Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Suffer from fits of rage? You could work for the Sentinel!

Today I somehow found myself browsing through journalismjobs.com. This is a bit odd, since I'm not a journalist and already have a real job, but nevermind that.

What did I find there? Why, I'm glad you asked!

I found five open jobs at the Sentinel & Enterprise. Now may be the time for a career change!

But what to do? Hmm, let's look at the jobs...

Okay, two listings for "Ace Reporter"... I don't know what that is. I assume it's the opposite of "Cub Reporter," so it's probably like Lois Lane and not Jimmy Olson (but wasn't he a photographer? Dammit.). Either way, they didn't really appeal to me. Sure, I'm "not only capable of covering meetings, but also digging for scoops and turning out features," but so is your average eighth-grader.

One listing for "Ace News and Sports Reporter." Hmm... that's like the same thing except with sports tacked on, which I'm not particularly interested in. Plus you don't have to just cover meetings, but "meetings and games," which is pretty dull.

Wait a second, here's one that's perfect!

A job opening for "Aggressive Reporter!" Just what I've been looking for! All my alcohol-induced fury can finally be channeled into prose instead of me just taking it out on the cat!

But am I fit for the job? Well, here's the listing...
The Sentinel & Enterprise, an award-winning daily newspaper in North Central Massachusetts, is looking for an aggressive general assignment reporter to focus on criminal justice and breaking news stories. Interested candidates should send resume, cover letter, references, work samples and salary requirements to Jeff McMenemy, Editor, The Sentinel & Enterprise, 808 Main St., Fitchburg, MA 01420.
Yes, I am eminently qualified. All you have to be is aggressive, and I can be that after downing just a couple pints of gin! Also, who knew that "worst paper in Central Mass." is an award?

Of course, if all they want is an aggressive reporter, who even cares if you can write? Or fact-check? Or indeed have a brain at all?

On the other hand, I may face some stiff competition if I apply for this position. Maybe there's an ill-tempered Rottweiler or fighting cock out there who could snatch it away from me. I mean, I'm not that aggressive, and it's not like writing skills or research ability or anything will help me get the job. Crud, maybe it won't work out after all.

There is one position left though; the dull-sounding "News Editor." Yawn.

But wait!
The Sentinel & Enterprise, an award-winning daily newspaper in North Central Massachusetts, has an immediate opening for a News Editor to run the pagination/copy desk for a growing and aggressive daily in North Central Massachusetts. Job responsibilities include working with the Editor to design daily pages, special projects and special sections. This is a second-shift position. The successful candidate must be a great designer and copy editor, who can also manage the desk staff.
Well, I'm not a great designer or copy editor, but that's not what I'm excited about. I just learned that the Sentinel is a "growing and aggressive daily!"

So the whole paper is aggressive! Could that possibly be any more awesome?

Then again, they say it's "growing" too. Funny, I'd heard the opposite.

Still, aggression! That's what makes news, people! None of that pansy-assed sitting around learning the facts or investigating things carefully. That's for sissies and dirty liberals! Aggression is where it's at!

Thank you, Sentinel, for once again announcing to the world just where your priorities lay.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Chuck Morse: Off the air but still a dickbag

So, ultra-conservative radio host Chuck Morse is no longer on WEIM. That's been true for awhile. As such, I figured I'd leave the guy alone. I mean, what's the point?

Of course, he still has a blog that nobody reads but me! Mostly because it's really bad and stupid.

Here [Update: he removed it, see the bottom of this post] is his latest entry. It's a dumb thing about how Hillary Clinton is supposedly a Marxist.

I'm no fan of Clinton, but it struck me as even more stupid than Morse's usual ranting. Both because quoting stuff is dangerously close to actual research (Morse is more comfortable just making shit up) and because this isn't the way Morse usually writes his blog entries. (He normally spends a lot of time talking about how Barney Frank is a big homo who loves terrorists or something.)

So I searched for one of the quotes attributed to Clinton in the blog. Guess what I found! Morse ripped the whole thing from a stupid forwarded email! Worse yet, I can't even debunk it for you because it's been around so long that Snopes has already done it!

Here's the Snopes page debunking this bullshit.

Let me state this again. Chuck Morse, "intellectual conservative" and guy who actually got to ask questions at one of the mayoral debates, cut-and-pasted a fucking forwarded email and presented it as his blog entry (without attribution to anyone but himself). He even left in the spelling errors (Mao Zedong/Mao Tse Tung/Mao Tse Dong is not "Mao Tse Dung." And why is Yeltsin in there? He's the guy who wanted to go from socialism to a free market!). What's more, Morse apparently didn't have the common sense to realize that anyone with half a brain could figure this out!

That's what apparently passes for conservative intellectualism these days. Forwarded emails from idiots.

Bravo, Mr. Morse!

[Update: he deleted the post, so here it is for you in screenshot form!]
[Some text got cut off here. According to my RSS reader it was:]
4) 'We have to build a political consensus and that requires people to give up a little bit of their own...in order to create this common ground.'
[Also, I enabled Javascript between taking these screenshots, which is why the same image from shot #1 shifted down in shot #2. Just in case you're wondering...]

