Monday, February 06, 2006

We like freedom of the press. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that we generally like the press, as long as it does its job and tells the truth. The New York Times had an interesting column recently about the role of the press in a democracy. I thought I'd include the more amusing part here.

So here's something to ponder: where would you be without your local newspaper? I'll tell you where I'd be - not in the Bruin Democrats. I became interested in politics at roughly the same time I discovered the newspaper at age six. It's been a beautiful marriage ever since.


The Pumas Must be Monitored

I was watching a great program on the capuchin monkeys of Costa Rica last night around four in the morning. The narrator pointed out the various behaviors and duties of each individual tribe member. While most of the capuchins hung from limbs, playing and eating berries, a special group of monkeys with the best eyesight scurried about the perimeter, scanning the jungle for predators – big cats, birds of prey and venomous snakes.

Of the entire tribe, these sentry monkeys were a small, but important, slice of society. When a bloodthirsty puma came sneaking around, the sentries erupted in wild screams, alerting their ignorant brothers and sisters and saving them from danger.

At four in the morning, this nature program was merely entertaining, but now as I am thinking about the role of a newspaper in a democracy, I find myself identifying with those furry capuchins on the rain-soaked fringe. I let out a horrible howl in my empty office. The pumas must be monitored for the good of the whole.

Read the rest here:

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