Monday, July 14, 2008

New Yorker Gets Stupid, Waxman Continues His Awesomeness, Afghanistan Update (OMG, Hard News!), And Jolie Pops Out Two More

Hi people. Happy new week! I hope you had a nice weekend. My weekend was . . . well, Eliza needs a break from life. I spent most of this past weekend in the ER/hospital. No, I didn't almost die again. It seems my mom's appendix wanted out. Like, immediately. So, for the last couple of days I've been hanging in the same damn hospital that I thought was going to keep me hostage forever. I swear, I'm about this close to being qualified to work there. Anyway, I seem to be living out Murphy's Law here right now, so, uh, don't stand next to me in a lightening storm, people.

As for the show, well, it seems the candidate's surrogates have run out of steam, so this week the media has decided to step in and take over the stupidness. Thanks New Yorker! As you no doubt know by now, New Yorker magazine decided it would be just so gosh-darn brilliant if they took every falsehood uttered about the Obamas and stuck them on the cover in picture form. The magazine claims the cover is "obvious satire," which, clearly it is not because if it was "obvious" we wouldn't be talking about it right now. I actually don't find the cover offensive. I'm just shocked that people who are smart enough to work at the New Yorker would make such an idiotic move.

Yes, news/political junkies can see that it's meant to be satire, but the nation is not made up of news/political junkies. All the magazine is doing is confusing people and reinforcing rumors. Sometimes I think people on my side of the political aisle actually do occasionally deserve that "elitist" label the Right is always trying to tag us with. The New Yorker assumed that everyone was up on all the smears against Obama, knew them to be false, and would therefore find the cover amusing. The New Yorker assumed wrong. It kind of reminds me of when people try to tell me that we can just blow off the mainstream media (MSM) and get all our news from online. Despite the fact that blogs rarely do their own reporting, people on my side of the aisle seem to forget that there are many people who still don't even have Internet access. It might be coming, but it's going to be a while before the majority of people stop getting their news from corporate sources. So we have to deal with the MSM whether we like it or not.

As for the magazine, this probably wouldn't have been quite the pickle if the cover art had been discussed, um, anywhere. But as Roland Martin pointed out, the story about Obama is not about the politics of fear. So anyway, we get a Gary Tuchman piece that uses random people on the street to show that, hey, yeah, the satire is not so obvious. As Anderson Cooper teases actual hard news coming up in the show, I say a little prayer that no missing white girl/celebrity antics news breaks in the next 30 minutes. When the show comes back, there's a Joe Johns piece that goes through all the Obama rumors, ticking them off as "not true." Awesomeness.

What's not awesome is the percentage of people that believes all that crap. But what are you going to do? If I knew how to make people inform themselves I'd be doing it. I'm actually a little surprised that CNN didn't take this opportunity to boast about how they were the ones to debunk the madrassa rumor a long time ago. Of course, the boasting they did back then lead poor Anderson to being crowned the Paris Hilton of news, so, uh, maybe best not. The coverage of this topic ends with an unnecessary "strategy session." I didn't have a problem with them covering this story, but half the show? Meh.

At about the halfway point we get some BREAKING NEWS that one of the hardest working men in Congress, Henry Waxman, is again sniffing out some corruption. Give that man a cape because he's a superhero if I ever saw one. The big to-do here is that there's a video of Bush fundraiser Steven Payne trying to get a donation to the Bush library in exchange for access to top Bush aides. Oops. That's a no no. Ed Henry dives in further with a piece and then afterwards tell us that Waxman is having a bit of trouble getting visitor logs from the White House. No! I'm shocked. "It's kind of remarkable you can't get visitor logs at the White House. I mean, it seems it's the public's building," says Anderson. No, actually it's not remarkable. That kind of thing has pretty much been standard operating procedure for over seven years now. It should be remarkable. But big points to 360 to giving coverage to a story that I quite frankly never would have expected to see on the show nowadays.

Speaking of things we haven't seen in a loooong time, remember that war that we never talk about when we're busy not talking about Iraq? Yep, we're getting an update on Afghanistan! Oh my God, happy dance! I'm only dancing for the coverage, not the actual content of the news. Because Peter Bergen and Nic Robertson are here to tell us that, ugh, things are not going well. The Taliban is resurging and it's just all the big suck, basically. But something really cool that 360 does is read us a statement from Obama about what he wants to do in the country and then Anderson talks to Peter to see how those plans would work out. Now, see. Was that so hard? We got actually information about an actual issue, instead of discussion of how the candidates should sell themselves. So . . . yay! 360, you get a cookie.

The last piece of the night is from Randi Kaye on the morality of celebs selling their baby's pictures to magazines. Oh, 360 you better hurry up and eat that cookie before I take it back. Anyway, this story has come about because Angelina Jolie just had her twins. Again. Didn't she have these kids like five times already? This is what happens when you get your important celebrity news from unreliable sources. So, uh, yeah. Hey look, Katherine Heigel got married. Oh yeah, I don't care. Is it wrong to pimp out your kids for cash? Yes. Will they still continue to do it? Yes. Why are we talking about this? I don't know.

