Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Computers, man. Can’t live with em, can’t live without em. I need to majorly overhaul my computer, even get a new. Anyone out there have a spare P4 with a decent box? Send it my way. I’ll give you a receipt and you can tell the IRS you donated it to charity. Ha!

Newsweek, Newsweek, Newsweek. Riots over a story, a story retracted, a scandal held up and examined by the blogosphere and presumably cable news. I say presumably because I don’t watch that shit. It’s so much blah blah blah, punctuated by commercials. I hate commercials too. I’ve read some good stuff on the whole controversy, mostly on my fav news site, You can pretty much get the goods from Will, a guy who has the perfect job. He surfs the internet all day, clicking away and writing about it. I wonder how much he gets paid. The Wall Street Journal also has a good story about using anonymous sources, which is a crucial element in this Newsweek ordeal.

Aside from the very real tragedy of the deaths in Afghanistan, Newsweek is being knocked on procedural intricacies of little relevance to the wider world. Should a journalist use an anonymous source? Should that source clarify whether the desecration of the Koran actually happened or was just alleged? Should anyone have placed a call to the Psychic Friends Network to see if next week’s issue would start riots? Who the fuck cares, man? I can see situations where journalists should use anonymous sources, and also situations where that may cause trouble. I can also see situations where an anonymous source has no control over what emphasis a journalist will place on the information he has been given, and situations where an anonymous source leads a journalist in one direction or another. But the psychic thing? I don’t know if that’s possible.

I guess I’m much more simple in my thinking. Newsweek isn’t responsible for the riots in Afghanistan or the loss of life. The rioters are. I read things that piss me off every day (want proof?) but I don’t run into the streets, throwing rocks and burning cars. Rioting only works sometimes, and most of the time, riots break out for the stupidest reasons. I’m from Colorado, home to many riots in recent years. When the Broncos won the Super Bowl, people went crazy, smashing windows, setting fires. WTF? The home team won and they celebrated by rioting. That’s when you know the dumb have truly taken over. Boulder erupts into riots almost yearly, usually between October and March, drunken college kids reared on too much Beastie Boys who know Daddy will bail them out if they get arrested. It’s stupid. Regardless of what Newsweek wrote or how they got it or whether it’s true or whether George Bush himself personally flushed the Koran down the toilet, it does not excuse the mob from doing incredibly idiotic things, like tearing apart your own city in a riot.