Stupid magic elf box.

I just spent an hour putting together a scribble on the Fox News team missing in Gaza. It was pithy. It was quotable. For once, I was pleased with it.


The idea is from Michelle Malkin, she’s not altogether happy with the lack of response to this story from non-Fox-News Mainstream Media, the disinterest in the story from just about everyone, nor the vicious, psychotic giggles from certain areas of the political spectrum.

Her idea is to get the story running through Blog World, and see what shakes loose.

Now, I’m not the brightest bulb in the chandelier when it comes to Things Computerical. People think I am being witty when I refer to the computer as the Magic Elf Box, and speak of sacrificing chickens to appease the spirits that live inside.

Not so much.

Apparently, my magic elves don’t get along worth a damn with Ms. Malkin’s magic elves, or I offered up the wrong variety of Kentucky Fried at start-up, because after a good hour -plus of brain sweat, I did the clicky linky thing using her Trackback thingy, my elves talked to her elves, my elves had a snit, and then my elves hauled off and ate my post. All of it. Gone.


It was a thing of beauty, too.

A quick-and-dirty recap:

On Monday, August 14 2006, persons unknown used two large trucks to entrap and block a clearly-marked Fox News vehicle within spitting distance of the Palestinian Security Service HQ. Once the Fox vehicle was immobilized, multiple gunmen emerged from the trucks and kidnapped 60-year-old American reporter Steven Centanni and 36-year-old New Zealand freelance cameraman Olaf Wiig.

Nothing has been heard regarding the fate of the two men since then. No press releases, no claimed responsibility, nothing.

I waxed poetic regarding the fact that the Fox News site was still running Mr. Centanni’s bio, complete with the stated facts that Mr. Centanni was an embedded journalist with a SeAL team during Operation Iraqi Freedom, and that he was the first western journalist to arrive at the scene where the 101st did the needful to Udey and Qusay Hussain. I opined that those kinds of things might not sit too well with Johnny Terr.

I meditated thoroughly upon the fact that ex-hostage Jill Carroll is all over the MSM simply because she has written a book about her captivity, yet two journalists currently being held captive merit absolutely no mention.

I held forth at length regarding the character, scruples, ancestry and probable deviant habits of those who would wish further harm upon these two men simply because they work for Fox News. I used three- and four-dollar words.

Anyhoo — all gone.

Ms. Malkin thought it might do some good to nudge the MainStreamers a bit and see what runs out from under the rocks.

So, go forth and nudge.


Britain, I knew ye when ye were great.
Shut up. Sit down. Be silent.

16 thoughts on “BUGGER!”

  1. Fox News team missing? Media not reporting? SAY IT AIN’T SO! Since

    1) Centanni isn’t as photogenic as a certain Christian Science Monitor reporter in the news of late, and

    2) he’s an Eeeeevil Fox News reporter, it’s no surprise the media everywhere else is sandbagging enough to protect New Orleans from a tsunami.

  2. I was wondering what was happened to those guys. The story went from a CNN headline red alert to crickets chirping in about 15 minutes.

  3. Based on what you’ve written, and backed up by a quick glance at foxnews.com, it looks like Fox News isn’t reporting it either. If Fox News doesn’t think it’s newsworthy, why should the mainstream media report on it? It could even been that the initial report was wrong, given what hammer wrote.

  4. “Apparently, my magic elves don’t get along worth a damn with Ms. Malkin’s magic elves, or I offered up the wrong variety of Kentucky Fried at start-up,”

    Did you remember the rum and cigar? They get cranky when you forget those. And don’t use the cheap stuff, either. That just insults them.

  5. Tsk. The initial Fox News report was not wrong; Steve Centanni and Olaf Wiig have, indeed, been disappeared. No one has claimed responsibility.

    I got the distinct impression that the Fox News honchos did not want it churned around for the typical news cycle as they were working behind the scenes with the Palis to get their guys re-appeared. Curious that the other news networks would be so accomodating, though, doncha think? I think it’s schadenfreude, m’self.


  6. I sincerely hope those guys return home safely. However, it never ceases to amaze me, how the media sends their own into harms way and then they are SURPRISED when harm finds them…… Could anyone imagine British reporters during WWII reporting from the German side of the front lines etc??? I am really amazed kidnappings, killings and arrests don’t happen more often…

    On another subject, my sister sent me this link:


    This site will send a (free) PRINTED “Thank You” card of your choice to an American Soldier serving our country. You can choose a “caned” greeting or you can write your own. I thought the gang here could help spread the word, especially if LD would post it in his regular blog (I’m sure a lot more people read the regular posts than the repliesI

  7. Jill Carroll does not have a book out. She has written her story for free for her newspaper the non-profit, Christian Science Monitor.

    If Fox wanted it to be news it would be. I’m sure it’s a savvy media strategy to try to save these guys. Once they’re released, you’ll see tons of coverage.

