Regular readers know I'm not in the habit of choosing unflattering screencaps, but sometimes devotion to accurately portraying the tenor of an event demands it. Which it does in spades in conveying the vituperation unleashed on MSNBC today in an exchange over the Edwards blogger brouhaha between Dem strategist Julie Roginsky and GOP strategist Brad Blakeman.
Words don't come close to doing justice to the Roginksy vitriol. I urge you to view the video here.
Roginsky began the conversation by asserting that Edwards did the right thing in retaining the two bloggers with a history of making outrageous anti-Catholic statements, as detailed here. She called it a "pragmatic political decision."
Have you ever watched a book-based TV segment in which the hosts never mentioned the book's title? Fox & Friends Weekend pulled off the feat this morning -- presumably because the title of the cookbook in question was a bit too spicy for Fox's taste.
With Valentine's Day looming, Martha Hopkins was in to suggest some sensual dishes to share with one's sweetie. Her claim to expertise? She is co-author of a book entitled . . . "Inter Courses: An Aphrodisiac Cookbook." Hopkins treated the Fox hosts to two of her recipes: artichoke hearts and strawberries and whipped cream.
But while the camera flashed on her book sitting on the buffet, items were artfully arranged to obscure its full title. I'm providing a larger-than-normal screencap so readers can see the careful camouflaging. The book title once appeared briefly at the bottom of the screen, and a full image of the book was flashed at the end of the segment. But the two Fox hosts, Kelly Wright and Brigitte Quinn, managed to avoid ever mentioning its title.
My first vivid memory as a child is watching JFK’s funeral on television. The next one occurred less than three months later when the Beatles appeared on “The Ed Sullivan Show.”
Of course, I wasn’t alone that night. It is estimated that 73 million Americans watched the show that evening, exactly 43 years ago, representing 45 percent of the population at that time.
Any way, without further ado, here is the video of that amazing night (h/t Hot Air). I hope it puts a tear in your eye, and as big a smile on your face as it does me. Watching this, I feel four years old again, without a care in the world, and nothing but a limitless future ahead of me.
Ron Reagan put his ballet background to use this evening, bending over backwards to avoid admitting the obvious: that the Edwards bloggers are anti-Catholic bigots. Appearing on Hardball, Reagan was matched against one of my personal favorites among conservative commentators: Terence Jeffrey of Human Events.
Asked by host Chris Matthews whether John Edwards should retain the controversial bloggers, Reagan responded:
"Yes, absolutely. If John Edwards had folded, everybody on the right would have known that John Edwards can be put in a defensive crouch."
Jeffrey: "Ron, did you actually read what they wrote?"
Reagan: "Yes I did. I did read."
Jeffrey: "Is it not anti-Catholic bigotry, Ron?"
Reagan: "I don't know what was on their mind. I can't give you a yes or no because I can't read their mind."
Making up for advancing the view that soldiers in Iraq are upset by anti-war opponents at home? Exactly two weeks after the NBC Nightly News featured a report from Richard Engel about how “troops here say they are increasingly frustrated by American criticism of the war,” Friday's NBC Nightly News ran a dispatch from Engel which showcased soldiers who want the war to end. Engel ran just one soundbite, from a Staff Sergeant with the First Infantry Division, who declared: “It is pretty much almost a lost cause. I mean, nothing it seems we do is doing any good. Every country goes through a civil war. So, I mean, maybe it'd be better for them to have a civil war and hash it out and then try to help them after that." Engel added about the unit he had traveled with which narrowly escaped an IED explosion: “They all told me it's time to end this war. And, Brian [Williams], the soldiers also asked why it seems from here there are no plans to end the war, just discussions of battle tactics?" (Screen shot is of Engel inside the Army convoy vehicle)
The answer, in part, photoshopped models. And no, I'm not referring to Katie.
...thanks to technology, often not even the models themselves can compare to their portfolios. Increasingly, photos for print are enhanced and perfected to an astonishing degree. Not only are moles, acne and subtle facial hair erased from already pretty faces, but retouchers are routinely asked by editors and advertisers to enlarge eyes, trim normal-size ears, fill in hairlines, straighten teeth and lengthen the already-narrow necks, waists and legs of 18-year-old beauties. "We're always stretching the models' legs and slimming their thighs," says a photo retoucher who works for a high-end Manhattan agency. In some cases, hands, feet or even legs are replaced in photos when the subject’s parts don’t add up to a perfect whole.
But the bigger danger, the Newsweek reporters insist, is that twiggy models are actually leading American women to bulk up:
A week after NBC's Law & Order aired an episode revolving around an Ann Coulter-like character (NewsBusters item with video) whose anti-embryonic stem cell research position so angered a student suffering from Parkinson's disease that he tried to kill her (but his gunshot kills an innocent student), tonight's (Friday) episode is inspired by the Ted Haggard case -- though with the added twist of murder. From TV Guide.com:
“A popular reverend is suspected of a gay actor's murder when it is discovered the victim threatened to out the pastor and expose his hypocritical stance on homosexuality.”
Tim Russert, Washington bureau chief of NBC News, walks with the aid of crutches as he leaves U.S. Federal Court, Thursday, Feb. 7, 2007, in Washington. Russert is key prosecution witness in the I Lewis 'Scooter' Libby CIA leak trial. (AP Phoito/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards' inflammatory new campaign bloggers Amanda Marcotte and Melissa McEwan will be retained by the campaign after making public apologies for past postings that were controversial, to put it mildly. In a surprise, the New York Times played the story on Friday's front page, albeit under the mild headline "Edwards Learns Campaign Blogs Can Cut 2 Ways").
