B3: Rhetoric can be cute, for neanderthals


Bernie Sanders continues his captivating speeches while traveling the country on the campaign trail. He brings “Democratic-Socialists” to their feet at political rallies, and studio audiences cheer after his subtle rhetoric. He makes great points about the political process in the U.S. and its vast amount of financial pitfalls regarding lobbyists—as well as the massive amount of stateside inequities. His pep rally nonsense, littered with statistics most people know all too well, is daunting, truthful, engaging and refreshing to hear from a presidential hopeful.

But I don’t care.

Sanders will not secure the Democratic nomination. But for argument’s sake, let’s say he does  and actually wins the general election. Upon taking office, Sanders will be rendered as useless as his socialist banter after moving to Pennsylvania Ave.

You’re going to save the middle class, Mr. Sanders? You’re also going to dismantle and properly reconstruct the corporate tax-structure? Plus you’re going to stop the U.S. gun lobby?

Like most hardworking journalists my single question to the Bern-Unit is, says whom? And my English friends would further ask, “are you taking the piss?”

Honestly, I completely agree with Sanders and concurrently understand attacking Capitol Hill head-on gets you nowhere. If elected, we would pay Sanders $400,000 per year to be just as abortive as the Occupy Wall Street movement. Grand ideas and big talk are just that, and that alone. The political process in Washington happens between the aisles of its opposite sides. As a prospective presidential candidate, American citizen and everyone in-between if you believe otherwise I have a bridge to sell you. It’s historic, iconic, it was completed in 1883, it connects the Lower East Side of Manhattan to Brooklyn—and I only accept cash.

Like it or not, the U.S. is a capitalist society. Our financial moves and focus sway the global economy in ways most sovereign nations dream about and will never experience. And come next November, Sanders and his supporters believe they can attack special interest groups that fund The Star-Spangled monetary juggernaut?

According to The Center for Responsive Politics, a nonpartisan political finance research group, in 2013 the National Rifle Association spent $3.4 million lobbying to protect U.S. gun rights. Within the same year, the cumulative GDP for South America was approximately $6.1 million.

Some days I envy the general public, the wistful political-romantics and idealistic activists still fueling their carbon-filtered fire on “Hope” or “Change.” But if I want to watch fictitious yarns from inside the Beltway the trove of “The West Wing” seasons are free online.


The President Delivers a Statement on the Shooting in Oregon


Regarding politicizing mass shootings in the U.S., Mr. Obama said, “This is a political choice that we make – to allow this to happen every few months in America. We, collectively, are answerable to those families who lose their loved ones, because of our inaction.”

B2: One of the Best News Organizations Delivering Multimedia Packages


What does the Syrian war, Martin Shkreli’s recent pharmaceutical price gouging endeavour and 43 missing students from Ayotzinapa, Mexico have in common?  

They’re complicated issues causing massive impacts on the global community. Regarding multimedia packages covering these stories, few news organizations handle the complexities better than AJ+, the video/infographic branch of Al Jazeera.

AJ+ was launched about two years ago and the technology driven news platform has matured quickly. The videos gracefully blend live/prerecorded broadcasts, prosumer content, tweets, infographics, plus and deliver insightful, sometimes quirky, reports that are second to none.

The channel revisited the Ayotzinapa tragedy a year after students headed towards Mexico City to protest against college budget cuts never returned home. And, AJ+ produced multiple in-depth and informative videos, ranging between 1 and 5 minutes in length, on this particular story.

Using this engaging style of reporting could help my work at the Arizona Daily Star. For instance, when I cover the Tucson city council candidate debates simply writing text about civic issue rhetoric only appeals to people already invested in politics. But, if I created a multimedia package with still photos, tweet graphics that highlight the candidate’s platform along with colorful infographics passive readers could become interested or further involved.

Young reporters must plunge headlong into our digital nation and pioneer new, engaging, more playful platforms before professional journalists become yesterday’s news. And, AJ+ has created a picture perfect template for us to emulate.

B1: Project critique


“Anti-Hero’s ‘What’s Up Monkey?’ Is The Ultimate Skateboarding Tour Series”

Professional skateboarding teams tour often, with photographers in tow, and their skating along with intoxicated mayhem gets documented. Typically they shred skate parks, schools, city streets or anything they happen upon. Tour videos usually show 90 percent skating relegating 10 percent for general madness or good times.

Unless you ride for Anti-Hero.

The “What’s Up Monkey?” series has the Nor Cal boys supplying us with the opposite. Their B-roll footage is the focus, and you get some hammers intermediately.

The motley crew insists on reminding its viewers they are not fame-oriented. Fortunately, they accomplish this with unadulterated style, grace and joyful finesse. The crew has some of the gnarliest skaters in the industry who have not forgotten why they began. Skateboarding is supposed to be fun. And becoming a professional is the ultimate anti-job.

Conversely, the consequences of attempting professional tricks can be fatal. And the best in the business take those aforementioned leaps in strictly controlled environments.

But, by the day’s close the plywood superstars became outliers while playing.