The River

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Reading the AJC front page

CIA chief defends Bush case for war. That’s the 48-point bold Helvetica head (I’m guessing).


Well, that’s reassuring. Photo of Tenet under the head. He looks unhappy. Looks like he’s having to deal with a lot of stupid questions. The several paragraphs given before the story jumps inside say he was defending charges from Democrats. Quotes Ted Kennedy (D – Mass.) asking Tenet if the administration had misrepresented the intelligence on Iraq. Tenent says no, he doesn’t think so. Kennedy presses him: why didn’t he correct them when they were wrong? Tenet shoots back: I’m not going to sit here and tell you what my interaction was with the president.

Poor Tenet. Being asked for meaningless details by partisan Senators digging for dirt in an election year. How many times does he have to say that the administration did nothing wrong? A little exaggeration here, a misstatement there. What’s the big deal?

What’s really interesting is that Pepsi can above the masthead. Something I can buy. Pepsi Edge, 50% less sugar. What will they think of next? Tastes great! (bold, italics), then partial photo of the can, bound on its bottom edge by the ½-point rectangular box, rising out of it, its top in front of the line, breaking the 2-D barrier. “Less filling?” to the right of the can. In Business, C1.

Uh oh. Last column on the right has the story on obesity. It’s a killer! They’ve got a graph comparing the “death data” for “Obesity vs. Tobacco.” Tobacco still leads, but obesity is gaining ground. Head says obesity crisis now rivals tobacco. Story informs us that eating too much and exercising too little are the culprits, and with the epidemic proportions (not to mention the epic proportions of meals these days – ed.) there are important effects on disability and mortality. As in, I’m assuming, hastening them. But wait, Inside, A12, “A new pill shows promise in helping people quit smoking, lose weight.” Science will provide. Just take a pill. (Future story: Study finds eating too much and exercising too little a factor in epidemic of pill popping. Inside: There’s a pill for this.)

D.C. Sniper Sentenced to Death. That’s the head (20-point) over a photo, half of which is above the fold, of John Allen Muhammad and his lawyers. Thou shalt not kill. Now the state, that’s different.

And speaking of the Ten Commandments (is that capitalized? Yep, the paper does). Georgia Senate backs display of the Ten Commandments. Good god. In yet another move sure to bring further humiliation on Georgia, state senators voted 42-8 to adopt a nonbinding resolution in favor of posting the Ten Commandments in government buildings. That’s not the lead paragraph, but it should be. Sen. Nadine Thomas (D-Decatur, the most progressive pocket of Atl.) is quoted: “This is an election year and everybody is trying to out-God each other.” Good one. Says she’s running for the U.S. Senate. Cool.

Lefthand column has teasers for the rest of the paper. Pollen season starting, DirecTV pirating, a group called Godless Americans Political Action Committee (wtf?), NASCAR. And a cashier at an area Wal-Mart was a hero because she “smelled a rat” when someone tried to pass off a $1 million bill.

So there ya have it. The view from the capital of the South. Pepsi has a new product. Coke sure to respond. Cola wars continue. Lying about Iraq war still okay. Unhealthy habits can be very detrimental to your health. Georgia leadership follies continue.

The fast food of print media. I think they nailed it with the Pepsi teaser: Tastes great! Less filling?

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