In the headlines tonight we've got some kind of marine murdering thing going on, so 360 gets more points for not doing a package on that. We also learn the very sad news that InBev is buying Anheuser-Busch. Yeah, you probably don't care, but St. Louis is devastated. It's not just about beer (I hate beer), A-B is a part of this city almost as much as the Arch. It's not just a company; it's an icon. And A-B's philanthropy has made it very much a part of the community. Now everyone is wondering what will happen with all that. InBev is making a lot of promises, but there are very real fears about our economy. There actually might be a national story here too. Because St. Louisans are very much ticked at A-B stockholders right now and guess who just happens to own a boatload of A-B stock and looks to be making a killing from this deal? One Mrs. Cindy McCain. I actually don't know what power if any she had to stop this from happening, but we all know that in the end, reality doesn't matter--it's all about perception. If things go bad in this city, McCain may find himself unwelcome in parts of the "Show Me" state.

So hey, which one of you broke the blog tonight? I've actually kind of given up on the live-blog, but a friend told me that tonight she got a critical comment posted, only to have it deleted minutes later. Now, thinking about it, this probably was related to the technical difficulties, but I still have to laugh at her reply to being reminded that they supposedly welcome criticism: "They welcome criticism as much as the Chinese government." Ha! Okay, I don't think 360 is going all red state on us, but I do find it hard to believe there's nary a critical word said about the show's coverage. I guess it's lucky I'm here, huh? Heh. I actually thought tonight's show was on its way to being good. I was bracing for the suck, but then we got some news that's barely seen the light of day on this program in a long time. So yay! I guess adding hard news and ripping away the celeb crap all at once would be too traumatic. Baby steps. Do it again, 360!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Even if 360 devotes half the show on serious news (including international news) like it used to, I shall be grateful. Very grateful. That is not too much to ask for, right?

As for the sub, I noticed this interesting comment made by the very well respected Mr. Gergen. I do have to disagree. I believe John King, John Roberts and Soledad O'Brien are way better subs than Campbell Brown. Just my two cents though. I will watch any of the above subbing, but never Ms. Brown. Don't know why, but she just does not do it for me...Patty

7:35 AM  
Blogger eliza said...

@patty--Not too much to ask for at all.

I did notice the Gerg's comment and thought it was kind of sweet he was sticking up for Campbell. Very Gerg-like of him. I don't understand all the Campbell hate. This is the same thing that happened with John Roberts and now no one has a problem with him. 360 fans are so fickle.

@anonymous 10:38 AM--

Your Anti-Americanism makes me sick. You need to start watching MSNBC. They're right up your alley.

And here I thought CNN was the "Communist News Network." You guys need to make up your minds about which cable channel is the most anti-American. By the way, my comment on the murder had nothing to do with the military and everything to do with it just being another sensational story. My respect for our troops is well documented on this blog. Of course, a drive-by troll wouldn't know that.

Visitor logs to the White House are private. They should not be given out to anyone because it is a "public building".

There's a thing called freedom of information.

The last part of your comment is completely irrelevant to anything and is what got you deleted.

11:30 AM  
Blogger Lulu said...

Hi Eliza,

I hope your mom is doing alright.

On to the show, such as it was. It was OK, but they went on too long on The New Yorker cover with Carville's and Bennett's debate, although I actually agree with Bennett. It requires too much explanation, so the humor is lost.

I was thrilled that we got Peter Bergen and Nic Robertson both in one segment, AND some news on the war. HALLELUJAH!!! Things began looking up! And the Bush Library scandal was good too. Then they messed it up with news on Angelina Jolie's twins! I know that time could have been better spent, like on the death of former White House Press Secretary Tony Snow. AC360 didn't even acknowledge it! Dropping the ball like that is absolutely ridiculous!

The quality of the show has tumbled drastically, and it saddens me. Anderson co-hosted Regis & Kelly yesterday. Many people like his appearances there. I used to like them too, but now, I feel he's doing that too much, especially when his own show is not up to snuff.

As for the subs, Campbell is alright. I don't have a problem with her, but I think Soledad is great when she subs, and I'll watch John King anytime, anyplace. But Anderson needs to be at that anchor desk more. It is his name in the title after all.

I've never blogged on the AC360 site, but I've heard about critical comments being deleted before. That strikes me as just plain odd. Why make it a lovefest? That's not fair and balanced.

Oh, how I wish Anderson would show us again just how great a journalist he can be! C'mon Anderson!

11:22 PM  
Blogger eliza said...

@lulu--My mom's okay, thanks. She just came home today.

I don't really think it's an either/or thing with the Regis and Kelly subbing. What I mean is, I don't think that one hour that he does every once and a while is really having any effect on his own show.

Some times it does seem like they're censoring critical comments, but I think with the live-blog it's mostly just a time thing. Only the show knows how many comments are coming at them during the hour. I imagine it's hard to keep up. So basically, it's a crap shoot.

Although it is really frustrating when you try to post what you feel is intelligent constructive criticism and have it get stuck in moderation. And it's made all the more frustrating when you see some of the comments that are posted. That's why I don't bother much anymore.

I've heard people say they should get rid of the mod. All I have to say to that is go take a look at Greta's unmoderated comments and ask yourself if that's what you want the 360 blog to turn into. No thanks.

4:03 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

FREE hit counter and Internet traffic statistics from