Richard Holbrooke Dies, Keeping Obama & McCain Honest On Tax Cuts, And Haiti Coverage That Is Unfortunately Focused On Sarah Palin
Hi everyone! I'm baaaack. I know you all missed me oh so very much, especially the 360 kids. I'm assuming their lives are very empty without random criticism from people on the interwebs. Anyhoo, the news cycle keeps on spinning. Time to jump back into the bullet points, already pre-inspected for adequate levels of awesomeness:
- We begin with the sad death of Richard Holbrooke, US special representative to Afghanistan and Pakistan. He fell ill on Friday and was diagnosed with a tear of his aorta, which was subsequently repaired surgically. Unfortunately, it was not enough to save him. When I first heard the news on Friday I feared this might be the outcome. Aortic dissections are serious, serious business.
- Paul Begala, David Gergen, and Jill Dougherty joined us to talk about the diplomat's career, including the peace agreement he brokered among warring factions in Bosnia. Apparently he was one tough dude.
- Reportedly, Holbrooke's last words were to his Pakistani surgeon: "You've got to stop this war in Afghanistan." Wow.
- We were also joined by Sanjay Gupta for the medical aspect. I think it's actually been a while since he's played this role for us. I remember when he used to pop up all the time to explain every little irrelevant medical thing under the sun. I actually didn't need him for this one because I know way more about this subject than I would like. But the good doctor hits on the basics of aortic tears. They're pretty rare (often occurring due to genetic predisposition), but massively scary. You might remember that John Ritter died from the same condition. The only thing I'd mention that Sanjay didn't is that an aortic tear can actually begin in the abdomen, so stomach pain can be an indicator. Thus endeth Eliza's medical lesson for the day.
- Moving on now to the tax deal. Your blogger is not at all happy. I understand why Obama is doing what he's doing, but do we really think the cuts for the wealthy are going to be allowed to expire two years from now? It will always be something. Also? The Republicans aren't doing much to convince me they're not evil.
- The 360 kids are getting adorable with their montages, aren't they? We've got some montaging fools on our hands! First we've got clips of Campaign Obama repeatedly pledging to do away with the tax cuts for the richest Americans. That alone is excellent, but then hilarity ensues because McCain decided to go on Fox News and call out Obama for flip flipping. Yes, this was an idea he had!
- At this point all you can really do is shake your head. Oh, grandpa. We know what's coming: the 360 kids jumped in the Wayback Machine to bring us an awesome montage of McCain 2000 pretty much saying the exact same things as Campaign Obama. Oh, lollers. I miss McCain 2000. He was all sane and stuff.
- For discussion, we've got Erick Erickson, James Carville, and Cornell Belcher. I sooo do not care what these people have to say. But here we are. Of note is Carville and Erickson getting into a really annoying argument about whether or not the tax cuts for the wealthy worked, and the economic realities under Bush and Clinton. And viewers would want to subject themselves to this crap, why? Jesus, Mary, and Joseph.
- But an interesting thing happened! Just as I was yelling at my TV about how pointless these segments are, especially without fact-checking, we went back to Anderson Cooper live for...some fact-checking. Sweet. Our anchor tries to play it off like he "always" holds his guests accountable. Oh, Silver Fox. But that's alright, because I love the way you lie. I love the way you lie. Er, actually, no I don't. And actually, I believe he really believes he does fact-check all the time. He's just wrong. Effort very much appreciated in this case though. Cookies for everyone!
- In case you're still on the edge of your seat, yeah, things were better under Clinton. Point Carville.
- Joe Johns talked about Bernie Madoff's son committing suicide:
- The "shot" has apparently permanently moved to the middle of the show. I don't deal with change well, but don't worry about me, people, I'll be okay. Tonight we get to hear Vladimir Putin sing "Blueberry Hill." Well, everyone thinks that's what he's singing anyway. Either way, this "shot" is a win because we get to hear Anderson say 'Poodin.' Yes, I am 12.
- Tom Foreman took care of the Crime and Punishment portion of the evening:
- Next we have Gary Tuchman reporting live from Haiti. Yay! But he's mostly focusing on Sarah Palin. Oh. Ohhh. Well, that's rather disappointing, isn't it? What's ironic (and TOTALLY UNSURPRISING) is that she's given exclusive access to Fox News, so it's not like Gary has a huge amount to say about her trip anyway. Dear CNN, maybe just let your reporter cover the story and ignore the publicity hound. Some of the Haitians are tired of the poverty porn.
- Gary did talk briefly about the situation on the ground in the country (not good), and the violence spawned by election unrest. We're told to remember the name Sweet Mickey Martelly, a man whose supporters believe is a victim of voter fraud. I hope we hear more about this throughout the week. (They didn't have Gary's 360 report up yet, but below is a similar earlier spot.)
- Tonight's RidicuList focused on Sal Alosi of the New York Jets. The coach totally tripped Nolan Carroll. Classy. But more bemusing to me than the entire segment, was this quote from our anchor: "Of course, the offending knee and the offender attached to it has since been identified as a fan of 'Hard Knocks' on HBO. I don't know if you watch the show. I do. I've been watching the Jets a lot lately but this is one hard knock I never expected to see, although frankly we have seen unsportsmanlike behavior from coaches before." You've been watching the Jets a lot lately? Um...okay. Because, you know, when I think football, I think Anderson Cooper. He's always professed such a love of sports!
- That'll do it. The show was okay. Love the montages of accountability. Was pleasantly surprised by the post-punditry fact-check (can you maybe do that all the time?). I hope Gary will be bringing us some non Palin-related Haiti news the rest of the week.