Like the sun, tensions always rise

One of the most popular journalese expressions is “rising tensions.” An obscure law of reporting requires tensions to always rise or escalate or grow or heighten. Tensions must never decline or lessen. The rule prohibits the reporter to follow up and report what happened to the rising tensions. Was there war? Or at least massing of troops on borders? If the tensions fizzle out, forget it. It’s not news.

What brings this on are two stories in The Boston Globe, May 28, 2020: Trump “lashing out” over Twitter fact-check, a Washington Post story, includes: “The move, which escalates tensions between Washington and Silicon Valley in an election year….” And an AP story headline: “Serbia bans Montenegro flights amid rising tensions.”

I’m happy Silicon Valley doesn’t have an army, but heaven help us! Remember what happened with those Balkan tensions back in 1914!

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