Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

All Froomkin All the Time

    What a delight to wake up to discover that the Boodle has been going all night! And everyone was so thoughtful and civil. Hardly any language stronger than "dork." No sneaky porn links. The occasional ad hominem attack, but I can't read Latin so I skimmed right past. I'm very pleased. I had planned to blog today about how, two days in a row, I've discovered pants in my closet that I had forgotten I had purchased, and how happy that made me. (Gosh I hope they're my pants! Never mind.) The point is, I think I am going to write about Froomkin and internal Post politics every day now. I'm going to spill precious Post secrets, like the identity of Deep Throat. (Or did that already get out?)

     I can't respond to everything -- I'm probably going to be lashed for continuing to blog about this embarrassing internal spat (and the bosses may yell at me for blogging in general, rather than writing for print) -- but let me go through a few comments, meticulously taken out of context and carefully distorted to serve my own rhetorical purposes.

    EAR last night said the FroomFoof was more than a turf battle between The Post and dot.com, and listed as evidence, among other things, "The involvement of the White House and Republicans. It really appears an attempt to silence a voice they don't like by going over their heads to the bosses."

    A lot of people have made this point. But let me suggest that the White House right now has bigger problems than Dan Froomkin's column. This was an internal dispute (though not anymore). John Harris cited White House and Republican complaints about Froomkin, but as I read those comments, he was trying to establish that some people viewed Froomkin as a partisan. Harris was making the case that it's an opinion column.

   I'll stick with what I wrote yesterday: This matter reflects the way the web site's home page has become coveted territory for everyone at The Post. It's not political. Some readers howl: Everything's political! Well, everything can get political, that's for sure. But not every dispute is spawned by ideology. Not every squabble in Washington is the result of a conspiracy masterminded by Karl Rove. You don't have to believe it if you don't want. I prefer to use Occam's Razor: Find the parsimonious explanation. No elaborate conspiracy is required.

    I don't have to defend every statement made by any of my colleagues here at The Post. I don't actually have a dog in the Froomkin fight. I admire Dan and his column, and admire The Post's political reporters. But since John Harris is getting so much heat, let me say something: He is an outstanding journalist. He's one of the best in the business. I sat about 4 feet from him when he covered Clinton, and he's always been a total pro. He does not take marching orders from anyone at the White House.

    Jay Rosen, of the PressThink blog, honored the Boodle with a couple of visits last night. He writes: 'I think some of the Froomkin Foofaraw has to do with Harris and associates needing to portray themselves as innocent, not too "political," free of taint.' I wish I had a URL for his post of 11:57:56 last night, but here's an excerpt:

   "Howell and Harris were willing to wade into this territory without realizing that the standards for persuading the people reading you have gone way up because of the Net, the blogs, the ease of comparison, the power of the link, the transparency that has come to journalism, the ability of the readership to talk back, and the 8 million readers of washingtonpost.com, compared to 1 million at best for the paper.

   "When you are at the top (and political editor of the Washington Post is pretty near it) it is hard to believe that the standards that got you there now have to be raised. But this is exactly what's happened to journalists like Howell and Harris. (Look how your readers push you to be clearer, smarter, fairer Joel.)"

    Jay, I think you're right, that the Internet and all this reader feedback has broken down the wall between producer and consumer and has already led to better journalism. (Some people say we're "insulated." That's probably true, except for the 200-something comments I've read on this in the past 18 hours.) And readers are correct: Objective doesn't mean you give both sides equal time and equal play on every issue.

    But I don't think this issue has anything to do with posturing as an innocent. No one seems to embrace my line of argument, but let me repeat, there's an odd situation with dot.com and The Post being separate operations under a single brand name. I tried to offer a little bit of testimony about the kind of feelings that might arise over the play of stories and columns on the home page. Imagine you cover the White House for The Post and every day you see a prominent feature on the home page saying "White House Briefing" -- by a person who does not cover the White House for The Post.

   One commenter suggested that I used the "liberal" tag on Froomkin. I didn't. I have always thought Dan's column was not particularly ideological. It's fairly critical of the White House, and you wouldn't mistake it for something that would run in the National Review, but it also doesn't read like something that would run in The Nation.

    Then again, I'm not sure anyone knows exactly what "liberal" or "moderate" or "conservative" or "radical" or "progressive" means these days. My standards may be skewed. When I think of "liberal" I think of ... well, Castro.

By Joel Achenbach  |  December 15, 2005; 9:01 AM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: The Froomkin Foofaraw
Next: Technical Problems With Blog

Comments

I'm a conservative, but in the last few elections I've voted Democrat. Mostly because I like to subvert the primary process.

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 11:05 AM | Report abuse

"Imagine you cover the White House for The Post and every day you see a prominent feature on the home page saying "White House Briefing" -- by a person who does not cover the White House for The Post."

Let me put this a bit differently, if I might. If you write for a media Web site, but not for the main media product -- in this case the actual newspaper -- you're likely to be viewed as something of an outcast by those who do work for the actual paper.

Posted by: Bayou Self | December 15, 2005 11:12 AM | Report abuse

That's a good point; what is "liberal" or "conservative" today?

However, the point is, that's not even relavent to this discussion on Froomkin. The fundamental issue today is truth vs lies/misinformation, not the traditional platform differences between Reps and Dems.

The fact of the matter is that the Republican party has embraced misinformation as a technique for gaining and holding power. Both sides do NOT do that, despite what traditional "objective" (he-said she-said) journalistic conventions might dictate.

Rove may not be behind every conspiracy, but he sure as hell takes advantage of this loophole in modern American journalism (MSM has no language to call a spade a spade, only the op/eds do--and that is a huge problem!!!!).

Journalism is at a point of change, where it needs to evolve to maintain it's purpose and grow. People like Harris do excellent work, and we appreciate it most sincerely, but there are some very critical issues where he/they are stuck in the past + being taken advantage of. This is harmful to our democracy. It has very little to do with Dem vs Rep.

Froomkin is a trailblazer.

Posted by: Matt B. | December 15, 2005 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Copying this over from the previous Boodle...

jw:
(she asks gently) What do you think is the difference between the labels "discourse accountability" (Rosen's polysyllabic way of saying it and in his last post to the A-blog) and "liberal," and which do you think most aptly applies to Froomkin and why?

How, jw, do you perceive Froomkin deviating from the goals of journalism, as articulated by the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard (which with Froomkin is affiliated--I have copied/pasted a portion of their goal statement immediately below)? (she uses the Socratic teaching method with jw) Feel free, jw, to give me other journalistic credos or cornerstones, if you don't like Nieman's.
***

Some may wonder about our emphasis on asking questions, since politicians and most of the rest of the world - even schoolchildren - are adept at sidestepping them. What's the point of asking good questions if the answers aren't forthcoming?

First, the ability to ask appropriate questions comes only with an understanding of the subject at hand. When experts [reporters] help with questions and background, they also help deepen the reporter's [readers'] knowledge of the issue.

Second, targeted, insightful questions are typically more difficult for public officials, candidates and others in public life to dodge, mislead or even lie about.

Finally, the questions don't disappear simply because a president, or someone else in a high position, won't give a straight, complete answer. The answer may lie in documents or in interviews with other sources, or both. But assuredly, a key to great journalism comes mostly to reporters and editors who ask the right questions, who have a full understanding of what they are looking for and who can recognize what rings true [squishy] and what doesn't.

Posted by: Loomis | Dec 15, 2005 11:12:41 AM

Posted by: Loomis | December 15, 2005 11:21 AM | Report abuse

"Liberal" means "Castro"? Are you serious? I realize that political discourse is being scrambled at present but this is extreme.

Posted by: jlr | December 15, 2005 11:24 AM | Report abuse

I sure hope Occam left his Razor in one of those vats of blue disinfectant before Fearless Leader used it...

And thank you for confirming what I tried to convey to the ad hominem folks yesterday -- you really WERE trying to talk about home page envy and not take a FroomkinSide.

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 15, 2005 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Joel, I still don't see how the internal squabble is the simplest explanation; it doesn't cover all the evidence (i.e., why the would the ombudsman get involved, why Ruffini angle, etc.?)

But what do I know; I stopped trying to use Occam's razor after a bad paper cut. Yes, I *read* dear William of Occam decades ago, thanks to Prof. Seymour Feldman. My eyes are still crossed.

But I'll agree the Froomfraw seems played out in the boodle. Let's hear more about the mystery pants! To mis-quote that other great midieval philosopher Elvis Costello:

Why don't you tell me 'bout the mystery pants
I wanna know about the mystery pants
Why don't you tell me 'cause I've tried and I've tried and I'm still mystified
I can't do it anymore and I'm not satisfied

Posted by: silvertongue | December 15, 2005 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Joel writes (and I joke somewhat):
But let me suggest that the White House right now has bigger [media] problems than Dan Froomkin's column.
***

First there was Wayne Downing and his SAIC crew, with little experience in broadcast technology, attempting to set up media networks in post-occupation Iraq, Jeff Gannon-Guckert, the Armstrong Williams debacle, Lincoln Group's ploy and strategy defined-to-the-nit to insert America-friendly stories into present Iraq media, Karen Hughes, Scott McClellan (no way under the blazing Texas sun am I gonna vote his mommy into the Texas governor's chair)...Shall we continue?

Posted by: Loomis | December 15, 2005 11:37 AM | Report abuse

While I am inclined to stand by my earlier suggestion that it is a larger issue about politics, suppose it is not. Mr. Harris could have mitigated the outcry by using less inflammatory language - by not calling Mr. Froomkin liberal. I understand the presumption that he was using that language to establish WHB as opinion, but unfortunately the strong statement opened this can of worms. And, to be blunt, he really should not have said what he said in a later interview, calling Mr. Froomkin "pompous and arrogant" in response to Mr. Froomkin's public defense. The personal attack did not help his case at all.

In addition, if this is primarily a turf war, what was Mr. Harris expecting to gain by taking it public? Surely he is aware of the widespread distain towards the print / MSM, deserved or not, it is reality. And that the web side is rapidly expanding, and that the web side is very, very quick on the draw, and would parse his words carefully. Did he think in attacking WHB readers would flock to the barricades in support of him? And assuming he and others did not intend the spat to be political, that word 'liberal' assured that it would be and thus attracted even more readers to the fray - to defend Mr. Froomkin, pretty much exclusively. And further damage the credibility of the print side. At the very least, it makes him and his colleagues them look petulant, thin skinned, and whiny. They may not be, but again, perception matters, and the print side does not look good on this one.

OK, say it was not a political move, but internal turf war or whatever. The original ombudsman article was extremely ill advised nevertheless, and has been damaging to the Post.

Thanks.

Posted by: EAR | December 15, 2005 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Ah, my first SCC
I meant "medieval" not midieval

Posted by: silvertongue | December 15, 2005 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Joel-

Yestreday I think I addressed your concerns about WaPo Classic (TM) and WaPo dotcom (I have no right to use TM here) being seperate entities, that are not well coordinated at best and counterproductive and divisive at worst. I've seen the same scenario play out in other compaies. Heck, I've lived it. More than once.

The answer is that the folks at the top have to realize that it IS all one big entity, and to reorganize the company in a manner that recognizes the value of both sides of the company, but not under an sky-high overarching umbrella.

Both sides need to be in the same bathtub.
For example, the people doing the 24 hour updates of the .com front page should be sitting in the same newsroom as the folks who lay out the Post's front page if they aren't already.

Heck, if you guys were doing this stuff already, I bet there wouldn't be a need for a free WaPo Express, for example...

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Could the mystery pants possibly be transported into the closet by a wormhole? Maybe Joel bought them in an alternate reality, and the fabric of space-time is tearing and allowing leaks from multiple dimensions.

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 11:48 AM | Report abuse

I read this, this morning in the Globe and Mail. Excerpted from an interview with Frank McCourt. (Full article here http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20051215.wxmccourt15/BNStory/Entertainment/?pageRequested=2)

'he's been preoccupied for the past five years with "this damned book" Teacher Man. "I was so frustrated trying to find the right tone. I couldn't enjoy anything. I couldn't enjoy food, going out with people, reading. I couldn't even pick up the newspaper without saying, 'This is a fine piece of writing. I wish to hell I could write like this.' And I'd drag myself to the desk. I hated the book, though I've begun to develop a slight affection for it."'

