Sunday, January 17, 2010

NYT set to further reduce its relevance

NYT to begin charging for online subscriptions

One commenter to this story wrote:

"The NY Times is an incredible newspaper."

I certainly agree with that statement, though not in the way he meant it. Their credibility certainly isn't what it used to be. Leftists love them. Most other people either distrust or ignore them, and for good reason. The Times is the poster-child for the leftist corruption of what some call the Mainstream Media. That isn't to say that every article is leftist propaganda, but enough articles are that the paper as a whole is made suspect. In addition to the articles that attempt to persuade rather than inform (and I don't mean op-ed either), there is the perpetual question of what they're NOT telling you. If the Times is unable spin a story to their liking, they simply ignore it.

Growing distrust has lead to reduced readership. They try to blame this on the internet, but that argument falls apart when one looks at other papers whose circulation is either stable or growing. There are only so many leftists to sell papers to, and the Times already has that market saturated. The farther out in left field they go, the fewer people are going to buy their paper.

If they adopt a model that restricts open access to their content, bloggers will simply go elsewhere. This may be the point. Right now the Times is regularly called to task by citizen journalists for its lack of honesty. Not only does that criticism sting, but it further damages their brand, which over the long run determines the paper's continued relevance. By limiting access, they limit criticism. The problem is that when you limit criticism by hiding from your critics, you cease to be relevant to anyone who isn't a fanboy.

One might argue that the paper should seek to improve its quality by hiring those with a commitment to honesty and objectivity. The problem is that such people don't go to journalism school. At the very least they don't graduate from it. You can't hire people who don't exist. The Times would have to begin hiring people from other backgrounds, and that would provoke the ire of the Journalism school grads who won't appreciate having their educational credentials devalued like that.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

The Road

The Road

I appreciated this movie, but the kid was annoying.

You would think that having been born into a world of decay and cannibalism, he wouldn't whine so much. You would also think that he would know when to be absolutely silent, like when a clan of cannibals is lurking downstairs. His "poppa! poppa!" routine made me want to reach through the screen and smack him.

His behavior would have made sense had he been a suburban rugrat uprooted from his world of peace and security and dropped into a post-apocalyptic hell. But he was BORN into this world, which made his behavior seem false and out of place. I hate stories that portray children as helpless by virtue of their youth alone. I dare say that a kid born into a world such as that one, who had managed to survive to the age of ten, would give most green berets a run for their money.

Viggo Mortensen's character as the wary and grimly determined father working to protect his son alive made a lot more sense to me.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Racism rears its ugly head again

Chicago Police scrap entrance exam

This is ridiculous racist nonsense. Hiring and promotion policies should be color-blind. Anyone and everyone should have the same opportunity. If "minorities" aren't pursuing a career in law enforcement, then how does compromising the integrity of the recruitment process make the job more attractive to them? If someone came along and told me that they'd lowered the standards of admission to a school or job so that I would qualify, I'd be angry and insulted. Yet time and time again I see this condescending crap being pushed by racists. Do they really expect a self-respecting "minority" to respond favourably to this? Why would anyone want to work someplace where their competence would always be in question because people with their shade of skin are not held to the same standard as everyone else?

Giving someone a job based on the color of their skin is a violation of the civil rights act of 1964. You would think that law enforcement agencies would be especially careful to actually follow the law.

Race is a social construct. There is no relationship between color and competence. Those who pretend otherwise are racists.