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 V.14 No.42 | October 20 - 26, 2005 

Thin Line

Nothing You Should Pay Attention To

I know. It seems like we rip on the Albuquerque Journal a lot here in Alibi-land. We do. And most of the time it's deserved. But this week, although our beloved daily is still hovering high on our shit list, our beef goes beyond the local media. It goes all the way to the top. Get ready for a mainstream media rant (MSM ... different from MSG but probably just as bad for your brain); but this time, find a safe place in a doorway somewhere ... we're talkin' earthquakes.

Apparently, talkin' earthquakes is exactly what the Journal (and other MSM outlets) doesn't do. Specifically, we're talkin' the Kashmiri earthquake, and we're talkin' an estimated 54,000 people dead and 2 million homeless. (That's about 50 times the casualties from Katrina.) We're talkin' four measly days until the story was shuffled off the Journal's front page. (The earthquake hit last Saturday and was missing from the headlines on Wednesday, subsequently lost somewhere in the trenches of the A section.) We're talkin' the just-released video iPod, a little boy's lost dog and the guv's shiny new hybrid SUV get front-page, headline coverage, while one of the largest natural disasters to ever be recorded gets shafted to page A-14. I've got to give the Journal some credit, at least. When the estimated death toll rose from 41,000 to the devastating number it is now, the story did make a brief reappearance on the front page this Monday.

It's an embarrassing trend that the U.S. MSM tends to ignore news from other parts of the globe, especially those areas that don't attract an unseemly amount of white tourism. But in a climate of ever-increasing globalization, and when we're finally tapping into not only the economic relationships between nations, but the environmental ones as well, you'd think we'd catch on. No such luck.

New Orleans was front-page news for weeks (and deserved the coverage it got). But compared to Pakistan, the flushing out of the Big Easy was easy. At least, in the Gulf Coast in the midst of hurricane season, the weather was hot and humid—dangerous in its own right, but not necessarily as intimidating as high-mountain country and a fast-approaching winter.

And Pakistan's not all. Do you remember hearing anything about the recent mudslides in Guatemala? You don't? Google it. Some villages were shrouded in so much mud they were designated as mass burial sites. But that sure didn't get much MSM attention. After all, we're not aware of any Americans that were injured.

Here's the silver lining: Osama may finally have gotten buried in a cave somewhere. There is, however, a twist: We may never be able to confirm it.

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