Reminded me a great deal of our fearless leader.

'He's a brand name, after all, and everyone wants a piece of him.' (From the same article noted above.)

The price of fame for all writers perhaps, no matter the type of media?

Posted by: dr | December 15, 2005 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Perhaps the nanoparticles in Fearless Leader's current pants are coalescing and creating new pants all by their lonesome...

Repli-pants???

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 15, 2005 11:54 AM | Report abuse

The link did not work in a spectacular fashion. Go the the Globe and Mail website. Bottom of the page, Teacher Man headline.

Posted by: dr | December 15, 2005 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Maybe to make the print edition relevant again, they need to go retro. It worked for the auto industry, right?

http://www.blueridgeinstitute.org/ballads/old97news2.html

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 11:55 AM | Report abuse

i don't know about the rest of you but this doesn't really count as a new k&k for me. i still need my fix JA.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 11:57 AM | Report abuse

If there's one place that nanotechnology doesn't belong, it's in my pants.

Stain-resistance be damned.

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Very odd.

I posted a comment about how aliens had abducted Joel's pants and returned them while he was distracted by Cattle Buyer jokes and vulcanized turkeys, and *poof* it disappeared when I hit 'Post'.

Coincidence?

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 11:57 AM | Report abuse

What are the non-mysterious pants -- the ones that actually work in the closet and have the day-to-day task of being Joel's pants -- saying about the mysterious pants?

Posted by: Bayou Self | December 15, 2005 11:58 AM | Report abuse

So far all they've said is that they insist that the mysterious pants be called something other than "pants" because Joel might get confused.

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Ha ha, jw! (Have you been watching "Donnie Darko"?)

Nice try, but I fear we'll be stuck in this alternative-reality Bizarro World All-Froomkin-All-The-Time Lurkers-and-Lopers-Only A-Blog for quite awhile.

Posted by: Dreamer | December 15, 2005 11:59 AM | Report abuse

OK, if we're going to talk about JA's pants then maybe this can be a new K&K for me. All that FroomFoof nonsense was too serious for me on hump day. And now, really, I've quite enough.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 12:00 PM | Report abuse

No, but I have been thinking of re-reading the "His Dark Materials" trilogy. Alternate dimensions AND a Catholic conspiracy. Quality stuff.

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 12:01 PM | Report abuse

bc: there are no coincidences. The truth is out there, waiting to be sliced by Occam's razor, which Joel carries in his pants pocket.

Posted by: silvertongue | December 15, 2005 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Welcome to the SCC, silvertongue, where self-loathing only elevates your SCC status.

Posted by: Sara | December 15, 2005 12:01 PM | Report abuse

When I hear the word "liberal" I think of "liberal leave snow policy" which I don't have. I'm stuck here for the duration of IceStorm 2005.

Let's recap: We are in our second day of navel gazing by a columnist that keeps a blog over a different blogger responding to a columnist who wrote about said blogger being mistaken for a reporter. And we are at least a dozen comments into the whole definition-of-terms phase of this onanistic flagellation about the future of the news business. If we can get the second blogger to write a column about the comments on the blog about whether the columnist was right in even discussing whether a blogger should be confused for a reporter or a columnist, we can close this loop on this circle jerk and get back to trading tall tales about drive-in movies and making obscure Monty Python references.

And since the public schools thought basic grammar was passe as I passed through the halls of elementary school, if anyone can diagram any of the sentences above, I would love to know if what I said made sense, and if so, what that was. Please feel free to add commas as necessary for clarity.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 15, 2005 12:02 PM | Report abuse

[Boodled out of order. Was referring to jw's initial pants post. Subsequent posts suggest that I might have been wrong. There is hope.]

Posted by: Dreamer | December 15, 2005 12:02 PM | Report abuse

I dunno about the 'go retro' thing that worked for the Auto Industry working for the news media.

I've driven an old Austin Mini and a new MINI Cooper S, had a 60's Mustang and driven a new GT, a Lotus Elan and a new Mazda MX-5 Miata, and some other 'retro' cars as well.

The old cars are fine for weekend fun, but I sure as hell wouldn't want to drive one to work every day. The newer cars that remind us of the old ones are far superior in every way. FAR superior.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Omnigoof, Tom Shroder also complained about this Kit not being a real Kit but just an extension of the Boodle. Sigh...Back to the grindstone...

Posted by: Achenbach | December 15, 2005 12:05 PM | Report abuse

jw, when we finally figure out what the Meaning of Life is, I think we will find that parallel dimensions and Catholic conspiracies explain a lot.

Posted by: Dreamer | December 15, 2005 12:07 PM | Report abuse

but it's ok now: we're talking about your pants and movies and sentnce diagraming and retro vs metro cars (I think).

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Tom Shroder is right. Of course.

Posted by: Tom fan | December 15, 2005 12:08 PM | Report abuse


*obligatory obscure reference*

Many Monty Python characters had no pants at all... The Blamange from the Planet Skyron in the Andromeda Galaxy, for example.

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 15, 2005 12:10 PM | Report abuse

I feel very important now, I am the newest VIP of the boodle. Boy did that go to my head fast. Better than blorph. And I always told everyone here I have no ego. feh. Lunchtime.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Joel, please to be reminding Tom of my use of the term 'Ouborosian' in reference to the Blogosphere/Web News Media some months ago...

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 12:11 PM | Report abuse

of course Tom fam is right about Tom Schroder being right, but so long as the FroomFoof debate is of the blog and we talk about everything else in the universe it's OK with me JA goes out and plays in the snow.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Not good enough.The gravamen of this issue is that the readers,eg,the customers,of White House Briefing percieved an injury to the column inflected knowingly by management,seemingly without just cause.The ensuing defense(s) promulgated by the various partie,including JA only added insult to the injury.To wit:that was not rain you were attempting to dispense on my person. Procedural questions aside,the facts still suggest strongly ,at least to me,that Toto has pulled back the curtain and the Wizard(s) are not happy.And the customer's response:good!

Posted by: ILL-logical | December 15, 2005 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Yellowjkt has ably summarized the past 200+ comments. If you're just tuning in, you'll catch up most effciently by parsing his(?) 12:02 post.

Joel: My opinion of Tom just rose dramatically. "Get back to work!" (picture Montgomery Burns)

Posted by: silvertongue | December 15, 2005 12:12 PM | Report abuse

SCC Tom fam=>Tom fan.

I'm so unworthy. Really it is time for lunch.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 12:13 PM | Report abuse

The word of the day, brought to you by yellojkt ...

Main Entry: onan·ism
Pronunciation: 'O-n&-"ni-z&m
Function: noun
Etymology: probably from New Latin onanismus, from Onan, son of Judah (Gen 38:9)
1 : MASTURBATION
2 : COITUS INTERRUPTUS
3 : SELF-GRATIFICATION
- onan·is·tic /"O-n&-'nis-tik/ adjective

Posted by: Bayou Self | December 15, 2005 12:13 PM | Report abuse

SCC and of=>off

I wasn't kidding when I said it went to my head.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 12:14 PM | Report abuse

SCC: "Ouroborosian".

Feh!

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 12:15 PM | Report abuse

of course that of=>off is for the second off not the first

Posted by: omnicantevenSCCcorrectly | December 15, 2005 12:16 PM | Report abuse

yellojkt:
Although I earn my living as a copy editor and consider myself to be grammatically correct most of the time, I don't think I could diagram a sentence to save myself.

Posted by: Tom fan | December 15, 2005 12:18 PM | Report abuse


Omni's gonna get positively Ouroborosian with his SCCs soon...

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 15, 2005 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Ouroborosian? Ouborosian? What the heck are yinz talking about? Help me somebody.

Posted by: silvertongue | December 15, 2005 12:24 PM | Report abuse

If there are sock-eating interdimensional ailens in my laundry chute, there can certianly be interdimensional aliens in Joel's closet looking for an unworn pair of Dockers.

Except that they're no longer unworn, of course. This could be an issue for JA if these aliens aren't stealing boxers from someone...

Who would want to wear some pants that some alien had been going commando in? Not me!

Joel, I hope you let CSI give those pants the once-over with a UV light before wearing them...

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 12:26 PM | Report abuse

bc, you mean . . . nothing but a thin layer of gabardine?

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 12:28 PM | Report abuse

I'll defer to bc, of course, but Ouroboros is the world-seen-as-a-snake-eating-its-tail symbol kind of thing.

Innit?

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 15, 2005 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Ha!
Yes, Achenfan.
Yes I do.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 12:31 PM | Report abuse

The White House, the Froofraraw, the new Kit.
AKA
"The Lyin', the Bitchin', the Wardrobe."

Posted by: kurosawaguy | December 15, 2005 12:32 PM | Report abuse

For those wondering about Ouroboros...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ouroboros

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 12:33 PM | Report abuse

SCC: "certainly".

Sigh.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 12:35 PM | Report abuse


Tip o' the hat to k-guy... *LOL*

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 15, 2005 12:36 PM | Report abuse

S'nuke, although it's pronounced blamange, it's spelled blancmange, just as luxury yacht is pronounced throatwarbler mangrove.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | December 15, 2005 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Are there any nominees for most consistently obsequious poster of the day? month? all time? I think there's one so obvious that she blots out the fun, erImean, sun.

Posted by: FAchenfan | December 15, 2005 12:41 PM | Report abuse

You made sense, yellojkt: Self-examination is for humorless clowns (the worst kind of clowns) and its tedium makes for easy parody.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 15, 2005 12:43 PM | Report abuse

You're right, FAchenfan -- that would be me. It was decided long ago, so we can move on now.

(That was easy, wasn't it?)

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 12:43 PM | Report abuse


Double tip o' the hat to k-guy... I went phonetic, since my last French class was a couple decades ago.

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 15, 2005 12:44 PM | Report abuse

You made sense, yellojkt: Self-examination is for humorless clowns (the worst kind of clowns) and its tedium makes for easy parody.

Posted by: Jay Rosen | December 15, 2005 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Hey, isn't that the thing from the once good but now crappy Robert Jordan books? Um, not that I would know.

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 12:48 PM | Report abuse

No, Scottynuke, my text trick will be to get something I write in the boodle copied into a subsequent Kit. Of course that would me I'd have to write something that makes sense.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Moving right along, who raised the flag of onanism? How does that relate to Froomkin? Can I still let my three kids lurk and play on this blog? [That may explain some of the weirder postings in the last few months, but there's no V-chip for blogging. The content often gives rise to questions I can't answer, or understand in the first place.

BTW, Afan, you are absolutely tops when you adopt your classic "jackassy" style and frame of mind. Please do that as mucha s you feel it is appropriate.

Yours faithfully lurking,

F

Posted by: FAchenfan | December 15, 2005 12:51 PM | Report abuse

SCC would me=>would mean

See what I mean. This is going to be very hard.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Achenfan,

Don't bother FachenA--he's too busy with his Cray-ons, as in Seymour.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 15, 2005 12:57 PM | Report abuse

I hereby nominate the Ouroboros as the Official Achenmascot of the Boodle.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 15, 2005 12:57 PM | Report abuse

But it should be modified to be a dog sniffing its own butt.

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Re Ms. Anonymous at 12:57:36,

I don't think that Fachenfan = FachenA.

FachenA is the guy/gal who thought Afan used Crays (surely he was yoking), but s/he does work with big computers, or so s/he says.

Posted by: cordova | December 15, 2005 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Loomis,

Tx for your your 12:57 post re Seymour C.

He's one of my heroes.

Posted by: MIPmonster | December 15, 2005 1:04 PM | Report abuse

jw- Ha!

A dog named Achenboros?

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 1:08 PM | Report abuse

FAchenfan,

I plead guilty to bringing "onanism" to the table, as it were. It was actually the milder of the two metaphoric masturbatory allusions I made. If you have kids reading the blog, use it as a Bible study teachable moment about ancient Hebrew birth control practices. If they are under the age of twelve, the tale can be sufficiently bowlderized. If they are over twelve, they are probably familar with the concept, if not the vocabulary terms.

