Thursday, February 04, 2010

American Missionaries Charged With Kidnapping, Corporate Greed, And Tea Party Movement's First Convention (Yay?)

Hi everyone. We're beginning tonight with the news that those American missionaries arrested in Haiti have just been charged with kidnapping. This story keeps getting stranger and stranger. It seems a villain has officially been cast, and her name is Laura Silsby. Anderson Cooper informs us that they have an EXCLUSIVE with two people who have interacted with Silsby and believe she's not as innocent as she claims.

We're then joined by phone with David Louis of Compassion For All Orphanage and Richard Pickett, who just legally adopted children from Haiti. The conversation starts with David...and it is excruciating. One of those pulling-teeth interviews where Anderson really makes his big bucks. David tells us Silsby offered to take some of their orphans, but when our anchor tries to confirm that David then told her she couldn't do that without permission from the government, he suddenly clams up and paints himself as uninvolved in any of that. And...then he's gone. Well, thanks for playing.

But we still have Richard via satellite and he's a much easier conversation. He tells us that Silsby actually called his wife while they were in the process of adopting and offered to get the kids out of the country. Obviously, the couple was like, um, no. Because that would be crazy and illegal. Richard also says that this woman would go from orphanage to orphanage, trying to get people to give her kids, and when they refused, she would freak out and cry. He speculates she wanted the kids for fund-raising purposes.

We then go live to Haiti to talk to Karl Penhaul about the brochure he's holding. A brochure of LIES! This is sad, awesome, and a tinge comical all rolled into one. So anyway, the brochure is what the Americans were giving out regarding their plans for the children. Karl then proceeds to (slightly dramatically) tick off the untruths one by one. No, the kids they took are not orphans. No, they don't even have an orphanage built. No, they did not have permission from the government to take them. No, they do not have a working website! Lies, lies, lies! Calling a spade a spade. Loves it.

For the other angle of the story, we flip back to Idaho to further explore this Silsby character with Dan Simon. Apparently, the missionary was having quite a time of it recently. Single mom. Recently foreclosed home. Can't pay the bills. Sad, actually. But weird too. It seems she's run her business poorly. Also? A couple of years ago she hired her 24-year-old nanny to set up an orphanage. I mean, WTF? Then she just strolls into the church, meets with the pastor, and is all, hey, who wants to go help Haiti orphans?

I feel bad for the other people arrested with her because it feels like they were probably sucked up in something that's way over their heads. They trusted this woman, and it looks like that's going to be a mistake. My theory on Silsby herself? I'm thinking some sort of mental illness/acute breakdown that led to some very poor decisions, and maybe even believing things that weren't true. What a mess. In related bad news, there's a new estimated quake death toll: 212,000. There are no words.

Transitioning now to Jeffrey Toobin talking about people I want to strangle. Perhaps I should be more specific. Today, Bank of America and two former top executives were charged with defrauding the government. But it's only a civil suit. Not one of the douchebags who got us into our financial mess has gone to prison. Let's list a couple of them for old time's sake, shall we? We're shown a picture of Richard Fuld of Lehman Brothers and Joseph Cassano of AIG fame. As for Bank of America (which, by the way, is teh evil), they're paying for their douches' legal fees, and since we bailed them out, guess who's really paying for the defense. Awesome.

Kiran Chetry continues her "360 Bulletin" duties, and the piece of inane information I'm pulling out for you tonight is that Heinz is going to revamp their ketchup packets. Life changing news, I know. They're going to be bigger now. And dippable! But I don't deal with change well, so we'll see how this goes. Although, if they could remove all metal from the packets, that would we good. Have you ever tossed a fast food bag in the microwave, not realizing one of those little buggers was in there, and then watched the whole thing light up like Fourth of July? Um, neither.

Tea Party time! It seems the movement is all growed up and got themselves a convention. One wonders what their numbers are compared to conventions held on the Left (yes, they have them too!), generally not significantly covered by the media. Centrist dude John Avlon is here again for discussion. I guess 360 has like adopted him now? Meh. I suppose they figure one middle-ly pundit is less work than two partisan ones. Efficient!

John draws the distinction between the crazies and those who have legitimate concerns about the nation's fiscal health. Anderson notes that critics want to know where all this populist outrage was during the Bush years (I think he's talking about me!). John then concedes that a lot of the anger is a reaction to the Obama administration. Hm, I wonder why that would be. Anyway! My only real beef with this segment is that there is no mention of the astroturfing done of the movement. Yes, there is genuine anger. There's also been big bucks making sure it's incited. Also? Dick Armey is mentioned, which now always makes me giggle. Because I'm 12.

On now to a Randi Kaye piece in which we meet Bob Porto, Tea Party activist. So what's his story? Nothing out of the ordinary these days: Business disappeared, bank wants the money back on his home loan, now he's ticked. But I still don't understand what he's protesting. You think liberals aren't outraged about this stuff? The problem is, all I hear is slogans from these people. Big government bad! Freedom good! Let's take our country back! From what though? Says Bob: "We want to instill the fact that the Founding Fathers gave us values, and in those values were the basic foundations that created the greatness that America has experienced." What does that even mean?! Yes, values good!

The only specific we get is that Bob does not like regulations. Like salmonella in your food, do you Bob? Big fan of lead? Do any of these people realize that if we would have had better financial regulations set up (and enforced) years ago, it's very possible none of this mess would have happened? So again, Bob seems like a nice guy and sincere and everything, but I still have no idea what his deal is, other than to be just ticked off that life has screwed him over. Yeah, Bob, join the club. It sucks. Of course, it's very possible Bob was much more detailed during taping and the problem lies with the piece, though I suspect not. Activism is awesome. But there's a difference between getting involved in your government, and simply opposing everything it does.

The "shot" tonight is bye-bye pandas. Tai Shan and Mei Lan are being returned to China. Aw. For those that think our anchor might naturally find the animals adorable (they are!), don't be fooled! Anderson is on record as a panda hater. And when I say "on record," I mean he might have mumbled something not completely complimentary about pandas once and I totally blogged it. The Silver Fox gets by with nothing on my watch!

I thought the show was pretty good again. Ratings haven't been so hot lately though. Hopefully they'll hold strong and not give into the urge to go tabloid. That'll do it.

Labels: , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home

FREE hit counter and Internet traffic statistics from