Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The N-Word, Mosques In The Vicinity Of Ground Zero, & Blagojevich's Hair--Oh My!

Hi everyone. I'm back. Kinda. Sort of. A little bit. I've got the blogging malaise, people! While the blame for this certainly doesn't completely lie with the 360 kids, the current state of the show sure isn't helping me much. They're stuck in the news cycle again, going all out on the sensational-type stories that make cable news suck so much. March to the beat of your own drummer, 360!

Yes, I am being Ms. Crankypants. It's just frustrating to see the news cycle dominated by nontroversies, or even controversies that no one will remember a couple months from now. Meanwhile, important stories (both from a humanitarian and foreign policy angle) like the Pakistan floods get the short end of the stick. To their credit, 360 had a good report on the subject last night. Tonight it was relegated to the Bulletin.

When it comes down to it, I'd like to be informed by my news. And if I can't get that, being entertained would at least be a consolation prize. Lately I don't feel like I'm getting much of either (though admittedly the whole "terror babies" debacle has been rather hilarious). As I said, I'm being Ms. Crankypants. It's not as though they haven't done any good work in the past week or so. I'm just tired of my quirky little show slumming it down with the rest of cable news. Be better 360! Because you are. And now, the bullet points:
  • Oh! I forgot to mention our anchor situation. Anderson Cooper has left us, no doubt to do something awesome. I come back and he skedaddles. I see how this is. No, no, it's fine. We don't need him. Yesterday we enjoyed the presence of the walking toothpaste commercial, otherwise known as Sanjay Gupta (a doctah!), and today the studio is being held down by John Roberts. He's pulling double anchor duty and no doubt totally messing up his sleep cycle. That's how much he loves us, people! We don't need no Silver Fox. So there.
  • Is the Dr. Laura saga over now? Please? Yeah, I'm probably being naive. Honestly, I don't really care about this story. I feel like I'm watching the Imus debacle all over again. Yay, Dr. Laura is ending her radio show. But it doesn't mean she's learned anything. And it really doesn't mean she's going away. We have to talk about it though because it's one of those "it" stories. That and the fact that she was on Larry King. So...yeah. By the way, the N-word was not even the most offensive part of what she said.
  • Okay, just in case we're not all clear, the First Amendment does not give you the right to say whatever the hell you want over commercial airwaves. Radio is a business. If Dr. Laura wants to spew her crap on a street corner, well, she's perfectly within her right. Also? Since when does the First Amendment protect you against criticism? Someone get this woman to a ninth grade civics class! Good lord.
  • Obviously we had to have discussion of all this. (Obviously!) Joining us were John Ridley and--wait for it--Al Sharpton. How original. Kudos to Ridley for smacking down the First Amendment nonsense.
  • John Roberts: "Reverend Sharpton, she insists that she wasn't dissing anyone, that she was just trying to make a point. Do you buy that?" I'm just quoting because it cracks me up. Remember when you used to use "dissing" and felt all badass?
  • A semi-related video for you: How to tell people they sound racist:

  • Surprise! The oil spill situation actually isn't all hunky-dory. Wow, who could have seen this coming? Anyway, while I give the 360 kids legit kudos for following up on this story, the fact that they keep going to people like James Carville and Doug Brinkley (who joined us tonight) instead of actual experts is frustrating. Seriously, a political analyst and a presidential historian to talk about an environmental disaster? What's wrong with this picture?
  • Now to my favorite subject: the Cordoba House community center, often erroneously referred to as the 'Ground Zero Mosque.' I find this whole situation almost as depressing as a humanitarian disaster. I keep hoping this country is going to evolve, yet for every step we seem to take, we just take two more back.
  • Where to even begin with the stupidity? Well, first of all, what I (and the majority of the country) think should be absolutely irrelevant. Why? Because this is and should have remained a local story. But now we are at like Code Orange on the Idiocy Scale. The center (which yes, will contain a mosque) isn't even going to be built on Ground Zero. There are already mosques in the area. There are even Muslim services held in the Pentagon. What about the hallowed ground argument? Well, if there weren't things like a gentleman's club the same distance away, and if there wasn't going to be a shopping mall literally put in the ground at Ground Zero, maybe I'd listen to that argument.
  • The fact of the matter is that I have yet to hear a rational reason not to build the center. It's only insensitive if you equate all of Islam with those who attacked us. Terrorists were responsible for that horrible day, not Muslims. Muslims died too. Muslims helped in the rescue effort. As for the wishes of the 9-11 families, yes, some are against this center, but not all. Why does the default seem to be siding with those against? For Pete's sake, the Imam was even Bush administration-approved. Again, there is no rational argument here.
  • Randi Kaye had a pretty good piece that seems to mirror this Salon posting of how the whole "Ground Zero Mosque" story came to be. If you guess a right-wing blogger was in the mix, you win the prize!
  • Said blogger, Pamela Geller, is here! Her blog is named Atlas Shrugs, so you know she's going to be perfectly reasonable. Yes, indeedy. The interview, I must say, was unsatisfying. They had all this back and forth with John noting that the building is two blocks away, and with Geller claiming that the real issue is that the building was part of the attack. I kept waiting for John to point out that there are Muslim services held in the Pentagon. But no dice.
  • I like how Geller says that calling her anti-Muslim would be slanderous, and then she goes on to say that "the Muslim terrorists were practicing pure Islam, original Islam."
  • Geller: "And, frankly, we're all 9/11 families, because they just took the hit for us." Um, no. Just because they weren't targeted doesn't give you the right to call yourself a 9/11 family.
  • Hey 360! Your guest has done some post-show blogging. I'm not going to link to her little hate-fest, but I shall give you a recap. First of all, did you know you did a "puff piece" and are "framing the narrative in a most disingenuous way"? Also, did you know CNN stands for Crescent News Network? I had no idea! So hey, maybe next time if you're going to have on such a hater (and I just perused her filth--she's a hater), maybe make more of an effort to call her on her shit, lest you give this kind of behavior credibility, mmkay?

  • Politics! Roland Martin, David Gergen, and Ed Rollins join us. And...I don't even want to blog this. I was gonna, but I think I'm done.
  • We had Rod Blagojevich news as well. Not really any complaints there.
  • I think my commentary on the show pretty much says it all. I'm glad they did the timeline. I wish the Geller interview would have gone better.

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