The Passing Parade: Cheap Shots from a Drive By Mind

"...difficile est saturam non scribere. Nam quis iniquae tam patiens urbis, tam ferreus, ut teneat se..." " is hard not to write Satire. For who is so tolerant of the unjust City, so steeled, that he can restrain himself... Juvenal, The Satires (1.30-32)

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

CELEBRITY NEWS: People magazine, the bible of our celebrity age, asks on its cover this week who will save Lindsey Lohan from the flaming and well-traveled arc of personal and professional self-destruction she is now on. I don’t mean to sound cynical here (there’s an obvious lie) but isn’t the point of magazines like People the snide and gleeful documentation of celebrity self-destruction for the prurient and voyeuristic titillation of its readers? Celebrities with stable home lives, assuming there are any, do not make it into the pages of People simply because the magazine’s audience is not interested in any celebrity not out making a public ass of themselves. In a related story, Paris Hilton has checked into an all-inclusive resort that is definitely not the Paris Hilton, and we all may sleep sounder in our beds, safe in the knowledge that the world is now a safer place.

UPDATE: Here’s an update to the above, although it’s not really much of an update, since it’s has nothing to do with what I’ve already written, but I thought it was interesting and maybe you will, too. Bill O’Reilly pointed out a couple of days ago that the New York Times put the story of the terrorist plot to destroy JFK International Airport on page 37 of this week’s Sunday paper, for which he has gotten a lot of grief from all the usual left-wing suspects. Now, in fairness to the Times and for those of you who may not get the city edition of the paper delivered to your doorstep, page 37 of last Sunday’s paper was the first page of the Times’ Metro section. This is the part of the paper wherein the Times, which likes to think of itself as the nation’s newspaper, pays lip service to geographic reality and reports what’s going on in New York City. The Times doesn’t like covering the city beat and frankly, it shows. If you want real coverage of what goes on in New York City, read the Post or the Daily News, the Sun or the Observer; read Newsday if you want to catch what’s going on in Queens; even read a left wing rag like the Village Voice and ignore the classified ads for the transsexual prostitutes and those Korean bordellos in the West 30’s. Read almost any other newspaper coming out of New York and you will get better news coverage of the city than the Times offers. But lousy or not, the terror plot was there, on the first page of the Metro section and above the fold, too.

But, you know, the arrest of these would-be jihadis made the actual front page of newspapers all over the United States, whereas the Times, on its actual front page, had yet another Guantanamo story, poor Indian brick makers, and a piece about the gentleman who plays the violins at the violin museum in Cremona, Italy. I should point out here that I am a tremendous admirer of the Stradivari, Amati, and Guarneri families and all of their products; no one likes listening to Itzhak Perlman swing a hot Strad more than I do; but I think we would all agree that in terms of news value a disrupted terror plot beats keeping great violins in musical trim any day of the week, especially when the target of the disrupted plot lies only a few miles from the Times’ corporate offices in Manhattan and those violins do not.

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