November 18, 2022
Our major obligation is not to mistake slogans for solutions.
Edward R. Murrow
Ray’s Daily first published on November 18, 2003
Edward R. Murrow and Fred Friendly debuted “See It Now” on this day in 1951. Viewers were treated to the extraordinary (for then) sight of live shots of the Statute of Liberty and the Golden Gate Bridge. We are pretty blasé about such things, but the world shrunk a lot that year. I saw many of the See It Now shows at the time and they truly educated the people of America.
Murrow was one of the first journalists to provide news broadcasting with a sense of integrity and societal responsibility. In 1937 Murrow became head of the CBS European Bureau. He won acclaim as a news commentator during World War II (1939-1945), with his on-the-scene radio reporting. His live reports from London as it was being bombed are classic radio moments that made the horror of the war in Europe real to the people of America. He also was responsible for recruiting some of the great names in radio and television news. I am sorry so many of you missed the era when the news was seriously presented by journalists. We did not have sound bites, news was news, even if a reporter did not have a building to stand in front of in order to do a live report. News was serious business and not fun and frolic.
The See It Now documentaries were notable for their realism and bold approach to controversial issues. The show’s most notable episode aired in 1954, when Murrow exposed the abusive tactics of Senator Joseph McCarthy in McCarthy’s investigations of alleged Communists in the United States government. It was the beginning of the end for McCarthy.
Maybe the difference was that we all watched the same shows, you were lucky to have TV three stations in your city. We did not have thousands of choices, nor the ability to watch only those that agree with us. We shared the experience, we talked about what we saw, and often did something because of what we learned. Sure society had lots of problems of all kinds at the time, but we also had the ability to focus on important issues. I wish we did as well today.
There are, however, people in this world who seldom pick up a newspaper, people who, when watching television, sneer in displeasure and change channels at the first glimpse of an anchorperson. While such willfully uninformed citizens are rare, emerging from seclusion only to serve on juries in trials of great national significance, they do exist.
A young and foolish pilot wanted to sound cool and show who was boss on the aviation frequencies.
It was his first time approaching a field during the night time.
Instead of making any official requests to the tower, he said: “Guess who?”
The controller switched the field lights off and replied: “Guess where!”
Sound travels slowly. Sometimes the things you say when your kids are teenagers don’t reach them till they’re in their 40s.
Bumping into a woman on the sidewalk, the Tom Cruise look-alike apologized, “Pardon me!”
“That’s quite all right,” the woman replied. “You look just like my fifth husband.”
“Wow!” he said. “How many times have you been married?”
“Four,” she answered.
“What is popular isn’t always right, and what is right isn’t always popular.”
It was a sunny Saturday morning, and Pete was beginning his preshot routine.
As he was visualizing his upcoming shot, a voice came over the loudspeaker, “Would the gentleman on the ladies tee please back up to the men’s tee, please!”
Pete was still deep in his routine, seemingly impervious to the interruption. Again the announcement, “Would the man on the women’s tee kindly back up to the men’s tee!”
Pete had had enough.
He yelled, “Would the announcer in the clubhouse kindly shut up and let me play my second shot!”
I was going to buy a copy of The Power of Positive Thinking, and then I thought: What good would that do?
Every Saturday morning the husband goes fishing. He gets up early, makes his lunch, hooks up his boat and off he goes, all day long.
One Saturday morning he got up early, dressed quietly, made his lunch, put on his long johns, grabbed the dog and went to the garage to hook up his boat to the truck. Coming out of his garage, rain was pouring down, then snow mixed in with the rain and the wind was blowing 50 miles per hour.
So he returned to the garage, went back into the house and turned the TV to check the weather forecast. He discovers that it was going to be bad weather all day long.
He put his boat back in the garage, quietly undressed and slipped back into bed. Cuddling up to his wife’s back and whispered, “The weather out there is terrible.”
To which she replied, “I know—can you believe my idiot husband is out fishing in that?”
Why is there a light in the fridge and not in the freezer?
The new Ensign was assigned to subs, where he’d dreamed of working since a young boy. He was trying to impress the Master Chief with his expertise learned in Sub School.
The Master Chief cut him off quickly and said, “Listen, ‘sir’, it’s real simple. Add the number of times we dive to the number of times we surface. Divide that number by two. If the result doesn’t come out even, don’t open the hatch.”
What we see depends mainly on what we look for.
1) If it rings, put it on hold.
2) If it clanks, call the repairman.
3) If it whistles, ignore it.
4) If it’s a friend, take a break.
5) If it’s the boss, look busy.
6) If it talks, take notes.
7) If it’s handwritten, type it.
8) If it’s typed, copy it.
9) If it’s copied, file it.
10) If it’s Friday, forget it!
“Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving there is no need to do so, almost everyone gets busy on the proof.”
John Kenneth Galbraith
Jack, a lawyer, lies dying with his partner of 40 years by his bedside. “Mike, I’ve got to confess. I’ve been sleeping with your wife for 30 years and I’m the father of your daughter. On top of that, I’ve been stealing from the firm for a decade.”
“Relax,” says Mike, “and don’t think another thing about it. I’m the one who put the poison in your martini.”
If Jimmy cracks corn and no one cares, why is there a song about him?
The Judge admonished the witness, “Do you understand that you have sworn to tell the truth?”
“Do you understand what will happen if you are not truthful?”
“Sure,” said the witness. “My side will win.”
He who is outside the door has already got a good part of his journey behind him.
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
Ray’s Daily has been sent for more than twenty years to people who want to start their day on an upbeat. If you have system overload because of our daily clutter, let me know and I will send you the information via mental telepathy. If you have not been getting our daily you can request to be added by e-mailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Back issues are posted at http://rays-daily,com/ currently there are hundreds of readers from around the world.
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