Tuesday :: Feb 24, 2004

Gud Journalism

by Duckman GR

You know, somewhere, someway, thereís got to be reporters who do good work. We all know about the Pickle, and others like Judith friggen Miller, now hereís another one. And it isnít politics he's covering either, but the rising price of gasoline.

The retail price of gasoline surged in California last week to an average of $2.03 per gallon, as two unexpected refinery shutdowns caused a sharp run-up in wholesale markets.

Analysts said the market's quick response was a harbinger of what is to come when the peak summer driving season kicks in, not only out West, but also in the Midwest and Northeast.

"It was a typical West Coast price spike due to a supply disruption," said Jacob Bournazian, an analyst at the Energy Information Administration, the statistical arm of the Energy Department. (ed-my bold)

Brad Foss writes for the AP. Iíve got one request for ya, Brad. Could you maybe trouble yourself to find out WHY these refineries shut down so unexpectedly? Or at least to ask why? Because itís kinda salient to our understanding of the situation, and might be helpful for people who might want to do something about it.

I took a journalism class way back when, my report of a spectacular, fiery, car crash, found its way rather rapidly into the Professorís discussion forum. I didnít enjoy that particular discussion all that much, as you might imagine.

Thereís a lot of bitching on the Left and Right about the work of journalists these days, and justifiably so. In part because of partisan politics, in part because of outright propaganda by embeds or hacks/flacks (see Novak, Bob, in the Dictionary). Some of it's just lousy work. And donít tell me about deadline pressures. We all face deadline pressures. That doesnít excuse poor work.

Democracy depends on the the free flow of ideas and information. The Fourth Estate is a big part of that, and their failures impact us all. It's time for the press to get to work, their motivation should not just be their paychecks, but their obligation to free speech. If they can't do it, they should find another line of work.

As for the "Gud" in the title, I'm reminded of one of my favorite Gary Larson cartoons. Crumbs and a sign lead to an open door. The 'Dog' scrunches behind a wall, peering around the corner, hopefully waiting. The sign says, "KAT FUD,' and the open door is the door to ......... the clothes dryer!

Anyone else feel that way about what the press is doing?

Duckman GR :: 11:33 AM :: Comments (7) :: Digg It!