The Telegraph Would Like to Apologize For Making Things Up About the First Lady

A note to the media -- if you're going to accuse a public figure of elitism, perhaps you shouldn't totally make things up in order to achieve that goal. The Telegraph of London learned this the hard way, after publishing an article which falsely reported that First Lady Michelle Obama had an entire Fifth Avenue lingerie store shut down so that she could shop with Her Highness Sheikha Moza of Qatar.

The First Lady, being the kind of person who favors small, independent designers and rewearing the same outfit more than once (the horror!), was understandably upset at this suggestion of opulence, and the Telegraph was forced to issue this rather sheepish retraction in response:

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New York Post Outs Greg Kelly's Accuser With Front-Page Photo

Even though Greg Kelly, now exonerated by a criminal investigation, will not be charged with rape after all, the New York Post isn't ready to let his story rest in peace. Not happy with merely naming Kelly's accuser in a report yesterday, the Post apparently felt that emblazoning the cover of its Thursday print edition with the woman's face was entirely appropriate. The ensemble includes a punny headline more appropriate for a jokey human interest piece than the aftermath of a criminal investigation, made complete by the use of scare quotes around the word "rape."

A full front page photo. We aren't going to link to it because it's -- well, quite frankly, it's shameful. Women who file rape accusations already have an uphill battle to fight when it comes to getting a conviction. This is particularly true when those they accuse are public figures or have family members in positions of power. Because sexual assault investigations are deeply entwined with public ideas of propriety and sexuality, it was, once upon a time, considered common courtesy not to publicly name women who had the bravery to come forth and file a report. That way, if their accusations couldn't be proved, they wouldn't have to deal with the dual shame of being raped and then publicly harassed. No more, apparently.

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Fox Nation Continues to Promote Occupy 'Link' to Attempted Obama Assassination

Yesterday, a 21-year-old man named Oscar Ramiro Ortega-Hernandez was charged with attempting to assassinate Barack Obama. There's a lengthy complaint available that includes quite a bit of information, including scary stuff he said about Obama to people who knew him well, referring to the president as 'the anti-Christ," the devil, and indicating he wouldn't stop "until it's done." There's information about what he had in his car, about how he conducted the alleged shooting, and even what he was wearing. There is NO mention of any Occupy movement -- the word "occupy" doesn't even appear in the document. So, why is it in this Fox Nation headline?

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'Child's Foot' Found on Queens Lawn Is Not, Actually

Not the foot found; not a real foot, either.
Earlier today, both the Daily News and the New York Post reported the gruesome news that what appeared to be a toddler's foot had been discovered by an unlucky fellow taking out the trash in Queens. "That's somebody's baby!" the Post quoted a horrified woman as saying. Fortunately, that was not correct, and, frankly, a little bit sensational. The New York Times quotes the Medical Examiner's Office: "Our anthropologists examined it," Ellen Borakove, a spokeswoman for the office, said. "It's still unclear what it is, but it's definitely not a human foot."

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Ryan Gosling Astor Place Crime-Fighting Mystery Solved!

In a hilarious turn of events, journalism website OMGICU has located the woman who took the video of Ryan Gosling busting crimes on the streets of New York City, or someone who very much resembles Ryan Gosling, and interviewed her! In fact, it was Ryan Gosling, in so much as this woman, Valerie, is to be believed, and we'll largely believe her, because we would like this story to be true. Of interest: She did not even know who Ryan Gosling was, until it was pointed out by her wife that this was the fellow from The Notebook. Watch her interview here! (She comes on at 2:45.)

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Psychics Predict Future of World Economy

This is a real CNN report from three days ago. According to the psychics, who know more about Ben Bernanke's plans in the next three months than Ben Bernanke does, everything is going to be just fine.


Anthony Weiner Headlines Skip Weinergate Dick Puns on the Front Page

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The Most Mature Paper in Town
More than a week into the Anthony Weiner scandal, the shit hit the fan, but our local New York newspapers were already running on empty if this morning's front pages are any indication. Last week brought us New York Post gems like "Battle of the Bulge," "Weiner Exposed" and "Hard Time!" But after the big blow yesterday, this morning's results are relatively subdued, and the restraint actually serves the New York papers well, lending the tiniest bit of gravity to the situation. "Naked Truth" from the Post and the competing "Yeah, I'm a Schmuck" from the Daily News maintain the papers' edge without being too juvenile. AM New York opts for the more frank "'Dumb,'" using the congressman's own word, while Newsday mirror the Post with "The Naked Truth," but chose a better photograph. The Times, typically staid, says "Tearful Weiner Admits Sending Explicit Picture." The real fun is for inside!

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Jonathan Carey and the Horrible Issues With New York's Office for People With Developmental Disabilities

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Jonathan Carey, killed in 2007
Outside of today's media mayhem, there's some serious journalism happening on the front page of Monday's New York Times. The paper has a huge exposé as part of an ongoing investigation into New York state's Office for People With Developmental Disabilities, focusing on the unbelievably awful death in 2007 of Jonathan Carey, an autistic 13-year-old boy in state care, who was suffocated by a man meant to watch over him. "I could be a good king or a bad king," the worker reportedly said to the boy as he was asphyxiating; the state employee was "a ninth-grade dropout with a criminal conviction for selling marijuana" and "had been on duty during at least one previous episode of alleged abuse involving Jonathan." And this sort of abuse, the Times reports, is widespread.

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Local News Reporter Learns Valuable Lesson About Camels

Sorry, we laughed pretty hard at this one, which is not an Adorable Animals in Trouble, per se...though, in fairness, we don't know what sort of invasive questions NBC12 Reporter Tara Morgan may have asked this poor camel. Or maybe he was just hungry.

Man Licks Own Shoe on 5 Train: Has Civilian Subway Journalism Bottomed Out?

For as long as we can remember, we (and, basically, the Internet) have had a certain fascination with people doing weird and freaky things on the subway. Perhaps it is because a subway train -- about the size of this blogger's studio apartment -- is a compact moving container for an array of diverse humanity, all packed together and, on a good day, surviving in harmony and reaching their intended destinations without harm or difficulty. On a bad day, however, a piece of the puzzle fails to fit, the precarious peace ruptures, and all goes ape shit. A video taken in these circumstances is far more interesting than one taken out in the whole wide world, because the subway rules for co-existence are more stringent based on the fact that space is at such a premium, even in tightly constructed New York City. It is a cross-section of life, a tiny microcosm reflecting our larger world, or at least, that's what we'd say if we were anthropology majors. More »