What the hell has happened to my country, "The Land of the Free, and the Home of the Brave"?
We are so afraid of our own frickin' shadows that we let a President get away with this crap? Fact: Since 9/11--that's right, I went there, Mayor Giuliani--EVERY President has been obligated to suggest during his term, he has "kept America safe" from terrorist attacks.Read More
It boils down to this: I became interested in becoming a reporter a few years after President Richard Nixon resigned from office because undaunted by his Justice Department, two reporters--one, experienced, one, less so--Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein--pursued what appeared to be a boring, routine story about a burglary at The Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C., that turned out to be the use of the power of the Presidency to attempt to spy on political opponents, to 'dig up dirt,' to influence the 1972 election. Which turned out to be Richard Nixon's re-election. And related to a series of 'dirty tricks' conducted by The Committee to Re-Elect the President, or CREEP.Read More
The main reason for this is to keep me from clogging up friends' threads on social media--particularly Facebook and Twitter--with my sometimes passionate, if not over-detailed, explanations of my views.
My mind, perhaps because of my International Baccalaureate education for my first two years of middle school at The American International School (now American Embassy School) in New Delhi, is like a pop-up ad, with words making connections and following the equivalent of links in my head to everything from history to personal experience or even the more than 100+ years of family history I've been able to remember.
Oh. And if I happen to refer to any sources for my views, I will endeavor to cite them and if possible provide embedded links for you, my readers, to read them or hear them or see them for yourself. Unless they are merely excerpts from personal interviews or off-the-record conversations with people. In which case, if they have a website or blog or YouTube channel or other means of displaying their own views, I'll provide links to those. So: Happy 2017!
I forgot I already have a blog, or, rather, a blog site. So I am going to try and populate it with my personal view of life as we know it in the 2010s, starting with the current political/economic situation.
After 37 years as a professional, working journalist, a reporter, foreign correspondent, and editor, I am embarking on new outlets for my experience, information and learning. As I am currently beholding to no other news organization requiring me to maintain objectivity in my writing, I am hereby establishing in print an idea that formulated over years of experience with fellow reporters and editors, but got its strongest impetus from another former Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones Newswires veteran, Mike Esterl.
Both Mike and I (along with countless untold others that may be named or contribute later) have experienced reporting in, from and on governments and countries that were and at times remain not as enamored as what we like to imagine a free press--providing information to 'the free marketplace of ideas'--is.
The Daily Bludgeon, as it was envisioned, was an ethereal product, like in many a newsroom of my day, where it was felt the 'real truth' could be written and published, 'without fear or favor' from either a publisher beholding to advertisers, shareholders, or other special interests, where a dedication to accuracy, and an attempt to discern truth from fiction in all manner of information gathering and dissemination, would be the only form of devotion required. It derived its name from our occasional telephone calls when he was in Mexico, and Germany, and even Atlanta, discussing 'actual' news, and the difficulties all journalists encounter not only trying to get their newsgathering into print and before the public, but getting it out and published with as much accuracy as possible--the mere deletion of a paragraph, or changing of a word, let alone 'jazzing up' of a headline to attract more readers being a not even just daily threat.
The Bludgeon received its name from our joint imaginary declaration of devotion to the accuracy of news, as we knew it, and the means by which we often felt truth, or at least accuracy, needed to be delivered to prevent either misinterpretation, efforts to mislead or downplay or otherwise obfuscate information we thought it important for readers to know. People sometimes need to be hit over the head with something.
From the non-existent archives in the very real clouds of The Fearless Bludgeon, formerly known as The San Francisco Inquirer:
'Declaration of Principles:
I'll provide the people of this city with a daily paper that will tell all the news, honestly.
I will also provide them with a fighting and tireless champion of their rights as citizens, and as human beings.'
Signed: Charles Foster Kane