‘The man who watched Cy Young pitch, Joe Louis box …’

Jeff Schultz pays tribute to Furman Bisher, who informed generations of Atlanta sports fans. I started reading him at 6 years old. More than 30 years later, I was (technically) a colleague, though Mr. Bisher had no peer. “People look at me like I’m in a museum or something,” he said. “It’s like I’m one of those stone things, talking to you. A talking statue. They can’t quite understand it. They look at me and say, ‘You really knew him?’ It really didn’t strike me as that unusual at the time. I had known Cobb before. I’d seen him blow his stack…

The 10 Most Annoying People of 2011: The pundit class (and not because of their punditry)

Ironic that the journalists who make up the pundit class are responsible for propagating some of the year’s most pestiferous cliches: “At the end of the day” … “Kicking the can down the road” … “Game changer” (which seamlessly doubles as a sports bromide) On a positive note, usage of “a perfect storm” seems to have abated. More annoying people of 2011 here — only two to go, including THE most annoying person(s?) of the year that almost was.

Notes on a scandal

Engrossing stuff: State report depicts Parks Middle as example of problems in district A few weeks later, teacher Damany Lewis told investigators, [Principal Christopher] Waller approached him with an unusual question: “Do you think you could get into something undetected?” Lewis, who gave investigators an extensive statement admitting his role in the cheating, answered yes. But he did not know what Waller wanted until the principal summoned him a few days afterward. Waller and an aide from a school program called Success-For-All had several CRCT booklets, each shrink-wrapped in plastic. Lewis used a razor blade to slice the plastic around each booklet,…

A roar from the dinosaur

The AJC’s reporting on the Atlanta Public Schools scandal demonstrates once again why the so-called old media is as relevant as ever. After The Atlanta Journal-Constitution began reporting evidence of possible cheating in Atlanta Public Schools, the school system commissioned an expert to challenge the findings. The results, issued in May, validated the AJC’s reporting, but the system never made the report public.   Related articles Mayor: a complete failure of leadership in APS in testing scandal (ajc.com) Investigation: Hall knew — or should have known — about cheating (ajc.com)

Thoughts on the NPR scandal

*Fired NPR exec Ron Schiller’s indulgence of Zionist conspiracies bothers me much more than his putdown of tea partiers. Though I wouldn’t go as far as Wonkette’s Ken Layne … a crumbling nation of fat slobs who ignore their kleptocrat kings and instead point their corn-dog fingers at Scary Mooslims and the “Kenyan president” and then get their little racist feelings hurt when anybody says, “Hey, look at those racist clowns.” … I have a hard time feeling sorry for a movement that empowers nutjobs like Bachmann Palin Overdrive. The tape doesn’t lie. *Talk about the pot-bellied calling the kettle Negro. Conservative…

Why do so many right-wingers insist on being jerks?

A Breitbart blogger posts: There has been widespread condemnation of the violence directed against journalists covering events in Egypt–and there should be.  But honestly,  I don’t have a great deal of sympathy for those who have been attacked. Journalists have a job to do,  but when they take huge risks for the sake of ratings and then find themselves in trouble,  it’s hard to take seriously any “shock” that media executives express about their journalists being targeted.   A journalist walking into a crowd of tens of thousands of protestors facing off against tens of thousands of other protestors is akin to…

The Times at its most insufferable

It’s so rare for presenters to be at open war with their host, and at times it almost looked as if Mr. Gervais and Mr. Bale were intent on bringing to Hollywood some of the incivility and extremism that veins political discourse. … Trashing the association that feeds you, on the other hand, is bad form, or bad politics. Tom Hanks and Tim Allen seemed to be signaling their disapproval of Mr. Gervais at the night’s end. Mr. Hanks said he could recall “back when Ricky Gervais was a slightly chubby but very kind comedian.” Mr. Allen replied sternly, “Neither of which…

The Kanye West of politics

Sarah Palin ain’t gonna “talk in no motherfucking interviews,” having grown weary of the media’s “stupid ass questions” (see Kanye West video, starting at 2:19). Palin is a communications major from the University of Idaho, after all, so don’t be offended when she lectures journalists on journalism. I’d love a Palin supporter to explain what’s biased about asking someone which newspapers or magazines they read.

James O’Keefe is no journalist

Sleazy right-wing journalist prankster James O’Keefe, deified by conservatives after an undercover stunt exposing alleged criminal behavior by ACORN, is back at it, targeting one of my favorite villains — the teachers unions. So he sent one of his flunkies to a bar after a teachers’ conference to buy drinks for a special education teacher named Alissa Ploshnick, and prompt her to dish about incompetent colleagues while secretly recording her. One of Ploshnick’s stories was that a colleague of hers referred called a student a nigger” and was demoted but not fired. She was clearly outraged. O’Keefe released the recording, and Ploshnick…

Expect an angry letter from Sonny

Four years ago, Gov. H. Dumpty took time out from promoting fishing to complain about the paper’s “negative coverage” after his beloved Dogs got whupped by Tennessee. Sunday’s sports page headline (“Dogs get put in their place,” referring to Georgia’s 51-33 loss to Tennessee, College Football, Oct. 8) is an indication of the way The Atlanta Journal-Constitution views Georgia. From the front page to the business page and now to the sports page, it is as if the AJC gleefully awaits lousy news about all things Georgia and pounces with their poison pens whenever bad things happen to the good people of…