O, my!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

O, my!

Updated 02/18/2010 – 05:09 pm

My wife just stumbled on some Texas news channel doing real-time coverage of the air crash in Austin, and the audio reminded me of just about every other "news" cast when the on-air people are working without scripts from teleprompters.

Few today know how to do it.

I'm too young to recall Edward R. Morrow live from London during the blitz, so it is Walter Cronkite's voice in November 1963 that is my touchstone of excellence.

(The utter antithesis of which was Sole­dad O'Brien during her stint at MSNBC when JFK Jr.'s plane crashed off Martha's Vineyard in July 1999. Her inane bab­bling got so bad that when she tried to work his uncle's Chappaquiddick event into the discussion, the interviewee quite directly told her to knock it off.)

It's tough doing real-time coverage of a "breaking news" story, especially when there's no teleprompter from which to read.

It's even tougher when the basis of one's hir­ing is one's photogenetic quality or hair style.

The actual event...

The pilot of the single-engine Piper Cherokee PA-28 that crashed into the Texas office build­ing housing offices of the Internal Revenue Service, has now been revealed to be one Joseph Stack, an angry and frustrated man.

He describes the sources of his anger and frus­tration on-line in a lengthy final statement.

One need not read much of it to realize why he felt the local IRS offices were the appropriate target for his suicide flight.

My wife spent an unsatisfying 50 minutes on the 'phone this very morning with the IRS, pleading with them to stop sending her checks which she would be unable, for reasons too arcane to delve into here, to negotiate.

"Yes," she was told. "We understand, but there's no way for you to stop getting that check unless you cash it."

My wife, fortunately not a woman given to vio­lence, also understood.

Not the IRS, but how that Government agency could drive someone like Joe Stack to his last desperate act.

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