Sep
14

Ferguson can afford to look fine, clichés are weapons in Bernero v. Snyder and Oakland Press is all over missing Milo

By

Recovering Detroit journalist and all around friend of the program Alan Stamm fills in today as I’m working on other projects. One of those projects, I can now announce, is analysis of the 1969 Roman Gribbs-Richard Austin mayoral race for the Free Press. It follows Jim Holly’s timely essay about Carolyn Cheeks-Kilpatrick. It’s part of a larger series: Remembrances of Candidates Past or In Search of Lost Elections. And thanks again to Alan. — WF

Of all the figures of speech, look what seemed apt somehow
Maybe it was the cameras or maybe Bobby Ferguson likes to start his week in style, even if the first errand is a fed court arraignment. The accused bid-rigger and money-washer came decked in alligator shoes, a suit with snazzy pocket square and a paisley tie. That cravat was just the visible neckwear, as defense lawyer Gerald Evelyn tells it: “They’re hanging things around his neck that have nothing to do with the charges.” Not too subtle in slinging racial imagery, this barrister with a gender-balanced name and a client who was relieved of more than $980,000 in cash and cashier’s checks by the FBI last week. (News, Freep)

On a wing and a prayer mat
Another federal defendant, Umar (Hot Pants) AbdulmutallabIn, thinks he’ll do better as an amateur lawyer than he did as an accused amateur terrorist. The Christmas Day air traveler from Nigeria hasn’t hit it off with his appointed public defender and wants to wing it . . . oops, we mean fly solo . . . oh, let’s just say take off in a new direction by representing himself. Sure thing, agreed Judge Nancy Edmunds, who’ll appoint “standby counsel” as a co-pilot for the newbie trying to navigate a tricky route. “When I represent myself,” he asked, “if I want to plead guilty to some counts, how would that go?” We’re no Juris Doctor, but figure that would go for a long ride. (News)

A cliché in every pot, a drink in every hand
As a civic service, here’s how to tolerate a debate between Virg Bernero and Rick Snyder whenever they find a neutral corner: Dyspathy Drinking Game – Catch the Clichés. We’ll toss one back each time either candidate utters a tired, familiar, overcooked phrase as empty as . . . well, as empty as “you’re going to be blown away” turned out to be. For mixed metaphors, two swigs. Virg is warming up now, clearly ready to beat a dead horse, so to speak. “I blew the whistle on what they were trying to do,” he says of Snyder’s proposed debate format. “They were throwing up roadblocks.” For his part, the Republican claims: “The career politicians are just trying to stir the pot.” We better stock up on beverages – it’ll be a bumpy night. (Yup, tip one back now for that.) (MLive)

Oh, the humanity: ‘At night he would cry’
AOL is investing heavily in what’s called hyper-local news – Patch.com community sites aimed at filling voids left by print journalism’s disappearing act. A dozen or so will launch around Metro Detroit this fall, though we can’t imagine even they will cover neighborhood news as trifling as the sizable report in Monday’s Oakland Press on a stranded kitty. “It was a harrowing handful of days recently for a Lake Orion woman,” Dave Philips began breathlessly. “Milo rested quietly during the days, but at night he would cry,” the newshound wrote before – cue strings – reassuring readers that “three days after it began, the ordeal had come to a close.” Sixteen heart-wrenching paragraphs after it began, so did Dave’s article. (Oakland Press)

‘Dear Mr. Fantasy, play us a tune / Something to make us all happy’
Politics columnist Joe Klein of Time is just a week into a month-long, 12-state Election Road Trip, but he seemed a bit – how shall we say? – pumpedafter talking with 33-year-old UAW activist Tammy Jackson in Detroit. He describes her in a post as “blond and not unattractive, and not shy” before adding that he and traveling companion Rodney Crowell (yes, the singer) thought Tammy could beat Sarah Palin “if there were a new sport, a boxing-debate cage match — both women armed with boxing gloves and microphones.” It took just over an hour for a blog commenter to say: “I hope I’m not the only one who finds this whole cat-fight image creepy.” Us, too. (Time)

Men behaving badly, cont.
We’re not one to pick up supermarket tabloids or click on truTV, but we can’t avoid exposure to life’s underside while keeping up with current affairs. Consider this from today, posted without comment because sometimes none is needed: “HOLLAND, Mich. — A drunken driving suspect who was sexually assaulted by former Holland Deputy City Attorney Carl Gabrielse in a courthouse jury room is now suing both Gabrielse and the city. . . . Gabrielse, who offered the woman a plea deal in exchange for sex, was sentenced to six months in jail in April for third-degree criminal sexual conduct and misconduct in office.” (MLive)

Categories : State of the State

5 Comments

1

So, about that line-spacing…

2

That Oakland Press is my kind of paper.

3

So the Oakland Press writes the cat story 13 days after it happened. Who says print journalism is dead? No dog biting a man?

The only thing that might have salvaged that piece of typing is if they actually had turned a professional power-washer unit on the cat. I’m not sure if the cat owner or cat itself would have been more surprised when the stream cut the animal in half. But we’re left only to wonder. And to belittle such a goddamned stupid story. WTF, Oakland Press?

4

Ok, Camille, no reason to belittle animal torture, either. I say WTF to you.

If they needed a feel-good story, I am sure they could have gone to one of the animal shelters to get info for fillers. Obviously it was a VERY slow news day for Oakland County. Maybe they need to come on over to Wayne County, where we have plenty of crap for them to report.

Oh, and Thanks Alan, I was having snark withdrawals in WF’s absence!

5

After a few rounds of the Dyspathy Drinking Game, we’ll all be “throwing up” roadblocks.

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