November 8th, 2010

Semiformalishmaybe

Cloth Teeth

Last weekend: Went to Stewart/Colbert rally. The trip was pretty decent, I arrived in DC very early saturday morning, had a nice walk to the National Mall. Met the people I was there to meet (being a bit intentionally vague here). The gathering was interesting - as every news network in the world has already said, there were a bunch of liberals there poking fun at conservative moveements, alongside people there for a party, serious activists, and some others who were presumably just mainly there for the message. The opening was a bit slow (music before content = substantial portion of crowd unhappy), but it was overall intelligent, reasonable, and worthwhile. We had really great seats for most of the rally.

Near the end, three of us left the group and wandered around DC for awhile (saw one of my favourite places, the Canadian Embassy, and also found a statue garden that turned out not to be the one I try to visit everytime I'm in town), finding one food place with spectacularly bad service (to the point that we sat there for an hour and then left when no waiters seemed interested in visiting us but a metawaiter told us "soon!") and then later a not-bad Sushi place. A bit later, I met Party Cat and saw a computer game involving mining and jumping cows.

I took last week off because I had a visitor. There's more to say that I won't cover here.

Leaving narrative mode for a grab-bag of topics:Collapse )

Semiformalishmaybe

Pointlet

One little point I was going to mention in my last post that didn't make it in - it does not excuse a source that's supposed to be relatively unpositioned on major issues of political contention in a society that its position is not one that lines up along party lines. Our politics are not entirely encapsulated in our party system - there are factions within the larger parties, and there are also smaller parties. Serious journalism should institutionally not step outside of broad societal consensus (either inward towards a specific perspective nor outward) - it is a feature of its society that legitimately shifts with that society's evolution but at the rate and encompassing the borders of society itself.

The notion of left versus right is manipulative and harmful (even two axes are not enough!). To pretend that "fairness" between only two parties can substitute for the broad view journalism should aspire to is to effectively give up on it in its current role.

Unrelated, I thought these comics were neat:

Also, during the visit, we went to Enrico's (cousin place to T'd'O) restaurant in the strip district for the first time; the food was fantastic.

I'll probably put up some of the few pictures I took at the rally in a few days.