Philly Blunt

Freelance writer. Editor and web-video producer. Former Atlantic City Press and Philadelphia Weekly staff writer, City Paper managing editor/columnist and Dougherty for Senate campaign manager. Comments welcome here or emailed to brianhickey9 [at] hotmail. Now on: Facebook (Brian Hickey, in Philly) Twitter at Flickr at Be sure to check out Hickey on Divorce Court:

23 August 2009

Weekend Reading Roundup (1,400th Post Edition)

It's just about 10 p.m. I spent a few hours at the bar I was at before I got smacked by a car, as you can see from the video in the previous post. All of which is to say I really don't feel like sitting in this here brown, leather recliner with a laptop in my lap. But here I am. And I'm here for you. To share links to stories I've rather enjoyed over the past few days. So read them. You'll be a better person for it. Here are the pertinent excerpts to whet your mental whistles:

-- Well, there was a good piece about Russia and the governmental-retribution complex therein by Scott Anderson in GQ, but it's not posted on So, be content with this gratuitous Erin Andrews shot. No, it's not of peephole caliber, but still...

-- From the NY Times Sunday Book Review:
As it happens, The Times itself provided vivid testimony to Jones’s thesis just as I was reading his book. On July 12, an important front-page article wasn’t about anything that took place during the so-called news cycle; it was a convincingly detailed (and readable) revelation of how young men in Minneapolis had been recruited for jihad in Somalia. One thinks of the disasters when this kind of embryonic news doesn’t get enough attention: the insufficiently monitored housing bubble, leading to the financial meltdown; the neglect in New Orleans, leading to the devastation after Katrina; or the formation of Al Qaeda in Afghanistan, leading to 9/11.
This is the scope of the news Jones fears we are in danger of losing, and the news he says the Internet generation has already abandoned. It’s the flow of significant reported information, “the iron core of information that is at the center of a functioning democracy.”

-- Alas, the lovely Megan is forced to go sans finding her millionaire. Whatever the opposite of alas is, VH1 has some 'splainin' to do:
While it is true that producers are responsible for vetting cast members, Andy Dehnart, the editor of, a popular Web site about reality television, said that VH1’s “abdication of responsibility is totally disingenuous.”
“The network has built a brand on unstable, crazy people interacting on these idiotic and mindless dating shows, and can’t pretend to not have anything to do with it,” he said.

-- It'd be far too easy to say that NY Gov. David A. Paterson can't see the forest for the trees, what with his leaning on the old-faithful excuse of across-the-board racism where even Rev. Al is loathe to say it is. But, I won't let that stop me: Paterson can't see the forest for the trees. (And not just 'cause he's legally blind. 'Cause he's legally mentally blind.)
“I do agree with the governor’s statement that we do not live in a postracial society and that there is a degree of media bias that does adversely impact communities of color,” said Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries, a Brooklyn Democrat. “But the governor’s problems are very complex and cannot be attributed to any one particular issue.”

Don't let him down, Hymiestate.

-- I'll just steal directly from the NYT headline: A Public Option That Works...
Through our experience working on health-care-reform efforts in California and Washington (one of us worked for President George W. Bush’s Council of Economic Advisers), we have seen how concern over employer costs can be a sticking point in the health care debate, even in the absence of persuasive evidence that increased costs would seriously harm businesses. San Francisco’s example should put some of those fears to rest. Many businesses there had to raise their health spending substantially to meet the new requirements, but so far the plan has not hurt jobs.
As of December 2008, there was no indication that San Francisco’s employment grew more slowly after the enactment of the employer-spending requirement than did employment in surrounding areas in San Mateo and Alameda counties. If anything, employment trends were slightly better in San Francisco.

-- Sports Illustrated has a detailed piece about how Marc Buonicotti thrived post-quadriplegia ... and his pre-chair wild yearnings...
"Are there certain things that would have put me in jail for 20 years? Yeah, I've done s--- that I could definitely get more than 20 years, combined," he says. "I'm giving you hints, man: Miami, the '80s ... having a good time? My parents know I was experimenting at the time, not only with partying but with different groups of people, some nefarious. Put it this way: Many nights I was at home awake, looking out the front window waiting for either a car I didn't know or the police."

-- And finally, have you heard the one about the Mutt that lost via a Bruntletting?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ryan Jenkins found dead. Why didn't he just kill himself and not the girl...sorry, but I hate when that happens.

12:34 PM  
Blogger Brian Hickey said...

Yeah, I noticed that last night about five minutes after posting it. I guess my unwillingness to update it -- and thank you for doing so -- is a testament to both my Sunday-night laziness and how a cheesebag reality-show contestant hanging himself really isn't news but rather humane justice.

12:50 PM  

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