With so much apologizing, you'd think we'd be better at it:
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||M - Th 11p / 10c|
|Harry Truman Was Not a War Criminal|
The NY Times blog has a couple of very funny viral photos from Mexico.
WHAT WE'RE DOING
Midmorning (9-11) - Kate Smith hosts. In the first hour, is college really worth the cost? Second hour: You know those pangs you occasionally have about dropping out of the rat race and returning to your simple, rural ways? Michael Perry tried that. Tune in and hear how that went.
Midday (11-1) - Maybe we should've combined Midmorning's and Midday's first hour. University of Minnesota president Robert Bruininks is in the studio.
Talk of the Nation (1-3) - The Supreme Court will decide if Barack Obama's election means that the 1965 Voting Rights Act is no longer needed. Second hour: A discussion about a study that says the fear of predators stalking children online is overblown. If that sounds familiar to you -- or even if it doesn't -- I told you about this story a month ago.
All Things Considered (3-6:30) - Does a recession propel purloining? MPR's Marty Moylan will answer the question. Find the story online late this afternoon, too. NPR's Elizabeth Blair finds out why stealth marketing is all the advertising rage (answer: it's cheap). Stealth marketing is when you're being marketed to, but you don't know it.(8 Comments)
The practice of publicizing evil-doers and undesirables is spreading.
The UK today released the names of 16 people who are barred from the country. They include American talk show host Michael Savage and the preacher (and his daughter) who picket funerals of American servicepeople. Here's the spreadsheet.
(h/t: Julia Schrenkler)(2 Comments)
Testifying on the flu-that-must-not-be-named at the Capitol today In a Morning Edition interview today, former state epidemiologist Mike Osterholm, also one of the premier experts in the country on the subject of pandemics, provided a real glimpse into the workings of the major American news media:
"I actually had a reporter from a major media venue on Thursday of last week interview me about was the government doing enough, quickly enough, you know had they failed to act in this very important public health problem? And yesterday called me and now is doing a story on did the government hype it. The story line went that quickly from 'they didn't act fast enough' to 'now they hyped it.'"
Some things can mutate faster than the flu.
Unfortunately, that one reporter -- probably from CNN or Fox -- becomes "the poster child" for "the media," and paints an unfortunate picture that ignores the work of hundreds of well-informed, calm, and ethical journalists who have worked tirelessly on the subject. And, yeah, I'm talking about MPR's Lorna Benson, for one. Her appearance with Tom Crann a week ago, was nothing short of magnificent.
Media anecdotes provide great sound bites, but they do as much damage as the approach the journalist in question is taking and undermines legitimate efforts to inform you. Why should you trust any journalist?
Somewhat related to this, Mark Henderson, the science editor of The Times (London), wrote today that there's still plenty of reason to take the outbreak seriously:
Most health scares are indeed groundless, and some, such as MMR, have caused grave damage to public health. Swine flu, however, is not one of them. It is a threat that must be taken extremely seriously, even if the death toll does not rise sharply in the next few weeks.
While scientists are describing swine flu as a mild strain, this terminology is relative. There is no such thing as mild flu -- it is always a serious infection that can be life-threatening. The danger from this particular virus is especially acute because it is new: our immune systems are naive to it, and this raises the likelihood that it will infect a very large number of people.
There is also no guarantee that this virus will continue to be comparatively benign. It is a fact of life that flu mutates fast, and there is every possibility that H1N1 will become more virulent, or resistant to antiviral drugs. The 1918-19 Spanish flu began as a mild virus in the northern hemisphere spring. It returned with a vengeance in the winter, bearing a mutation that enabled it to kill 50 million. If swine flu disappears over the summer, we can expect it back when the weather gets colder and wetter. It might well have turned nastier by then.
But, overall, this remains a no-win situation for health authorities. There are too many agendas in play to expect otherwise.(1 Comments)
The major retail gasoline outlets -- SuperAmerica, BP, and Holiday -- raised the price of gasoline to $2.19 today. That's still way below what it was a year ago, of course, but it's still a 16-percent increase in the last week.
Apparently, it's the "optimism thing."
"With the outlook for risky and pro-growth assets continuing to improve (particularly as U.S. equity markets turn positive for the year), we are growing more constructive on energy markets," technical analysts at Barclays Capital told the Dow Jones Newswire. Translation: It's a good time to raise prices and make some dough.
The Associated Press also reported that easing fears about the flu also have contributed to higher prices.
Was last week the last time we'll see gasoline for under $2?(1 Comments)
The Minnesota Court of Appeals today rejected the claim of a convicted rapist who said because he tried to kill himself during his trial, he was denied the right to be present at his trial.
Jason Finnegan took an overdose of drugs on the final day of his trial for raping a 14-year-old girl in Otter Tail County.
