August 1, 2008

Today's Front Pages Analysis

In health news, promises of an antidote to exercise

What better than a lazy summer day to consider exercise in a pill?

“Rejoice, couch potatoes! It’s exercise in a pill,” announced The News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C.

The news that mice given an experimental drug turned into marathoners originated with researchers in California, and The San Diego Union-Tribune devoted its centerpiece to “Endurance lift without lifting.” The Oregonian of Portland pictured a mouse and said: “Fat-burning drug works on mice, but could it fight obesity?”

Other headlines also focused on humans. “Just too lazy to work out? Then this pill is made for you,” The Providence (R.I.) Journal said.

It’s a week to the Summer Games in Beijing, and many large newspapers have begun their countdown. “Politics muscle in on Olympics,” The Detroit News said in a historical look at the games. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that grammar police are out in force in China, cracking down on Chinglish, the mistranslation of English on street signs and T-shirts.

Today is the one-year anniversary of the Interstate 35W bridge collapse in Minnesota. The Star Tribune of Minneapolis published an anniversary pullout section, and the St. Paul Pioneer Press used “recovery” as an art headline. Newspapers across the country have run stories this week examining the state of infrastructure. In a package with photos and references to online content, The Forum in neighboring Fargo, N.D., said: “Funding crisis disrupts need to monitor or repair bridges.”

The Twin Cities newspapers also did extensive coverage of a corporate plane crash Thursday that killed eight. “Death in a cornfield,” the Pioneer Press said.

News organizations this morning are following a report by the Los Angeles Times that a top government scientist, who was about to be charged in the 2001 anthrax attacks, has died of an apparent suicide. The story led today’s Times.

And on a day when many focused on “race card” accusations in the presidential race, the Rochester (N.Y.) Democrat and Chronicle gave us good ol’ mom. When it comes to the campaign messages of Obama and McCain, “Mom’s the word,” the newspaper said.

kkennedy@freedomforum.org Kate Kennedy is front-pages editor at the Newseum.

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