Hold that Tiger

Now that you know EVERYTHING, what do you know?

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Thank you, Tiger Woods. For those of us in the finding fault with others industry, you have performed a great service.

Not because you couldn't keep your one-iron in your bag, although I promise you I've read every detail of that narrative. And not because you've whined about the media coverage, though when you've redeemed your fame for multiple hundreds of millions of dollars from Nike, Accenture and Buick, I'm pretty sure you don't get to complain about the limelight. No, Tiger, what you've done is demonstrate exactly why the ongoing death of newspapers is such a tragedy.

Oh, plenty of journalism was committed this week, from the sleaziest celebrity websites to The New York Times. And millions like me devoured every salacious detail, because, well...duh. Juicy scandal. Mythic hero with glands of clay. Outlets like TMZ truly distinguished themselves in exposing your peccadilloes, incriminating voicemails and all. Yet, here's the thing: None of it matters. You don't matter. Whatever you did or didn't do -- with whichever cutiepies you did or didn't do it with – has no bearing on anything or anyone but your family and you. Sure, it's delicious gossip, a schadenfreude bonanza. But it matters not one bit.

Compare your story with those pathetic, star-fucking knuckleheads the Salahis, whose state-dinner stunt exposed security gaps at Fortress White House. Better still, compare it to health-care legislation, Iranian nuclear brinksmanship and the Iraq War, which were all but devoured by one panicked Tiger.

The point is, human interest and solid reporting do not necessarily add up to real news. For that we depend not on the tabloids or the internet or, God help us, cable. We depend on real newspapers, whose editors and reporters have the experience and judgment to separate the wheat from the chaff, to lead with the Afghan troop escalation, not Escalade acceleration. This week, the layoffs again numbered in the hundreds.

It was a bad week for the industry, Tiger. It was a bad week for you. It was a great week for chaff.
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