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00h UTC; WEDNESDAY, 20 FEBRUARY 2013: On January 4, 1957, Collier's, which had changed its publication schedule from weekly to fortnightly just two years earlier to reduce losses on the part of its publishers, Crowell-Collier, published its final issue after years of heavy losses and declining circulation. Look, an established photo news fortnightly, acquires certain assets and the latter's masthead indicates for a few years thereafter that Look was "incorporating Collier's."

On February 4, 1969, The Saturday Evening Post ends 148 years of weekly publication, notwithstanding a discredited legend, featured prominently on its front cover for years, claiming that it was "Founded A.D. 1728 by Benjamin Franklin"; heavy losses and declining circulation aggravated by a misguided refocusing of the weekly on a more sophisto audience are to blame. (Within a year and a half, an Indianapolis doctor named SerVaas acquires the rights to The Saturday Evening Post name, archives and trademarks and continues it on a limited basis.)

Just over two years later, on October 9, 1971, Look comes out with its final issue--which turns out to have been short-lived; in late 1978, French publishing group Hachette-Filpacci acquires the rights to the name and brings it back in spring 1979 as a fortnightly, only to suffer serious losses and be discontinued in early 1981. (In explaining the 1971 closing, its then-publishers, Cowles Communications, explained that while it was still rather profitable, any profits it was generating were being erased by increasing costs.)

Just over a year later, on December 28, 1972, Life comes out as a weekly for the last time, citing increased costs and television eating into its readership. Following an occasional series of special issues in the interim as are well received, Life is revived as a monthly in November 1978 and continues thus until early 2005, followed soon after in a new form as a weekend magazine supplement in the vein of Parade and USA Weekend; loss of advertising revenue kills that experiment within a year.

Just over four years ago, RDA Holdings, publishers of the 91-year-old Readers' Digest, the world's top-selling and most-read general-interest magazine (editions in 41 countries, and in 16 languages, every month), placed the magazine in Carey Street to deal with declining and aging circulation and readership. And now just this past week, it thus returned, claiming that despite a costly redesign to make it more appealing to today's readers, its core readership has a median age in its 50's and it continues losing money. Which has some people wondering if there's still a place for general- and popular-interest magazines when you've got Teh Blogospheerez and Teh Innerwebz.

(Incidentally, North American editions of Reader's Digest didn't contain outside advertising until 1958, although editions circulating in South America, as a counter to pro-Axis propaganda, had paid advertising from their launch in Argentina and Brazil in the early 1940's. As well, the Digest has Chinese editions in simplified-character such for mainland China ... and traditional-character such in Hong Kong and Taiwan.)

So why would a Turkish agricultural cartel want to market vegetable seeds and stock under the "Idaho" name, over the objections of the Idaho Potato Commission in its Luscious Glory of defending the honour and integrity of Idaho potatoes to the extent of registering the name and stylee of "Famous Idaho Potatoes" and the "Grown in Idaho" mark as trademarks in ten foreign countries?

No wonder the "patriot" element is as adamant as it gets in insisting that there is a natural interconnexion between Our National Character and Identity as a Sovereign Peculiar Among the Nations and the defence of ekonomesie vryheid met Amerikaanse eienskappe as an Essential and Integral Part Therefor, especially with an eye towards seeking the Mere Formality of Legal Recognition of this Doctrine and Discipline through a Constitutional Amendment comparable to Cuba's insisting in their Constitution that "socialism" is essential to its national character and identity (and insisting that such is "perfectly logical" and "common sense" besides).

What this same element doesn't want you to know is their seeing such interconnexion conditional upon:
  • having said Amerikaanse eienskappe being vaguely defined to the point of being open to rather broad interpretation; and
  • their insisting that "nation" be seen in the defining context encapsulated in the white-supremacist acronym ORION ("Our Race Is Our Nation") and the flawed implications thereof, further reinforced by the Calvinist doctrine insisting that "every Nation is founded upon a Country allocated unto it by Yahweh God."
If the so-called "People's Liberation Army" of the equally-so-called "People's Republic of China" officially denies as "ridiculous" research by American computer security experts implicating a computer unit thereof based in suburban Shanghai as the source of serious cyberattacks upon American computer networks in recent years, then who exactly is responsible?

And staying with China for the nonce, Your Correspondent understands that even though Beijing and Pyongyang are BFF's in a way, such a close friendship inevitably has its limits. In fact, Beijing expressed official reservations about North Korea's recent nuclear-weapons testing, going so far as to insist that the last thing they want with Pyongyang is that the latter insists on referring to as "sacred war," especially where nuclear weapons come into the equation.

Even more difficult when you stop and consider that China, for the most part, is North Korea's lifeline when it comes to food, medical and relief supplies and even petroleum used for fuel; cut off the fuel pipeline as serves North Korea from China at the wrong moment (especially in the midst of typically fierce Korean Peninsula winters), and the ongoing human misery enforced upon its 16 million people in the name of "Eternal Leader" Kim Il Sung and "Eternal First Secretary" Kim Jong Il, and their guiding philosophy of Juche as is predicated, ideally, on socioeconomic self-reliance can only get worse. Tragic, even.

Adding insult to injury for the Chinese is the fact of Jilin province bordering on North Korea via the Yalu River, which could become a flashpoint of human suffering should North Korea's regime suddenly and spontaneously collapse into disorder and ruin as North Korean refugees stream across the Yalu to rebuild their lives, especially if local People's Liberation Army garrisons become overwhelmed with North Korean refugees seeking assistance.

After all, North Korea's regime, in its Luscious Glory of seeking the perfection of Juche all the further, may have made things worse by calling for the wholesale deforestation of hillsides just to increase potential agricultural land, the byproducts thereof made all the worse by prolonged rain and flooding in especially that period which official propaganda calls the "March of Tribulation" between the 1994 death of now-"Eternal Leader" Kim Il Sung and 1998, soon after the elevation of heretofore "Dear Leader" Kim Jong Il unto "Great Leader."

Something Your Correspondent would love to see coming from the Religiopolitical Right: The shock and unconscious decline into bankruptcy of a more prominently blatant specimen thereof by way of their falling for some class of a Nigerian scam involving some woman, just converted from Islam to Bible-Believing Christianity (and, hence, refusing to remarry), supposedly dying from cancer and wanting the proceeds of her estate to be "used for the Greater Glory of God"--provided all manner of fees, taxes and "stamp duty" were advanced to expedite the processing thereof through probate. And to have such coming at a rather bad time for such an entity, as evidenced by rather emotionally pathetic to the point of blatant e-mail blasts demanding emergency donations to deal with "serious financial crises" as are probably their own fault owing to poor accounting, general public unease over their prolefeed message and diversion into "pure trusts" structured for the benefit of its (pseudo)religious leaders offshore (and excused as necessary "for tax reasons"--as in "judgment-proofing" certain assets against the prospect of adverse legal action stateside).

Let it be hoped such comes within measurable distance. Sooner, rather than later. The better so all may see the bare depravity of Elmer Gantryite debauchery and paranoid hysterics laid bare.

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