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The Washington Post Exposes an 8-year-old Heroin Addict and a Liar

Contributed by Alex Shrugged

There is a problem with the Pulitzer Prize winning story written by Janet Cooke. In summary she reports...

Jimmy is 8-years-old and living in Washington D.C.. He has been begging his friend, Ron, to give him some heroin, so Ron finally agrees. Now Jimmy wants to be a drug dealer, maybe buy a bike, and get a dog. His mother, Andrea is OK with it because drugs are just a part of life. Jimmy can't do the needle himself. Ron has to help him, but he'll learn. It's all a matter of time.

So what's the problem? Mayor Marion Barry wants to help young Jimmy, but cannot find him. The Mayor raises doubts about the story. After Janet Cooke is caught in some lies on her resumé she is grilled on Jimmy's story. She finally admits that IT WAS ALL A LIE! She explains that she was under terrible pressure to produce, especially after the Post had brought down Nixon a few years ago. She resigns and the newspaper returns the Pulitzer. She is done. [1] [2] [3]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
You'll be happy to hear that the Washington Post has a new slogan. I'm not sure it had an OLD slogan other than "Follow the Money", but the new slogan is, "Democracy Dies in Darkness." Yes. Well... that speaks for itself. Regarding Mayor Marion Barry, he was a crack addict caught in an FBI sting 10 years after Janet Cooke's article was published. After serving his time, he ran for Mayor again using the slogan, "He May Not Be Perfect, But He's Perfect for D.C." Very true. Very true. He won with 70% Democrat approval. On a sadder note, his son, Christopher Barry died of a drug overdose last year (2016). He was 36. As a chaplain, I work with heroin and crack addicts as well as alcoholics. I know that most of them are going to die, but a few can be saved if someone tries, so I try. [4] [5] [6]

Staggering Effects

Contributed by Southpaw Ben

The Staggers Rail Act and the Motor Carrier Act of 1980 were both passed as a means of deregulating transportation industries, removing many regulations and price controls from the train and trucking industries respectively. This allowed the creation of lower cost carriers, and helped the expansion of intermodal freight transport. This also helped usher in the age of just in time delivery, as now there were more carriers at better prices, meaning the cost of shipping food from a distributor to a store now cost the store less than having a large inventory of the items in the back, meaning a store had a lower overhead. [7][8]

My Take by Southpaw Ben
Many in the survivalist community demonize just in time inventory and champion free markets at the same time. While I agree that just in time inventory is an inherently risky endeavor, with little in the means of back up in case something goes awry, it also is a great example of how the free market won't always follow our ideals, and will seek to streamline and optimize modern technologies. However, this is not to say we should sacrifice free markets to shape the world into how we think things should run. Instead, we need to accept the way it takes things, push back where we can with our dollar, and where we can't, accept the risk by forming our own personal redundancies to the systems of concern.

Elected Officials Are Caught Taking Bribes from "Arabs"

Contributed by Alex Shrugged

"What have we come to if turning down a bribe is 'heroic'?"
-- US Senator Larry Pressler, (R-South Dakota), considered the hero of the Abscam bribery scandal.

One US Senator and six US Congressmen are caught selling their influence to the Arabs except that it wasn't Arabs. It was the FBI running a sting operation. The FBI had been looking into real estate fraud and caught a con-man. Instead of convicting him, they made a deal where he would continue his scam acting as a front for Arab money. The idea was to catch other con-men and shady businessmen. What they actually caught was the Mayor of Camden, New Jersey and a state senator attempting to sell their influence for an Atlantic City casino license. These two knuckleheads then proceeded to bring in other politicians which included the federal officials mentioned previously. It is all caught on video as FBI agents dressed as Arab sheikhs hand over tens of thousands of dollars to esteemed public officials. (Guess which political party is heavily represented?) There are a few who come close to taking a bribe, but the FBI runs out of time as word gets out that a sting operation is underway. The most notable of the unindited co-conspirators is Congressman John Murtha (D-Pennsylvania). He is able to convince the prosecutors that he was trying to steer Arab money to legal investments within his congressional district. He agreed to testify against his fellow Congressmen. [9] [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Republican Senator Larry Pressler was also approached by these so-called Arab investors, but when the conversation turned to something that sounded illegal he balked. He confronted these Arab investors, and after the meeting was over he immediately called the FBI to report these guys... who were the FBI after all. He was caught on tape being honest, and for this he was called a hero. He couldn't believe it, and I can sympathize. I get praise sometimes for doing things that seem part of the general requirement of living like raking up the leaves that I KNOW are from my tree that the wind has scattered across my neighbor's lawn, and my neighbor two doors down. She came running out to thank me and give me cookies. For what? Raking up the mess my tree made in her yard? It's once a year. It's not that big a deal. I took the cookies. I can't seem ungrateful. I gave them to the kids across the street. Everyone is happy.

