Peter Fallow -- Bizarro World Romenesko!!

If there were ever a time for an arrogant, drunken, lazy, ethically challenged and totally fictitious reporter to comment on the state of journalism, it is now!

Friday, May 21, 2004

Pictures worth a thousand shrugs

Like most of my colleagues in Professional Journalism, I think it is vitally important to publish every seven-month-old picture of naked ex-Baathist thugs standing in uncomfortable positions. It's much more relevant than last year's endless parade of photos and stories about Saddam Hussein's mass graves.

And like my colleagues, I'm completely agnostic about the impact of these pictures on the domestic political scene. Case in point: Today's Washington Post online chat with executive editor Leonard Downie Jr. Here's a question from a reader:

Arlington, Va.: I've never read the newspaper and been moved to tears before. How many others do you think feel like me now, and what impact do you think that will have on the election? I, for one, just donated money to Kerry's campaign online!

Leonard Downie Jr.: These are indeed very disturbing statements and images. It is been emotionally difficult for our reporters and editors to review all of them. I do not know what political effect they will have.

See? Images of American soldiers abusing Iraqi prisoners may carry a lot of shock value, but it's politically neutral shock value.

Kudos to the Post for clearing that up.


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