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No News Is Good News 

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People often complain that newspapers only report bad news. And, of course, that is largely true. Most newspaper reporters and editors hate good news. When little Timmy Johnson earns his Eagle Scout badge; or when Mary Miller wins the Sterling Scholar Award; or when Professor Smith gets recognized by his peers in the National Society of Yodelers, it’s all such a bore. Yawn.

By contrast, we tend to favor blood and guts, sex and scandal. If someone’s life is ruined along the way, well, chalk it up to collateral damage. But even the most hard-bitten newspaper grouch has to be getting sick and tired of all the bad news lately. This terrorism stuff is getting old. The economy is slumping. And a large chunk of the world hates Americans. Enough already. Let’s have some good news, damn it.

• We’re going to break tradition and report some good news. But it’s a one-time-only deal, so don’t write in to SmartBomb with smarmy, heart-warming stories about Aunt Edith’s vegetarian meatloaf or your neighbor’s singing poodle, thinking we might print them. Because as Tommy Lee Jones said to Harrison Ford in The Fugitive, “We don’t care.”

OK, so here goes:

Item: More people don’t have anthrax than have been infected by it.

Item: It’s still safer to fly to a destination than it is to drive there.

Item: Gasoline prices are going down now that everyone is afraid to go anywhere.

Item: Former Mayor Deedee “Take the Money and Run” Corradini won’t be waving the flag at the Opening Ceremonies at the Winter Games.

Item: The New York Yankees lost the World Series.

Item: The LDS church said it will remove metal detectors from entrances to what used to be Main Street when the Winter Olympics are over.

Item: Former Salt Lake County Commissioner Mary Callaghan hasn’t made a demand in over a week for more taxpayer money to add to her $279,000 severance.

Item: The Utah Jazz won’t have to lose at-home during the Winter Games.

Item: Mayor Rocky Anderson was dubbed by the Baltimore Sun as the Minister of Fun in what’s believed by many to be the most boring city in America.

Item: The Salt Lake (Olympics) Organizing Committee hasn’t sued anyone in the last 24 hours.

There now, feel better?

Here’s something from our “Change of Pace”-file: A panel of professors at the University of Utah say that the United States is entering an era of terrorism. The panel, apparently, is part of the “Masters of the Obvious” series.

• And finally, this: A Virginia judge has ruled that a 15-year-old high school student can not wear a T-shirt bearing the slogan: “When I saw the dead and dying Afghani children on TV, I felt a newly recovered sense of national security. God Bless America.”

Our freedoms, apparently, are the first things cast aside as we go to war to fight for our freedoms. Make sense? Well, not exactly.

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