Oh, and the whole FAchen- series of puns reminds me of an old radio DJ bit called "Young Spock" where the purpose was to use the adjective "Vulcan" as promiscuously, gratuitously, and inappropriately as possible without triggering any FCC violations.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 15, 2005 1:10 PM | Report abuse

SCC: "Achenboros".

I need to apologize for that one.

That was over the line, I'm sorry.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 1:11 PM | Report abuse

I beg to differ re. the dog. Surely that mascot is already taken by Weingarten. I like to think that the A-blog is above all that. The Achenmascot would be a majestic dragon.

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 1:11 PM | Report abuse

One problem with the term Achenboros is that it could easily be confused with Achenbros (i.e., THE Achenbro and that other Achenbro).

Posted by: Tom fan | December 15, 2005 1:14 PM | Report abuse

SCC entry:
I meant to sign off on my previous comment as Achenbro- and Tom fan.

Posted by: Tom fan | December 15, 2005 1:15 PM | Report abuse

A majestic dragon...sniffing its own butt?

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Do dragons even have butts? I thought they were above it all. Like Joel in his Garret.

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Yeah... but a majestic dragon sniffing its own butt.

Posted by: TBG | December 15, 2005 1:19 PM | Report abuse

I have been reading washingtonpost.com for many months, and I would like to confess a few things:

1) I had NO IDEA that the Post considered the "Washington Post" and "washingtonpost.com" two separate entities until this whole Froomkin thing blew up.

2) I didn't realize that Dan Froomkin didn't actually cover the White House as a reporter until about a month or two ago.

3) I didn't realize that "White House Briefing" was considered a blog until about a month ago.

Now, I don't think I am all that dumb. I agree with Joel that the difference between WP and WP.com is not all that clear.

Other reasons for my confusion: Dan is listed as a "Columnist", his column/blog/whatever isn't visually structured like a lot of other blogs (compare the format on screen between WHB and Achenblog--they aren't the same!), and comments aren't elicited at the end of the post, but in a separate WHB Forum (yeah, that encourages give and take).

I don't think it is surprising that some readers would be confused--because I am one of them! I still like WHB and hope it doesn't change--whatever it is (column, blog, collog, bolumn...)--it is the one online posting I make a point of reading every day.

Posted by: JustAReader | December 15, 2005 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Would someone please refresh my memory? Which boodler besides jw recently got engaged?

Thanks

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Achenfan, I'm confused.

A majestic dragon sniffing it's own butt?

I thought about the Achenboros/Achenbros issue when I first wrote it all of 10 minutes ago, but thought: there are only 3 guys who might have a problem with that. And then there are the rest of US.

I'm willing to go with Achenboros as long as it's a majestic dragon or a panda.

Weingartenboros is the dog.

I am SO giggling over here.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 1:22 PM | Report abuse

This had me literally laughing out loud, and it does mention Kimodo Dragon poo, sort of.

http://www.nd.edu/~ndmag/w0304/mom9.html

I am the master of zen googling. Whereever you go, there you are.

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 1:24 PM | Report abuse

HAHAHAHAHAHA...TBG and I made the same joke!!! This afternoon's going to be totally wacky.

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 1:25 PM | Report abuse

SCC: BOOO.

I think Peter Jackson will have Smaug sniffing his own butt in the next cinematic verision of "The Hobbit".

Take that any way you want.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 1:27 PM | Report abuse

I was thinking more along the lines of a majestic dragon breathing its own fire, or chasing its own tail, or something. (And yes, I know, the breathing-its-own-fire option is kind of nonsensical -- omni-senseless, even -- but would we really have it any other way?)

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Maybe it could shoot fire out of its butt and breathe that.

Ok, ok. I'll stop now.

Posted by: jw | December 15, 2005 1:28 PM | Report abuse

My vote: the Majestic Dragon Achenboros consuming it's own tail.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 1:30 PM | Report abuse

jw - double Ha!
You're on fire (as it were) today...

...fire's COOL...

You're channeling Gene now, aren't you?

I think I'm going to have to change my vote.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Curmudgeon, the other newly engaged boodler would be Sara.

Posted by: slyness | December 15, 2005 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, slyness

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 1:43 PM | Report abuse

I say, this is a most unusual blog, with so much talk about sniffing one's butt.

I think your colleague is correct that draggons have no butts. Therefore, where would they be sniffing? Pudenda maybe?

As for bros versus boros, why be concerned with bros? We need to stand up for what we believe in, or, sit down.

Posted by: Gefilte | December 15, 2005 1:43 PM | Report abuse

If the chosen Achenmascot ends up having anything to do with butts, poop, Achenobscenities, etc., why, I'm . . . I'm . . . I'm going to have to burn down the building!

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 1:44 PM | Report abuse

remember the addage, AchenFan: everyone poops. There's no getting away from that reality. Just watch what you step in.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 15, 2005 1:46 PM | Report abuse

That's true, everyone *does* poop. But if you spend too much time focusing on poop, you could be missing out on a whole bunch of other stuff. We are more than our poop.

Posted by: Dreamer | December 15, 2005 1:49 PM | Report abuse

But, that said, we also: are what we eat, no? Or is this concept a pile of shit?

Pleeez don't tag moi for vulgarity, given content of this blog this week. My word!!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | December 15, 2005 1:52 PM | Report abuse

OK.. I'm going to pipe in on the Froomkin thing just a little...

I like his column. I find it very interesting and entertaining and usually worth a look almost every day (and I must admit I go to it more if it's on the front page of the website). And I agree with the commenter last night that when the WH says 1+1=3 Froomkin points it out--and I like that he does that.

Now, somewhere along the way, probably a month or two ago, I got the impression that he didn't really work for the Post but was some kind of freelancer or that the Post was just publishing a Froomkin, Inc. blog or column or something. I wasn't really paying attention, it just sort of grew on me that that was the case. I can't even really put my finger on what led me to think that. But it appears that I'm not that far off.

So if I wasn't even paying attention and got the impression that he didn't work for The Washington Post paper, then how would a news "savvy" person not get it?

OK.. that's my six cents worth of Froobabble. Thank you.

Posted by: TBG | December 15, 2005 1:53 PM | Report abuse

should have signed the 1:52 post. My regrets.

Posted by: Gargantua | December 15, 2005 1:53 PM | Report abuse

But can a dragon light its own farts? And what would be the point? I am cracking myself up picturing a dorm-ful of dragons with beers in their hands nearly burning the place down.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 15, 2005 1:56 PM | Report abuse

No-one was tagging yoi for anything.
The world is not out to get you.

We are stardust. We are golden. And we've got to get ourselves back to the garden.

Beware of maya.
Love is the answer.

[OK, I'll stop now.]

Posted by: Dreamer | December 15, 2005 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Another swing and a miss, Joel. You may be reading, but you're not listening. Heck, you are not even remembering your own words. Oh well.

I remember when a journalist would gleefully bring word back complaints from the administration directly to the target as confirmation that they were doing their jobs. Does that ring a bell at all?

Washingtonpost.com is separate from Wash Post to avoid paying union wages to editorial employees. Ironically, it is to slight the web employees, not the print staff.

Posted by: RB in DC | December 15, 2005 1:57 PM | Report abuse

then what is the question, eh?

Posted by: Anonymous | December 15, 2005 1:57 PM | Report abuse

[Especially since I keep Boodling Out of Order to the point of Boddling.]

Posted by: Dreamer | December 15, 2005 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Awriiiight, Dreamer! Channeling a little Joni Mitchell!

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 2:00 PM | Report abuse

What is the question?

The question is everything else.

Posted by: Dreamer | December 15, 2005 2:03 PM | Report abuse

I believe it's from Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young, not JM. Or I am older than I thought.

Posted by: Cordova | December 15, 2005 2:05 PM | Report abuse

I do believe CSNY did a cover of Ms. Mitchell's "Woodstock."

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 15, 2005 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Maybee I am younger, and stupeeder, than I thought. But I feel great.

Posted by: Cordova | December 15, 2005 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Cordova, Ms. Mitchell wrote that song...

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Joni Mitchell wrote "Woodstock" in David Geffen's NYC apartment. She didn't go to Woodstock because she was scheduled for the Dick Cavett show right afterward. CSN&Y had the hit with it.

Posted by: pj | December 15, 2005 2:15 PM | Report abuse

I remember studying "Woodstock" as poetry in college and not realizing until then that J. Mitchell had written it. I got my revenge by quoting Springsteen on the final.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 15, 2005 2:26 PM | Report abuse

I somehow knew we'd get the definitive answer from pj.

Posted by: omnigood | December 15, 2005 2:26 PM | Report abuse

[Dragon dorm-room theme song]

Watch out
You might get what you're after
Cool babies
Strange but not a stranger
I'm an ordinary guy
Burning down the house

Hold tight wait till the party's over
Hold tight we're in for nasty weather
There has got to be a way
Burning down the house

Here's your ticket pack your bag: time for jumpin' overboard
The transportation is here
Close enough but not too far, maybe you know where you are
Fightin' fire with fire

All wet
Hey you might need a raincoat
Shakedown
Dreams walking in broad daylight
Three hundred sixty five degrees
Burning down the house

It was once upon a place sometimes I listen to myself
Gonna come in first place
People on their way to work baby what did you expect
Gonna burst into flame

My house
S'out of the ordinary
That's might
Don't want to hurt nobody
Some things sure can sweep me off my feet
Burning down the house

No visible means of support and you have not seen nuthin' yet
Everything's stuck together
I don't know what you expect starring into the tv set
Fighting fire with fire

-- "Burning Down the House," by Talking Heads

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Cordova, this is one bad-a** place to screw up your musical knowledge. This crowd will eat you alive. pj probably knows if she used a Number Two pencil, and how many packs of Marlboros she went through during the writing phase.

But speaking of music, it's time for a song! Maybe that will take all our minds off the "recent unpleasantness." Fortunately, I just happen to have one, in honor of the recent boodle-based engagement of jw and sara (yeah, yeah, I know...don't bug me with facts. Just go with it, OK? Sheesh.)

Cue up the piano...it's a little ditty I call...

Achenblog Nights

aka The Ballad of jw and Sara

She stood there bright as the sun on her Internet blog
He was a cyberspace boy on his own
She typed at him with those soft eyes, so innocent and blue
He knew right then he have to rent "Rashomon"
He'd need to see "Rashomon"

She took his hand and she led him to the Achenbach blog
They watched the boodles tumble all over Karl Rove
They read up on miles and miles up those twisting, turning posts
Higher and higher the onanism rose

[kicking guitar riffs, and an out-of-control piano]

In those Achenblog fights
And those Achenblog kits
Froomkin attacked by the right
And giving Joel fits
All those dot.commy nights
In those WaPolling hills
The Left beats the Right
With rhetorical skills

He'd typed in a post 'cause he felt that a chat
Would do him good
Read some old kits, good for the soul
She had been born with a face that would let her
blog all day
He saw that face and typed alt-control
Oh-oh, typed alt-control

Night after night, day after day, it went on and on
Froomkinistas* comin' out of the woodwork
He spent all night responding to Jay Rosen
Wondering if he could ever leave it alone

And those Achenblog nights
In those Achenblog hills
He was sick of the Right
Argumentative pills
In those Achenblog fights
All those leftwinger drills
Paranoic insights
With a passion that kills

In those Achenblog nights
Ah those Achenblog kits
She was looking so right
On her bloggy Web sites
All those big city fights
And those high-sounding phrases
Above all the lights
Of the posts of the crazies

Oh, oh ooooooooooooooo

[go nuts with the honky-tonk piano, drums, guitars, etc. Rinse, repeat]

* Thanks for that one, Kurosawaguy--very nice.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Is it just me, or is there a little less-than-or-equal-to symbol at the end of each time stamp that never used to be there before?
"How did it get there?"

Posted by: Tom fan | December 15, 2005 2:32 PM | Report abuse

I have to confess to wondering if jw and Sara have ever even HEARD of Bob Seger.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 2:32 PM | Report abuse

SCC:BOOO

Posted by: omnigood | December 15, 2005 2:33 PM | Report abuse

["How do I work this?"]