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

My Demand For Mayor Wong: Fix The Damn Weather!

Dear Mayor Wong,

It has come to my attention that there is inclement weather in Fitchburg. Not only that, but there are occasionally weather conditions that interfere with important things like driving buses and being able to walk down the road without slipping around and looking silly.

This will not stand!

As a young, idealistic mayor you've presented a bunch of interesting and creative ideas for improving Fitchburg. That's all well and good, but what's it going to get you when sudden ice storms cause me to slip and fall on my supple and widely-envied ass? A big fat nothing, that's what!

As a well-respected blogger, I join our community in asking--nay, demanding--that you fix the goddamn weather. Right now would be good, because I hear there may be a storm coming later this week.

Now, I've been told that you are of Chinese ancestry. Furthermore, I know that the Chinese government has elaborate weather control systems planned for use during the Olympics. Surely if a nation of 1.3 billion people can stave off a little light rain, a town of a mere 40,000 people can totally eliminate winter! We're much smaller than China! Do you have any connections in the Chinese government/Olympic committee that can help?

I've heard the arguments against this before: "Nobody can control the weather," "Invest in some good snow tires," "It's New England, get used to it," and on and on. These lame excuses (and oddly sensible advice) can no longer be tolerated!

You ran on a platform of changing things, getting rid of the old ways, and maybe some other stuff (fiscal responsibility? Beats me!). What's more of an "old way" than to have crappy winter weather? Let's get rid of it.

Perhaps you're thinking "Fitchburg is very hilly, there are bound to be some unavoidable difficulties in icy weather." Defeatist! Obviously the hills are a problem for snow removal and ice de-icing. So flatten them! I don't want to hear excuses, I want to see bulldozers out there pounding down the hills and filling in the valleys until everything is nice and flat.

If you can just take care of this one little request and keep Fitchburg a comfortable 72 degrees year-round you will go down in history as the greatest mayor Fitchburg has ever had. Otherwise you're a failure. Get to it!

The Unicow

PS Please redirect the inclement weather to Leominster. They're jerks.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Mayor Wong is everywhere!

So, you've seen nice articles about our new mayor in the Boston Globe and other significant regional papers. Which is swell, but not that exciting.

You've also seen her mentioned by Andy Rooney, if you're an octogenarian who watches 60 Minutes. Still not great, since he thought she was a man and his sense of humor is poor.

More recently, you've likely seen her nifty photo with Obama, Patrick, Kerry, and a couple of Kennedys.

Now we move into new realms. Driving to work this morning I heard her on WBUR (90.9 FM) in a preview for this week's generally-excellent Radio Boston show. I actually listen to this show just about every week, and it's always been quite good, so it should be an interesting show.

Also, while I'm in the middle of writing this, Radio Boston just left a comment on my last post mentioning the show. Sweet.

Anyway, the show seems to be called "Fitchburg Rising?" and deals with mill cities and "hope" and so forth. Here's the video promo for it:

The show airs Friday at 1 PM on 90.9 FM or can be streamed at wbur.org, though you should be able to hear it archived on the net if you miss it then.

Apparently it will also feature a webchat with Mayor Wong! Nifty!

Whatever you may think about Wong as a mayor so far, I think everyone could agree that she's been excellent at bringing good press to the city.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Primaries are dumb

An interesting thing happened at the voting place tonight.

I voted. Yay me! Since I'm officially unaffiliated, it means I could vote for anyone I want! (I chose Obama, which probably surprises nobody. I would have chosen Kucinich but he dropped out.)

So that's all well and good and whatnot.

But here's the interesting part. My girlfriend/fiancee is officially registered as a libertarian. Don't worry, she's not a crazy Paultard or anything. In fact, she wanted to vote for Mike Gravel (a Democrat).

But woe is her!

Apparently there are no libertarians running (at least under the title "libertarian"), which means that those who show up to the polling place with a little "L" beside their name don't get to vote for anybody, regardless of party.

That sort of sucks.

The unaffiliated people like me get to vote for anyone we want. The independents get to vote. So do the Greens. Some other little party I forgot about already (I saw the list, but only very briefly) gets to vote. [Update: Mrs. Unicow thinks it was the Rainbow Party.] Dems and Republicans get to vote too. But if you dare to self-identify as a libertarian, you don't get to vote!

Now, I realize the point of primaries is to whittle down the large number of people running under one dominant party so the winner can run against the winner of the other dominant party, but I fail to see how it's good for democracy to deny anyone a vote. Just because you self-identify as a particular political party, why should you have to vote for them?

It's a corrupt system. Another example of how the vote of an individual does not count. What counts are party politics and stupid affiliations more than voting for who you think would be best for the fucking job.

And I'm just ranting. But the Lady Unicow is upset, and that's not the way you should feel after trying to vote.

On the bright side, I did write her name in for a write-in (non-presidential) spot. So maybe she'll get something out of this after all!

Go now!

What are you doing wasting your time here when I have nothing to say today?

Instead, go right now to Hello Fitchburg and check out the photo of Mayor Wong surrounded by political bigwigs. Make sure to click on the picture so you can see everyone.

Pretty awesome.

ps also don't forget to vote today. Or something.