The journalism industry is having a bit of a hard time these last couple of decades, you may have heard. And the main way the journalism industry has responded to the crisis in the journalism industry is by dramatically lowering the quality of the journalism industry’s primary product, which is journalism. Here, in a brilliant video by some random AP person (probably a stringer?) in the Los Angeles foothills, is perhaps the most damning indictment of the current ridiculous requirement that all random news reporters also shoot some incredibly crappy, boring video to make sure nobody ever wants to look at news again.

Our good friend and colleague Tim Blair, a right-wing Australian online terrorist and infamous columnist for Sydney’s Daily Telegraph, recently visited Wonkette’s Western Bureau and told many hilarious stories during the usual drunken haze, and one of these stories involved a Melbourne tabloid photographer who was notorious for carrying around a soiled, banged-up teddy bear which he would judiciously place at the scene of automobile crashes before shooting the heartbreaking pictures that would decorate whatever banal police report article.

A common unemployed graduate of a journalism school would say, “Eww, that’s unethical, and now I’m going to have my testicles waxed, again, at the beauty salon, using my mom’s Discover card.” And while such a statement would be invariably true, it’s also true that most of what passes for “news” is deadly boring. A rainstorm is deadly boring unless you just happen to be in the one place at the right instant when something dramatic happens, like the Orphans’ Home being sucked into a giant sinkhole. Get there an hour later, like this poor AP schlub, and you’ll be shooting crappy video through a point & shoot of some police cars parked here and there between what appears to be harmless puddles of mud.

A skilled news photographer, however, would come back from that same banal scene with something. A good beat reporter who knew the cops wouldn’t be standing there on the wrong side of the police line, either. He or she would be handing off bribe bags of donuts and burritos on the way to an exclusive view of the sinkhole that swallowed all 127 residents of the Pasadena Home for Crippled Children. And then the reporter would delicately place the mud-smeared “Woody” from Toy Story at the edge of the abyss, and America would have an enjoyable photographic representation of the terrible winter storm that is slowly and quietly doing about a gazillion billion dollars of damage to the aged and crumbling infrastructure of California.

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  • mavenmaven

    yeah, its only news if like Sarah Palin blames the rain on CA believing in global warming or being the home of the lamestream media that voted against Bristol.

    • neiltheblaze

      Or maybe she'll just blame Michelle Obama.

  • MissTaken

    But at around 43 seconds that dude's mustard yellow rain slicker totally clashed with his banana yellow pants. That's newsworthy, no?

  • SexySmurf

    Today we all have mud-smeared “Woodys".

    • LionelHutzEsq

      Hey, who gave a negative fist to Sexy for that? Come on, stand up, admit it.

      • BaldarTFlagass

        I think vote-down troll has been making occasional sorties here all day.

      • SexySmurf

        Must be Breitbart's doing. If you see a video of me propositioning an underage hooker don't believe it.

        • LionelHutzEsq

          Breitbart's minions have assassinated many Wonketeers. If anything happens to me, don't believe it was natural causes, no mater what the media tells you.

  • SorosBot

    At least the AP isn't blaming Obama and the Democratic Party (or Democrat Party as they call it) for the rain and mudslides, for once.

    • LionelHutzEsq

      But I'm sure both Daily Kos and FOX News are.

      • SorosBot

        Kos: These storms and mudslides would have happened exactly the same under President McCain, Obama is no better than the Republicans!

        Fox: By allowing this rain to happen Obama is showing weakness before our enemies! Is this Obama's Katrina? Also he's a negro!

        • OneDollarJuana

          CNN: Developing: Rain still raining.

  • V572625694

    I'm suffering huge cognitive dissonance from the whole idea of the Associated Press "publishing" video. Where do they publish it? And why? Isn't their job to:

    (1) Write (and distribute by "wire," whatever the fuck that may mean, lame-ass articles for use by dead-tree media too cheap to hire their own journasaurs; and

    (2) Figuratively (or perhaps in the case of Ron Fournier, literally) suck the dicks of powerful Republicans in DC?

