Saturday, October 30, 2010

A Snapshot Of What Interests Readers Of The Legendary

These are the stories of what people looked for, clicked on and read yesterday in these columns

In January of this year, The Legendary set out to write news and feature coverage of the subjects most likely to interest consumers of daily journalism.

On Friday, October 29, at the beginning of the weekend before general election day of what many pundits are labeling a key year of decision among thinking Americans, these are the stories that attracted the attention of our readers, ranked by the numbers of persons who actually read them.

It is well to remember that to read a Legendary story, one must find the website, a cookie cutter and generic “blogspot” provided by Google through an internet service provider, in this case the local telephone service, CenturyLink.

Having found us, the reader must then discover which story is of interest, read the headline and peruse the picture - and in some cases play the YouTube video presentation to determine if the item is of interest.

For these reasons, The Legendary is at pains to determine what, exactly, matters the most to the neighbors and readers of that erstwhile outlaw Grub Street journalist, The Legendary Jim Parks.

The results are not surprising, but they are instructive. These are the items of interest that we the people care about, ranked by the numbers of those who furthermore cared enough to seek out, click on and read all about each of them.

Of a total of 173 “page views” yesterday, 53 persons showed they care
a lot about whether their vote counts.

On October 23, we published a story about the official misconduct of a politician who found a way to nullify the votes of a Constabulary and Justice Court precinct in McLennan County and disallow the will of the people to elect their local judge.

In Mt. Vernon, New Hampshire, some youthful men are facing a jury to answer for a vicious home invasion and murderous machete assault on a woman and her little girl. We published a story about the subject on January 5, 2010. A total of 32 persons clicked on that story and read it yesterday as background for the story of the trial which they got somewhere else, then returned to The Legendary to read an account of the offense.

The Legendary exercised a public information act request for a comprehensive report on just who and how many were released from McLennan County jails on “personal recognizance” bonds requiring the payment of no bond fee. The request had languished for about a year while public officials dodged their responsibilities to allow the people to be informed. A total of 31 people cared enough to click on that story and read it as published on October 28.

A lame duck incumbent Justice of the 10th District Court of Appeals, Mr. Felipe Reyna started his legal career in the office of the Adult Probation Department after serving in the Navy and obtaining a degree. He worked his way through Baylor Law School while working as a janitor at night keeping things and ship shape in the court, library and chambers of the very court upon which he serves as an Associate Justice until December. His son Abelino Reyna is a candidate for Criminal District Attorney, a position held by Mr. Reyna for many years. When Mr. Reyna made some remarks on Facebook regarding his son's candidacy, the incumbent DA, Mr. John Segrest, made an issue of it and demanded he recuse himself from all matters having a bearing on the office of DA for the duration of his term on the Court. Mr Reyna sent The Legendary a brief of the cases and holdings that he feels prove he did not violate judicial ethics canons and laws.

In a hotly contested race for the District 17 seat of the U.S. House of Representatives, the will of the people is being tested by the Democratic incumbent Chet Edwards, who is serving his 10th term there, and his challenger, a retired oil and gas executive from Houston named Bill Flores. He is a conservative “Young Gun” Republican sponsored by the Republican Congressional Committee who is convinced that limited government and a rock-ribbed commitment to get government spending under control will save the day. An equal number of readers, 26 people, found and clicked on the story published on Oct. 25 about the second of two debates simulcast on television, radio and internet websites.

The story was headlined with the information that a nationwide poll showed about half of the people surveyed who said they would definitely vote in next Tuesday's mid-term elections indicated they had still not made up their minds if they would cast their ballot for the incumbent in their Congressional District, or elect the challenger in a year dedicated to throwing the rascals out.

Though the numbers are tiny, they are solid because we the people cared enough to seek out these news items and read all about our will as expressed at the polls, the security and safety of our loved ones in our homes, the necessity to keep predators and others accused of vile crimes against persons and property sequestered while they await justice, the freedom of a man to speak freely, and the issues facing the nation and the men and women who will make the decisions that will shape the future.

A story published on Oct. 13 about soldiers injured and awarded Purple Hearts in the fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, then discharged from the Army for peronality disorders and denied medical and pension benefits was a runner up, as well as an item about how polls show the District 17 Congressional race is actually a referendum on the “Obama-Pelosi Agenda,” which was published on Oct. 29.

These numbers indicate just how many persons found a certain story on Facebook, the table of contents of this website, or clicked on a hyperlink from another news story or website and came to this page to read all about it.

As of today, The Legendary has experienced 15,420 such visits from persons who wanted to view The Legendary page after being referred by any of 10 url's, 3,985 of them last month. We have published a total of 559 news articles during the past year.

The all-time record number of those who clicked on and read a story came with the story of how a Gainesville, Florida, pastor intended to burn copies of the Quran on 9/11. Almost 20,000 persons, many of them from the Muslim states of Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and Indonesia, as well as the European states of the UK, France, Spain, Germany – even Russia - read the brick through the window original story, then followed its developments with intense interest as events transpired from day to day.

Fortunately, Pastor Terry Jones of the charismatic Pentecostal Church of the Dove backed down and yielded to the persuasion of President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Defense Secretary Bob Gates and General David Petraeus to not commit this rash act of burning what the majority of the world's faithful consider holy writ, no less than Christians and Jews consider The Holy Bible to be the same.

Our conclusions: Persons who cared enough to read The Legendary's copy are particularly concerned that no one trespass upon their spiritual lives and burn their Holy book in protesting that which powerful and perhaps slightly mad politicians and activists are doing elsewhere. They are equally concerned that their vote counts, that when they go to the polls and cast a ballot, it will be tabulated and its intent heeded. In matters of home and the safety of their families, they are particularly adamant that thrill killers, sexual predators and thieves stay away - or suffer the consequences. When offenders are locked up, they wish to see them stay behind bars and not be freed due to the vagaries of prosecution, Grand Jury terms or Court sessions.

When their soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines are injured by hostile enemy fire on a foreign battlefield, they are adamant that these men and women should be given medical care and pensioned as Congress intended.

Finally, they seem to insist that their Congressmen, Congresswomen and Senators should grow a spine and adhere to the basic law of this great nation, The Constitution of the United States of America.


God save the United States of America!

No other power in the world seems to be able. That is why "In God we trust." It is my humble prayer.

So mote it be.

I have spoken.

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