Thursday, May 17, 2012

Matt Drudge, the Drudge Report, and Stoking the Facebook Fire

Look - I'll admit it - I check out the DRudge report ( every day. Touted as a right-wing news aggregator, almost like a Republican Reddit - Drudge posts headlines often germane to issues of interest to conservatives. However, I think he is hurting his cause (although he gets hundreds of millions of unique visitors a year) and here is why. We are in the worst economic downturn in three quarters of a century. Record numbers of college graduates are having difficulty finding part-time, menial positions. So, it comes as a surprise to me that Drudge keeps posting stories all about the ridiculous, undeserved sums of money the Facebook founders are making from their IPO. I hesitate to call them "founders," since all they found was a way to rip off a pre-existing idea and through a combination of the right investors and chance, beat out rival yet earlier incarnations of social networking, least among them the one that existed at their own school. While it's not uncommon for Drudge to throw in a few headlines about pop culture or entertainers, the constant barrage of "at least 1,000 new millionaires!" headlines nestled between links about Birther stories and oil prices, filed neatly a few inches beneath links on Greece's probable default and unemployment data, is cringe-inducing, to say the least. Matt - *why* on Earth do you think people want to hear about a bunch of twentysomething douchebags making millions or billions of dollars when they are a.) smarter b.) as or more educated and c.) harder working and they can't find a full time 9-5 making $30 grand a year? I get that you make a million dollars a year from ad space so you have probably lost touch with your readers, and *everyone in America,* but it just comes across as pandering to rich people and an attempt to schmooze with people who made their money off a stolen but well-adapted idea instead of through working and creating an actual product. Stick to stories about the economy, your convenient links to Romney v. Obama polling data, and your bizarre and sexually ambiguous obsession with aging pop stars like Madonna and Donna Summer. Thanks!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

"The Science is Settled on Global Warming"

It is pretty austentatious to me that after the foils and follies of the AGW movement the past couple years - i.e. ClimateGate, ClimateGate 2.0, ad infinitum et nauseum, that the media would be a little more behooved to adhere to a neutral point of view. You'd think blanket assumptions or articles regarding warming would have stopped. When do liberals ever do anything "you'd think" should happen? This is a pretty innocuous story, right? Just a story I actually started reading just because I thought it seemed interesting, to be honest. Then, I get to the end - where it discusses the "effects of 'CLIMATE CHANGE'" will "lead to warmer temperatures." Oh, really? Seems like they made up their minds about the direction climate change was leading. This is but one of a slough of insertions I've been noticing lately, and is much worse with it than, although neither are free from guilt. In a recent story that is still on their front page about their predictions for the upcoming hurricane season, and how it will be less severe and below average, mostly due to an El Nino pattern that is setting up, throw in the necessary prerequisite AGW alarm bells at the end, informing us not to coast in our hurricane preparedness this season because "climate change will lead to warmer ocean temperatures and more intense hurricanes." Ironic, isn't it? Instead of focusing on El Nino - a pattern of above average sea surface temperatures in the central Pacific 2000 miles west of Chile that has dampening effects on hurricane genesis in the Atlantic - it's all about to ignore that story and focus on the possibility of perceived future warming that might lead to increased hurricane activity. I won't even start to tell you about how wet their panties were over the week of 80 degree temperatures we had in March. If that wasn't proof of global warming, then nothing is. Oh, wait, I forgot, the historic, very unusual, and unprecedented snow events in October and in April. The average high in the mid-atlantic and southern New England states for April 23rd is 69 degrees. Temperatures hit 25. That's 44 degrees below average. The largest departure from average we had in March was 35 degrees above average. Even though the cold was more historic than the warmth, the cold was proof of global warming, because more heat in the atmosphere means more cold air, but it also means more warm air too. Expect a future article from telling you how both increased and decreased rainfall, colder temperatures and warmer temperatures, and how walking your dog are all contributing to global warming.