Pore Jud is Daid

Posted: July 18, 2009 in Politics

In college my favorite teacher told us about his young daughter’s favorite character in the musical Oklahoma, Jud Fry.  The song is a rather vile effort by the hero, Curly, to talk the villain, Jud, into committing suicide. To do this Curly sings verse after verse about how everybody would praise Jud at his funeral. As bad as Jud is – and he realized it – supposedly he would be remembered as a good guy. Of course Jud missed the interspersing of negatives between the positives that would be sung at his demise. What is relevant to this short essay is how people are generally praised in obituaries even though their lives were controversial.

By not dating this I can escape the charge that I am speaking evil of any one dead person. The obituaries in the media are universally positive. Even a newspaper known for its bias in the opposite direction of the deceased prints a pretty unbiased news item about our “Jud Fry”. The deceased was a journalist and the news item compared his most familiar sign-off with the introduction of an entertainer. That would be consistent with my opinion of most of the mass media that calls what they purvey “news”. In my opinion newsy items that are framed in entertaining sound bites lacks substance; which is what way too many news consumers want.

Ok, so depth and substance is relative. Years ago I made it through a very substantial news piece about the Russian crime syndicates. It was pages of fine print detailing a whole mess of … mess. We all have a finite apatite for news; and a limited amount of time to absorb (listen) to what we read (hear).  Listen to the lyrics of “Sounds of Silence”.

For me writing about what I read is my way of absorbing the news. This is my effort to do so.


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