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St. Patrick's Day: Hide the newspaper

March 17, 2011 |  1:29 pm

FI.B.1.B1.LA.1.03-17-11.th. To those looking for a little luck of the Irish on St. Patrick's Day, just one word of advice: Don't look at your newspaper.

Even on the best of days, "news" is often synonymous with "grim" -- or worse.

And today certainly wasn't the best of days.

Just check out these headlines in Thursday's Times:

First, on Japan:

Page 1: "Despair in shadow of reactors. Radiation fears leave Japanese trapped, in want of food and information."

LATExtra, Page 1: 

"Desperate steps are taken to avert full-scale meltdown" and "Keeping watch on fallout."

Business, Page 1:

"Quake roils stocks again" and "Prices of cars from Japan likely to rise amid production shutdowns."

Opinion, Page 17: "California's tsunami threat."

But we all know of Japan's troubles. You can't really expect good news from there anytime soon.

Let's get inside the paper. On to Libya and the Middle East:

Page 3: "Kadafi's forces bomb Benghazi."

Page 4: "Forces fire on protesters in Bahrain."

Page 7: "Crackdowns in the Arab world."

Opinion, Page 17: "Our longest war."

OK, OK, enough foreign news. Things are often bad abroad. That's why we live in America, and California. Things are looking up in the U.S.A., aren't they?

Page 12:  "House votes to eliminate foreclosure fix-up effort.'

Oh.

Business, Page 1:  "Cheap food may be history."

Uh oh.

Forget about the rest of the country. California, here we come. It's always sunny here; every day's a picnic.

Page 1: "Insurer cancels hike in rates."

Yes! California comes through. 

But wait. One blip:

Page 1: "High-risk buildings rife in state."

Or two:

George Skelton column, Page 2:  "Far right thwarts democracy. But Gov. Brown's labor allies are also inflexible on the budget."

Or three:

LATExtra, Page 1: "Billions in cuts to services OKd."

Or, uh, four:

LATExtra, Page 6: "UC regents hear grim forecast on system's future."

There's always Sports, though.

Page 1: "Out in the cold. Trojans make one field goal in the last nine minutes, are eliminated."

Sheesh.

To be fair, I did omit a few good-news headlines, such as this on LATExtra, Page 1:

"Man is finally free, and 'not angry'"

Although when a story about a guy who spent more than two decades in prison for a killing he didn't commit is your good-news story –- well, even Irish eyes aren't smiling.

-- Paul Whitefield

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