Marcotte is notorious for a January 7 post on the Duke lacrosse "rape" case, one she later eliminated after it became an issue after her hiring: "Can't a few white boys sexually assault a black woman anymore without people getting all wound up about it? So unfair."
The left-leaning media are so predictable, aren’t they? Regardless of the well-documented recent failings of the United Nations – the Oil-for-Food scandal, the sex scandals, you name it – America’s press just can’t bring themselves to question anything that comes out of this corrupt body.
Such was certainly the case in devout liberal Ellen Goodman’s Boston Globe piece Friday concerning global warming (emphasis mine throughout):
By every measure, the U N 's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change raises the level of alarm. The fact of global warming is "unequivocal." The certainty of the human role is now somewhere over 90 percent. Which is about as certain as scientists ever get.
Game, set, and match for Goodman. Yet, this wasn’t nearly as unequivocal as she got:
The City of Brotherly Love could soon become the second major U.S. city to ban trans fats from its eateries, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported today. The new law passed the city council unanimously and awaits Mayor John Street's signature.
So you'd think in a city like Philly you'd have plenty of people who would find such a ban ridiculous, and would not be shy about telling some reporters the same. That may well be the case, but in today's paper, the Inquirer's Patrick Kerkstra and Julie Stoiber only gave readers one critic of the ban, an official at the American Academy of Chefs. In fact:
With Barbara Walters away, whom did ABC choose to guest host The View today? A woman who thinks a 9-11 nutcase is "so great." Singing the nutcase's praises in the screencap is Christine Ebersole, a Broadway actress and former Saturday Night Live cast member, I've learned. And there she was, guest hosting on this morning's View, when she let this drop:
"I'm going through 'the change' in my life."
That was good for a high-five with Rosie, who said she is, too.
Ebersole explained that one symptom is insomnia, which has turned her into a YouTube addict. Speaking of her YouTube favorites, she continued:
Is Al Gore a prophet? This was a suggestion made by Harry Smith in yet another one-sided story on CBS about global warming. Smith interviewed former Vice President Al Gore and Richard Branson, the Chairman of Virgin Group to discuss actions they are taking to combat, what they claim, is man-made global warming. During the segment, Smith seemingly urged Al Gore to run for President -- "would you not be better off trying to affect this change from the White House?" -- and CBS displayed its agreement with Gore and Branson’s approach, running the graphic "Saving the Planet" on screen throughout the almost five minute long segment.
Gore and Branson, appearing in the 7:00 half hour of the "Early Show," discussed a reward offer, where they are offering $25 million to a scientist who can figure out a way to extract carbon from the atmosphere. But, Mr. Smith lamented that this idea sounded like the men were giving up on the idea of conservation and reducing emissions:
This week, Chris Matthews' anti-Bush bigotry spilled over into a profanity laden rant. The "Hardball" host dropped the F-bomb during a live interview with Don Imus.
Meanwhile, CNN’s Paula Zahn connected opposition of illegal immigration to, you guessed it, the Ku Klux Klan. This is the same network, however, that tried to downplay proven religious bigotry by a blogger for the John Edwards campaign.
Over on ABC, "Good Morning America" anchor Diane Sawyer spent the week in Syria. She let the despotism of President Bashar Assad go mostly unchallenged.
During other segments, Sawyer chose to ask him about video games and whether he uses an iPod.
The highly anticipated report from the Pentagon’s acting inspector general concerning prewar intelligence was released on Thursday, and depending on the media outlet you rely on for information, the determination was either that “officials did nothing illegal,” or their reporting was of “dubious quality and reliability.”
As a result, it appears that if a media outlet wanted to present a negative picture of what the Bush administration did with intelligence before the war, it could. Conversely, if another organization wanted to depict the opposite, that was possible, too.
For instance, one of the most consistently antiwar writers has been Walter Pincus of the Washington Post who actually wrote about bad intelligence information days before the war began. On Friday, he wrote this in the first paragraph of an article on the Pentagon report published on WaPo’s front page (emphasis mine throughout):
Last weekend, the Chicago Sun-Times gave nearly an entire page in their "Controversy" Section to a man who feels America is under attack by a radical, religion that is inseparable from Nazi Fascism. He feels it is a hateful religion that is out to destroy America and everything it stands for and it must be stopped at all costs.
No he did not mean Islamism, amazingly enough, but Christianity.
There are times when people find their lives empty and begin to look for a "new" way of life. Sometimes they find that life in a cult and become brainwashed converts like "Azzam The American", the recent American born al Qaeda mouthpiece, or Johnny Lindh Walker, the young enemy combatant from California who was caught fighting for al Qaeda against US forces. If one looks for something, one usually finds it. And too often when what is being looked for is found, it causes more trouble than it really is due or takes on a larger meaning than reality permits. The saying "Be careful what you wish for comes to mind.
A full court press is underway to re-brand self described anarchist Josh Wolf as an embattled journalist who is being wrongly imprisoned for refusing to "divulge his sources". Wolf, whose pen name is "insurgent" on his new blog The Revolution Will Be Televised, has been sitting behind bars on and off for a total of 169 days as of Tuesday February 6th. (Wolf's old blog at thisrevolution.blogspot.com comes complete with the header "I live in San Francisco. I'm an artist, an activist, an anarchist and an archivist; this is my videoblog.").