Notable Births

  • Chelsea Clinton: Daughter of U.S. President Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. (She has the rare gift of commanding large sums of money in exchange for mediocre talents.--alexshrugged) [16] [17]
  • -- In Sports: Venus Williams (tennis player). [16] [18]
  • -- In Movies: Channing Tatum (White House Down), Macaulay Culkin (Home Alone), and Christina Ricci (The Addams Family). [16] [19] [20] [21]
  • -- In Music: Christina Aguilera, Michelle Williams (Destiny's Child), and Jessica Simpson (who played Daisy Duke in the new Dukes of Hazzard). [16] [22] [23] [24]
  • -- In TV: Ben Foster (Flash Forward), Ben Savage (Boy Meets World, and brother of Fred), and Kim Kardashian (who parlayed her sex tape into a TV reality show.--alexshrugged). [16] [25] [26] [27]

This Year in Film

  • The Empire Strikes Back: "Luke, I am your father" (I almost laughed out loud.--alexshrugged) [28]
  • Airplane!: A slapstick comedy mocking the movie Airport 1975. [28] [29]
  • The Blues Brothers: John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd are on a "Mission from God". [28]
  • The Shining: Jack Nicholson plays an ax murderer. "Here's Johnny!" [28]
  • Fame: Tracking the lives of students in the High School of Performing Arts. [28]
  • The Gods Must Be Crazy: A bushman is on a quest to return a magic Coke bottle to the Gods. (Extremely weird and funny.--alexshrugged) [28]
  • Urban Cowboy: Mechanical bull riding becomes a fad. [28]

This Year in TV

  • The NFL Draft is televised on ESPN: Pete Rozelle thought no one would watch. WRONG! [30] [31]
  • Magnum, P.I.: A detective drama set in Hawaii starring Tom Selleck. [30] [32]
  • Eddie Murphy first appears on Saturday Night Live: His sketch is entitled "In Search of the Negro Republican". [30] [33]
  • Closed captioning begins: A telecaption adapter is required. [30] [34]

This Year in Music

  • (I am a) Woman in Love: Barbra Streisand. [35] [36]
  • (Won't you take me to) Funkytown: Lipps Inc. [35] [37]
  • John Lennon is shot dead: The murderer gets 20 years-to-life. His next parole review is in 2018. [38]

This Year in Video Games

  • The first Arcade Awards prize goes to... Space Invaders: The award is called "The Arkie". [39]
  • Nameco releases Pac-Man: It will become the best selling game of all time. [39]
  • Infocom releases Zork I: A text-based adventure game developed by the folks at MIT. [39]
  • Distribution of video arcade games is standardized: Each new game is uploaded to a standard game cabinet using a Data East DECO cassette. [40]

In Other News

  • The rescue of American hostages in Iran fails: Mechanical difficulties and a helicopter crash force Special Forces to abort their mission. The hostages are then scattered to multiple locations. [41] [15] [42] [15]
  • The USA boycotts the Summer Olympics in Moscow: President Carter is protesting the Soviet war in Afghanistan. [43] [15]
  • Rubik's Cube is an overnight success: But it was invented in 1970. [44] [15]
  • Mount St. Helens blows its top, killing 57: It created a crater 1 to 2 miles wife and knocked down everything for miles around. [45]

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1980, Wikipedia.