Posted by: Tom fan | December 15, 2005 2:33 PM | Report abuse

SCC:BOOOBOOO

Posted by: omnigood | December 15, 2005 2:34 PM | Report abuse

SCC:BOOOBOOOBOOO

Posted by: omnigood | December 15, 2005 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Now it says "Permalink." Achenevolution.

Posted by: Tom fan | December 15, 2005 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Boo hoo, omni. I feel your pain.

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 2:37 PM | Report abuse

I smell the Hand of Hal on this page.

Fonts are changing, links appearing, functionality disappearing (like being able to backspace in TypePad)...

Hey, we're being Upgraded.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 2:38 PM | Report abuse

At least I finally got two posts in a row. I was getting worried that robot blocker was gonna keep me at this all afternoon. Anyhoo, breaktime.

Posted by: omnigood | December 15, 2005 2:38 PM | Report abuse

SCC: of those twisting, turning posts

And how was I to know I was following the Talking Heads?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 2:40 PM | Report abuse

"... and you may say to yourself,
My God, what have I done?"

Indeed, Achenfan.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 2:40 PM | Report abuse

bc,

The combined ages of Sara and jw don't add up to Seger's. Or mine (sigh).

Curmudgeon,

HA! I dunno what she smoked. Maybe it was my cigarette of choice when I smoked - Camel non-filters.

Posted by: pj | December 15, 2005 2:41 PM | Report abuse

"...and you may say to yourself,
'"This is not my beautiful blog!'"

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Hal's noodly appendage has indeed been at work. Perhaps The Schemer's mysterious agenda is about to be revealed.

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Uh, the song is hilarious but I don't think Sara and jw are engaged to each other. Sara got engaged way back in mid-November. See this post on Sara's blog and we will let jw confirm or deny if he is the Jeremy pictured:

http://discoveringsara.blogspot.com/2005/11/getting-married-updated.html

And if I am just spoiling some sort of inside joke, I apologize for my desensitized sense of humor. Anything more sophisticated than dragons lighting farts (which I think is actually a Far Side gag)goes over my head.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 15, 2005 2:47 PM | Report abuse

pj, I was guessing Marlboros, because I believe (not sure--working from diseased memory) that there was a pack of Marlboros in the corner of one of the album cover paintings (she was indeed smoking in the painting, however).

Camel non-filters? My father's nail of choice during and after WWII. I did Pall Malls in college until I developed a cigarette cough, switch to Parliaments. During my heavy Albert Camus phase, I would occasionally buy a pack of blue Gaulois (his nail of choice, of course). I would smoke maybe one a week, because they were so...satisfying? so rich? so French?...that one a week was enough.

If my wife should ever pre-decease me, I'm going back to blue Gaulois.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Hal has a noodly appendage? Was he created his FSM's image? Thought only the FSM had one. Dang!

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Curmudgeon,

I think you are correct about Marlboros. I also smoked them some. I smoked in college, quitting in about '77 or so (smoking, not college) and haven't had one since '80 or '81.

Posted by: pj | December 15, 2005 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Scottynuke:

I was WORKING today or I would have been all over that blancmange reference. Because, the memory is seared into my brain of the blancmange playing tennis. It was quite frightening to me as a child because I really had no idea what that thing was. In later years I have learned a little more about British "cuisine" and always when the subject is "pudding", I'm thinking of that blancmange playing tennis.

Posted by: Reader | December 15, 2005 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Ha! Great song, Curmudgeon. And yes, I have heard of Bob Seger, though I'm not all that familiar with his stuff. Actually, not familiar at all. So bc wasn't that far off with his comment.

And no, jw is not my Jeremy. They just share a name. And jw is engaged to Kristen. (I'm assuming, since she's the one he's been dating.)

Posted by: Sara | December 15, 2005 3:03 PM | Report abuse

You describe Froomkin as "a person who does not cover the White House for The Post." Yet his blog title says "White House Briefing -- News on President George W Bush and the Bush Administration"

If he's writing about Bush and the Bush administration (located in the White House, last I heard), and he's writing about it on the website washingtonpost.com, in what possible sense can it be said that he does not cover the White House for the Post?

Posted by: Brachinus | December 15, 2005 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Sara, that song works better if you hum the tune to Bob Seger's "Hollywood Nights" while reading the lyrics.

It'll only cost you $1 on iTunes...

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Brachinus,

It depends on your use of "cover." His column isn't necessarily a news column. It's an opinion column, so he doesn't cover the White House in the way that the Post's White House reporters cover it. He just gives his take on what's going on there.

Posted by: Sara | December 15, 2005 3:09 PM | Report abuse

I'm thinking I'll actually get it off of iTunes tonight, bc. It wouldn't hurt to expand my musical horizons to include Bob Seger.

Posted by: Sara | December 15, 2005 3:10 PM | Report abuse

someone should call security about these Permalink things

one of them just followed me out to the car

Posted by: kp | December 15, 2005 3:13 PM | Report abuse

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blancmange

Posted by: omnigood | December 15, 2005 3:14 PM | Report abuse

On another note: If anyone followed the link jw provided to the Komodo dragon essay I've discovered the other two of the other eight are good reads. Plan on reading the rest as Achentime permits.

Posted by: omnigood | December 15, 2005 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Sara, add "amongst many other issues of Political interest.

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | December 15, 2005 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Isn't a Permalink what holds up Sansabelt Slacks?

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | December 15, 2005 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Sara, I was thinking about making some Bob Seger recommendations, but that'll just make me feel old.

Metallica's cover of "Turn the Page" is about ad far back as I'm willing to go here.

bc

Posted by: bc | December 15, 2005 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Dolphin Michael, there's just *got* to be some connection between that and the new pants Joel found in his closet.

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Sara, pardon a little authorly pride, but I recommend the live concert version of Hollywood Nights found on the "Nine Tonight" album. IMHO, the superior version. Don't know which cut iTunes has, but if there's a choice, take the Nine Tonight. Also on the same album I highly recommend that particular version of "Night Moves." I have the cassette in my car, and these two are virtually back-to-back on the cassette. I play one (at about 90 decibels--the only way to go), then when it's done, hit the revere button, and do the flip side.

Oh bliss.

Haven't heard the entire Seger oeuvre (sp?), but IMHO Nine Tonight is the best one.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Yes. Add that, like Dolphin Michael said. He's not strictly limited to the goings on inside the White House.

Posted by: Sara | December 15, 2005 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Metallica's cover of "Turn the Page."

Pu-leeeeze.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 3:24 PM | Report abuse

I don't understand what's going on. I'm confused about the confusion. I need an excuse. Where's the blorph. Permalink???

Posted by: omnihuh | December 15, 2005 3:24 PM | Report abuse

omnihuh is me, just for the record.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Reader;

A thousand pardons for the misspelling... And for me as well, the first time I saw that blancmange skit I just about ran outta the room!

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 15, 2005 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Curmudgeon;

Unless iTunes ripped the LP version of "Nine Tonight," it's not the same... The CD has an extremely over-edited version of "Let It Rock." *SIGHHHH*

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 15, 2005 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Stop Making Sense, omnigoof.

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 3:32 PM | Report abuse

I know "Turn the Page." But only because of Metallica. Sorry Curmudgeon.

Posted by: Sara | December 15, 2005 3:38 PM | Report abuse

omnihuh? no such thing, eh?

Posted by: omnigasm | December 15, 2005 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Very good points Joel. It was a very good and high-minded debate yesterday.

I have no doubt that there is a turf battle between the online and offline segments of the Post - especially given how the landscape seems to be tilting to the online side of things (perhaps not financially, but at least in terms of eyeballs).

Harris is probably a fine reporter (I say probably since I don't know him and really can't judge except by his stories and his comments) who got caught up in making his case and said some things he would most likely want to take back if he could.

I did think this morning that it was rather funny that there's a big flap over Froomkin but rather little over Dana Milbank's columns. He has a voice rather similar to Froomkin's (at least in today's column and the previous one) in my opinion but has the ability to balance his columns since he focuses on more than just the White House.

On the dorks thing. I was surprised when I saw the dork comment yesterday. I mean, seriously, who uses that word still? Didn't it go out of style in the 80s?

Posted by: DBJ | December 15, 2005 3:39 PM | Report abuse

dork may be outdated. but this blog is a catchment basin for most of the few left.

Posted by: cordova | December 15, 2005 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Curmudgeon: Kudos for the Achenblog Nights song, even if it's all over for jw and Sara. They've both moved on...


[just teasing]

Posted by: CowTown | December 15, 2005 3:42 PM | Report abuse

OK I get it now. It's the Permalink link that appears after the time stamp.

And dork is still widely used by us dorks here. We've co-opted it (is that the right word).

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 3:42 PM | Report abuse

When I think of "Turn the Page" I think of the version by an Aussie called Jon English.

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 3:42 PM | Report abuse

I am trying to read the comments but my eyes are entranced by the Permalinks.

Posted by: Achenbach | December 15, 2005 3:44 PM | Report abuse

the dorks have gathered here to aid the capacity and capability to reproduce this rare species.

however, there are probably a few more dorks on this earth than giant pandas

Posted by: cordova | December 15, 2005 3:44 PM | Report abuse

I'm sure that's Hal's intention. First he hypnotizes us, and then the brainwashing begins.

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Brachinus writes:

"
You describe Froomkin as "a person who does not cover the White House for The Post." Yet his blog title says "White House Briefing -- News on President George W Bush and the Bush Administration"
If he's writing about Bush and the Bush administration (located in the White House, last I heard), and he's writing about it on the website washingtonpost.com, in what possible sense can it be said that he does not cover the White House for the Post?
"

Dear Brachinus: Actually, we've covered this territory to the point of exhaustion. We're going to move on. It's over. Nothing to see here, folks.

Posted by: Achenbach | December 15, 2005 3:47 PM | Report abuse

[Boodled out of Order. I was referring to the Mesmerization-by-Permalink Scheme.]

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Warning! Do not look directly at the Permalink links! Do not even look indirectly at the Permalink links. Not even a sly glance, I say. And do not talk to the Permalink links. Above all else, do not click on the Permalink links!

Posted by: Bayou Self | December 15, 2005 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Might I suggest a simple solid black for the permalink instead the way too bright blue.

Posted by: yellojkt eye for the blog guy | December 15, 2005 3:54 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry - horribly entertaining comments, and all - but do you folks have bosses?

Posted by: jdinhouston | December 15, 2005 3:55 PM | Report abuse

I see only Permalinks.

I will obey.

Posted by: CowTown | December 15, 2005 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Of course, jdinhouston! His name is Joel Achenbach.

Posted by: slyness | December 15, 2005 3:56 PM | Report abuse

There must be something wrong with my brain (or something right). When the Permalink thing first started appearing I didn't even notice, I had to look at an older boodle to figure it out. It's just like when someone typos, my mind just fixes it in place and I don't notice until said boodler throws themself at the mercy of the SCC. Then I go back and reread it just to see what I missed.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Actually we're all self-made retired jillionaires who pretend we have jobs.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 3:59 PM | Report abuse

You're right, yellojkt eye for the blog guy. It's just way too "busy," isn't it?

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Actually, I believe that a Permalink is what we used to call a sausage curl, no?

Posted by: kurosawaguy | December 15, 2005 4:00 PM | Report abuse

I thought Permalink was that character from the Mod Squad... Or was that Link with a perm? I'm so confused...

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 15, 2005 4:05 PM | Report abuse

The Leftist Tirebiter creeps through the rushes and enters the Boodle, having sniffed through the Goodle detrius for keyswords like "MSM," and "balanced." He emerges from the underbrush with a roar, frustrated that the Mainstream Media have so far failed to impeach the president. He attempts to find a meal in discussions of a columnist accused of being a "liberal."

The Tirebiter instead finds the golden meadows of the Boodle inhabited by nymphs and satyrs, dancing and singing paens to "JA's Trousers," and speculating on whether a dragon has a "butt."

Frustrated, the Tirebiter grabs a rock with his scaly tail and hurls it at the plate glass windows of a local Starbucks. Momentarily satisfied, the Tirebiter stalks back into the brush, seeking easier prey in the Reader's Forums.