    How is this event consistent with those missions?

    This is just terrible. Oh, boring, certainly, that too.

    • I hear the Ron Fournier's people are checking with Paul Kantner's people over Ron using "Blows Against the Empire" for the title of Fournier's new book about the fall of libtradism.

      • BaldarTFlagass

        Ooh! Irony!

      • V572625694

        Let's hope is book is as successful as that fine album was. "After Bathing at Baxter's" rulez!

    • StillGoinGreen

      What's next? A BASF commercial saying, "We don't only make the plastic that things are made of, we now make the things that are made of our plastic that things are made of."

  • WarAndGee

    I'm trying to decide if this is a liberal rain or conservative rain. Perhaps I'll tune into Fox so they can tell me how to think of this rain. What wouldve the founding fathers thought about this rain.

    I hope someone gets around to shooting a tropical fern or a tube of toothpaste because I'm not sure how they fit into my political world view without Hannity explaining it to me.

    Did I mention the Constitution? No. I mean just to mention it.

    • SexySmurf

      It depends. Did the rain cross the border illegally from Mexico? Is it Jesus' punishment for allowing teh gays in his military, or was it caused by Obama's moral weakness? All legitimate questions.

      • gef05

        It came in on that super-highway thingy. You know, Obama's secret super highway thing for smuggling napalm from Mexico to Canada. In the assholes of dead muslins. Or was it heroin? Anyway, Jesus died on the cross to stop this sort of thing from happening. Or was it Mary? I forget. Regardless, I'd still Go Rogue with Palin anyday because AMERICA LOVES FREEDOM OR SOMETHING

      • jim89048

        No, it came via the Pineapple Express, from Hawaii, thereby further burnishing Nobama's cred as a Kenyan-Hawaiian Usurper.

  • BaldarTFlagass

    Can't hear; does it have "Riders on the Storm" by the Doors or "Ridin' the Storm Out" by REO as background music? If so, that really kicks ass.

    • SorosBot

      Now they need something much more classic:

      Blame it on the Rain by Milli Vanilli

      • bflrtsplk

        That would mean the rain is being lip synched out of sync. Who to blame?

    • Extemporanus

      ♪♫ I'm out of work, I'm out of my head

      Out of self respect, I'm out of bread

      I'm underloved, I'm underfed, I wanna go home

      It never rains in California, but girl, don't they warn ya?

      It pours, man, it pours… ♪♫

    • LionelHutzEsq

      California Dreamin'
      on such a winter's day

  • bumfug

    The advantage of this for Californians is that they can use their remotes to tune to this view, saving them the trouble of getting off the couch and walking to the window and eliminating the chance of spilling the chips and cheese dip that''s nestled in what remains of their laps.

  • elviouslyqueer

    Wait. I thought only poli-sci majors got their testicles waxed.

  • Monsieur_Grumpe

    I’m mildly amused by the schmuck reporter that gets sent to report on a hurricane and they film him trying to stand in the 50 mph or more wind gusts while he’s attempting to yell above the noise. I figure this is the guy that everyone in the office hates and their placing bets whether he comes out of it alive, decapitated by a stop sign or simply blown into the sea.

  • nounverb911

    7" of gods tears

    I thought it was called Seattle sunshine.

  • chickensmack

    Jesus, now get ready as suddenly we're inundated (NPI) by flood movies.

  • Come here a minute

    At 0:18 the clumsy cop knocks over the reflective barrier — that's something, isn't it?

  • SmutBoffin

    It's like I always say:

    "Everything in America is decrepit, gaudy shit, and Americans are a bunch of navel-gazing perverts who couldn't think their way out of a grease-sodden paper bag if there were a 24-hr. porn and gambling emporium on the other side."

    Now I'll BRB, I'm off to get my balls depilated and painted red, white, & blue!

    • OneDollarJuana

      SmutBoffin, I didn't know you had three balls! Is it painful?

  • Neilist

    You East Coast Communist Liberal Pink SKUM better back off.

