Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Edward R. Stewart

Over the years several things of a relatively trivial nature have irritated me maybe a bit more than such things should.  I began to lose interest in football during the early 1970s about the time I first heard that an unremarkable lineman was making over $100,000/yr in the NFL.  That’s when a starting engineer made about $10-12,000/yr.

The same kind of high pay was going to major league hitters that had no better than .240 batting averages.  Then there were the early days of showboating in the end zones, the end zone dances and such, and breathless announcers dubbing one sports guy or another, a “hero.”  In my world, a hero was a far more substantial person than a kid showing off in the end zone. 

Then came the baseball strikes and free-agency where very highly paid athletes declared themselves “entertainers” and closed down the 1994 World Series.  Much to the consternation of family members I haven’t been interested in modern sports for a long time.  When I played, it was a different time and a different character.

As for news reporting, it suffered its own version of withering substance along with an increase in triviality.  Like most of us I’ve led a busy life working and raising a family, so there has been little time to contemplate the details of these changes around us. 

However, more recently I’ve taken more time to contemplate a variety of things and take note of the stupidity that seems to swirl around us every day.  I’m no longer interested in getting wound up about dumb things, but do find it interesting to dig a little deeper to find “the rest of the story,” the one that easily escapes us when we’re not paying close attention. 

I stopped all periodical subscriptions decades ago.  No time to read them and I got tired of hauling unread papers and magazines out for garbage pickup.  It dawned on me that all I was doing when I did read those things was simply reading a stranger’s opinion or report and I could draw those conclusions myself.  With growing demands on my time, it grew more important to choose my diversions carefully.  Now and then, in the event of encountering an outrageous or plain dumb piece, it was revealing to look up who the author was.

This past weekend a headline danced across the screen saying that the New York Times had (seriously) posed the notion that the comedian Jon Stewart (born Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz; November 28, 1962) may be this generation’s Edward R. Murrow.  Now, I ejected the New York Times from my approved news vendor list many years ago, mostly due to their slanted reporting which more recently evolved into shameful leftist propaganda.  It’s always been a big paper, so it was one of those that I frequently hauled out to the garbage, much of it unread. 

For those of you that don’t recall Edward R. Murrow (1908-1965), he was a highly regarded newsman from the 1930-1960 time frame and an early TV news pioneer.  Jon Stewart is a talented comedian.

The Times writers’ premise was based on Stewart’s public (and comedic) charge to Congress to take care of the 911 police and firemen health problems.  Never mind that they were being taken care of by programs already in place and the new initiative was loaded with about 100% too much pork which would not flow to the police and firefighters at all.  Never mind the facts, this was a leftist foray.   

The illustration shows this generation’s proposed replacement for Edward R. Murrow and the authors of the NYT article so you can see the faces behind the words which is sometimes useful to help you decide how much credibility to give the writers.


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