Daily Archives: 11 May 03

Correcting the Record:

The Times airs its dirty laundry in agonizing detail. The article is frank about the extent of fabrication and plagiarism in ex-reporter Jayson Blair’s high-visibility national reporting on such issues as the Washington sniper attacks, the domestic reaction to the invasion of Iraq, and the rescue of Jessica Lynch. The crucial issue in this abrogation of the public trust in the Times, however — how he could get away with it for so long — is glossed over in one brief paragraph:

The investigation suggests several reasons Mr. Blair’s deceits went undetected for so long: a failure of communication among senior editors; few complaints from the subjects of his articles; his savviness and his ingenious ways of covering his tracks. Most of all, no one saw his carelessness as a sign that he was capable of systematic fraud.

(Sound of the wind blowing as The Times neatly sidesteps any corporate responsibility). In an accompanying editorial note, the mea culpa is similarly tight-lipped: “The Times regrets that it did not detect the journalistic deceptions sooner. A separate internal inquiry, by the management, will examine the newsroom’s processes for training, assignment and accountability.”

Annals of Emerging Disease (cont’d.):

Why Is Jonathan Simms Still Alive? “Jonathan Simms lies in a bed at a hospital somewhere in Belfast — the British courts will not allow the press to say exactly where. He is thin and pale, and on the wall behind him his parents have propped photos taken in happier times, to show the staff the handsome 18-year-old locked within this shell. It is hard to see the connection between that vibrant young man and the one who lies here now, jerking with involuntary spasms.” NY Times

No Joke??

Man Advertises ‘Son for Sale’ on Internet

A man who jokingly offered his five-year-old son for sale on the Internet has had to explain himself to police after a complaint from a concerned web surfer….

‘Hyperactive kid for sale, good at vacuuming, not great at washing dishes because he’s too short,’ the ad read. ‘Guaranteed to annoy. Five pounds ($8) or nearest offer.’

Yahoo! News