From yesterday's Daily Howler:
Last week, we thought of Marla Ruzicka every time we quoted "The Second Coming," in which Yeats foresaw a future where "the worst are full of passionate intensity" while "the best lack all conviction." It was hard not to think of Yeats' words with Ann Coulter perched on the cover of Time--and with a denatured "press corps" continuing to pretend that it can't see the essence of her ministry (much more on that pose tomorrow). But if America's press corps lacks all conviction, "the best" among us surely do not.
Last week, we remembered that fact each time we read about Ruzicka's astonishing work.
Last week, we didn't want to put Ruzicka's name in the same posts as Coulter's. But we're going to continue discussing Coulter, and we were grateful this morning to see Bob Herbert focus on Ruzicka again--to see him names the actual names of some of the people she helped.
If you haven't already done so, we suggest that you take a minute to look at the picture essay on the web site of CIVIC, the humanitarian group Ruzicka formed. When cameras follow the Ruzickas around, they send back images from humanity's future.
And by the way: Though Ruzicka seems to have been an exceptional case, there are many others like her--the best. They're full of conviction, but their work escapes notice in the pages of the lounging mainstream press. (Note: Many reporters risk their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan, as Ruzicka did.)
We were struck by two bits of journalism last week as we read about Ruzicka. We applaud the New York Daily News for the language it chose to use in a headline. (The language is drawn from this news report's text.) And we thought Herbert used an interesting quote from Ruzicka's father last Friday. What explained his daughter's moral brilliance? According to Ruzicka's dad, she had "been like that all her life."
Bob Somerby's words should have been noted last night.
They weren't. There wasn't time because I was dealing with someone (repeatedly) e-mailing who wanted me to use this space to say what they wanted me to say about them but pretend that I was speaking my words.
That's not going to happen. And that person needs to quit writing and quit trying to bully others about what they write. If someone wants a valentine to himself, he needs to write it himself and not tell me to.
That wasted a great deal of time last night that I didn't have to waste (five hours plus). If it continues today, I'll be addressing it at this site and I won't worry about taking the "high road."
To RL who e-mailed something to the point and funny, thank you and I'll try to reply to you in some form tonight.
The e-mail address for this site is firstname.lastname@example.org but, for the record, I will not pass anyone's words off as my own no matter how much they insist that I do so.