Calm returns to the Boodle, and the wildebeasts return to drink at the pond.

Posted by: DiscoverCow | December 15, 2005 4:09 PM | Report abuse

SCC Note: "Goodle" should be "Google"

I am an idiot.

Posted by: CowTown | December 15, 2005 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Late as usual. Darn internet rules. Luckily I got out early for bad weather. Anyway, sorry for backsliding, but I thought about this all day. I never knew that the "dotcom" and "dead paper" incarnations of the Washington Post brand were so distinct. I also never realized that the homepage was such valuable real estate. In light of these facts, I can see that the prominence of Froomkin on the homepage could ruffle some feathers in the print newsroom. Perceived objectiveness of the paper, as well as a bit of ego are clearly involved. Although I understand the point that this conflict is not necessarily about politics, I can also see how it could easily be interpreted that way by some. There seems to be a twisted philosophy that anyone who does not savage the president daily like a junkyard dog on PCP must, necessarily, be a stooge for the White House. This is silliness, but we are a society of pack animals.

Posted by: RD Padouk | December 15, 2005 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Was that just a Joel sighting a minute ago? I think it was!

Step away from the Permalink.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Don't beat yourself up over it, DiscoverCow -- I think there's a place for "Goodle" in the AchenLexicon: A Goodle is what the Boodle becomes when the Googlers fly in for the day.

[Great story, by the way -- I love the part about the rock and the scaly tail. I just hope it wasn't *my* Starbucks. Or Joel's.]

Posted by: Tom fan | December 15, 2005 4:19 PM | Report abuse

help! help! the permalink has be by the ankle and is dragging me back into the boodle!!!!!

and yes, most definitely dragons have butts!

Posted by: mo | December 15, 2005 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Ah - I did forget from growing up in D.C. - you do get some ice and snow, etc.

Yes, I would also guess that dragons have butts - if they are emitting fire at one end, there has to be an exhaust system at another end.

Posted by: jdinhouston | December 15, 2005 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Many mornings I'm draggin' butt until the caffeine kicks in.

The pun is the lowest form of humor. That was lower.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 15, 2005 4:26 PM | Report abuse

and speaking of dragons - you must go here http://www.homestarrunner.com/sbemail58.html

the permalinks demand it!

Posted by: mo | December 15, 2005 4:28 PM | Report abuse

I love the word Tirebiters. It's perfect in this case.

I am going to complain to Hal that his Permalinks are so friggin' bright they are blinding us. You know this was Jay Rosen's doing -- he emailed the suggestion late last night and, poof, we're Permalinked to within an inch of our lives.

AND they don't match the drapes.

Posted by: Achenbach | December 15, 2005 4:29 PM | Report abuse

I'm draggin' butt till it's time to go. which it is. I am so out of here. Catch you all tomorrow AM. And let's try to keep the BOOOBoddling to a minimum. AchenLater alligator.

Posted by: omnigoof | December 15, 2005 4:32 PM | Report abuse

and um... *ahem* i believe the reference to the achenfaq might have been buried in the froomstorm - also i think there should probably be many additions introduced in today's boodle... i'm pretty sure hal the schemer should be added - joel - how would you define hal the schemer?
*shamless self promotion*
http://www.mortiifera.com/?p=67

Posted by: mo | December 15, 2005 4:34 PM | Report abuse

mo, you need to add "dork" to the achenfaq. It's a word who's time has come again.

Posted by: CowTown | December 15, 2005 4:39 PM | Report abuse

I have an Idea.

We need Boodle Cliffs Notes. So those of us who haven't been here all day can understand what's going on, without re-reading the whole boodle. We are a loquacious bunch.

Posted by: LP | December 15, 2005 4:39 PM | Report abuse

mo, that dragon link is Achentastic! I was mesmerized!
And yeah, Hal the Schemer should definitely be added to the dictionary. I think Hal could be defined as Creator of the AchenUniverse.

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 4:41 PM | Report abuse

"I'm gonna hit the highway like a battering ram
On a silver black phantom bike
When the metal is hot and the engine is hungry
And we're all about to see the light
Nothing ever grows in this rotten old hole
And everything is stunted and lost
And nothing really rocks
And nothing really rolls
And nothing's ever worth the cost
And I know that I'm damned if I never get out
And maybe I'm damned if I do
But with any other beat I got left in my heart
You know I'd rather be damned with you
If I gotta be damned you know I wanna be damned
Dancing through the night with you
If I gotta be damned you know I wanna be damned
Gotta be damned you know I wanna be damned
If gotta be damned you know I wanna be damned
Dancing through the night
Dancing through the night
Dancing through the night with you"

Yup, Meatloaf- "Bat Out of Hell"

Posted by: kurosawaguy | December 15, 2005 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Am I the only one who has dark blue (almost to the point of black) permalink links? Always have.

Posted by: Sara | December 15, 2005 4:44 PM | Report abuse

but achenfan - isn't hal the schemer trying to take over the achenblog?

don't cha just love strongbad?

Posted by: mo | December 15, 2005 4:51 PM | Report abuse

mo, that strongbad link was the highlight of my day so far!

Posted by: Sara | December 15, 2005 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Tirebiter lyrics, courtesy of Firesign Theatre and sung by the Android Sisters:


Porgy Tirebiter!
He's a spy and a girl delighter,
Orgie Firefighter!
He's just a student like you.

If you're looking for a Captain of the Ringball Team,
You can bet he won't be there.
You'll find him pa-popping off at Pop's Sodium Shoppe,
Tr-trailing a red, with red hair.
Doobie doo-wah...
Porgy Tirebiter!
Just a student like you!
(PORGY:) "Like me?!"
Just a student like you!
(Father:) "Stop singing and finish your homework !"
Just a student like you! ooooooooooo..."

Posted by: pj | December 15, 2005 4:53 PM | Report abuse

That's true, mo -- although I think he could probably take it over at any time if he *really* wanted to. He made it, and he has total control over it. We are all at his mercy, even Joel. I agree it might be hard to define Hal the Schemer. His role --and his ultimate plan for us -- are probably way beyond our understanding.

Posted by: Achenfan | December 15, 2005 4:58 PM | Report abuse

pj, I've actually been kinda waiting for the Porgy Tirebiter song to pop up, since it's been floating in my head since the word Tirebiter was first mention.

More coffee, warden?

K,-guy, what prompted "Bat Out of Hell"? (One of my tippy-top alltime favs--saw him at Wolftrap summer before last when he fell of the stage, and then later almost electrocuted himself leaning against a giant speaker. Terrific concert.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Hey, mo, speaking of the achenFAQ, I thought you said t'other day you posted it. Is there a link yet?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Several medieval recipes for blancmange have survived, and the dish is mentioned in the prologue to Geoffrey Chaucer's Canterbury Tales.

Ah yes, my distant great-uncle by marriage, Geoffrey Chaucer.

Here's a Chaucer parody of an earlier news story this year, Perhaps you recall it:

April's Fools: March's Canterbury Tale (2005)

When April, with her showers sweet with fruit,
The drought of March has pierced unto the root,
And bathed each vein with liquor that has power
To generate therein and birth the flower.

This subject of nature pricks me on to ramp and rage,
Since folks now come back from pilgrimage
Where palmers went seeking out strange strands
To erect temporary shrines in the sunny, Florida land.

And 'specially from every shire's end
From the Fractured States to Pinellas Park they wend,
Their holy blessed, created martyr there to seek
To help her when she lay so ill and weak.

But nonetheless, whilst I have time and space
Before yet farther in this tale I pace,
It seems to me to accord with reason
To inform you not of the state of every one.

Yet, the martyr, her spouse, an actor, I shall briefly describe
As all future penned accounts shall certainly not jibe.
For in her room, she was in a most desperate fight
Hovered over outside by national media's bright, glaring light.

Her repast had long been delivered by stomach feeding tube,
Whilst outside her house danced many a fervent boob,
These placard-carrying supplicants danced in a colorful circus
And remonstrated for the dying woman--with clanging, fearful fuss.

Our faithful leader on Palm Sunday took winged flight
To sign papers drafted hastily in the dead of night.
To give control of this woman to federal court authority?
To barter support for his failing restructure of Social Security?

Of Her "Aaaahhs" and "Whaaaahhs," physicians tried to divine
Her wishes of life and death, while she lay quite supine.
Many cuckooed, chanted night and day--she in death's last throes.
The Lord finally lifted her up, she, now, in serene, sweet repose.

Her bedside spouse, cast as sinner, is justly, truly the saint,
So many his watchfulness and care have tried to taint.
Through his tender mercy she received the most loving care.
Not one bedsore in more than 15 years, dare I share?

Is it not time that we leave this grieving family alone,
Since this brain-dead martyr has lost her haunting moan?
So many of these zealous pilgrims' deeds, the errands of fools.
History shall itself proclaim, those who were surely the jewels.

By God, if more women had but reported written stories,
As have the politicians and pundits with their oratories,
They would have written of men more wickedness
Than all the race of Adam could redress.

Posted by: Loomis | December 15, 2005 5:02 PM | Report abuse

'mudge - peek up above at my shameless self promotion...

ah heck - i'll just re-post

*ATTENTION BOODLERS* PLEASE VISIT
http://www.mortiifera.com/?p=67
FOR ACCESS TO THE (unofficial) ACHENFAQ

Posted by: mo | December 15, 2005 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Hey, mo, speaking of the achenFAQ, I thought you said t'other day you posted it. Is there a link yet?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 5:04 PM | Report abuse

is there an echo in here?

Posted by: mo | December 15, 2005 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Do not taunt the Permalink links.

Posted by: Bayou Self | December 15, 2005 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Does this group have breadth and depth, or what? It even has "what."

Posted by: CowTown | December 15, 2005 5:07 PM | Report abuse

I was referring to: (a) All the cool David Bryne lyrics; (b) the REALLY cool Firesign Theater references; (c) Linda's biting lymeric commentary; and (d) mo's ever growing achenfaq. We're a busy group.

Posted by: CowTown | December 15, 2005 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Jeez, boodled two seconds behind the curve, again.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Hey, Joel, howzabout a science Kit someday soon?

My eldest offspring is in the throes of fixation on cryptozoology and cryptids. I have recently been treated to a photograph of the paddle of Nessiteras Rhombopteryx. I know this photo! It was released in Science in about 1975-1976. Back then, it was blurry and barely discernible as anything -- imagination largely connected the noise to give a rhomboid flipper. The same photo, now, is incredibly clear and shows an unmistakable flipper, but the posture is precisely the same as the 30-year old photo. I'm reminded of the way that the Viking picture of the "Face on Mars" became clearer and clearer as True Believers continually 'improved' the quality of the photo until it clearly showed the image that they knew was there. So, how about something on pseudo-science, N-rays, stuff like that?

Posted by: ScienceTim | December 15, 2005 5:14 PM | Report abuse

there are now additions to the achenfaq
http://www.mortiifera.com/?p=68

Posted by: mo | December 15, 2005 5:16 PM | Report abuse

"The confusion about Dan's column unintentionally creates about the reporter's role has itself become an obstacle to our work.

John Harris
National Politics Editor"

What does this mean Achenbach? It's great that you believe that "the White House right now has bigger problems than Dan Froomkin's column," despite documented examples of WH staff doing just what you claim is so unlikely. (Not specifically with Froomkin, but Lewis Libby/Russert and a Brokaw quote highlighted just in the last 24 hours by Atrios, to name a few.)

If what you say is so self-evidently true, then just what does this quote mean? Harris concluded his response with it. You work alongside him (as your glowing endorsement of his work above states), so what's the problem? You yourself have admitted to reading these threads, and a (large) number of comments cited this notion or specifically this quote. And yet in two blog posts you've only made glancing reference to the idea couched Harris's concluding point. Why?

Posted by: Dr. Cb, Sick of straw men | December 15, 2005 5:17 PM | Report abuse

CowTown wrote: "Does this group have breadth and depth, or what? It even has "what."

