WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING. I haven't changed my mind about those Boston Herald photos, but I have calmed down. In the interest of offering some additional perspective, I suggest you take a look at Herald business reporter Jay Fitzgerald's blog, in which he offers some characteristically smart, thoughtful comments in guarded support of the Herald's original decision to run the photos.
Letters to Romenesko has a few intelligent comments, as well as a few stupid ones. They're posted in reverse chronological order, so all of the letters come after my response. Herald staffer Tom Mashberg's is particularly good, though I disagree with him.
Last Friday, on Greater Boston's "Beat the Press" media roundtable on WGBH-TV (Channel 2), I was surprised to find myself pretty much alone in asserting that the photos shouldn't have been run. You can watch it here; click on "View Webcast" in the lower left, at your own chosen speed, and make sure your popup blocker has been turned off.
In what may be a first and last, Herald columnist Mike Barnicle and I are on the same side.
Finally, the Boston Globe today has significant new information. According to the report, by Donovan Slack and John Ellement, Deputy Superintendent Robert O'Toole was among four officers who shot pepper pellets into the crowd, which raises questions as to whether that conflicted with his supervisory role. One of those pellets, as we know, killed Victoria Snelgrove.
It also turns out that O'Toole's career had been dealt a huge setback after he roughed up a prisoner on television during the 1986 World Series. He was brought out of the wilderness only last April by the new police commissioner, Kathleen O'Toole, who is not related to him.
POLLING MADNESS. I don't know what it means. You don't know what it means. Nobody knows what it means. But what else do we have?
Electoral-Vote.com, whose wild swings every day can induce motion sickness, has it Bush 285, Kerry 247 in this morning's state-by-state roundup. But that's mainly because Florida and Ohio have been awarded to Bush, which seems by no means certain.
Slate scores it closer, Bush 276, Kerry 262. The main difference is that Slate thinks Kerry's going to win Ohio.
The Los Angeles Times' do-it-yourself interactive map gives Bush 177 electoral votes and Kerry 153. Sitting in the comfort of your own home, you can add swing states to your guy's column until he reaches the magical 270. If only it were that easy!
The national polls all have the race extremely tight, with Bush generally ahead by a few points. Go to Real Clear Politics for a roundup.