Patterico's Pontifications


A Very Easy Quiz

Filed under: Dog Trainer — Patterico @ 5:21 pm

Yesterday I told you about two stories, one from the Washington Post and one from the L.A. Times, which covered the same event (the release of Chief Justice Rehnquist’s annual report on the judiciary) in very different ways.

Today I want to provide another example of two stories from the L.A. Times and Washington Post covering similar topics. We’ll do it quiz-style. I’ll give you the headlines of the stories and some relevant excerpts. Your mission is to guess which story appeared in the Post and which was in the Times.

One story is titled: An Election Day That Could Be a Close Call. The sub-head reads: “Worried about unrest, a volatile Sunni Muslim area of Iraq is bracing for this month’s vote. Most candidates skip a chance to tape ads.” It opens:

BAQUBAH, Iraq — At the former Baath Party headquarters known as the Blue Dome, everything was set for candidates in the upcoming elections to come in and tape political ads for local TV. . . . But recording the campaign spots this recent morning didn’t take long.

Only three people showed up.

The story is full of pessimism, and suggests that Iraqis may be reluctant to vote:

A boycott here in central Iraq in the area known as the Sunni Triangle could undermine the elections. Some Sunni Muslim politicians say that continued violence, especially in the central and northern parts of the country, will make it difficult to hold a fair election.

. . . .

Many Iraqis worry the elections will spur even more violence.

“We are fearful,” said one Iraqi woman. “Maybe because of the election, it will be worse.”

. . . .

Throughout Baqubah and its southern suburb of Buhriz, insurgent groups are distributing leaflets that promise death to those who vote. Freshly painted graffiti spell out “Praise Be Fallouja” — the insurgent stronghold recaptured in November — and “Join the Jihad.”

All of this leaves Schnell, the intelligence officer, to ponder whether he would vote if he were an Iraqi.

“I think I would,” he said. “But I don’t live here.”

The article ends with this cute story:

Still, the three who showed up had enough time to deliver their messages. Candidates from the Communist Party and the Elites of Diyala explained their parties’ platforms — improving local infrastructure and irrigation, an interpreter said. The third candidate, from the Socialist Arab Movement, read from a script as U.S. soldiers watched him exercise his right to free speech: “No to the American occupation,” he told the camera.

The story from the other newspaper is titled: Iraqi Officials Cite Rise Of Interest in Elections. The sub-head reads: “In Final Week, Many Act to Ensure Registration.” And the first sentence says:

The number of Iraqis making sure they are properly registered to vote has surged dramatically, officials said Saturday, calling the rise evidence of enthusiasm for the Jan. 30 elections despite continuing security concerns that have blocked the process in two provinces.

The story is optimistic in tone:

Officials said more than 2.1 million people went to local election offices to assure that eligible members of their households could vote. About 1.2 million forms were submitted to add names to the voter lists, an involved process that requires providing proof of identification and residence.

“That’s a definite marker of voter interest,” said an expert with the Independent Election Commission of Iraq who was not authorized to speak publicly.

Because Iraqis do not have to take any steps to register to vote — food rationing accounts serve as voter rolls — requests for corrections are essentially the only gauge of voter involvement in the registration process for the Jan. 30 election.

“This is a very good indicator,” said Hussein Hindawi, who heads the election office. “We are very optimistic.”

Your mission: to guess which story appeared in the Washington Post and which was in the L.A. Times.

The answer is in the extended entry. No cheating!

Best Day by Day Cartoon Ever

Filed under: Blogging Matters,Dog Trainer,Humor — Patterico @ 8:18 am

Well, at least in my opinion:

Day by Day Patterico.gif

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