At the risk of putting words in your mouth CT, I suggest the word you were grasping for is "pith." The boodle has pith. We are a pithy boodle. In fact, one is hard-pressed to find a blog with more pure, unadulterated pith than thith one.

Midst laurels stood mo (and associated contributors), for her excellent achenfaq. Mo, it has pith.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 15, 2005 5:24 PM | Report abuse

jeez - how'd i get surrounded by all these laurels? are they all going to fit in my car? hey - you boodlers created the achenfaq - i merely brought it all together!

Posted by: mo | December 15, 2005 5:28 PM | Report abuse

You know Gene actually had to have paid staff create his faq. Joel - you may be on to something here that will really increase your net worth - get boodlers to work for you for free and you can reduce the number of your support staff. (Shhh, maybe even Hal can be replaced)

Posted by: omodudu | December 15, 2005 5:37 PM | Report abuse

SCC - I was referring to Gene Weingarten who just set up an faq for his chat

Posted by: omodudu | December 15, 2005 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Joel blames it on Jay Rosen, but this morning Fearless Leader himself wrote in the Kit, "I wish I had a URL for his post of 11:57:56 last night, but here's an excerpt..."

And now we have.... Permalink

Posted by: TBG | December 15, 2005 5:44 PM | Report abuse

yeah, but omodudu (heh, i said dudu) Gene gets paid for his chat - joel is here unpaid - a mission of love if you must - to feed the boodle monster, the hairy warty slobbering boodle monster that tinkles on little kids tricycles...

Posted by: mo | December 15, 2005 5:45 PM | Report abuse

That's an awesome achenfaq, mo. and see? it just took me an hour to read everything. I just caught up..... (whining, wringing of hands)

Posted by: LP | December 15, 2005 5:45 PM | Report abuse

"We're going to move on. It's over. Nothing to see here, folks.

Posted by: Achenbach | Dec 15, 2005 3:47:39 PM | Permalink"

This would have been a more appropriate title for this post.

Oh, and when you're done asking Harris just what the hell he meant regarding "obstacles," why don't you ask the ombudsperson exactly why she chose to write about this trivial "embarassing internal spat." Doesn't seem like the place for airing dirty laundry, does it? (Though it sure does give Harris and the WAPO something to point to the next time some "obstacle" miraculously appears, doesn't it? I mean, at least they made an effort, yes?)

Trading clever comments with your readers sure is easier than actually being a journalist, isn't it Joel?

Posted by: Dr. Cb, Do I hear a "hack"? | December 15, 2005 5:48 PM | Report abuse

And in case you need to access it quickly, my comment above can be found here:

http://blogs.washingtonpost.com/achenblog/2005/12/all_froomkin_al.html#c12135120

Posted by: TBG | December 15, 2005 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Dr. Cb writes: "You yourself have admitted to reading these threads..."

Yes, but only under threat of torture.

And then when I read them, I said: "On second thought, I'll have the torture."

Posted by: Achenbach | December 15, 2005 5:52 PM | Report abuse

Dr. Cb: I am actually eager to move on because everyone has already said everything there is to say about this. You seem to think there's something really suspicious about that Harris statement, but he's exhaustively explained himself at this point. I'm not sure what else you want from me, to be honest. But guess what: I'm going to take your suggestion, and will go back to being a journalist now!

Posted by: Achenbach | December 15, 2005 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Mo, there's actually a small bit of compensation. I know that's a shock but I thought I should set the record straight there.

Posted by: Achenbach | December 15, 2005 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Mo did you include an entry for "Boodle-killer."

Posted by: Achenbach | December 15, 2005 6:01 PM | Report abuse

O lord and master to whom we dorks supplicate and suck up: You seem to have (perhaps inadvertently) included your personal e-mail address at WaPo in a mail-to link on your last post. You might want to remove that -- you know, to avoid being swamped by e-mails from the angry people, not to mention inviting even more spam to come your way from robots combing the web for persons who might like to buy Viagra, engage in important confidential business transactions, or purchase major monumental architecture in order to help out with the national debt. A bit of discreet self-smiting might be in order (sounds like onanism, doesn't it?).

Posted by: Tim | December 15, 2005 6:15 PM | Report abuse

No matter what you may think, Boss, you are NOT a Boodle-killer!

See? I'm still here...

Posted by: Slyness | December 15, 2005 6:21 PM | Report abuse

*shock* this isn't a mission of LOVE?? you mean you are getting PAID to be here? *slumps over* my world is over!

guess i hafta add boodle-killer and onanism (hey, tim, please provide definition, tx!)

Posted by: mo | December 15, 2005 6:23 PM | Report abuse

I believe that Bayou Self, earlier in this Boodle, already has handled the excellent word "onanism."

Posted by: Tim | December 15, 2005 6:29 PM | Report abuse

That's my washington post email address. It's achenbachj@washpost.com. It's not personal. But I don't check it very often, because it's unbelievably spammy and I kid you not I have at any given moment something like 20,000 unread messages.

Posted by: Achenbach | December 15, 2005 6:43 PM | Report abuse

Trading clever comments with your readers sure is easier than actually being a journalist, isn't it Joel?
Posted by: Dr. Cb, Do I hear a "hack"? | Dec 15, 2005 5:48:03 PM

Hey Dr Cb,
What's up with that attack on our fearless leader? The boodlers actually like it when Joel takes time out to join us in the boodle. In fact I'd say we are gleeful when he pops in.

To avoid future gaffaws when responding to my posts (mo) I have shortened my handle to omodee even though "dudu" really does mean black in Yoruba. I guess when in Rome . . .

Posted by: omodee | December 15, 2005 7:12 PM | Report abuse

Kudos, Mr. Achenbach, for even addressing a less-than-fawning comment. Many would not have the courage, and for that you deserve respect.

That said, there are still some unresolved issues at the heart of this "boodle."

Mr. Harris contends that a "great many people" perceive Mr. Froomkin to represent the values and viewpoint of the National Politics Desk. And yet, at the same time, "obstacles" are created. This can only mean that those covered by Mr. Harris's desk represent the conflicts he is trying to address. From my perspective, this allows for two possibilities:

1) Those people covered by the White House reporters (who have allegedly raised this issue) are unable, unlike the vast majority of the Wapo readership, to distinguish that Mr. Froomkin's column is indeed a column of opinion (as located on the site). This would suggest that those being covered on the White House beat are morons. If this should be the case, I'd suggest that this is quite newsworthy, not to say troubling.

2) That those being covered are not morons, but instead are pushing "disingenous talking points" that, per Mr. Harris, should cause a reporter to "cry foul," representing, as he again states, "basic journalistic" and "democratic" values.

In either case, is Mr. Harris's responsibility to acquiesce to those people he covers, and take steps to remedy their "confusion"? Or, is it to instruct his staff to, as any rational person would do, inform these folks that Mr. Froomkin writes opinion, as do many other people at the Post, conservative and liberal, as you no doubt know.

I would suggest that Mr. Harris's job is not to take whatever steps necessary to soothe these moronic/disingenuous subjects of his work, but to report on them in the objective manner he professes to strive toward. He knows perfectly well that a simple "So-and-so declined to comment/be interviewed for this story" ends up being much more damaging to the subject than the story, and as such is in a position to do whatever he damn pleases in this case. That he is compelled to take action to please those "great many" confused people (who also happen to be among those he is covering) does not to me seem to be a basic journalistic value.

Which brings us to the other unresolved issue, which is the reasoning behind making the whole issue public. Whether through pressure (from where, who knows?) or through simple recycling of office issues, Ms. Howell found reason to devote a column to this conflict that a "great many" people are so troubled by. As the readers' representative, is her priority to those readers who also happen to be the subject of the White House reporters' stories? Is it that surprising that a great many readers have come to the conclusion that Ms. Howell and Mr. Harris seem more concerned with addressing the whims of those around the White House (after all, it was the three WH reporters who took this issue to Mr. Harris, yes?) who also happen to have the means to create "obstacles"?

To paraphrase a comment from one of these Froomkin-centric threads, any "freeze-out" or threats of a loss of access would, for any journalist with a shred of integrity and belief in "basic journalistic values," cause not an acquiescence but a resentment that would in turn intensify the critical thought applied to each story. That Mr. Harris (and with him Ms. Howell and apparently you, though I'll allow that you are simply loyaly attempting to defend a colleague) has chosen the former, is unfortunate to say the least.

Again, I give you kudos, though it may mean little coming from "the crankosphere."

Posted by: Dr. Cb, Over and out | December 15, 2005 7:49 PM | Report abuse

ScienceTim, I agree. I would like to see a little bit more Science in the Achenblog. Joel does good Science. Further your observations about "enhancements" are right on. I do signal processing. The temptation to tweak a given algorithm until you see the expected result is very strong.

Posted by: RD Padouk | December 15, 2005 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Joel writes:
"Imagine you cover the White House for The Post and every day you see a prominent feature on the home page saying "White House Briefing" -- by a person who does not cover the White House for The Post."

I'm writing about his use (twice in that sentence) of "The Post." It shows what's now an outdated point of view. I wrote to Dan Froomkin (who is a friend, as are a few writers for the print edition) last night that the contretemps made me realize that the main edition of the Washington Post is now the .com version, and the dead-tree edition has suddenly and silently become the less important version -- & that Howell & Harris woefully fail to realize this; Howell listed much of the evidence, such as circulation numbers, in her column, then made that ignorantly snide remark about online being better for its ability to include the whole text of long boring speeches, which is like saying the paper version is better when you need to wrap a fish. Which "Washington Post" has more readers & broader geographic scope, and is more talked-about, prestigious (except in the minds of some reporters and editors), & influential? Online.

So, yes, it may be a problem that there are 2 different "Washington Post" operations on different sides of the Potomac, but the flagship one -- "The Post," as Joel would say -- is now the one that comes out of Rosslyn, not DC.

(& I voice this realization with some sadness, as a newspaper fiend who subscribes to the dead-tree Post, NYT, and WS Journal, and reads all 3 cover-to-cover daily, and who comes from a family of newspaper people. But it's true.)

Posted by: David Sullivan | December 15, 2005 9:00 PM | Report abuse

two pages from the Met identify the Yaruba word dudu as meaning black or a cluster of colors including black

http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/ho/11/sfg/hod_1993.500.1.htm
http://www.metmuseum.org/explore/oracle/figures29.html

i'm guessing that omo is Yaruma or Benin for person, people, or child, but google didn't really come to grips with that

dee might mean "shorter handle" (contextual translation), but no explanation is necessary

Posted by: kp | December 15, 2005 9:06 PM | Report abuse

I live in California and read .com. As I write this, the front page lists (under Today in Opinion) George Will as the headliner, Dan Froomkin, Richard Cohen, and Early Warning. I have heard of the first three gentlemen, but not the last. Yesterday, there was unknown lady listed, Ms. White House Briefing.

I believe the problem is that Mr. Early Warning and Ms. White House Briefing are not real people. Even Mr. Achenblog seems to be a slight misrepresentation. The solution is that all opinions should be listed by the names of the authors. With such as system, no one would be confused that Mr. Early Warning really is giving us an early warning or that Ms. White House Briefing is really providing a briefing to or from the White House.

Posted by: Albert Kinderman | December 15, 2005 9:27 PM | Report abuse

maybe you'll consider the comparison unfair, but your defense of your colleague is highly reminiscent of david corn's defense of viveca novak.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-corn/the-case-of-the-second-no_b_11681.html

Posted by: craigp | December 15, 2005 9:34 PM | Report abuse

Dear Joel--

I have to question your assertion that "Harris isn't objecting to Froomkin's politics, only to the fact that Froomkin offers opinions at all." Roll the videotape at:

http://journalism.nyu.edu/pubzone/weblogs/pressthink/*

and a fair paraphrase is:

Jay Rosen: Why do you think Froomkin's column has a liberal bias?

John Harris: Because Patrick Ruffini, past Bush-Cheney 2004 webmaster and currently eCampaign Director for the Republican National Committee says so.

