Don't you hate those friends that know everything — and tell you about how they know everything? They have to be right, and they're smart, so usually they are. And those rare moments when you know that they're wrong and you catch them in they're misinformation, but what happens? Somehow you're still dumb and they're still right. Welcome to CNN.com — the know it all of news websites.
It becomes clear - quickly - that the CNN.com site is content heavy (it is a news site after all). Even without the subtle visual noise that letter-forms create the site feels cluttered and somewhat overpowering; but vastly improved over previous incarnations of the site. To me, the header/top portion of the site feels incongruous with the "fixed" style of the rest of the template.
On the postivie side, the information stays along a visible grid with simliar sizes and line heights. The images also have a clear hierarchy that helps to break up the monontiny of text (the featured story occupying the most space in terms of text and image size). Compared to many other large news websites, CNN.com does the best it can at presenting vast quantities of information to a large and varied demographic while remaining clean, uncluttered and predictable (which is a good thing, really; it is).