Saturday’s top (afternoon) stories

Sorry to be a bit late with this — hey, it’s the weekend. Let’s pretend today that the stories I’m selecting are for the front page of an afternoon paper. I really miss those. Here goes:


  1. Ahmadinejad Claims Victory — Today’s lede story. The Iranian regime claims it won; the reformist opposition says it cheated. It’s hard to think of a scenario more likely to feed further strife, and there it is.
  2. N. Korea to Weaponize Plutonium — And if we try to stop them, they promise to take military action. This would be a good lede candidate, under the Buzz Merritt principle of “Is my world safe?,” if not for Iran.
  3. Obama to cut $313 Billion in Health Costs — The president says he’ll cut back on hospital reimbursements to pay for expanding coverage.


  1. Gorilla escapes — Certainly not a lede story, but high local interest. I’d run it with that picture that was in the paper (but not online, oddly) showing the thin shaft of bamboo that amazingly supported the ape in his escape (bamboo is strong stuff). Plus a file mug of the erstwhile fugitive on the jump page.
  2. Sanford on Fox 46 Times — Note my emphasis. The fact that he used ETV studios for his anti-stimulus national TV appearances (for which ETV was reimbursed) is not as interesting as the fact that he took the time to appear on Fox 46 times in his effort to prevent his state getting this money. 46. That’s four more than the ultimate answer to life, the universe and everything.

OK, that’s only five stories, which is about one short for a proper front page. At this point, if I were playing the role I did at the Wichita paper back in the mid-80s, I’d ask the other editors to make suggestions for something to flesh out the page — preferably something local, something that fits in the interesting take-note-of category (like the Sanford story).

Oh, wait, I just remembered this is a p.m. paper. That means I’d have access to this breaking story today: Morning Fire Closes Bi-Lo — Not big enough to be worth the front by tomorrow morning, but it adds that local immediacy for which afternoon papers were once celebrated, and which I miss.

10 thoughts on “Saturday’s top (afternoon) stories

  1. Kathryn Fenner

    My mom used to sit down after a hard day of housework and read The Augusta Herald before making supper. I used to buy the London afternoon paper (name escapes me) and read on the way back on the train to Canterbury. I was a fan of the Atlanta Journal. It’s a great way to wind down your day, rather than adding one more chore to a busy morning….now it’s All Things Considered or nothing….

  2. Lee Muller

    Obama promises to cut 1/10 as much from Medicare as he plans to expand it. Does he think everyone is as dumb as a Democrat?

    If he can pay for more socialized medicine by cleaning up the fraud in Medicare, he needs to get busy and do it, but don’t ask for more money.

    So far, Obama has a resume of no accomplishments in his life.
    Nothing he has done with the banks, or GM, or Chrysler or mortgages has worked the way he said it would. Just more money to fat rats, more money to pay off the unions, more bankrupt businesses, and more layoffs.

  3. Lee Muller

    The so-called “stimulus money” has done nothing to improve the economy.
    Here is the proof:

    1. Only 5% of the $787 billion in Democrat Pork Money has been allocated to spending contracts.

    2. Layoffs continue at over 600,000 per month. The only reason jobless claims are not rising as fast as in April, is that small business created 355,000 new jobs last month.

    3. Small business creates 95% of jobs, but only 1% of the Stimulus Pork and bailout money is targeted to small business. Money spent on government jobs come at the expense of eliminating a private sector job (or two).

    Massive government interference is wrecking the economy.
    Business is risky enough without the uncertainty of what new policy is going to be announced next week, which industry or products will be the targets of moralistic persecution, tax increases on profits, changes in depreciation on capital expenditures, taxes on employee benefits, seizure of 401-k plans…

    Obama and the radical Democratic Socialists are running a revolution against capitalism and individual liberty that has Real America very spooked. Foreign investors have stopped every project that they can until things are sorted out.

    Recession is when people lose their jobs.
    Decession is when you lose your job.
    Recovery is when Obama loses his job.

  4. Brad Warthen

    I was just gigging you there, Lee. I don’t really think the stimulus is having a measurable effect. And if and when it does, it will be impossible to prove it objectively — too many variables.

    As I wrote months ago, I worry whether it will work at all. I wonder, for one thing, whether Krugman is right — that it’s not big enough…

  5. Lee Muller

    Krugman is clueless. He admitted a year ago to not studying this area of ecomomics, and has no experience in it ( he has never worked in the Treasury Dept, Federal Reserve, or in business economics). Ignore him. He just likes big government.

  6. john hammond

    Have you considered starting up a weekly rag of your own? You obviously have the experince.
    Think Free Times with less focus on hipster culture. The Star with more real news. The City Paper without lawsuits and crudeness. The State without the fluffy babble and corporate ownership…

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