Saturday, September 18, 2010

Is it too late for Troubled Waters?

Bob Collins of MPR has called Troubled Waters an "infomercial," even though he's never seen it. According to him, "By the time this film airs on television -- if it ever airs on television -- it will have little integrity because the process that created it is too polluted." He has a laughably naive view of how documentaries are made. And it almost seems like his main issue is that the director, Larkin McPhee, is not a journalist (at least not by his standards). He is correct that the integrity of the film would be in question if the documentary is changed because it "vilifies agriculture." The comments are definitely worth reading.


  1. "The author of this piece is, as usual, half right. And the piece is definitely worth a read. But I am afraid he has already declared the film dead and useless without ever having seen it. Is this good journalism?"

    I tried to post the above comment on the MPR website but it never appeared. Also pulled Mr. Collin's leg about advancing beyond his interest in things like the pornographic beaver of Bemidji...

    Perhaps that was too much for him to take. Such a thin skin for a flyboy.

    It is interesting to look at the comments and see how much Mr. Collins has to continue to argue with commenters. He also seems to be doing a significant amount of back pedaling if you read the whole thread.

    Bottom line: The Morrill Hall Gang has once again stepped in it big time. Such an amateurish operation that now leaves the University open to charges of censorship or worse...

    The Bruininks/Sullivan regime cannot end soon enough.

  2. Uh, oh...

    Pharyngula is on the case. For those who don't know about him, our colleague PZ Meyers (UMMorris) is a world class scientific blogger. For him to post on this matter is the Morrill Hall Gang's worst nightmare. His post on Eva von Dassow's video stimulated about half of the ca 25K hits to date.

    As Professor Myers puts it in his post: "Gagging the Mississipi"

    "So who is calling the shots at the University of Minnesota? Academics and scientists with some intellectual integrity, or lackeys of big business who care most about short-term profit, no matter the cost to the environment and public health?

    Don't bother answering, I know what the answer will be."

    For those interested please see the whole post at:

    Brian Leiter's Philosophy blog has also picked up on this. [Bad Behavior by the University of Minnesota] Not good PR for a university with ambitious aspirations.

    For Caesar was ambitous... And look at what it got him.