No news is good news, as the wise man would say – and I must say I tend to agree with the sentiment.

Apart from the fact that it would seem that most of the news is bad news these days, there’s just so much stuff made up, or re-dredged, redressed and reissued as “new” news, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to sort out the forest and the trees.

There is so much pressure on the media to produce news all day, every day that there is no wonder that there’s been such a spate of, well, shall we say, crap produced in the name of “news.”

It’s not news, dear hearts, if it’s fake. And it’s not news, little one, if you dredge up a story from 2014 and call it new.

Take, for instance, Sir. (Please). No. no. Just having a small lend of you. Sir brought to my attention that a law has been passed in California that decriminalizes shoplifting if less than $950 worth of goods has been lifted.

Naturally outraged, I looked it up online, and yes indeed the law was passed – way back in 2014. Now I don’t remember it being widely reported then, but then again, I’m known to forget why I purposefully walked into a room 30 seconds ago.

So yes, in sunny California, you can whip into a store, filch $949.99 worth of goodies, and know you’ll only get a stern-faced misdemeanor to utter a harrumph and slap you smartly on the wrist for your efforts. What a beauty I thought – I could fly out there, do a grab and dash at about 47 stores, and come home with enough to redecorate my house, feed the hoards for half a year, provide enough booze to sink the Navy, and mount the odd TV onto any available wall space.

But, oh gosh, oh darn, I read on that I can only do it once, and get away with it. Any more $949.99s going on, and I do then face criminal charges. Drat the luck.

I cannot imagine that the store owners in that great state would have been particularly thrilled with the news back in 2014, and certainly not in 2019 when the story is dredged up again to fill a void in a news program, only to have those unaware of this potential bonanza, grab it by the horns and go on mini-spending sprees.

The law is an absolute ass, but the journo who re-re-re-reported it is a bigger one.

I know it’s hugely old-fashioned of me, but can we go back to a morning and an evening edition of a newspaper? Can we go back to TV news at 6 p.m. and 10 p.m.? Oh, and while we’re at it, can I still get my bread, milk and eggs delivered, and have the mailman blow a whistle as he drops my non-junk mail into my mail box?

Ah for the simpler days when one didn’t have to achieve, 24/7.

Annie Dear lives in Lee’s Summit. Email her at