Well, I was out of town: and I don’t own a T.V.  So it’s always interesting to see what it is that I miss on a regular basis.  This is not snobbery, that I don’t own one of the televisions.  Anyone who checks out this blog knows I have a penchant for entertaining, low-brow reads, in fact I have at least one mass-market paperback in almost every room of the house. 

So.  First I thought I would check that quality news source, CNN.  I caught some of Wolf Blitzer on CNN and some of Lou Dobbs and I was horrified.  Isn’t news analysis supposed to give you a lot of facts and then put them in a logical progression?  That is not what I heard–what I heard was, say, two unsubstantiated facts, and then a quick, angry conclusion that didn’t necessarily follow from those facts.

After about an hour of this, I switched to some channel or another that featured competitive dance.  Much better: not only could you view the fantastic artistry, but the commentators for the most part elucidated more fully what you could see for yourself.  It seems a shame somehow that dance judges have this process more fully in hand then our political commentators.

Yesterday, C-Span Radio carried the National Press Club speech of Mr. Dobbs, and he made better points among his peers than he made on the network.  Mr. Dobbs: your audience is your peers.  After that, Mr. Woodward and Mr. Bernstein were discussing the “state of journalism” on C-Span and they somewhat diplomatically but inexorably dissed the blog phenomenon.  They also dissed television news.  I’ll go for a blog over television any day–at least, based upon my latest experiences.

By the way, in the dance competition: Germany won, overall; the Italians took ballroom dancing; and the Russians had the Latin dancing completely sewn up.  Your globalized culture at work and play.  And there was a lesson there, too: consistency counts. . . so I’ll get back to work.

Update: found Epictetus on my desk, now unburied, and open to this page:

No. 28: If someone turned your body over to just any person who happened to meet you, you would be angry.  But are you not ashamed that you turn over your own faculty of judgment to whoever happens along, so that if he abuses you it is upset and confused?