    Here in L.A., we have creeping walls of oozing, filthy, slimy mud.

    You in Washington, D.C., have Congress.

    Personally, I think we win.

    "L.A. City in the smog! Don't you wish that you could be here to now . . . ."

    • bagofmice

      Point taken.

    • Monsieur_Grumpe

      Would you like some pictures of snow? Lots and lots of snow?

  • Crank_Tango

    Talk about LameStream media!

    • bagofmice

      The WetStream media?

  • neiltheblaze

    If only the AP photographer knew of the beat-up teddy bear trick, this video would have been completely awesome.

  • mdotsota

    Was Tim Blair on season five of The Wire?

  • natoslug

    You SoCal types sure are whiny. 11 months of the year, you're demanding our water be diverted to you. The other month, you're complaining about having too much water. Make up your minds, damn you!!!

    (as someone who was born in Porn ValleyCanoga and who spent his early years bouncing between Topanga and Santa Monica, I still get to mock those of you whose parents didn't have the sense to leave, right?)

  • PublicLuxury

    I bet there is at least two gay people in California. If California did luv teh gay so much, God and baby Jeebus would spare their homes from mudslides, sinkholes, earthquakes, vandals, piss poor neighbors and The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. Alas, there are at least two gays.. .

  • KochFembot

    This is the New Way, Ken. Set the camera up on a tripod and point it at something and HOPE some cool shit happens in front of the camera.

  • DCHatesMe

    ……………………………………I'm Terry Gross

  • Steverino247

    Come back in a few days when that pile of mud has flowers and yellow ribbons all over it.

  • Mindblank

    Can't help thinking of The Devil's Rain, which is a horrible, awful movie.

  • SudsMcKenzie

    Ohhh nooes Ken, its rain, in SCal…. Its like Mike Gravel is peznit.

  • ttommyunger

    Well, its not like there is anything else to report on right now. I mean, no pretty blond girl has been kidnapped or murdered, has she, has she, oh please, has she?

  • SecretMuslin

    More terrifying than mudslides is Southern Californians trying to drive in the rain. This is not a well-honed skill in this part of the country, so the natives drive like idiots when the streets are wet.

  • SecretMuslin

    I'm in San Diego and it's the same here. Worse than the flooding are the giant sink holes (euphemistically called "pot holes") that have formed in just about every surface street as a result of the rain. But of course we're talking about directing tax dollars to building the fucking Chargers a new stadium. Who needs functional infrastructure?

  • chascates

    That's a B-roll we can always use in any rain-related story. Kind of like Fox News using shots of 100s of 1,000s of people on the Mall when the real story only involves about 10,000.

  • aguacatero

    You people probably don't understand Cage or Beckett either.

  • bureaucrap

    If only it were a simultaneous mudslide/brushfire/earthquake/volcano/alien invasion. Now THAT would be a moderately interesting story.

    But let's face it — The only really interesting journalism being done these days is the stuff coming from those courageous reporters trying to learn when Justin Bieber is going to change his hairstyle.

  • LakeLucilleLoon

    This is what you get for living in a place with green leaves and temps in the 60's in December.

  • DemmeFatale

    Up here in Norcal, (it's flooding here, too), we know that this summer we will hear ENDLESS complaining about drought conditions, and that all this rain just caused the grasses to make perfect brush fire material. *sigh*

  • slappypaddy

    if a storm like this were happening in south carolina, wingnut central would report it as a terrorist attack. since it's happening in california, it's the wrath of god.

    but the bbc's on the right track, spreading the fear and terror by reporting that someone somewhere is bunching up panties and saying the storm could spread to the entire nation of usa (which is the number-one nation, third in population, but so far has had no success in experiencing the kinds of floods india #2 and china #1 find old hat).

  • JackObin

    I guess this means all the sun-worshipping Golden Staters will stop making snide remarks about how bad the weather is back east, right? Now they have nothing left to be snotty about.

  • The alien confronts pickup truck scene at the very beginning showed potential, but it was downhill from there.

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