OMT One Man's Trash...from Norman Leahy

Monday, August 14, 2006 :::

When the Facts Don't Fit...

...use ellipses. Or at least that's what Shaun says the Daily Fishwrap (or Daily Press, if you're so inclined) has done with Rep. Jo Ann Davis' remarks regarding Sec. Def. Donald Rumsfeld. And as Shaun points out today, Davis' spokesmodels are retreating from the DP's characterization of the Representative's remarks.

Meanwhile, at the Richmond War Room, Not Buck says the DP's story has a "fundamental flaw":

...if this pronouncement (or joke, depending on whom you ask) is worth of a headline like this, where's the follow up?

It should have had something in it like this: Speaking after the event, Davis said she [fill in the blank with pithy explanation/excuse/no comment here]. As a reporter, you can't just leave something like that hanging. If you're covering an event and Jerry Falwell says he's decided that Hinduism is the way to go, you have to grab a staffer and say, "Hey, I need to talk to him about that. Was he being serious?"

If the answer is yes, you follow up. If the answer is no, you present it as a joke. That's a basic, fundamental rule of journalism, at least according to the ink stained wretches I talk to. If it's not, then it ought to be.

Perhaps there was a follow-up that, for whatever reason, didn't appear in print. We may never know. But Not Buck's little dig at the end is priceless:

...this looks like the reporter came in, grabbed the buffet, turned on the tape recorder, and typed up the highlights.

Just in time to make the deadline. And to get the story picked up by the

::: posted by Norman Leahy at 8/14/2006 2 comments


"You know what the fellow said: In Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they also produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love -- they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock." -- Orson Welles, The Third Man

"The graveyards are full of indespensable men" -- Charles de Gaulle

"Oh, so Mother Nature needs a favor? Well maybe she should have thought of that when she was besetting us with droughts and floods and poison monkeys. Nature started the fight for survival and now she wants to quit because she's losing. Well I say, hard cheese!" -- Montgomery Burns

"Don't pretend that you know me...cause I don't even know myself" -- The Who

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