A good example of the confusion that can come from the use of the present tense to denote past events is the following (real) headline: “Brennan objects to use of waterboarding in CIA confirmation hearing.” The jokey interpretation of the head would be that Brennan objected when an attempt was made to waterboard him during the confirmation hearing ("Really, Senator, is this entirely necessar… <glug, glug>). The non-jokey interpretation that springs to mind is that Brennan stated, during the hearing, that he objects to the US’s current policy regarding waterboarding. However, what the article actually states is that Brennan claimed, during the hearing, that he had, in the past, “expressed personal objections” towards the use of interrogation techniques like waterboarding, but that he hadn’t done anything to stop the practice, because he was not part of the relevant chain of command.
Strictly speaking, anything Brennan said during the hearing would have been in the past, but the use of the present tense, especially in the context of the head as a whole, cues a reader to assume that an objection occurred during the hearing, not that a claim was made during the hearing that an objection had been expressed at some point in the past. (I also question clipping “expressed personal objections” into either “objects” or “objected”.)
EDIT: I’m not claiming that this example proves that there is anything wrong with the convention of using the present tense to denote (recent) past events. But care is warranted when attempting to briefly describe a complex temporal relationship, and the convention seems to increase the odds of creating this type of confusion.