traffic. If there isn't anything special about a blog , no one will link to it, and word of mouth will not spread.

The more popular bloggers--Glenn Reynolds, Mickey Kaus, Josh Marshall and Andrew Sullivan to name a handful--have a special responsibility. If a blog is mentioned on one of their sites, hit count will skyrocket and its information will flood into the blogosphere. After a while, it has the potential to leak into the mainstream media and eventually the public.

This week, I believe that Reynolds and Kaus shirked their responsibilities, linking to a Republican blog known as soxblog which suggested John Kerry isn't too bright. His logic is essentially this: John Kerry went to Boston College Law School. He didn't go to Harvard. If he could have gone to Harvard, he would have. So Harvard must have rejected him because his grades weren't good enough. And furthermore, considering Kerry's connections, his inability to get into Harvard must make him really stupid.

(Yes, I suppose I'm contributing to the problem, but I'm pretty confident my readership is so small that it won't make much of a difference.)

Someone (yes, Dad, that's you) taught me that there are things you know, things you don't know and things you think you know. There could be a million reasons that explain John Kerry's decision to attend BC. And maybe lack of intelligence is one of them. But at this point, given the incredible lack of information, it's pure speculation.

Reynolds and Kaus fueled this, and that's inexcusable.

Friday, August 06, 2004

Speaking with an iron tongue

Our president isn't exactly known for his eloquence. But this latest Bushism is particularly embarrassing. I'm thinking it's a Freudian slip:

"Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we."

Thursday, August 05, 2004

The Wall falls down on Broadway

I've often hoped that Roger Waters would follow in the footsteps of Pete Townshend and adapt The Wall for the stage like Townshend did with Tommy. It looks like it's going to happen.

Thanks to Jeff for bringing this to my attention.

Thank you

My older brother, David, was kind enough to plug Eye of the Storm in his blog, so it' s only fair that I return the favor.

For a good time, visit The King of Pointland.


Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Circle... the... date

I sure can't wait until October 5! That's when William Shatner--with help from Ben Folds--will release Has Been, the long-awaited follow-up to his 1968 classic Transformed Man, which featured his hilarious rendition of "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds."

From the amusing press release:
Shatner’s performances are stunning. His rendition of “Trying” is downright heartbreaking, as he depicts an absent father’s desperate attempt at building a relationship with his daughter long after it’s too late. His own droll way with prose makes a splash on “Common People,” in what could be an ode to a certain girl with a famous last name. And the album’s title track is a playful romp -- a spaghetti western score with Shatner embracing the lyrics, “Has Been.”
Based on that, I'm sold. And the fact that Shatner duets with Henry Rollins on one of the tracks.


Pure class

The New Yorker ran a piece this week about the Boston Herald's lopsided coverage of the Democratic National Convention. Once a somewhat charming underdog to the Boston Globe powerhouse, the Herald has become New York Post lite. This is no surprise considering their Editor, Ken Chandler, served in the same role at the Post from 1993 until 2002. Chandler's colorful comments to the New Yorker provide further insight:

“The Globe is a Times wannabe, but it can’t quite pull it off. We are just trying to extract some news from an event where there isn’t any. We knew that the Globe was going to give it a big blow job. "

During the convention, the Herald gave us the front-page headline "KERRY GIRLS GONE WILD," for a story about the behavior of Alexandra and Vanessa Kerry in the presence of Ben Affleck at a Boston bar. Chandler defends his paper's embarrassing approach to news coverage by predictably arguing that Boston needs a conservative antidote to the Globe's poisonous liberalism. But I didn't see the Globe plastering on their front page the picture of Jenna Bush sticking her tongue out at a group of reporters.

“Somebody’s got to be the conservative paper in this town,” Chandler told the New Yorker. “They don’t make them more liberal than the Globe. Boston isn’t a Republican place. On the other hand, people here are quite conservative, with a small ‘c.’”

Chandler, a newspaperman, clearly has a limited understanding of the English language. For his benefit, here are the first three definitions of "conservative" from the American Heritage Dictionary:

1. Favoring traditional views and values; tending to oppose change.
2. Traditional or restrained in style: a conservative dark suit.
3. Moderate; cautious: a conservative estimate.

This may be news to Chandler, but a newspaper that features obnoxious headlines and salacious stories is not restrained, moderate or cautious.

Monday, August 02, 2004

Welcome

With apologies to Cracker, what the world needs now is another blog like I need a hole in my head. But since I wanted to post a comment to my friend Eoin's blog, I was forced to create my own blog. So here it is.

About the title: In 1995 and 1996, my sports column for the Rutgers Daily Targum was called Eye of the Storm. Like Pete Bigelow's "The Big Picture," the title was inspired by my name and was also meant to suggest a steadiness in the center of tumult. Well, it sounded good at the time.

Why is the address eyeofthestorm2004.blogspot.com, you ask, and not eyeofthestorm.blogspot.com or theeyeofthestorm.blogspot.com? Click and you'll see that those addresses are being wasted away. The former blog has not been updated since February 8, 2002! Sheesh.