Patterico's Pontifications


Michael Schiavo to Get His Wish

Filed under: Court Decisions,Schiavo — Patterico @ 6:04 pm

Michael Schiavo has finally received an answer to his heartfelt question: “When is that bitch gonna die?” The answer is: soon. As expected, the Florida Supreme Court has declared unconstitutional the law passed to save the life of Terri Schindler-Schiavo. Absent an appeal to the United States Supreme Court, which would almost certainly fail in any event, Michael Schiavo will soon achieve his longstanding desire to see his wife dead.

I have expressed my thoughts about this case extensively on this site. The best distillation of my feelings can be found in this op-ed that I wrote for the California Republic web site. In that piece, I make the case that the procedural protections afforded by our judicial system were insufficient — and indeed are less stringent than the protections that we afford to the worst murderers.

Nothing in today’s decision changes my mind.

The Typing Monkeys of the Internet

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:05 am

The Washington Post‘s Tina Brown has this arrogant Big Media take on blogs:

Fear of missing the bandwagon is behind all the hype about the brilliance of bloggers who blew the whistle. You’d think “Buckhead,” who first spotted the flaws in the documents, is the cyberworld’s Woodward and Bernstein. Now the conventional wisdom is that the media will be kept honest and decent by an army of incorruptible amateur gumshoes. In fact, cyberspace is populated by a coalition of political obsessives and pundits on speed who get it wrong as much as they get it right. It’s just that they type so much they are bound to nail a story from time to time.

As Cori Dauber notes, that last sentence is a clear reference to the analogy: “Let a monkey type long enough and he’ll type the Lord’s prayer.” You see, only Big Media has those layers and layers of review that proved so effective for CBS. We in the blogosphere are just a bunch of typing monkeys.

In pajamas.

By the way, last year I noted what monkeys actually do when placed in front of a keyboard. It ain’t Shakespeare or the Lord’s Prayer, and it ain’t on-target media criticism either:

Some researchers tried it. They actually left a computer in a monkey enclosure in an English zoo. The results are described here. In terms of the literary output, basically, the monkeys pressed the “S” key a lot. “Later, the letters A, J, L and M crept in.”

It didn’t start out that auspiciously, though. Actually, according to one researcher, the first thing that happened was that “the lead male got a stone and started bashing the hell out of [the computer] . . . Another thing they were interested in was in defecating and urinating all over the keyboard.”

By contrast, Tina Brown, bloggers raised the arguments and located the experts that jump-started the story for your paper’s Michael Dobbs.

Maybe the new blogger mascot should be a monkey, ideally in pajamas. And when Big Media screws something up, we can yell: “Get that guy some pajamas! And a banana!”

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