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(Eric Shansby)
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By Gene Weingarten
Sunday, September 14, 2008

It's too bad that most of the remaining newspapers in America have boring names like the Times, the Post, the Herald, the Times-Post, the Post-Herald & Times, etc. I miss the old eccentric types of newspaper names: the Bugle-Beeblers, the Chronicle-Complainers, etc.

I started my career at a now-defunct paper called the Knickerbocker News, a fine, weird name that unfortunately sounded like "the Nicaragua News," which often resulted in phone calls not being returned. My favorite real newspaper name, though, was the Genius of Liberty, which published in Leesburg in the late 1800s.

The name was created on the theory that our nation is great because it runs on the collective wisdom of a free, informed and wise citizenry. This theory was noble and inspiring, but it was probably based on the fact that in the old days, newspaper editors seldom actually got to really know their readers. Alas, today it is obvious that this theory is untrue. I say this because of the contents of the online "Comments" section that accompanies most news articles, the place where readers are encouraged to post their thoughts, free of editorial control.

They tend to read like this:


by Alicia Rosenblatt

(Comments below)

  • I posted frist!
  • Very good article. Trees should be saved and not cut down and turned into pulp to print your Communist rag WHICH SHOULD BE RENAMED THE HAVANA TIMES.
  • You didn't mention motorcycles in this article at all. Just because motorcycle riders sometimes hit trees doesn't mean we need a fascist helmet law.
  • You are wrong. Old trees must be preserved and not cut down. I am cancelling my subscription.
  • You idiot it was all about saveing old trees like you can even read get a life.

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