Opinion: Cynical

POSTED: 11/25/11 12:40 PM

Journalists are a cynical bunch. We should know. J

So there is a lot of stuff going on in editorial offices that never sees the light of day; it never hits the front page, or even page 29, it never airs on radio or TV. But accidents happen. Ask Ronald Reagan (okay, that’s not possible anymore, but bear with us here).

On August 11, 1984, Reagan was preparing his weekly Saturday address on National Public Radio. During a sound check, Reagan had the following text: My fellow Americans, I’m pleased to tell you today that I’ve signed legislation that will outlaw Russia forever. We begin bombing in five minutes.

It was a joke made for a limited audience, but somehow somebody leaked it and then the Russians had something to say about it.

Recently somebody in Russia returned the favor. Tatjana Limanova, a news anchor at REN TV showed her viewers what she thought about US president Barack Obama by sticking up her middle finger. In the States, this would probably fall under the first Amendment, but in Russia they keep different rules, at least at REN TV.

Limanova was reading a news item about the appointment of President Medveded to the economic cooperation organization Apec. She noted that Obama had held this function earlier and to support him she gave him the finger.

The TV station first said that it was an unfortunate mistake and that the news reader had made the gesture for her camera crew. When that story proved to be incorrect, REN TV saw no other option than to fire Limanova.



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