  8. Lawdog:

    Re: “Anyhoo — all gone.”

    You never elaborated on what type of ELF Box you use but if your LEO salary permits, you might choose one of the new Apple laptops which run both Windows and Mac Operating Systems and have less of a chance of going “poof” as you describe.

    It’s analogous to the choice of using either a Colt or a High Standard; one will work and the other probably not.

    Anyway… good post…

  9. I’m sure your original post was great…enjoyed the one you put in its place. I stop by your blog daily and never leave disappointed. Well, when you’re busy and can’t write I’m a little disappointed ;), but I do understand.

    Not that you want any advice from a blogger who rarely updates their own blog these days – but here goes… After a post I wrote was eaten (and why is it always writing that you feel really good about that gets eaten?), I started making a backup before I clicked the post button. There are two reasons for this. 1)I’m not a great typer anymore since I rarely write on my own blog and I need the spell check ha! 2)I have it in an open email, so if I post it and it gets eaten, I can just copy and paste and try again.

    Thanks for such a great blog. I hope you won’t mind a link from my blog. I think I have two people who read ha!, so don’t expect a jump in traffic :).

    And one last thing…Fox News is reporting that Al Jazeera is releasing a video of the two kidnapped. Fox News says they will have the entire video shortly.

  10. I’ll refrain from saying how easy it was to trackback to Michelle’s post with Typepad.


    Well I’m sure your post would’ve been much better than mine.

  11. anonymous …

    Thanks for posting that link, but you can hardly fault Lawdog for not knowing about a story that was released 53 minutes ago as I’m typing this.

  12. As regards the mainscream media and their apparent reluctance to air anything having to do with FoxNews, I suppose it’s just a matter of whose Al is being gored.

    As regards your unfortunate loss of your contribution to Ms. Malkin, I suggest backing up, using your favorite (or at least most tolerable) word processing program. One variant on Old Man Murphy’s Law is There are only two types of people: those who back up, and those who wish they had.

    As regards computer elves, mine particularly favor Napoleon Brandy. Go figure.

  13. In our residence, we’ve discovered the computer elves favor offerings of either Bushmill’s or Jameson’s Irish whiskey and chocolate products.

  14. Once more into the breach, then I’ll be quiet. My point in linking to CNN wasn’t that LawDog should have known about an article that hadn’t been written yet. Simply, I wanted to point out that it hadn’t been ignored but was just breaking.

    I had been avoiding reading Jill Carroll’s story over on Christian Science Monitor, but gave in today and started reading. It’s fairly interesting as far as getting an idea what things are like on the ground in Iraq. I think I would prefer it if CSMonitor wasn’t interjecting their “then we did this to try finding her”, as I feel it detracts from the story.

    My point though, is that one of those CSMonitor interjections was very interesting and relavent to this conversation. Specifically, when she was first taken hostage, CSMonitor asked the main stream media not to break the story and the main stream media complied, grumbling all the way but compling. They wanted to keep it quiet because as soon as the story broke Carroll became much more valuable to her captors as her fate would reflect publicly on her employer and the US government.

    I don’t have any reason to believe that Fox News didn’t do the exact same thing. The reason the story is out now is that the captors released a video, so the story is in the public eye anyway.

  15. LawDog ..
    (1)Computers become hungry sometimes and prove it by eating an occasional post. After having that happen once more than I could tolerate, I adopted the technique of composing in a general-purpose word processor with an auto-save feature set for about 7 mins so that if my machine signals Tango Uniform before I’ve finished, I have a copy no older than that. I also adopted the technique of saving my posts with a unique naming convention so if I wanted to re-use a particular paragraph I could find it again. For example, this post will be named “toLawDog060824a.doc”. When ready to post, copy / paste your document into the appropriate web page / window. If cost is an issue, look into the Open Source OpenOffice.org Writer, an MS-Word compatible, full feature word processor available free at http://www.openoffice.org/.
    (2)Not all MSM is dead or devious. If I root around here for a minute, I remember seeing something in the dead-tree copy of the Minneapolis Star/Tribune about Fox News reporters being held hostage in Gaza. Same published in their on-line version, an AP story (see http://www.startribune.com/722/story/630817.html). Sometimes silence serves a good cause. Note the implications in Para. 1 & 2, “. . . it was widely assumed the pair would quickly be released, like two dozen other Westerners abducted by Palestinian groups over the past two years.
    “On Wednesday, though, it became clear that the case may signal the beginning of a more perilous trend when a previously unknown group released a video of the journalists and issued demands not to Israel or to the Palestinian Authority, but to the United States, giving it 72 hours to release all Muslim prisoners in American jails in exchange for the journalists’ freedom.”
    (3)You write a darn good column. Keep it up. It might be something to do with where I’ve lived that I saw Mr. Critter first as an adolescent bear.

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