Monday, July 26, 2004

Is the NY Times biased? Of course not! Oh, wait... of course it is!, it says.

Howell Raines, then Executive Editor of the New York Times, accepting an "editor of the year" award from the National Press Foundation, February 20, 2003:

"Our greatest accomplishment as a profession is the development since World War II of a news reporting craft that is truly non-partisan ... It is an exercise in disinformation, of alarming proportions, this attempt to convince the audience of the world's most ideology-free newspapers that they're being subjected to agenda-driven news reflecting a liberal bias."

Dan Okrent, public editor of the New York Times, July 25, 2004:

"Is the New York Times a liberal newspaper? Of course it is.... the social issues: gay rights, gun control, abortion and environmental regulation, among others... if you think The Times plays it down the middle on any of them, you've been reading the paper with your eyes closed.

"... if you're examining the paper's coverage of these subjects from a perspective that is neither urban nor Northeastern nor culturally seen-it-all; if you are among the groups The Times treats as strange objects to be examined on a laboratory slide (devout Catholics, gun owners, Orthodox Jews, Texans); if your value system wouldn't wear well on a composite New York Times journalist, then a walk through this paper can make you feel you're traveling in a strange and forbidding world.

"Start with the editorial page, so thoroughly saturated in liberal theology that when it occasionally strays from that point of view the shocked yelps from the left overwhelm even the ceaseless rumble of disapproval from the right...."

Hey, that was Howell's page before he took over the rest of the paper!

Howell? Howell? Did Howell lie?? I'll never believe a Times editorial again.

From now on it's the NY Post for me -- a paper that at least has the virtue of not getting self-righteous about kidding itself. Which goes with a livelier sports section as well.

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Cannibals are such funny cut-ups.

July 10, 2004 -- The notorious Butcher of Tompkins Square was a real cut-up in court yesterday, leaving jurors in stitches with his fond memories of his marijuana-loving menagerie of house pets.

His dog, his cat and even his pet rooster would all come running when he fired up a joint back in the day, East Village murderer and dismemberer Daniel Rakowitz told jurors to their audible laughter.

"Whenever I used to smoke pot, my animals would all gather around me," the long-haired pot piper drawled in his Texan accent. "My rooster would jump on my lap," he said fondly.

"Did they inhale?" deadpanned Manhattan prosecutor Gary Galperin...

"Get some order in the courtroom!" a court officer snapped as the room dissolved in laughter...

The prosecutor and a lawyer for the state attorney general's office are fighting Rakowitz's bid to convince a jury he is no longer crazy and dangerous...

Rakowitz has been locked up since being found not guilty by reason of mental disease of murdering his dancer girlfriend, Monika Beerle, in 1989, dismembering her, then boiling her in pieces on his stove, and feeding some of the resulting soup to the homeless of Tompkins Square park.

NY Post

Saturday, July 03, 2004

Marlon Brando dies, $20 million in debt. Far be it from me to speak ill of the acting abilities of someone like Brando, so I'll leave that to Terry Teachout.

But if Brando really died $20 million in debt as reported, after all he made, he surely should have starred in one of Hollywood's many versions of Brewster's Millions. "He once paid $18,000 to fly 50 bags of sand from Tahiti to his L.A. home..." say the obits. None of those Brewsters ever thought of that! (Selling his points on the The Godfather for $100,000 cash to plonk on that island of his was a clever move too.)

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Fired from the public schools for not doing nothing when being paid to do it.
In a bizarre, only-in-New-York story, five school administrators face the ax for being no-shows at their no-work jobs, said Special Schools Investigator Richard Condon.

The veteran assistant principals -- who earn up to $106,000 a year -- cheated the city out of tens of thousands of dollars by skipping out of work - although they had no work to do.

They spent the school day shopping at department stores and visiting attractions around the city, Condon said. They've all been caught on surveillance cameras playing hooky, he said. Four of the five allegedly falsified time sheets by claiming they spent the day at work when investigators tailing them caught them elsewhere.

"These supervisors couldn't even supervise themselves," Condon said. "They shouldn't supervise anyone else."

All five had been temporarily placed in a regional office last fall awaiting re-assignment to a school following the Department of Education's reorganization. But they were not assigned specific duties and refused to do any clerical or administrative work during the three to six months they spent in the office, insisting their union contract prohibited it, Condon said.

So their "job" consisted of sitting in the office...

Condon said he has referred the case to Manhattan DA Robert Morgenthau "because they stole money from the Department of Education for taking pay for work they didn't do."

And Schools Chancellor Joel Klein said he's moving to fire the five phantom supervisors, who are supposed to work a seven-hour, 40-minute day. Condon admitted the investigation uncovered management problems -- like giving the supervisors nothing to do.

Klein's office blamed a "dysfunctional union contract." But a spokesman for the Council of Supervisors ... accused educrats of dragging their heels in reassigning people...
end quote from the New York Post