You don't have to be a pajama-clad paranoid blogger from the crankosphere to find this hilarious.
----
*Q: You also said, "I perceive a good bit of [Froomkin's] commentary on the news as coming through a liberal prism--or at least not trying very hard to avoid such perceptions." But you don't give any examples or links to past columns, and Deborah Howell, who also made this point, doesn't give any examples, so it's hard for readers to judge what these observations are based on. Could you help me out here? What issues does WHB tend to view through a liberal prism? Can you point to columns that you had in mind? You also say that it may be true that Froomkin would do the column the same way if Kerry had won the '04 election; but if that's so, doesn't that undercut the notion of a liberal prism?

John Harris: How Dan would be writing about a Kerry administration is obviously an imponderable. Does Dan present a liberal worldview? Not always, but cumulatively I think a great many people would say yes--enough that I don't want them thinking he works for the news side of the Post. Without agreeing with the views of this conservative blogger who took on Froomkin, I would say his argument does not seem far-fetched to me.

Posted by: Brad DeLong | December 15, 2005 10:01 PM | Report abuse

You want science?

This--Rick Weiss's article (two paragraphs excerpted below) on the front page of the fiber Washington Post tomorrow is about as good as it gets...discovery made from work on the zebra fish. Just ONE letter change in the entire DNA sequence--INCREDIBLE!!! (I already knew I was mutant--I just didn't know HOW mutant.)

Somewhere, deep in the Boodle archives, is my previous post about how scientists had yet to discover that part of the genome responsible for melanin. As Weiss's article points out, that gene is present in a number of mammals, as well as the one-inch zebra fish.

Don't know if you also saw in the WaPo less than a month ago the great reporting about the sequencing now completed by geneticists for the dog genome and the very short (in terms of time) history of various dog breeds.

One day soon, the geneticists will figure out the mysteries of the calcium-sensing receptors. I remain hopeful.
***

Scientists Find DNA Change That Explains White Skin
By Rick Weiss
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, December 16, 2005; Page A01

Scientists said yesterday that they have discovered a tiny genetic mutation that largely explains the first appearance of white skin in humans tens of thousands of years ago, a finding that helps solve one of biology's most enduring mysteries and illuminates one of humanity's greatest sources of strife. ...

In fact, several scientists said, the new work shows just how small a biological difference is reflected by skin color. The newly found mutation involves a change of just one letter of DNA code out of the 3.1 billion letters in the human genome -- the complete instructions for making a human being.

Posted by: Loomis | December 15, 2005 10:42 PM | Report abuse

Brachinus asks a reasonable question:

'You describe Froomkin as "a person who does not cover the White House for The Post." Yet his blog title says "White House Briefing -- News on President George W Bush and the Bush Administration"
If he's writing about Bush and the Bush administration (located in the White House, last I heard), and he's writing about it on the website washingtonpost.com, in what possible sense can it be said that he does not cover the White House for the Post?'

Ah. Grasshopper. You are young. Let me enlighten you.

Daniel Froomkin does not work for _The Washington Post_, a newspaper. Daniel Froomkin works for WPNI--Washington Post-Newsweek Interactive--a separate company. _The Washington Post's_ offices are in Washington, D.C. WPNI's offices are in northern Virginia. Writers for _The Washington Post_ are members of the Newspaper Guild, a powerful and aggressive union. Writers for WPNI are not.

Back, oh, a decade or so ago, Washington Post Corporate Headquarters decided to set up the online operation in this way--as a separate company, with separate offices--to save money. Now everyone can see that the two operations have to merge, and merge soon--that what Washington Post Corporate Headquarters thought would be their successors' issues are their issues, that maybe there will be no print classified advertising revenue in three years, and that they have to mash two very different operations with very different cultures together.

Thus someone who works for _The Washington Post_--let's call him X (not John Harris)--notices that already more people are reading his work through washingtonpost.com than the print edition, that space on the washingtonpost.com homepage is better than space on page A1, and fears that the WPNI people (who hand out space on the homepage) will favor their own northern VA people over and above the print people who have toiled up the career ladder.

The thing that does not compute is that the response of the Ombudsman and the National Political Editor is to lash out at Froomkin. They should be offering him--and anybody with a secure place on the washingtonpost.com homepage--expensive presents to link to their stories and so get them effective front-page virtual placement. They should not be p***ing anybody connected with washingtonpost.com off.

That is a big mystery--that and the fact that when John Harris is asked "Why do you think Froomkin is biased?" his answer is "The eCampaign Director of the Republican National Committee said so."

Posted by: Brad DeLong | December 15, 2005 10:48 PM | Report abuse

There are actually THREE entities. I just found http://www.washpost.com - a "secret" website! (It says it's the "business" website).

You can even get a job!

"The Washington Post is a great place to work -- with interesting jobs and competitive benefits.

We are a diverse group of more than 3,000 people, dedicated to bringing you an excellent newspaper every day. In the Pressroom and the Newsroom, in Information Technology and Accounting, in Advertising and Circulation, we share that common goal.

When you join The Post, you are joining people who have been proud to work here for years."

(That all sounds pretty sappy to me - like it was written by an intern or something...)

Posted by: ot | December 16, 2005 1:28 AM | Report abuse

THE BOODLE IS BACK!!!!! all is right with the world!!!!!!

Posted by: mo | December 16, 2005 7:47 PM | Report abuse

First in line!! (Okay, mo, second.) And I have absolutely nothing to say! Except that horribly empty feeling I had all day is gone....

Posted by: RD Padouk | December 16, 2005 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Hooboy, I hope we never have technical problems with the blogs again...I missed the chatter! You folks keep me sane, and I need to read what's going on.

Posted by: Slyness | December 16, 2005 9:04 PM | Report abuse

Why are we not ashamed to be here? This is somehow the definition of dork. And brings new dimensions to the term "lurking."

Actually, it's not that I have no life. Really. I swear. It's just that I successfully integrate the many facets of my social/intellectual/professional/personal pursuits so that I can attend to them virtually simultaneously.

My daughter is coming home from college tonight. Pretty soon I'll check her flight online to see if it is on time. Then I'll wake my husband up because he wants to be the one to pick her up at the airport. Meanwhile, I've been cooking and shopping and decorating and wrapping presents since I left work today.

I did miss the Achenblog today. An unfortunate analogy occurred to me: it's like going to the zoo to see the gorilla and you go every day and he's always there and then one day you go and he's in the back part of his area, where the public can't see him, and so you miss him. The animals in the zoo mostly have that optional private zone they can disappear into. I guess Joel's entitled to that too. [I realize that this wasn't the boss's fault, or choice, of course. Stupid analogy, overall, but it did cross my mind.] Sorry, Joel, I said it was unfortunate.

Posted by: Reader | December 16, 2005 9:14 PM | Report abuse

Maybe I should mention I have gorillas on the brain because my husband has been raving about King Kong for the past week or so--he couldn't wait for the movie so he got the Fay Wray version from the library and watched it tonight. I listened from the other room. Lots of scary music and screaming. Not much dialog.

Posted by: Reader | December 16, 2005 9:16 PM | Report abuse

Joel: If you think the word, liberal, means Castro, that demonstrates how distorted the press has become as a result of the continuous barrage of propaganda that infects all US media these days. You guys don't even know what the words mean anymore. I am a liberal and I always have been since I voted for Jack Kennedy in the 60's. I am not a communist, nor even close to one. In fact, I am a true American patriot who passionately believes in democracy and the bill of rights. The word, liberal, became the nasty phrase to call people you don't like back after the cold war ended when they couldn't use the word, communist, to smear opponents any longer. Surely you're not to young to remember the 80's?

Posted by: Marcia Sherman | December 16, 2005 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Joel: If you think the word, liberal, means Castro, that demonstrates how distorted the press has become as a result of the continuous barrage of propaganda that infects all US media these days. You guys don't even know what the words mean anymore. I am a liberal and I always have been since I voted for Jack Kennedy in the 60's. I am not a communist, nor even close to one. In fact, I am a true American patriot who passionately believes in democracy and the bill of rights. The word, liberal, became the nasty phrase to call people you don't like back after the cold war ended when they couldn't use the word, communist, to smear opponents any longer. Surely you're not to young to remember the 80's?

Posted by: Marcia Sherman | December 16, 2005 9:31 PM | Report abuse

Glad to see the Kit and Kaboodle back. I wondered what was going on...I read the Kits at work, but don't look at the Boodle till I'm home, so I won't be tempted to join in! I thought maybe someone crossed the line in the Froomkin Storm, or that Joel had gotten fired (ruh roh).

Posted by: mostlylurking | December 16, 2005 9:32 PM | Report abuse

Reader, I may go see King Kong - it's supposed to be really well done - but long. But with Peter Jackson directing and Adrian Brody in it, it sounds promising. I'd also like to see Memoirs of a Geisha - trying to finish the book first. I may skip Syriana - if you haven't seen Good Night, and Good Luck - it's very good (both have George Clooney). And I'm amazed it's still in the theater here...

Posted by: mostlylurking | December 16, 2005 9:37 PM | Report abuse

I read Dana Milbank's chat transcript today - he had some funny Froomkin references in it. I still don't quite understand the online/print rivalry from a consumer point of view. I can only read the Post online, and I love it, after many years of being deprived. What I don't like is that it's hard to find columns - is Howie Kurtz off this week, or are they just not linking his column on the home page? And I hate, hate, hate the ads. I often read from work - those Victoria's Secret ads make it look like I'm on a porn site. Sheesh!

Posted by: mostlylurking | December 16, 2005 9:43 PM | Report abuse

I had quite literally never heard of Dan Froomkin before this week, and even with all the erudite comments and the passion this issue has dredged up here and elsewhere, it still feels like someone else's local issue to me. I just can't bring myself to care about it. (similar to the snow thing--it's been sunny and warm here in SoFla so it's hard to get worked up about someone else's flurries. I try to empathize, but it's just a distant reality.)

ml: I want to see Brokeback Mountain. I guess I'll be going to that by myself, the sig other wouldn't be caught dead. I will definitely see Good Night, and Good Luck--I've been a David Strathairn fan since I first saw him, in Dominic and Eugene, years ago. He is a very talented actor.

Posted by: Reader | December 16, 2005 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Someone must have pi**ed off the Permalink to do in the blog like that today.

We must always honor the Permalink.

Posted by: TBG | December 16, 2005 10:25 PM | Report abuse

TV Guide write-up:

The Day the Blogs Went Dark

Hilarity ensues in the Crankosphere when Dan Froomkin (Zach Braff) pulls a good-natured prank on the WaPo political desk, and accidentally short-circuits the newspaper's blog server. Server repair guy: Jesse White. Len Downie: George Clooney. Dana Priest: Evangeline Lilly.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 16, 2005 10:59 PM | Report abuse

Brokeback Mountain is on my movie list, too. A film aficianado friend of mine recommended Cinderella Man - Russell Crowe and Renee Zellweger (neither of whom I like much)...I see most movies by myself. My dear husband doesn't even want to see King Kong, and at 3 hours, I know better than to "force" him to accompany me...

Mudge, great casting. I heart George Clooney.

Posted by: mostlylurking | December 16, 2005 11:11 PM | Report abuse

S~t~i~ll sh~a~ki~ing here. I seem to be suffering withdrawal or maybe that feeling is from to actually having to work all day, the whole day, reading teeeeny tiny little numbers for ever and ever... .

I hope I am not the only desperate person who searched in every way imaginable, till I saw on the column and blog mainpage the note on blog problems.

A question kept echoing in my mind all day. "Hal, what are you doing Hal?" We whined about permalink, and the the blog went silent. Coincidence?

We must honour Hal, the Lord of the Permalink.

Posted by: dr | December 16, 2005 11:14 PM | Report abuse

Does the Permalink mean all of this is on our permanent records?

Posted by: mostlylurking | December 16, 2005 11:14 PM | Report abuse

I thought that Hal took over - or was trying to remove the Permalinks or change the Permalink color and had things go sideways on him...Or that Joel got fired, but I was hoping that wasn't it...

Posted by: mostlylurking | December 16, 2005 11:20 PM | Report abuse

Yes, I too was suffering withdrawl, and actually spent most of the day working (there was still e-mail, fortunately). I think there is something in the Book of Revelations about the blogs going dark being a sign of the Apocalypse--or maybe it was one of those Nostradamus things, I forget. But if today was a forecast of the Week the Blogs Go Dark....brrrrr, I shudder to think.

