If you haven't checked it out, take a spin over to Norm Kent's "Broward Law Blog" this morning. Yes, the "renowned criminal defense attorney," as Kent refers to himself, and former Express Gay News publisher is giving the bliz a go. "I want to spark people's conscience; to make them care about justice," he says in a press release.
That's noble stuff. At the heart of this, though, is his petty split with the mother of all Broward court blogs, JAABLOG. Here's what he wrote about that blog, which used to host his writings:
"As you read the comments on JAABLOG, unmoderated, anonymous, and flowing with venom and vitriol, you get a feeling that everything about our system is unclean, unhealthy and untoward. Quite to the contrary, many of the professionals who make up our courthouse community are dedicated public servants working against all odds to fashion out a life for themselves, personally and professionally, which is honorable and admirable."
Yes, and as you read the comments on Kent's blog, you get the feeling that ... nothing is happening at all. All tumbleweeds. What Kent doesn't get is that all those "dedicated public servants working against all odds to fashion out a life for themselves" are, in print, as boring as dog biscuits, especially when they're dripping with a warmed-over Janeane Garofalo 60s preachiness.
Don't get me wrong, I like Norm Kent and think he is, overall, a positive force in this county. I hope his blog catches fire. I'm going to keep tabs on it and add it to my own ridiculously poorly maintained blog roll over there when I get around to it (along with JAABlog -- that's how pathetic I've been on that score).
But Kent is all wrong in this new role. One of the things that makes his professed nemesis, JAABlog, tick is its anything-goes freedom and spontaneity. In that sense, JAABlog is much more the radical yippie type. And Kent? Well, this time he's the guy that doesn't get it. He's the guy defending the corrupt establishment, decrying the barbarians at the gate who would dare call it "unclean."
On top of that, the new blog is clearly a vehicle for Kent to peddle his legal services (read that press release). They used to spell that "s-e-l-l-o-u-t" in the communes.
This is, in the end, all about Kent's ego. I guess in that sense, Kent is still a rebel. For more on Kent and the blog go to -- where else? -- this post on Jaablog.
-- She a man, baby. The Miami Herald had an Austin Powers moment with this morning's correction: "An article about the Fort Lauderdale City Commission on Page 2B of the Broward Edition of Monday's Miami Herald misidentified the sex of one candidate. Inger Garcia is a woman."
-- Bankruptcy apparently causes some really embarrassing sideshows. Since its parent company, Tribune, declared bankruptcy, the Sun-Sentinel has failed to pay not only its freelancers, but also its water bill at the Tamarac bureau (some staffers had to use a nearby McDonald's bathroom before the water was turned back on). According to sister Juice blog:
The Tribune Co. recently used rubber checks to pay $300 for the off-duty cops who patrolled its City Link Beer Fest on November 28 ... The company also has failed to reimburse the city for staffing the event with two firefighter/EMTs. Fort Lauderdale spokeswoman Angela DiPietro says the paper owes the City of Fort Lauderdale $581.25; the two firefighter/EMTs have already been compensated by the city.
My goodness, the Sentinel is starting to act like my old neighbor, Rodney. What's next? Is management going to pack up in the middle of the night and leave town?