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Michael Moore: “Two main things I want to say: Why aren’t the newspapers in Europe going under? It’s not that newspapers in Europe are having an easy time – again, we’re in an economic recession that’s worldwide, but why aren’t they going under? The American newspapers, oh they say ‘It’s the Internet. Papers are getting killed by the Internet.’ Last I’ve heard they’ve got the Internet in Europe. And they’ve got the Internet in Japan. So why aren’t their papers folding like ours are going under? European, Japanese, other countries many, most, of their newspapers, the primary source of their funding is circulation. Advertising is second. In our country, advertising is the primary source of funding, circulation is second. Anything you say that the people who read your newspaper are secondary to the business community you’ve lost, eventually you’re not going to survive at that point when you’re primary concern is the advertiser. In Europe, they know in order to keep circulation up they better put out a damn good newspaper. They better put out something that people read, and they better not cut too many reporters because if certain beats aren’t being covered, people aren’t going to read the paper. –“Michael Moore: ‘Capitalism killed the newspaper’”
“Animal Pictures of the Week” opens strong with monkeys, picks up some big cats, moves on to prop iguanas, then finally shows us a turtle named Lucky that lost its legs to a racoon and now gets around on furniture coasters–also there’s a panicking fish; “25 million British adults have been injured by tea biscuits”
We deeply regret to inform you that without the necessary budgetary legislation by the State Legislature in Harrisburg, the City of Philadelphia will not have the funds to operate our neighborhood branch libraries, regional libraries, or the Parkway Central Library after October 2, 2009. Specifically, the following will take effect after the close of business, October 2, 2009:
- All branch and regional library programs, including programs for children and teens, after school programs, computer classes, and programs for adults, will be canceled…
- All library visits to schools, day care centers, senior centers and other community centers will cease.
- All community meetings at our branch and regional libraries, and the Parkway Central Library, will be cancelled.
- All GED, ABE and ESL programs held at Free Library branches will be discontinued, students should contact their teacher to see if other arrangements are being made.
One of us was famished for colour; this one would lasciviously brush up on the paused automobiles as if it were somehow possible to carnally blot the knowledges locked in those saturate and subtly witty pigments. One of us would take eight days to write a letter describing the superb greyhound of the Marchesa Casati, as painted by Boldini; the sublime haunches of the slightly cowering creature, and the intelligence of its ears. One of us wanted only to repeat certain words; diamond, tree, vegetable. This was the one who would touch the street with the point of her toe to establish its irreality and this is the one who would scream through the filters of gauze to illustrate the concept “violet” and this is the one who remembered flight. This one remembered flight. This one remembered the smooth cylinders glimpsed at evening through he opened portals of the factory. What discipline is secular? This one remembered each acquaintance by an appetite. This one remembered each lie, each blemish, each soft little tear in the worn cottons of the shirts. –“The Office for Soft Architecture,” Lisa Robertson, Drunken Boat (via)
I recently spent a semester teaching writing at an elite liberal-arts college. At strategic points around the campus, in shades of yellow and green, banners displayed the following pair of texts. The first was attributed to the college’s founder, which dates it to the 1920s. The second was extracted from the latest version of the institution’s mission statement:
The paramount obligation of a college is to develop in its students the ability to think clearly and independently, and the ability to live confidently, courageously, and hopefully.
Let us take a moment to compare these texts. The first thing to observe about the older one is that it is a sentence. It expresses an idea by placing concepts in relation to one another within the kind of structure that we call a syntax. It is, moreover, highly wrought: a parallel structure underscored by repetition, five adverbs balanced two against three.
Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:
An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.
A naked man believed to be under the influence of LSD rammed his pickup truck into two police cars.
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“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”