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Sweet Nothings

Torture? The state of journalism? Nah

It’s past noon on Tuesday — this week’s New Times goes off to the printers in about five hours — and I have no idea what to write for my page 2 note (Starting Point).

It’s not a case of writer’s block. I know how to deal with that: I just start writing, then edit out the gibberish and move ahead. I’m not one to get hung up on a word or a phrase or a sentence and then just stop.

In other weeks, a topic grabbed me and compelled me to write about it. It was almost out of my control. That hasn’t happened this week.

My daughters are coming home from college soon, and I couldn’t be happier. They’re both smart, often assertive women who are fun to be around and interesting to talk with. I’ve missed them.

But I’m not feeling like writing about them.

The congressional torture report is disturbing. Beyond disturbing is the defense of torture we’re hearing. Torture is wrong. It’s done by the bad guys, not by Americans. Now former Vice President Dick Cheney twists logic and explains why the ends justify the means. Sen. John McCain, of Arizona, is right: Torture is un-American. We’re better than that. Cheney should be ashamed of himself for his betrayal of American values, but he seems to have no shame.

But I don’t want to write more about torture.

The state of journalism? There’s much to say, what with the shift in emphasis from reporting the boring, but important, news to reporting what will generate the most online page views. Another big, serious topic that somehow leaves me uninspired.

It seems there’s nothing for me to write this week. But that’s OK, because it turns out I’ve reached 300 words. I’m done.

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LarryLarry Dietrich is the Editor of the Syracuse New Times

 

 

 

 

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