Americans are overwhelmed with informational stimuli on a daily basis, so it should come as no surprise that most of us get our news exclusively from the headlines. Reading the actual stories is a huge time drain, and let’s face it – a well-crafted headline provides you with all the background and analysis you’ll ever need to make informed decisions on matters of local and national importance, or at least be conversant at the neighborhood happy hour. The details will only confuse people.
Occasionally, however, for entertainment value only, I do read past the headlines, and I encourage you to do the same. What follows are actual headlines from today’s www.msnbc.com website. Since the headlines might mislead you slightly, I thought I’d filled in the void with a few sentences from the text of these articles, sentences clipped by your MSRP editors and chosen for their relevance to the real issues at hand. I recognize the demands on your attention span, and I am here to help. Enjoy!
MSNBC Headline: Wife of Mega Church Pastor Files for Divorce
The wife of a prominent mega church filed for divorce from her long time spouse today in district court. The filing lists the reason for the dissolution of their marriage as “The rise of legalized homosexual marriage in America”.
“I could have survived his infidelity. I could have survived his embezzlement. I could have survived his recurring halitosis. But our heterosexual union could not survive knowing that gays could marry legally in New York. Homosexuality destroyed our marriage just like they told us it would.”
MSNBC Headline: Gingrich Says Front Runner Status is “Disorienting”
Newly anointed front runner for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination, Newt Gingrich, admitted to a crowd in Iowa that his revived candidacy should be disorienting to independent voters and those with enough common sense to realize that his divisive profile means that he could never be elected President.
“I’ve been disoriented for years,” said the former Speaker. “But I acknowledge that the disorienting feeling of the entire electorate to my recent success is probably a new sensation for them.”
Mitt Romney was quoted as adding, “If you think the swing voters in the electorate are disoriented, imagine how I feel.”
MSNBC Headline: Gingrich: Poor Kids Should Be Put to Work
Newly anointed front runner for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination, Newt Gingrich, announced during a campaign stop in Ames, Iowa that poor kids need to get jobs, preferably jobs that are created by rich kids.
“Let’s face up to the reality that the rich kids are job creators in this country. The sooner the poor kids recognize the value of working for the rich kids, the quicker they will learn the important values of hard work, thrift, and obedience.”
MSNBC Headline: In Light of Affair Accusation, Cain to Meet with Wife
After spending the past several days battling accusations of marital infidelity, GOP hopeful Herman Cain has decided to take the unprecedented step of arranging a meeting with his current wife to discuss the situation.
“I know that I have preached on the trail to never negotiate from a position of weakness,” stumbled Cain. “But what choice do I have? I’m bound to bump into her at family events, so the time is now to attack this issue head on, without preconditions.”
President Obama offered Camp David to the couple for the weekend to hold the fragile peace talks.
MSNBC Headline: Focus Group Reveals Why Voters Don’t Like Romney
Focus groups across America were assembled this week to explain why being the front runner for the GOP nomination for the past year is being framed to voters as “not liking Romney”.
“It’s a riddle,” said one participant on the condition of anonymity. “Usually if you lead in the polls for a year, you are considered to be liked.”
“I don’t know, there’s something I really trust about that guy,” gushed Mitt McGillicutty, one of the focus group attendees. “I think he could relate to someone just like me.”
MSNBC Headline: Hero Puppy Saves Family from Gas Leak
Little Rex Rover, the Murphy family’s newest canine addition, was being acclaimed as a hero today after saving his new family from a deadly gas leak during their Thanksgiving feast.
The new puppy alerted the family about the source of the leak, Crazy Uncle Fred, who unbeknownst to the Murphy clan was silently expelling noxious intestinal fumes into the dining room atmosphere during the main course of turkey with all the trimmings.
“I was chasing that mutt with a rolled up newspaper to get him to shut up when I smelled something and saw the embarrassed look on Fred’s face. That’s all the warning I needed. We got the hell out of there just in time before we all passed out.”
The two littlest members of the Murphy family, seated on either side of Uncle Fred for the holiday meal, were relieved. “We thought it was the bean casserole. Thank God for that dog. We could have been killed.”
MSNBC Headline: American Taxpayers Get Off Easy, Report Shows
According to a stunning new report from the Kinsey Institute for Sexual Dysfunction, American taxpayers are 38% more likely to get off easily than their European counterparts.
Researchers at the Institute were reluctant to speculate as to the cause of the disparity. “It could be that in our American 24/7 culture, we have develop a penchant for wanting things immediately, without waiting, and getting off so easily and quickly could be an offshoot of that, so to speak,” said Ivan Toriskokoff, lead scientist on the project.
In a related story, requests for tourist visas from the European Union countries to the U.S. increased sharply in reaction to the study.
MSNBC Headline: Motorcycle Stunt Goes Horribly Wrong
Responding to a dare, a novice cycler was critically injured today when his motorcycle crashed after the rider successfully jumped over a tank filled with man-eating sharks.
The rider’s mother was quoted as saying, “Mister, if you ever try a stunt like that again…”