Time Mag: Occupy Wall Street The Number One Story of 2011?

-By Warner Todd Huston

It’s that time of year again, time for newspapers and magazines to start floating their “top stories of the year” lists and Time Magazine has a whole “Top of Everything” list with which to thrill us. But it is Time’s Top U.S. News Stories list that deserves some closer scrutiny because on it Time has determined that the Occupy Wall Street tale is the number one story of the year. As if anyone ever doubted that this left-wing temper tantrum would pique Time’s interest most.

But, seriously, now. Is Gabrielle Giffords somehow a lesser story than the Occupiers? Is the long-drawn out GOP primary campaign a lesser story? How about the debt crisis? Is that somehow a less important story than Occupy Wall Street? Apparently Time thinks so.

Certainly these lists are always somewhat subjective. After all, what one considers important another may not. But some of these entries seem to point out Time’s ideology as opposed to a serious attempt to pick the top stories of 2011. And making the Occupy story number one is pure ideology.

Time puts this story above the bad economy, Iraq, the Penn State sex abuse case, and the Gabrielle Giffords shooting. In fact, if it weren’t for the bad economy, the debt ceiling debate and the bank crisis this Occupy business would not have occurred at all.

Naturally, Time’s characterization of the “movement” is all sweetness and light. Not one mention is made of the now over 400 arrests made as a result of crimes perpetrated by the Occupiers. In fact, Time blames all the ills of the Occupiers on the beleaguered cities for their “heavy handed-policing” of the protests.

Time also disgorges the discreditable claim that the OWSers are the left’s Tea Partiers. This is a calumny against the Tea Party that really needs to be eliminated from the national discussion of the two movements.

Another aspect of the Occupy events that went unmentioned in Time’s laudatory entry on the protests is the fact that taxpayers are being charged millions of dollars in tax money we don’t have to clean up after and police these protests. This somehow never makes an appearance in Time’s gladhanding of the Occupiers.

What is clear with this entry is that Time Magazine had an agenda with this pick. Sure the OWSers deserved a mention on a top ten list. But that it made number one and that the entry ignored all the negative aspects of the protests proves what the magazine is really attempting to do with this list.

Besides the guffaw inducing pick of the Occupiers as the top story, two other choices are odd, to say the least. Number 10 is the Execution of Troy Davis, a death row inmate in Georgia. My guess is that 99 percent of the country never heard of this story so how it could make a top 10 list is a mystery, unless its inclusion is a political statement against the death penalty.

Then there is slot number nine: “Freak Weather.” Come on. This year’s weather has not been any “freakier” than that of any other year. We get this all the time, though. Somehow everyone imagines that the weather they’ve seen in their lives is worse than that of any other era. But in reality, weather is always both awe inspiring and inconvenient and it is these visceral feelings that weather induces in people that makes them think their weather is worse than it’s ever been.

Sadly, what we have here is yet another attempt by a maven of the Old Media to push ideology in the guise of “news.”

Time’s Top U.S. News Stories

      1). Occupy Wall Street Protests Spread

        2). The Republican Presidential Race

          3). The Economy

            4). Iraq: The Long Goodbye

              5). Gabrielle Giffords Shooting

                6). The Penn State Child Sex Abuse Scandal

                  7). The Debt-Ceiling Crisis

                    8). The Death of Steve Jobs

                      9). Freak Weather

                        10). The Execution of Troy Davis

“The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it.”
–Samuel Johnson

Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer. He has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and before that he wrote articles on U.S. history for several small American magazines. His political columns are featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart’s BigGovernment.com, BigHollywood.com, and BigJournalism.com, as well as RightWingNews.com, RightPundits.com, CanadaFreePress.com, StoptheACLU.com, AmericanDaily.com, among many, many others. Mr. Huston is also endlessly amused that one of his articles formed the basis of an article in Germany’s Der Spiegel Magazine in 2008.

For a full bio, please CLICK HERE.

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