The trial went on without him, although the jury wasn't told why Finnegan wasn't attending.
"The district court did not err in finding that appellant voluntarily absented himself from trial, and hold that a suicide attempt can constitute a voluntary and unjustified absence from trial constituting a waiver of the right to be present. Appellant knew that he was required to be in court the next morning for the final day of his trial," the court said.
President Obama and Vice President Biden hopped in the motorcade and hit up a small burger joint in Virginia for lunch today, the Washington Post reported. Cute stuff, of course, but there are so many unanswered questions here.
Let's look a little closer:
A couple of $20's? And each paid for his own meal. How much are they charging for burgers in Virginia, anyway? $6.95, according to NPR.
A closer look at the transaction:
Have you ever seen a politician hold onto money as tightly as the vice president?
A question I'd ask if I did a TV segment about good questions: Where does the president get cash? Is there an ATM in the White House?
Apparently, the place is worth getting elected for:
Though it appears to be a tough place for a couple of guys to strike up a conversation with average folks...
The people in line are obviously too shy to talk to the two celebrities. What would your opening line be?(13 Comments)
A battle is intensifying between Minneapolis-based Target and hedge fund boss William Ackman, who has a history of fighting with the companies in which he becomes an investor.
It will come to a head later this month when stockholders meet to vote on a board of directors. Ackman wants to replace four of them with four of his own.
Target has selected an unfinished store in Waukesha, Wisconsin as the site for the meeting and Ackman is suggesting it's an attempt to make it difficult for his sympathizers to get to the meeting.
"This is another Pershing Square (Ackman's hedge fund) sideshow," a Target
spokesman told Reuters.
But Ackman has some reason to be suspicious. When his hedge fund got into a proxy fund against the railroad CSX, the company held its stockholder meeting in a difficult-to-get-to railroad yard.
Here's Ackman's filing with the SEC in which he complains about the Target location.(2 Comments)
A controversy that has broken out over a few thousand dollars at the University of Minnesota Daily newspaper.
In an "open letter to readers" today, two editors -- Andy Mannix and Mike Rose -- criticize the decision to give $3,000 bonuses to the paper's president and business officer, while noting that the editor-in-chief didn't get a dime.
"These bonuses come at a time when the Daily is facing dire financial hardship," they wrote. "The most impactful budget cuts made to the Daily this semester include massive pay cuts (reaching 50 percent for some), discontinuing a Friday print edition and cutting entire departments and sections of the newspaper."
The brouhaha has spilled over into the paper's comments section, which mostly favored the bonuses, but for those of us worrying about young whippersnappers coming into the profession from college, we were shocked to learn that college journalists appear to be equally worried about the young whippersnappers coming from high school.
The problem with most newspapers is the journalists. Don't let yourself think there arent hundreds of younger, smarter kids graduating from High School right NOW who would gladly fill your shoes.
Would you rather they divied up their salaried bonus and you kids all walked away with $3.00?
Get off your high horse and find something better to cover.
(h/t: Anna Weggel)(1 Comments)
Should taxpayers pay for a hockey arena in St. Paul?
That's the question facing Gov. Tim Pawlenty, a professed hockey nut, now that the Legislature has sent him a political grenade -- a bill that forgives $33 million of a no-interest loan the city got from the state to lure professional hockey back to Minnesota by building the Xcel arena.
The city really doesn't need the money, except that it wants to build another hockey arena across the street for the benefit -- primarily -- of the Minnesota Wild, who need a hockey facility.
A hotel planned for the site has been dropped, according to St. Paul councilman Dave Thune on the the St. Paul Issues Forum. "The ice sheet would provide a base...(surrounded) by a really exciting retail component befitting historic seven corners. The pond would host world class figure skating, public skating, wild hockey practice, curling and youth hockey," he said.
Perhaps. But wasn't one benefit of the Xcel Center to be a boost to business in St. Paul? A few restaurants have benefited, there's more business for parking ramps, but other than that, not much. And while it attracted the Republican National Convention, that week was a disaster, even for businesses a teargas cannister's throw from the arena.
Back when then-mayor Norm Coleman was trying to cut the arena deal, some people in St. Paul objected to the city getting stuck with pricetag for an arena that would attract hockey-loving suburbanites. Perhaps this is one way they can pony up their share.
But what about people in Marshall, for example. Its representative, Marty Seifert, the House Minority Leader is, predictably, no fan of the bill. "Go back to your coffee shop. Go back to your hardware store ... and ask people if you think this is an opportune time for us to be forgiving over $30 million that's owed to the state of Minnesota, from a deal that was struck in the 1990s, when we are $6 billion in the hole," said he said.
What say you?(10 Comments)