September 2009 Archives

Attribution Analysis

Attribution Analysis

By Brittany Falkers

            In this analysis I looked at and article written by Helene Cooper, "Obama Makes Gains at U.N. on Iran and Proliferation.  

            I choose this article in particular because of the way it addresses President Barak Obama.  In the beginning of the article Obama is referred to as President Obama.  However, in the next paragraph he is referred to as Mr. Obama.  This was confusing and made the story smear to an almost distracting, "Mr.", dilemma.

            Another President was referred to in this article as well, in first introduction as President Demitri A. Medvedev of Russia, and then in the following as Mr. Medvedev.  

            Other attributions I thought were successful and effective in this article.  It used people of prominence and authority to give the story credibility with quotes.  

            The majority of the information is from people in this article. 

            The attributions are scattered throughout the story, however they are more concentrated toward the end of the story.

            In the story the reporter uses a summary before a quote or a type of lead in to what the quote is saying.  I think that this is a very effective way to use attribution to one's advantage.

Minnesota, a Coen brother's identity

Minnesota, a Coen brother's identity

By Brittany Falkers

            The Coen brothers have been in the movie making business for 25 years and yet are still warded back to, what Joel Coen refers to as "Siberia with family restaurants," Minnesota.

            The two writer/directors rely heavily in their youth for their new film "A Serious Man".  This film will be the Coen's 14th feature film, reported the Minnesota Post.

            The Coen brothers, who are St. Louis Park natives, put a lot of themselves as well has dipping into their past.  Ethan told the Star Tribune, "Minnesota is totally part of our identity," adding, "The combination of being Jeswish, specifically Minnesotan, is big and important.

            Friday night, the brothers met with more than 300 fans at the Walker Art Center.  On Saturday night, they returned to the museum, joining 600 local players, tradesmen and well-wishers for two preview screenings of the film, reported the Star Tribune.

To Coens, Minnesota roots are big deal, you betcha

The Coen brothers talk-reluctantly- about talking

By Rob Nelson

Teamsters back Rybak

Teamsters back Rybak

            Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak received his first enforcement from Teamsters Local 120.

            Star Tribune reported Rybak, who has been Minneapolis' mayor since 2001 and is running for reelection in November, hasn't declared his intentions yet but has said it is "very likely" he will run for governor next year.

            Local President Brad A Slawson Jr. told the Star Tribune in a statement issued Saturday that the union is "most confident in Rybak's prospects for winning statewide election and moving forward."  

            Slawson also told The Minnesota Independent, "We're not content merely drafting R.T. to run, we're beginning to elect him Governor."


Teamsters unit backs Rybak for governor

By Mary Jane Smetanka

Teamsters local backs Rybak... for governor

By Paul Demko

Accusations of Hate Crime in Brutal Brooklyn Park Beating

Accusations of Hate Crime in Brutal Brooklyn Park Beating

By Brittany Falkers


            Early Wednesday morning, at about 1 A.M. Derrick Thomas was beaten and kicked by three men armed with an ax, brass knuckles and a gun.

            Thomas, an 18-year-old man with autism was beaten and robbed while the suspects screamed a racial epithet, and they ordered him to strip naked, he told police.

            Thomas' uncle was beaten as well just a few blocks away as well Friday night.  Leading authorities to file assault charges against Anthony P. Kilpela and Bryan C. Westerlund, both 21 and both white, reported the Star Tribune.

            Kilpela's sister Tania Kipela spoke to the Star Tribune saying, "He's not a bad person, and I'm just in shock.  He's not like that at all."

            Both crimes of attack, against Thomas and his uncle were believed to be motivated by racial bias.

Family Struggles with accusations of hate crime

By Abby Simons and Mary Jane Smetanka, Star Tribune

Beaten, robbed, a victim of hate

By Paul Walsh and Abby Simons, Star Tribune

Peaceful March Turned Ciaos

Peaceful March Turned Ciaos

By Brittany Falkers

            Friday a peaceful march was held in Pittsburg by those opposing Group of 20 summit.

            The protest was asking for solutions to several problems that they attributed the worlds economic policies.

            The New York Times reported that there were protesters with Iraq Veterans Against the War, wearing fatigues, marched alongside Tibetans chiming cymbals, chanting denunciations of China and waving signs.

            The peaceful protest turned to ciaos at about the same time President Barack Obama arrived at a meeting with leaders of the world's major economies, reported Yahoo News.

            Confrontations between the police and protesters resulted in 66 arrests as well as about 19 businesses had sustained damage.

Thousands Hold Peaceful March at G-20 Summit

By Ian Urbina, The New York Times

G-20 opponents, police clash on Pittsburgh streets

By Daniel Loveering and Michael Rubinkam, Associated Press

New era for America at United Nations General Assembly

New era for America at United Nations General Assembly

By B. Falkers


            President Obama made his first visit to the United Nations General Assembly Wednesday, said the New York Times.

            Obama addressed the assembly, declaring the United States will start a new era of engagement with the world. 

His efforts were to inform the assembly of the several and important distinctions between his administration and that of President Gorge W. Bush.

            The New York Times reported that President Dmitri A. Medvedev of Russia signaled for the first time that Russia would be emendable to longstanding American requests to toughen sanctions against Iran. 

            "I told His Excellency Mr. President that we believe we need to help Iran to take a right decision," Medvedeve told the New York Times.

            Although the assembly appears to be a gain for Obama, many prevalent issues remain.

"Obama Makes Gains at U.N. on Iran and Proliferation"

By Helene Cooper, New York Times

"Obama Arms Summit Skirts Iran, North Korea Disputes"

By Bill Varner and Janine Zacharia

Michelle Obama gives health care reform a soccer mom appeal

Michelle Obama gives health care reform a soccer mom appeal

By Brittany Falkers


            With the recent hot topic of health care reform, first lady Michelle Obama plans to show her support and encourage women to take special action.

