May 08, 2002

So, after five straight days

So, after five straight days of flat line Internet access, my cable modem sparked to life this morning at about 5 a.m. for not particular reason. I'm still going to have Charter give my cable access a thorough look over tomorrow, but this is the type of crap that just irritates me.

Well, it turns out the maniacal pipe bomb mailer who has been terrorizing the Midwest was raised in a town called Pine Island, about 10 miles north of where I live. Now, I don't know if anyone who reads this blog (three or four of you) has ever heard television news report broadcasts from markets consisting of less than 100,000 people, but they have a tendency to overstate a local news angle like this. You'd think they caught Osama bin Laden himself. KTTC, the Rochester, Minn., NBC affiliate had some of the most laughable stories you can imagine, including a 30 second interview with the Pine Island mail carrier. Here's the deal: the kid was raised in Pine Island, which really doesn't mean anything. Sure, you can do the whole concerned parents angle, but that's about where I would draw the line. No pipe bombs were found in Minnesota, so an interview with the Pine Island mail carrier is lazy journalism at best. Second, the kid was attending school at the University of Wisconsin/Stout, so the university has a much better local angle than anything coming out of Pine Island. Reporters can interview his college friends and get a better gauge of his mental state than talking to his 5th grade Pine Island teacher who says something like "He always seemed a little too into his crayons. I was worried about the boy."
Additionally, the local news played up the fact that the bomber was a singer in a local band called Apathy. Tell me, does this have anything to do with anything? According to KTTC it does: they went out and interviewed a clerk at a local music store that sold Apathy CDs. Does that make any friggin sense?! Here are the questions that should be pursued in my mind. Did the kid have any close current friends who knew something was up? Was there any connection between the states or sites he planted his bombs. Was he purely mentally unstable or did he have an agenda that would indicate accomplices. I don't know, these just seem like far better angles than talking to a music clerk.
But, then again, I'm just a lowly magazine news editor. What do I know?

Posted by Ryan at May 8, 2002 10:07 AM
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