Thursday, February 07, 2008

Politics, Tornadoes, Britney, And Live Blogging-Oh My! (Wednesday's Show)

Hi everybody. Are you all recovered from your Super Tuesday hangover? Hold tight because there's more before we make it to the conventions. Anyway, I recently learned something new about myself: I fail at extreme multi-tasking. Since I started this blog, my time watching 360 has also included chatting, Googling up articles for the upcoming blog post, eating, and of course, taking notes. I have a system. But then Anderson Cooper throws me a curve ball by deciding to live-blog the show. My first reaction was, "He's going to do what?!" My second reaction was, "I must see this." After all, with the train wreck potential being fairly high, I figured there was a good chance this was only going to happen on rare occasions--like an eclipse. So I put on my protective eye wear and headed to the 360 blog come show time. How did my notes fair? Not so well. But this is why God invented transcripts, right? So this will be a not up to snuff review, but I know you'll still love me anyway. By the way, the reasoning behind the live-blogging? Just got clearer.

We kick off the night with, what else, but politics. John King is live at his big interactive map and he shows us where we've been, delegately speaking, and where we're going. Remember when Tom Foreman was the map guy? Do you think there was a map fight and John emerged victorious? But anyway, John just goes on and on and, wow, that's a lot of democracy. Anderson asks him if he's canceled all his vacations and John laughs, but it's more of a I've-started-having-dreams-about-this-frickin-map kind of laugh, than general laughter. After the map, we go to a Candy Crowley piece about how Obama and Clinton are currently competing for the title of "underdog." It's all an expectations game, people. It's also all about the benjamins. Obama is a fundraising machine, while Clinton just had to loan herself campaign money. Probably not the situation she wants to be in right now. For discussion, we're joined by David Gergen, political commentator Keli Goff, and Joe Klein of "Time," but I'm going to take a pass.

Tom Foreman has the headlines tonight and our "What Were They Thinking?" is video of some dude in court punching his own public defender. Oh that's smart. So needless to say, now he has to contend with assault charges on top of his initial burglary charges. Apparently he was caught allegedly rappelling into a Kmart to steal jewelry. Rappelling? Well, he gets points for creativeness. Tom wants to know how much of a public defender the guy was if he couldn't stop the right hook. Ha ha ha. Oh, Tom.

Next up, we have a piece from Dana Bash about how conservatives hate McCain. (But they better get used to him, because as of this blogging Romney is suspending his campaign.) Basically they're ticked at him for his record on taxes and immigration and they just don't trust him. For discussion of this, we're joined by radio talk shot host Larry Elder and Glenn Beck. Oh joy. Glenn would rather vote for Clinton than McCain, which, of course, makes no sense. "I can't explain anybody else's position, Anderson. But you know me. I'm an alcoholic," says Glenn. Wow. And yeah, that pretty much sets the tone for the rest of the interview. Apparently Glenn and those like him are all in a tizzy because Reagan is dead (who, by the way, spent just like Bush) and no other candidate fits the bill as a "true conservative." Anderson then reads a quote from Bill Kristol, who tries to point out there are actual differences between Clinton and McCain. Okay, in this particular instance, Kristol is not crazy (although he does make his point in a dicky way), but 360, please, the man has been wrong about everything these past seven years. Please do not reward him by quoting him on your show.

Larry agrees with the Kristol quote and tries to pimp out McCain's positives to Glenn, but Glenn ain't having it and they go back and forth a bit. Glenn wants Clinton because he believes she'll be so wildly unpopular, that after two years of hell the Republicans will find their soul. Anderson points out that he's basically saying he's going to vote for Clinton because she'll be bad for the country. Yep, party before country. And the liberals are the unpatriotic ones. Great guy, that Glenn. Of course he disputes this. "I believe Hillary Clinton, she'll say all of these things. But when America actually looks at all of them, they'll say, 'Oh, dear, Lord. We can't do any of this stuff,' or a lot of this stuff. And he'll triangulate, and he'll be a little bit more of a rein on her," says Glenn. First of all, can he be more out of touch? Yeah Glenn, you're right, who wants health insurance, tax breaks for the middle class, and a possible ticket out of Iraq? I want free market healthcare (because that always works out so well), tax breaks for the rich, and occupation with no end in sight! And second, wow, what a sexist. Yes, how nice for us that there will be a big strong man in the White House to keep the little lady under control. Is he kidding?

On now to Tom Foreman walking in front of big screens that demonstrate each candidate's typical voter. Ah, stereotyping. Isn't it fun to put people in boxes? Even if they don't fit? Hm. Who's my candidate? Well, I'm fairly young, so I guess that means Obama. But, ruh roh, I'm kind of (unfortunately) poor right now, so I should support Clinton. But then again, I'm educated. Back to Obama. I'm so confused! Apparently nobody puts Baby in a corner and nobody puts Eliza in a box. After Tom, Anderson teases an upcoming segment on Britney Spears: "What's driving her? And is anyone in her mad, mad, mad, mad world actually looking out for her?" That would have been funny if he wasn't talking about Britney. Look under the big "W" of palm trees! (It's a movie, people.)

Transitioning now to a David Mattingly piece on the horrible weather that hit Super Tuesday night. The death count stands at at least 54, yes 54, people with destruction over five states. I was going to complain about how this weather is making my back feel like it's on fire. But I have nothing to complain about. Prayers to the affected.

Moving on now to...Britney Spears. Oh boy. Here we go. Apparently she's been released from the psych ward and now Dr. Drew Pinksy is here to talk about it. Obviously this stopped being funny a fairly long time ago and now it's just really sad. But for the life of me, I do not understand why they do these segments. I know all of Anderson's arguments because they're always the same every time they cover her (or even another celeb), but they just don't cut it. He tells us over and over how they normally don't cover this story. Because if he says it enough, apparently we'll believe him; or maybe he's trying to believe himself. "These people, the paparazzi, all of us that are watching this, are participating in her demise," says Dr. Drew. Then later from Anderson: "Even by doing the story in some way we're complicit." This is where my head explodes. They know what they're doing is wrong, yet they still do the segment.

Obviously for someone, somewhere it's about ratings and money and all that jazz, but watching the two of them, it's obvious they're really upset by this. So again, I don't get it. "These companies, TMZ,, all these companies, you know, sell this video. People log onto the Internet," says Anderson. Yes, and where did your B-roll come from? Honestly, maybe it's not from TMZ tonight because I wasn't watching too closely (mad multi-tasking, remember?), but I know they've used their stuff before. Anderson, Dr. Drew, please stop being part of the problem. They're right though. Every time you click or buy one of those magazines you become a part of it. Yeah, celebrities court attention. And yeah, some are raging assholes. But they're still people and no one deserves what's happening to Britney. Because we know how this ends.

The Shot tonight is an amazing picture of a nine month old being dropped from a burning apartment in order to save his life. The show was okay. Normally I hate it when Glenn Beck is on, but I will begrudgingly admit it kind of made sense this time given the topic. Although I still think they should just wall off the passage between real CNN and Headline News, especially now that Erica Hill is safe on the good side. I think you already know my feelings on the Britney segment. As for the live-blogging, well, it was quite an experiment, huh? Some room for improvement, but not a total disaster. And hey, good on them for trying. Although they really do need to find a way to authenticate Anderson's posts, so people don't post as him, like what happened late last night. By the way, I saw that coming a mile a way (duh, of course people would try that) and shame on TVNewser for falling for it. B-


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