Local News

Facts? We don’t need no stinkin’ facts. Fake news is here.

Did you hear about the Chicago White Sox winning the 2016 World Series? It’s true (now that we live in an era of fake news!).

Did you hear about the Chicago White Sox winning the 2016 World Series? It’s true.

  Tom Houlihan

And how about that rocket-powered Metra train that, at a slick 120 mph, will get Homewood-Flossmoor area commuters to downtown Chicago in 10 minutes flat. I hear the rocket trains will be ready to go in just a few weeks. It’s really going to happen.

I also have on the best authority that a family of American black bears — good old Ursus americanus — was seen shopping last week at the Flossmoor Meijer store. From what I hear, they were spotted in the produce section before heading over to the fish counter.


Cross my heart and hope to die. Honest.

There are plenty of other stories out there that the H-F Chronicle, for one reason or another, has not gotten around to publishing.

Fire trucks with wings. Robotic teachers in the public schools. A proposed luxury condo development at the bottom of the Thornton Quarry.

I swear — they are all 100 percent accurate.

But, even if they are just a teensy-weensy bit false … well, who cares?

You may have noticed that we are, all of a sudden, living in the golden age of fake news. It’s about time. Finally, those of us in the news business no longer have to worry about troublesome factual information getting in the way of a good fake story.

Who knew it was so easy? All you have to do is come up with a juicy tidbit of fake news — let’s just say you want to spread the word that Hillary Clinton was observed doing the tango with those evil alien invaders from the “Independence Day” movies.

You just post it on a bogus Internet “news” site, preferably with a home base in a place like Macedonia — where that heck is that?

Before long, your juicy tidbit will be picked up by other news sites, some not completely bogus, and millions of people will see it on their Twitter feed, and swear that HRC is, in fact, the leader of the evil movie aliens.

Apparently, fake news — especially about the Democratic candidate in the recent presidential election — was rampant this year and may have played a part in the
way people voted.

I’m someone who has been in the news business since the Nixon administration (and I’m not making that up). These days, I am wondering why I bothered all those
years to get the story right to the best of my ability. Fake stories are obviously the wave of the future.

I predict that before long college journalism schools will be promoting their new and improved fake news curriculum for our new and improved society. From now on the news can be gloriously dishonest. I can’t wait.

One more thing.

That Disney movie, “Frozen” is an honest-to-goodness true story. The characters are real. How do I know? The other day, I saw that comic snowman, Olaf, shopping in the freezer section of the Meijer store.

Cross my heart and hope to die.

But seriously, folks.

This has been a very successful year for the H-F Chronicle. Our first print edition hit the streets on Dec. 1, 2015 and we have put out 12 more print editions since then.

The response, from our vantage point, has been phenomenal. We have been gratified by the support of our advertisers, which is allowing us to print each month and try new exciting things.

Starting next month, we will be mailing the Chronicle to every postal address in Homewood and Flossmoor — you can read more about this on Page 3 of this issue.

We want everyone in town to get our paper and see this as the best way for that to happen. We also want to continue free distribution of the paper. That’s important to us too.

During the past year, we have had a lot of fun distributing the paper all around town. I have especially enjoyed handing out the paper at the Flossmoor train station on the third Thursday of every month.

When we first started doing this, some people looked at us with a certain amount of suspicion. I would tell people I was giving them a free local paper and, in return, get a few of those “What does he want from me?” looks.

But no more. Just about everyone at the train station appears happy to get the latest Chronicle. And we have gotten a lot of good feedback.

So, to my friends at the station, I say that I will miss handing you the paper each month. But please keep reading the Chronicle. We will continue doing our best to bring comprehensive community journalism to Homewood and Flossmoor.

In the meantime, on behalf of the four of us — Eric Crump, Marilyn Thomas, myself and my wonderful wife, Patty Houlihan — I’d like to extend our best wishes for the holiday season and the coming New Year.

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