The Corner

Why I Love the News

Because it is such a cheap source of reliable entertainment. As Chris Buckley has frequently commented, satire is impossible these days because you have to compete with the newspapers, and the newspapers are winning. So I saw this story in the Washington Post this morning about how the usual goo-goo groups (Consumers Union, etc) object to school bus radio because — gasp — our tender kids will be exposed to ads, even though to any common sense observer (as the story explains) the bus radio programming is an excellent calming device for the Lord-of-the-Flies culture of most school buses. But this is the sentence that had me spitting out my coffee amidst a hail of uncontrollable guffawing:

Consumers Union, the National PTA and other groups oppose exposing students to commercial radio on the bus, time they might otherwise pass in quiet reflection or conversing with friends.

Right: In the absence of bus radio, the kids will be reflecting on Cartesian dualism; little Johnnie will be comparing Lucy in the next row to Athena, while Philip in the back row will be quietly reciting a Shakespeare sonnet. Meanwhile, in other news you can use, KFC is going to introduce grilled chicken. Who says America doesn’t innovate any more?

Steven F. Hayward — Mr. Hayward is the author of The Age of Reagan: The Conservative Counter-Revolution, 1980–1989.

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