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* What Noosepapers do:  They run stories by the carload of government-supplied services being cut, far more than ones that waste money.  You have to be a gadfly to go after that sort of thing, and, well, we know how they are, sniff.  Noosepaper reporters are professional, you know.  But they listen to squeaky wheels and go for the sentimental jugular, too often blissfully unaware of the theft that goes on under guise of helping people with public money. 

Editors coast to coast react, lemming-like, in all seriousness and sincerity, according to a script prescribed by the NY Times-Wash Post combine, the East Coast liberal axis.  These editors are shocked and contemptuous when another narrative is followed, as by Fox News, which with all its faults gives play to stories that the others never touch.  And gets accused of bias, when at worst they are supplying a crying lack.

* As old as he?: Reading USA Today on our Beloit (WI) trip, by the way, I am led to ask how old is the head shot of its founder Al Neuharth that accompanies his column?

Al Neuharth

* Star pitcher talks sense: In USA Today of 7/13/12, star pitcher Jered Weaver of the Los Angeles Angels talks about taking a home-town discount in his $85–million contract:

“I know . . . how big some people still think it is [passing up $40 or $50 million more with the Yankees] . . . . But honestly, I wouldn’t change a thing. It’s tough for me saying the contract is a discount. Come on, it’s $85 million. It’s more money than I ever thought I would make in my life.”

How about a big-leaguer with perspective?

“I’m happy. My family is happy. The fans and my teammates are happy,” he says. “If we play like we’re capable of in the second half and win this whole thing, that’s all the happiness I need.”

I’m not making this up.

“I get to stay at home. I get to pitch in front of my mom and dad and friends and family. And I live in Southern California, where the weather is beautiful”  . . . .   Come on, is that so bad?  You can’t put a dollar figure on happiness.”

Perspective, people.  And values. 

Others talk this way, including Cole Hamels, of the Philadelphia Phillies, who is facing the same sort of decision:

“Ultimately, you play this game for the happiness, not the paycheck. There are guys who are making ridiculous money who are unhappy. And there are guys making nothing who are happy.

Be true to yourself.  Don’t be blinded by bucks.  If you are not true and are blinded, then what?

“There are so many guys, after they’re done playing, they are bitter. Hey, do what makes you happy instead of having those regrets.   . . .  Maybe it’s the jealous side of people criticizing it, because maybe they realize the decisions they made weren’t for the right reasons.”

Weaver’s teammate C.J. Wilson:

“For us, this is the easiest thing to smile at. Every two weeks, you get a paycheck for playing baseball, doing what you’ve been doing since you were a kid.

“And if you’re successful, it’s so rewarding on a non-monetary level. It’s rewarding on a spiritual level, on an emotional level. That’s what means the most, not your college buddies and guys wondering how much you’re making.”

As for Weaver:

“Man, to look up every game and see my parents behind home plate is awesome. I can’t even honestly remember the last time they missed a (home) game. My wife (Kristin) has seen me pitch every home game since my sophomore year.

“I didn’t want that to ever go away. That’s why I wanted to stay. I don’t know what’s going to happen five years from now, but I’m sure not ready to have that end now.”

Now that’s a success story.

* Businesslike, no: USA Today quotes longtime Dem operative Donna Brazile speaking at CNN about Romney, who said he would run the country like a business:  But it “cannot and should be run like a business.”  None of this bottom-line stuff for her, for instance?  Running up debts, for instance?

* McPaper showed how: USA Today was mocked at its start as McPaper.  But the mockers are mostly shadows of their former selves and losing circulation, while the mocked leads the pack.  Tsk, tsk.

* Misleading early reference to Beloit: It’s where I read USA Today, for cryin’ out loud.  Complimentary copy at the door at Holiday Inn Express in Beloit, where the people may read about attitude in noosepapers but don’t know how to act with it. 

A very nice town, with 37,000 people, hub of 90,000–plus in surrounding area.  Very nice riverside (Rock R.) park, which stretches many blocks.  We had a lovely pasta dinner at Little Bistro, on State Street.   Price right at this place, $40 for two (sans alcoholic drink, which was on offer in form of beer and wine), with tip.  Had veggie soup with my shrimp scampi, both excellent, finished with raspberry sundae and coffee.  Lady of our house had pasta and coffee.

Unfortunately Little B is across street and down the block from almost nothing to match it, including some empty storefronts.  But streets are in very good shape, and downtown had become a track for an international bicycle race which we stumbled on and found dramatic, won by a German or Colombian or American or South African, I forget which.