See Also


  1. "JIMMY'S WORLD - The Washington Post", September 28, 1980. Retrieved on 9 April 2017. “In a city overflowing with what many consider positive role models for a black child with almost any ambition -- doctors, lawyers, politicians, bank presidents -- Jimmy wants most to be a good dope dealer. He says that when he is older, 'maybe about 11,' he would like to 'go over to Condon Terrace (notorious for its open selling of drugs and violent way of life) or somewhere else and sell.' With the money he says he would buy a German Shepherd dog and a bicycle, maybe a basketball, and save the rest 'so I could buy some real s--- and sell it.'” 
  2. Janet Cooke and Jimmy's World. Retrieved on 9 April 2017. “As the popular outrage about Jimmy grew, rumors began to swirl around the city suggesting that he didn't exist, that Janet Cooke had simply made him up. The Post stood by her and denied these rumors, but everything came to a boil on April 13, 1981 when Cooke was awarded the prestigious Pulitzer Prize on account of her story. The editors of the Post, who had learned that Cooke had lied about various academic credentials on her resume, confronted Cooke and demanded that she provide proof of Jimmy's existence. Cooke, unable to do so, finally admitted that she had never met Jimmy and that much of her story was fictitious. Cooke offered her resignation, and the Post, humiliated by the incident, returned the Pulitzer Prize.”
  3. "JANET COOKE'S UNTOLD STORY - The Washington Post", May 9, 1996. Retrieved on 9 April 2017. “Janet Cooke, author of the most notorious journalistic hoax in modern history, is working in a Kalamazoo, Mich., department store for $6 an hour.” 
  4. Washington Post makes 'Democracy Dies in Darkness' great again - NOLA.com (February 24, 2017). Retrieved on 9 April 2017. “Some people noted that Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos, the billionaire who made his fortune with Amazon.com, had also used the phrase in public recently. That prompted writer John Podhoretz to joke on Twitter: 'Democracy Dies in Darkness But I Got This Cute Little Night-Light at Amazon for Just $4.99 and It's Free Shipping Because I Have Prime.' This is a far cry from the newspaper slogans of old. The New York Times may have the best known: 'All the news that's fit to print.' That was modified in newsrooms across the nation as editors tried to persuade reporters to write shorter to 'All the news that fits, we print.'”
  5. "The Washington Post’s new slogan turns out to be an old saying - The Washington Post", February 24, 2017. Retrieved on 9 April 2017. “The Washington Post added a new phrase beneath its online masthead this week — 'Democracy Dies in Darkness' — and the commentary flowed immediately. The slogan quickly trended on Twitter, drawing tweets even from the People’s Daily newspaper in China. It was fodder for a few late-night cracks from Stephen Colbert, who suggested some of the rejected phrases included 'No, You Shut Up,' 'Come at Me, Bro' and 'We Took Down Nixon — Who Wants Next?'” 
  6. Son of former D.C. Mayor Marion Barry dies of drug overdose - Washington Examiner (August 14, 2016). Retrieved on 9 April 2017. “Christopher Barry, who had struggled with drug use and had recent brushes with the law, ran unsuccessfully for D.C. Council's Ward 8 seat last year after his father died. He came in sixth place on the ballot.”
  7. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Staggers_Rail_Act
  8. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motor_Carrier_Act_of_1980
  9. "High Officials Are Termed Subjects Of a Bribery Investigation by F.B.I. - 2-Year Inquiry Used Agents Who Posed as Sheiks-- Senator Williams and 7 in House Are Named Lawmakers Are Named Senator and 7 Representatives Termed Subjects of F.B.I.'s Bribery Inve". Retrieved on 9 April 2017. “High public officials, including a United States Senator and seven Representatives, have been subjects of a two-year undercover operation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in which agents posed as businessmen and Arab sheiks willing to pay bribes, according to law-enforcement authorities.” 
  10. "Etymology of 'Abscam' Undergoes Revision - Article - NYTimes.com". Retrieved on 9 April 2017. “What exactly does Abscam stand for? When law enforcement authorities first revealed the Federal Bureau of Investigation's undercover operation they said that Abscam, its code name, stood for 'Arab scam,' or swindle.” 
  11. "John Good, Architect of F.B.I.’s Abscam Sting Operation, Dies at 80 - The New York Times", October 18, 2016. Retrieved on 9 April 2017. “When the operation targeted the mayor of Camden, N.J., Angelo J. Errichetti, and he proved to be open to further suggestion, the net widened, and the sheikh’s story changed. Now he was offering money for influence in the halls of government. The investigation resulted in bribery and conspiracy charges against a United States senator, Harrison A. Williams Jr. of New Jersey; six members of the House of Representatives; and a dozen others, including Mr. Errichetti. All were convicted. (Mr. Williams died in 2001, Mr. Errichetti in 2013.)” 