Most of the day I felt like one of those early cavemen the first time they saw a total eclipse--I was huddled pathetically in the farthest back corner of my little government cubby, wondering if the darkness would ever end. O the horror, the horror!

I wonder what kind of sacrifice would appease the gods of the Permalink? Human? And if so, do they have to be virgins?Chickens? Lambs? Tittles? ASCII codes?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 16, 2005 11:31 PM | Report abuse

SCC: foretaste, not forecast. Jeez.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | December 16, 2005 11:33 PM | Report abuse

mostlylurking, I think Howie Kurtz is off this week.

I tried to read the Kit and Boodle Thursday night and could only pull up the bird flu story so was glad to discover a while ago that we'd had an archenlapse. Was it a WaPo deadtree or .com lapse?

Maybe the hiatus was the dragon blowing smoke down the Potomac to clear the air - though how it could blow smoke while chasing its tail is difficult to imagine. (Are dragons male or female?)
We clearly need Puff (the magic dragon) to come and make it right - hum the tune.

Looking forward to science, or movies, or fairy tales next week.

Posted by: boondocklurker | December 17, 2005 12:16 AM | Report abuse

Hey boondocklurker - I wonder if Joel could pull of a Kit about a movie based upon a scientific fairy tale? Wait - that would be King Kong.

Posted by: RD Padouk | December 17, 2005 8:17 AM | Report abuse

Do not fear the permalink. Permalinks have always been among us and have only now decided to reveal themselves to us. They are here to help us and guide us.

Every kit has an url. The url of this kit is:

http://blogs.washingtonpost.com/achenblog/2005/12/all_froomkin_al.html

Every part of the boodle has an id. The id of my comment on Dec 15, 2005 12:02:05 PM is c12125176.

When you merge the url and the id by using a pound, you achieve permalink. The mystical symbol of the pound is #. Watch as I merge the url and id:

http://blogs.washingtonpost.com/achenblog/2005/12/all_froomkin_al.html#c12125176

That is now my permalink and I have forever bonded my part of the boodle to the kit. I can now return to my part of the boodle any time I want in order to reflect and grow within. Praise be to the permalink.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 17, 2005 9:10 AM | Report abuse

cool!

reflexive permalinks

what else will they bond?

Posted by: kp | December 17, 2005 9:37 AM | Report abuse

To answer you, kp, to paraphrase: 'Perhaps the nanoparticles in the permalinks are coalescing and creating new permalinks all by their lonesome...
Repli-permalinks???'

(Stolen with respect and awe from Scottynuke.)

Posted by: Anonymous | December 17, 2005 10:11 AM | Report abuse

mostlylurking,

My husband loves movies and if I could, I would let you borrow him in order to have a companion to see flicks with. His late Thursday doctor's appointment was cancelled, and coming home was physically closer than returning to work (and he puts in long hours with his job). And he so pleaded that we should see an early evening showing of "King Kong," that I couldn't resist his request.

"King Kong" is long--just shy of three hours. As one of my husband's coworkers who read our local paper's movie review of "Kong" pointed out to me at a house-warming party we attended last night, the ape doesn't appear until about an hour into the movie.

In my opinion, the movie gets off to a slow start, but necessary in order to set the stage--some fun looks at early vaudeville in this first one-third of the movie. The film rapidly picks up steam and forward momentum when the tramp steamer "Venture" shoves off from the New York docks.

Not wanting to toss out spoilers, I will tell you that there is an entire middle segement of the movie that is what I would term "Jurassic Park meets King Kong." This same erudite co-worker of my husband actually read the book and says Peter Jackson's interpretation of "Kong/Jurassic Park" stays true to the original story.

As a person with only a mild interest in seeing the movie "King Kong," I have to say that I enjoyed the film--my biggest sense of pleasure derived from the mastery of all technical aspects of the film--the special effects, state-of-the-art computer graphics, choreography of the battle scenes between actor-critters and actor-humans, the meticulously designed and crafted sets and backdrop matts (I think that's what they're called). Kudos also for the so-real-you-can-feel-'em atmospherics--the foggy ocean mists the tramp steamer plys through, the lush tropical rain forest scenes, the street scenes of New York City.

I foresee the film sweeping (actually crushing competitors) many of the technical Academy Awards. I don't think Adrien Brody pulls off so well the sensitive literary Jack Driscoll character, and I haven't seen much of Jack Black in movies and when I have, I haven't cared for him. Black portrays sleaze quite well in this acting effort, however. Naomi Watts shone as Ann Darrow, however.

I heard that "Kong" is the most expensive movie ever made. I can see why. The scene of the T-rexes and velociraptors chasing the ship's crew on Skull Island down a narrow island canyon is one of the best examples of all the computer feats mentioned above--rolled into several minutes of amazing film footage. Equally impressive are the computer-generated facial expressions of Kong himself. And to think that much of the acting was done in front of blue acreens.

One thing I did notice about my fellow movie-goers: There were scenes that caused such tension that those seated around us felt compelled to comment. At one point, I actually changed seats--in the empty seat to my husband's right--for what I hoped to be a more quiet viewing vantage point for the film, only to discover that the man I plopped down next to was engaged in a running dialogue with his son. The theater audience was identifying emotionally with the movie's characters, feeling their fear, applauding their triumphs. I don't know if the abundance of talking during the movie was a result of the movie itself--or just an increasingly annoying habit of our own *local* movie-going public.

"King Kong" is just one of those movies you must see on a large screen. I can watch a movie silently and prefer that others do so as well. It's been a long time since I've seen a film during which the audience comments are coming fast and furiously from a 360 degree arc around me.

My recommendation: See "King Kong"--if only for the technical wizardry that Jackson employs so masterfully throughout.

Posted by: Loomis | December 17, 2005 10:15 AM | Report abuse

Mr. A,

Sorry for the previous jab -- didn't realize this was a group therapy blog for
recovering glossolalia users.

Enjoy the ride!

Posted by: Jose ABQNM | December 17, 2005 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Linda, thanks for the kind offer! And for the great review of King Kong - it does seem like one that should be seen on the big screen. I often go to movies on Monday afternoons, when there are very few other people there, so that takes care of the talking factor.

Posted by: mostlylurking | December 17, 2005 12:17 PM | Report abuse

How is it that people are prattling about whether Bush allowed the NSA to listen in on domestic conversations without needing approval and they don't say a relevant thing about his support of Delay? Delay swore to support the Constitution of These United States of America and he has advocated using the Executive and Congress to control the Judicial system, Delay has also advocated using Church to control the electoral process...impeach both of them.

Most of the third world leaders live in gated compounds....why are moving in that direction? Why is it all of a sudden okay to have leaders that we don't trust and don't represent us? What happened to the days when we felt good about having the world trust us? We can't trust in the future any more, companies that give retirement or healthcare benefits are becoming something that was here "in the old days," Companies today have record breaking profits and no employees in this country..........and that's okay? They just moved Hoover overseas after the most profitable year ever and laid off their entire staff. People in Washington DC don't know this because they're all retired federal, government or military....they've got multiple pensions. THEY're immune and yet they are the ones that pass the lawss and communicate what they think is going on. I know, I traveled around the United States after being in Washington DC for twenty years. They're not having the same level of security that you are....it's not liberal hype.


For instance, there's a whole state that has had it's two major industries destroyed, moved to other countries...North Carolina...textiles and furniture. Cannon towels/cotton is in now in China. North Carolina used to have a furniture industry that was huge, employed tens of thousands...moved wood tooling factories to the Philipines, Indonesia, wood is still cut here and shipped there, factories moved in toto. All the workers out of work, selling homes, destitute as of 5 years ago.......still a depressed area. Used to be traffic backed up on highway 40 to purchase furniture at factory stores...now finished parts are shipped to New York and the furniture is assembled by temp workers with no benefits, and no full time employment. Same is true for most of your other goods, manufactured in other countries and put together here by temp workers...speak up and ask for a day off, no more job. Refuse to work over time...no job. You'll notice that the clerks in grocery stores in other states may contain quite a bit of white collar people laid off from the computer industry. No lack of income for the companies and your tax dollars paying to support discarded workers as they wander off into oblivion....if they can qualify for foodstamps or medicare. All the gains made by unions and work reform, traded to third world countries by your government.

You're not taking care of the people of these United States and your current leader is a personality disorder put in charge of an economy...fear.

Posted by: Hate is notafamily value but it can get a moron elected | December 18, 2005 8:59 PM | Report abuse

> He is an outstanding journalist. He's one
> of the best in the business. I sat about 4
> feet from him when he covered Clinton, and
> he's always been a total pro. He does not
> take marching orders from anyone at the
> White House.

I guess I find it a little odd that the example given of why a WaPo reporter is a good White House journalist is from the ....... Clinton Administration. Do you not have examples from, say, the last 5 years?

I guess I just don't understand how the WaPo (and the NYT) could spend 6 years savaging Bill Clinton, then turn their sights on Al Gore, and end up by being concerned about whether or not they are being fair to (wait for it) George W. Bush. Does that even make sense? It doesn't out here.

Cranky

Posted by: Cranky Observer | December 19, 2005 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Joel, anybody that says John Harris ain't a Tool of The Man is clearly delusional. Sorry, man. He's a Bush Administration sycophant through-and-through. His nose is turd brown.

Y'all should be ashamed of your newsroom, especially Woodword and Harris. You are now second only to the mighty-in-their-own-minds New York Times in Overwhelming Suckitude.

(Thank Sweet Jesus for Dan Froomkin.)

Posted by: ET in Chicago | December 21, 2005 1:08 AM | Report abuse

Why bother even talking to you, Joel?

It was the Post that made this a big stink, and your readers are simply reacting.

Instead of taking the feedback seriously, you accuse US of getting political. You ignore the complete circumstances and focus on the fact that some of the feedback had a level of outrage that is beyond your comprehension.

And why are YOU even getting involved at all? You act above the fray, like the whole thing is a cute little charade to you, but you were the one who decided to get involved in the first place. You weighed in with your fluffy opinion, then labeled any backtalk as politically motivated. It'd be like me saying, "All Post bloggers are jerks," and then when you tried to object, I'd say, "I can't listen to you because all Post bloggers are jerks." Nice way to treat readers, huh?

Anything anybody says to you is simply dismissed as political. So what could anybody say to you that would convince you to use your column, and the fact that you wanted to get involved, to actually say something intelligent about it--more intelligent, that is, than simply saying your readers are making a mountain out of a molehill? There is a much bigger issue here that is evidenced by the volume and passion of the feedback--that issue, if you realize what it is, might even be perceived by a young go-getter reporter as a story.

Has it ever occurred to you that the enormous reaction to this public airing of Post laundry is symptomatic of reader disgust at the Post's laziness in its political reporting? I know everything's funny and cute to you, but maybe if everything has to be funny and cute and you have to be cool and above the fray as your schtick, maybe you should stick to covering topics that are pure whimsy, and not in the realm of grownups.

Has it ever occurred to you that the Post's slant on stories, its right wing columnists, its support of the Iraq War, its distorted coverage of the anti-war movement, and, last but not least, Bob Woodward, all indicate a tilt to the GOP and this frustrates your readers who believe this president, any president including Democrats, should be held accountable? The only time the Post seems to get angry is when the President has oral sex with an intern. Screwing the Constitution, the middle class, the poor, the environment, our education system, etc. appear to be off your radar.

Just because we're angry, don't discount our reaction and don't label us as liberal or conservative, Democrat or Republican. That kind of grownup generalization is beyond your sense of cute whimsy.

P.S. Castro is your prototype of a liberal? Need we say more?

God help us ...

Posted by: Craig | December 23, 2005 1:15 AM | Report abuse

Excellent and very helpful
http://buyadip.tripod.com/buy_adipex_p_online
Thanks!

Posted by: Spirit | July 29, 2006 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Did you know this page is a "Google Whack"?

with sycophant and blamange

Just thought u'd like to know-Gemma

gemmacopping@hotmail.com

Posted by: Gemma Copping | September 27, 2006 9:15 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company