Wednesday, July 1, 2009


It struck the Clarion Content as quite the juxtaposition when we popped open Google the News last month. Context, there is no morning paper delivered to the office. The old timey ritual of looking at the front page of the daily fishwrap has disappeared, probably forever. Frequently then the equivalent is the first time of the day we head to Google the News which encapsulates the stories of the day with links. It is a brilliant idea. It has sections: World, US, Business, Sci/Tech, Entertainment, Sports, Health and Most Popular (other). However, unlike the traditional newspaper, columns or leads in one section or one part of the page pay no mind to the other. There is no central orienting by a single editor or designer.

Thus it came to be last month that right next to a series of articles about the meeting of the heads of the G-8 economies were a series of articles about the impending bankruptcy of the amusement park chain Six Flags. In article after article, the wonkish economists of the state offered bland reassurance that the world economy was indeed doing better. Things had stabilized. Heck, the Germans even advocated that not as much stimulus as once thought would be needed. Starkly juxtaposed with those articles was the massive bankruptcy of the huge amusement park operator. It is billions of dollars in debt, despite 25 millions visits to its parks last year and record revenues.

In the staid conference rooms of Lecce, Italy it may look like the world is getting better. But back here on the front lines of the midway, not so much. Fiscal worry still hangs heavy.

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