  12. "To the players in Abscam, the real-life 'American Hustle,’ the bribes now seem quaint - The Washington Post", December 26, 2013. Retrieved on 9 April 2017. “Back then, it was dubbed the largest political corruption probe in the bureau’s history, involving more than 100 agents. Among them: supposed sheiks in fancy suits and improvised headdresses, seeking political favors and proffering stacks of $100 bills in return. (The role was mainly played by an agent of Lebanese descent, after an earlier effort by a non-Arabic speaker came hilariously close to disaster.) Many agree it could never happen again, mainly because stricter guidelines were imposed on sting operations. But today offering bribes in exchange for legislation seems almost quaint. 'The lobbyists do the same things we did, only to a much greater degree,' Good says.” 
  13. 'Abscam' fallout: Atlantic City casinos - CSMonitor.com (February 6, 1980). Retrieved on 9 April 2017. “The disclosure that Senator Williams is the subject of an investigation connected to casinos is another in a series of jolts that has hit the New Jersey gambling industry in the last several days. On Feb. 4 Kenneth MacDonald, vice-chairman of the CCC, resigned under pressure after allegations surfaced that he had taken a $100,000 bribe in the Abscam operation. Mr. MacDonald denied Feb. 4 that he took the money.”
  14. Abscam - Wikipedia. Retrieved on 30 January 2017.
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 15.4 1980 - Wikipedia. Retrieved on 30 January 2017.
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 16.3 16.4 1980 Births - Wikipedia.
  17. Chelsea Clinton - Wikipedia.
  18. Venus Williams - Wikipedia.
  19. Channing Tatum - Wikipedia.
  20. Macaulay Culkin - Wikipedia.
  21. Christina Ricci - Wikipedia.
  22. Christina Aguilera - Wikipedia.
  23. Michelle Williams (singer) - Wikipedia.
  24. Jessica Simpson - Wikipedia.
  25. Ben Foster - Wikipedia.
  26. Ben Savage - Wikipedia.
  27. Kim Kardashian - Wikipedia.
  28. 28.0 28.1 28.2 28.3 28.4 28.5 28.6 1980 in film - Wikipedia (1980). Retrieved on 27 January 2017.
  29. Airport 1975 - Wikipedia (1980). Retrieved on 21 March 2017. “The plot concerns the dramatic events aboard an airborne Boeing 747 when a small aircraft crashes into the cockpit causing the fatalities of senior crew and the blinding of the pilot with no one aboard qualified to take the controls.”
  30. 30.0 30.1 30.2 30.3 1980 in television - Wikipedia (1980).
  31. National Football League Draft - Wikipedia (1980). Retrieved on 21 March 2017. “In 1980, Chet Simmons, president of the year-old ESPN, asked Pete Rozelle if the fledgling network could broadcast coverage of the draft live on ESPN. Although Rozelle did not believe it would be entertaining television, he agreed.”
  32. Magnum, P.I. - Wikipedia (1980). Retrieved on 21 March 2017. “Magnum, P.I. is an American crime drama television series starring Tom Selleck as Thomas Magnum, a private investigator living on Oahu, Hawaii.”
  33. 1980 in American television - Wikipedia (1980). Retrieved on 21 March 2017. “Eddie Murphy made his first Saturday Night Live appearance, appearing in a non-speaking role in the sketch 'In Search Of The Negro Republican'.”
  34. Closed captioning - Wikipedia (1980). Retrieved on 21 March 2017. “The first use of regularly scheduled closed captioning on American television occurred on March 16, 1980.[4] Sears had developed and sold the Telecaption adapter, a decoding unit that could be connected to a standard television set. The first programs seen with captioning were a Disney's Wonderful World presentation of the film Son of Flubber on NBC, an ABC Sunday Night Movie airing of Semi-Tough, and Masterpiece Theatre on PBS.”
  35. 35.0 35.1 1980 in music - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 30 January 2017.
  36. Woman in Love - YouTube (2017). Retrieved on 21 March 2017.
  37. Funkytown - Lipps Inc (official video) - YouTube (2017). Retrieved on 21 March 2017.
  38. John Lennon's killer Mark Chapman denied parole again - BBC News (August 29, 2016). Retrieved on 21 March 2017. “Chapman was sentenced to 20 years to life in jail in 1981 after pleading guilty to second-degree murder.”
  39. 39.0 39.1 39.2 1980 in music - Wikipedia (1980).
  40. DECO Cassette System - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 7 April 2017. “The arcade owner would buy a base cabinet, while the games were stored on standard audio cassettes. The arcade owner would insert the cassette and a security dongle into the cabinet. When the cabinet was powered up, the program from the tape would be copied into the cabinet's RAM chips; this process took about two to three minutes. After this, the game could be played freely until the cabinet was rebooted.”
  41. Operation Eagle Claw - Wikipedia. Retrieved on 30 January 2017.
  42. Iran hostage crisis - Wikipedia. Retrieved on 30 January 2017.
  43. 1980 Summer Olympics - Wikipedia. Retrieved on 30 January 2017.
  44. Rubik's Cube - Wikipedia. Retrieved on 30 January 2017.
  45. Mount St. Helens - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 14 May 2017. “On March 20, 1980, Mount St. Helens experienced a magnitude 4.2 earthquake;[2] and, on March 27, steam venting started.[25] By the end of April, the north side of the mountain had started to bulge.[26] On May 18, a second earthquake, of magnitude 5.1, triggered a massive collapse of the north face of the mountain. It was the largest known debris avalanche in recorded history. The magma in St. Helens burst forth into a large-scale pyroclastic flow that flattened vegetation and buildings over 230 square miles (600 km2). More than 1.5 million metric tons of sulfur dioxide were released into the atmosphere.[27] On the Volcanic Explosivity Index scale, the eruption was rated a five (a Plinian eruption).”

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