The Sore Spot


Wednesday, March 13, 2002

CLARITY, BUT WILL ANYONE NOTICE Would that there were more clear heads like Amos Oz in the cloudy war between the Israelites and those of Palestine. Would that people would listen.
posted by Robert 1:34 PM

THE RISE OF FABULISTS The news brims recently with imaginative authors befooling gullible pressmen with tales too tall to believe.

Michael Finkel, a reporter who apparently cared more for style than for substance, wrote a piece for the New York Times Magazine on a supposed African slave whom, it was eventually sniffed out, did not actually exist. Now, Slate explores how it was hoodwinked by a slippery fellow who claimed to have been a European carmaking kingpin but who was more likely just a former Internet businessman.

What strikes me is how easy it was to untangle these writers' lies; in both cases, readers, not editors, found them out.

Why did they believe they would get away with it? How could they have so insulted their audience by suggesting that smart readers can't see through their lies.
posted by Robert 1:31 PM

SAPIENTIA.VERITAS.LIBERTAS.

Joe Pesci
This isn't me, but it looks like me.
The library doesn't have those scan machines. And I don't have a camera.

----

My name is Robert Sore. I am a homeless man in San Francisco, scraping out a living from trash cans and odd jobs. But don't think that I need your pity. If you see me on the street, keep walking, buddy. I don't need your money and I don't need you, in fact -- but I'd be willing to wager that you need me.

I have lived a long time, and I spend a lot of time in the library. A lot of time. I know what's wrong with this world. Why the politicians have it wrong, why the fancy professors have it wrong, why the United States has it wrong. Why the liberals are wrong and why the conservatives are wrong.

But I damn sure know what's right, too. And I'm going to tell you what.

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