IN A NEW YORK MINUTE
BY John Tully
THE LOS ANGELES SUN
JUNE 17 2004
Being a vocal, loyal fan of the Redskins, Bullets and Redsox at an upstate New York boarding school didn’t go over too well with the lads. He hated their teams right back, as any good D.C.- loving boy would but he was badly outnumbered. The Big Apple’s teams and in turn, the City, had been his nemesis for years and moving to the coast only strengthened that rivalry.
He used to fly People Express in and out of Newark and it was hell. The bus to Port Authority and the cruise to Canal Street was always a fun adventure but he had absolutely revelled in not being a Newyorker.
Seventeen years and a minute later he fell hard.
Can you blame him?
Every polish waitress, every Ecuadorian launderer,
Indian Cabdriver, downtown hipster, bodega owner and Yankee Stadium attendee treated him like a king.
The smell of burnt pretzels and Sabrett hot dogs with cars whizzing/honking by; a beautiful day in Central Park and the sun going down right exactly over the West Village. Thirty Irish bars in ten square blocks, thousands of great restaurants and a subway that works.
He gave in.
Seventeen years later he fell in love with a city that never sleeps and it was all over. But it wasn’t until he flew back to the coast that evening that he choked-up when he figured it out:
this was a truly great town that had been attacked; it’s heart broken just two and a half years before.
Just when he had lost faith in pretty much all of mankind, this good, noble, wounded yet resilient city had given him some hope that America could still be great.
The beautiful woman didn’t hurt either.
People are angry-angry I say!
By Tom Chivers
15 Sep 2009
If Dan Brown’s new novel The Lost Symbol is anything like his previous works, it will not go down well with the critics. Famously, comedian Stewart Lee mocked him for using the sentence “The famous man looked at the red cup” in his bestselling The Da Vinci Code. • Dan Brown’s conspiracy theories: six of the best
In fact, Lee was making that up – the sentence never appears in the book. So are the critics unfair on Brown?
They’re certainly harsh. Edinburgh professor of linguistics Geoffrey Pullum says “Brown’s writing is not just bad; it is staggeringly, clumsily, thoughtlessly, almost ingeniously bad.” He picks out some excerpts for special criticism. The female lead in Angels and Demons learns of the death of her scientist father: “Genius, she thought. My father . . . Dad. Dead.” A member of the Vatican Guard in the same book becomes annoyed by something, and we learn that “his eyes went white, like a shark about to attack.”
Below we have selected 20 phrases that may grate on the ear. It’s not a definitive list. It couldn’t be: he has published five novels, each around 500 pages long, and the arguments over which are the worst bits will go on for a while. But it’s our list. Add your own in the comment box below.
20. Angels and Demons, chapter 1: Although not overly handsome in a classical sense, the forty-year-old Langdon had what his female colleagues referred to as an ‘erudite’ appeal — wisp of gray in his thick brown hair, probing blue eyes, an arrestingly deep voice, and the strong, carefree smile of a collegiate athlete.
They say the first rule of fiction is “show, don’t tell”. This fails that rule.
19. The Da Vinci Code, chapter 83: “The Knights Templar were warriors,” Teabing reminded, the sound of his aluminum crutches echoing in this reverberant space.
“Remind” is a transitive verb – you need to remind someone of something. You can’t just remind. And if the crutches echo, we know the space is reverberant. [Read more...]
Numerous Myths and Falsehoods Advanced by the Media in Their Coverage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act
Media Matters for America previously identified numerous myths and falsehoods advanced by the media in their coverage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. As debate on the bill continues in Congress, other myths and falsehoods advanced by the media about the recovery package have risen to prominence. These myths and falsehoods include: the assertion that the bill will not stimulate the economy — including the false assertion that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said the bill will not stimulate the economy; that spending in the bill is not stimulus; that there is no reason for stimulus after an economic turnaround begins; that corporate tax rate cuts and capital gains tax rate cuts would provide substantial stimulus; and that undocumented immigrants without Social Security numbers could receive the “Making Work Pay” tax credit provided in the bill.
In a February 1 article, The Associated Press reported an assertion by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) that the recovery bill will not stimulate the economy without noting that the CBO disagrees. ABC World News anchor Charles Gibson echoed this assertion during his February 3 interview with President Obama, stating: “And as you know, there’s a lot of people in the public, a lot of members of Congress who think this is pork-stuffed and that it really doesn’t stimulate.” Additionally, on the January 28 edition of his show, nationally syndicated radio host Rush Limbaugh allowed Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) to falsely claim of the bill: “Even the Congressional Budget Office, controlled by the Democrats now, says it is not a stimulative bill.” Fox News host Sean Hannity repeated this claim on the February 2 broadcast of Fox News’ Hannity, asserting that the CBO “say[s] it’s not a stimulus bill.”
In fact, in analyzing the House version of the bill, H.R. 1, and the proposed Senate version, the CBO stated that it expects both measures to “have a noticeable impact on economic growth and employment in the next few years.” Additionally, in his January 27 written testimony before the House Budget Committee, CBO director Douglas Elmendorf said that H.R. 1 would “provide massive fiscal stimulus that includes a combination of government spending increases and revenue reductions.” Elmendorf further stated: “In CBO’s judgment, H.R. 1 would provide a substantial boost to economic activity over the next several years relative to what would occur without any legislation.”
Several media figures, including CNN correspondent Carol Costello, CBS Evening News correspondent Sharyl Attkisson, and ABC World News anchor Charles Gibson, have all uncritically reported or aired the Republican claim that, in Gibson’s words, “it’s a spending bill and not a stimulus,” without noting that economists have said that government spending is stimulus. Indeed, in his January 27 testimony, Elmendorf explicitly refuted the suggestion that some of the spending provisions in the bill would not have a stimulative effect, stating: “[I]n our estimation — and I think the estimation of most economists — all of the increase in government spending and all of the reduction in tax revenue provides some stimulative effect. People are put to work, receive income, spend that on something else. That puts somebody else to work.” Additionally, Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, has said, “[S]pending is stimulus. Any spending will generate jobs. It is that simple.”
3. There is no reason for stimulus after a turnaround begins [Read more...]