Monday, July 28, 2008

Obama Back Home, McCain's Health, Lobbyists And Campaign Cash, Female Suicide Bombers, Drew Is Still A "Terrorist", And AC Not Scared Of Sharks

Hi everybody. Happy New Week! Looks like we're going to be sans Anderson Cooper. I thought it was feeling like time to break out those frequent flier miles. I was kinda hoping he'd pop up in Iraq or Afghanistan, but I think we'll probably have to wait until after the election for that. Maybe not though. Anyhoo, PIP stuff is important too. Campbell Brown is holding things down stateside for us, though still mysteriously boycotting the blog--what's up with that? Before we get into things though, I need to give you your sporadic dose of Larry King amusement. So okay, apparently cell phones give you cancer now or something. Larry's going to cover it and it's all very "dun, dun, dun!!!" But the amusing part comes in when Larry acts like he actually knows how to operate a cell phone and then he asks Campbell if she's going to put her cell phone down too. "Absolutely," she says. Aw, look at Campbell fitting in. Just like Anderson, she's not listening to a word Larry says either. Just smile and agree, kids. Just smile and agree.

We kick things off with politics. Shocker, I know. Obama is back stateside and new polls have him in the lead. There's also the news that McCain had a growth removed from his face that is going to be biopsied. Campbell informs us that he's already had melanoma four times and reminds us that he's, like, really old. I happened to be watching CNN's live coverage when McCain dropped this little health bomb and bizarre doesn't even begin to cover it. He's standing there in the sun talking about energy and how Obama doesn't want to fix anything and then freaking out of the blue, he's all, "I had a growth removed from my face. Wear sunscreen!" Wha?

To help us all unboggle our minds about this, we're joined live by Sanjay Gupta. And just in time too. 360 was suffering from a horrible adorable doctor deficiency. Almost fatal. Unfortunately though, besides making me smile, Sanjay doesn't have much to offer here. Why? Because we don't know anything. Speculation, speculation, speculation. I'm all about having negative McCain coverage, but this is just uncool. Why can't we ever wait for the facts? Anyway, we then get Dana Bash for the political angle and she's hearing some concern. You know, because McCain is, like, really old. In case you forgot. Dana also totally backs me up in my characterization of the bizarreness of how the biopsy news was dropped. After these two, we have even more discussion with David Gergen, Dee Dee Myers, and Ed Rollins. But I didn't hear anything they said because I was completely distracted by the sun faces hanging in the window of The Gerg's live shot. Anderson so would have had to comment about those. As Campbell tosses out to commercial, she teases a story on female suicide bombers, calling them "the newest terror tool in Iraq." Really? Because I thought that had been going on for years.

Next up, we have a Candy Crowley piece about how Obama's getting his economy-expertize on and how McCain is grumpily blaming our energy crisis on Obama. We then move back with the prior panel and Campbell brings up how McCain is slamming Obama for not visiting the troops. The "maverick" has a new ad out, which is mentioned, but I'm completely boggled that 360 gives a pass on actually fact checking the thing. Thankfully, where the news falls down, stands up. The show doesn't even mention that the ad actually shows Obama with the troops, a fact that resulted in this totally awesome headline: "New McCain Ad Bashes Obama for Not Visiting Troops Using Footage of Obama Visiting Troops." Seriously 360, way to drop the ball. It is then left to Dee Dee to point out that Obama never planned to take TV cameras with him in the first place, and The Gerg to note that Republican Chuck Hagel thinks the charges are ridiculous. I think Obama should have visited the troops, but that ad was just low.

Randi Kaye has the headlines tonight and we learn about a church shooting in Tennessee. Apparently the shooter was mad at liberals and, I guess, our destruction of America. Because if there's one way to stick it to the evil liberals and their Godless anti-family agenda, it's to shoot up a church during a children's production of Annie. There are no words. Another headline is about raging flood waters, but the accompanying b-roll is Robert Novak. Well, if they have to screw up, at least they make it amusing. From here we move into a Joe Johns piece on McCain and lobbyists. Then a David Mattingly piece on Obama and bundling. Joe's wasn't that much of a shocker, but I found David's interesting because I never really fully understood bundling. I guess there will always be new ways to dress up the same old, same old.

Moving on now to what I thought was an Arwa Damon piece on female suicide bombers, but it turned out to just be an Arwa soundbyte. Where's she been lately, anyway? So okay, instead we have Peter Bergen here to talk about the subject. He reminds us that women have been used as suicide bombers since back in 2005. One of the reasons is that there are not as many foreign fighters coming into Iraq, meaning the terrorists are forced to turn to women to commit their crimes. Campbell notes that some of these women are even used unwittingly and she wonders if they're going to have to rethink checkpoints because currently it's improper to pat down a woman. Horrible. But at least we're getting the coverage.

Next up, 360's little enemy of the state, Drew Griffin, updates his predicament. I have to say, though I don't wish inconvenience on anyone, this stuff should happen to journalists more often. Because look at how fired up he is! You know he's not dropping this story until his name is off that list. Of course, there's the whole issue of that never happening (sorry Drew, you're on there for life, methinks), but don't tell him that. Who knows what he'll uncover as he's trying to get to the bottom of it all. Go Drew! Get on with your bad "terrorist" self!

Because 360 is totally onto us regarding our wetsuit anticipation, "The Shot" tonight is Anderson swimming with sharks off South Africa. Well, not really swimming--more like being locked in a cage for his own protection. And how did he like it? A lot, thank you very much. Campbell and Randi are both boggled at his lack of fear. Well, it's not like there were frogs in the cage. Besides, it could have been much worse; he could be Ryan Seacrest. (I could just stop that thought right there and it would still be true--kidding, Ryan!). I'm actually alluding to the fact that Mr. American Idol apparently recently was "bit" by a shark. He's fine--well, except for the grammar. So anyway, Randi and Campbell get their "mom" on regarding Anderson and are all, "we're having a talk with him when he comes back." That's right, mister! I think that about does it for me. The show wasn't too bad


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