            First Lady Michelle Obama has been in the center of magazine focus both internationally and nationally. reported recent surveys had her favorability ratings in the mid-70s.

            Michelle Obama plans to give American's a "dedicated focus" on health insurance reform.  Planning to raise awareness to women, Michelle Obama told the New York Times Friday that overhauling the nation's health care system was of critical importance to women and part of "the next step" in their long quest to assure full opportunity and equality.  The first lady urged women to get involved in the health care debate at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building. 

            Myra Gutin, a first lady historian at Rider University told, "I think she has been a very good representative.  She is very popular, very well-liked; she's planted the garden, done a lot of traveling- but it's a much more ceremonial activity."   Her Oprah-like appeal gives the health insurance reform a new spin, in hopes of reaching a broad audience of women.

Michelle Obama turns to health care

By Nia-Malika Henderson

Michelle Obama: Health Care Overhaul Is 'Next Step' for Women

By Jeff Zeleny

The New York Times

Nine injured at German high school

Nine injured at German high school


            An 18-year-old injured eight students and one teacher at a German high school on Thursday. 

            On Thursday morning an 18-year-old student at Carolinum High School in Germany threw Molotov cocktails into two classrooms.  After the first one was thrown the police were alerted and arrived about eleven minutes later. 

            Udo Dreher, the chief police officer at the scene told that the attacker threatened to use his weapon against police, so the officers opened fire.  The attacker was then arrested.  Authorities are not sure of the motive of the young adult who attacked the school.

            The Star Tribune reported the man attacked some girls with an ax, causing serious skull wounds on one of the girls. 

            The attacker was in his last year at Carolinum and was shot five times in the upper body during his arrest.  He is now in critical condition.

            Prosecutors told the Star Tribune they are investigating the teen on suspicion of attempted murder.         




Police: Ax-wielding teen wounds 8 students, 1 teacher at his high school in Germany

By Brigitte Caspary

Ax-wielding student injures nine at German high school

By Associated Press

Analysis on Leads

Analysis on Leads

By Brittany Falkers


            An example of an effective lead comes from the  Staff reporter Vince Tuss wrote an article, "Officer at center of Fong Lee shooting" the lead is as follows:

"A Minneapolis police officer at the center of controversy after fatally shooting 19-year-old Fong Lee in 2006 has been fired, a department spokesman said Wednesday."

The lead is effective because it gets right to the action of the story.  In the article Tuss gives other important details describing the why and how aspect of the story.  In his lead, however, he uses the who, what, and when details well. 

The lead is effective because of proximity value as well as a sort of impact value. Proximity is seen from the "where" of the lead, Minneapolis.  The impact is seen from the 'who' part of the lead, a police officer.  A corrupt officer has the potential for great impact on citizens.

Police Officer's Consequences after Fong Lee Shooting

Police Officer's Consequences after Fong Lee Shooting

By Brittany Falkers

            Officer Jason Andersen was fired Wednesday afternoon after being at the center of an investigation into the shooting of Fong Lee.

            Police say on the evening of Saturday, July 22, 2006 two officers saw a potential drug transaction on an Elementary school grounds.  The two officers approached the group which then scattered leading to a chase and the shooting of a 19-year-old man Fong Lee.

            The Twin Cities Daily Planet reported that the police neglected to reveal to the media eye-witnesses who observed the incident.  A 17-year-old girl Pang Vang said she saw the police squad car run into Fong Lee who was fleeing on a bicycle.

              In May, Fong Lee's family filed a wrongful-death suit.  The Star Tribune reported that in court, Lee's family argued that Andersen used excessive force when he shot Lee eight times during a foot chase.

            Sgt. Jesse Garcia told the Star Tibune Wednesday night, "After an internal investigation, officer Jason Andersen was terminated late this afternoon."



            Officer at center of Fong Lee shooting fired from department

            By Vince Tuss



            Community seeks justice in Fong Lee shooting

            By Wameng Moua

35W to get a new MnPASS

35W to get a new MnPASS


            A new MnPASS is coming on Sep. 30 to 35W.

 This MnPASS was created to fix some of the congestion troubles of freeway traffic.  The Department of Transportation managers told MSNBC that they hope to add a measure of relief in two weeks, when a new MnPASS lane is up and running, both directions on 35W, from Burnsville to Downtown Minneapolis. 

The Star Tribune reported that solo drivers will have to use the MnPASS transponder system to use the express lanes.  However, carpoolers, busses, and motorcyclists will be able to use the system without a charge.

Project Manager Nick Thompson told MSNBC that the new MnPASS system will give drivers a choice of having a congestion free trip.  He also said that the stretch of highway is the busiest in the state.



MnPASS coming to 35W on Sept. 30

By Bob Von Sternberg

ACORN denied funds

ACORN denied funds

By Brittany Falkers


            The house denied all funding for the group ACORN, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now. 

Andy Sullivan, a reporter for said that ACORN, a poverty rights group that fight to help low income peoples from foreclosures and tax problems has been the recent focus of scandal.  Sullivan's article also says that conservatives' charges of widespread fraud have begun to impact the group's reputation in the capital.

            House Republican Eric Cantor of Virginia told the Star Tribune that ACORN has violated federal laws and the House has voted against funding for the group to ensure taxpayer dollars would no longer be used to fund the organization. 

            According to the Star Tribune a hidden-camera video was released on Monday, showing two ACORN employees advising a couple to lie about their professions and to launder earnings. 



            U.S. Senate denies funds for poverty group

            By Andy Sullivan

            House votes to deny all federal funds for ACORN in GOP-led strike on embattled group

            By Jim Abrams

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