January 22, 2011

Keith Olbermann’s Final ‘Countdown’ at MSNBC Has the Stench of Comcast All Over It

Last night, Friday, January 21, in what I know must have been a surprise to much of his audience, Keith Olbermann announced this was the last “Countdown with Keith Olbermann,” thanked his viewers and those who had helped put the show on the air over the years, and then calmly read a James Thurber story named “The Scotty Who Knew Too Much,” the moral of which was: “It is better to ask some of the questions than to know all the answers.” It was an odd, unsettling moment in the context of Keith’s departure, and it’s still not clear if Olbermann quit or MSNBC fired him; the only official announcement from MSNBC being an exercise in bland Corpospeak opacity:

“MSNBC and Keith Olbermann have ended their contract. The last broadcast of Countdown with Keith Olbermann will be this evening. MSNBC thanks Keith for his integral role in MSNBC’s success and we wish him well in his future endeavors.”

Richard Adams, writing in The Guardian (UK), apparently believes Olbermann was fired:

“Keith Olbermann, the liberal, outspoken anchor of MSNBC’s Countdown show, had his contract dramatically terminated by the US cable news network’s parent company NBC on Friday night.

“Olbermann had two years of a four year contract remaining, worth an estimated $30m, and was the network’s highest-rated personality, responsible in large part for MSNBC’s orientation as a liberal, Democratic-leaning channel.”

Although Comcast ferociously denies they had anything to do with this – and it is barely possible Keith simply refused to work for them and ended his contract by mutual agreement with MSNBC — the juxtaposition of FCC approval to take over NBC/Universal and Olbermann’s blink-quick departure reek with the stench of conservative mega-corporation Comcast sending a chilling message to the cable news network’s employees – especially air personalities Rachel Maddow, Ed Schultz and Lawrence O’Donnell – that if they go too ‘progressive’ in their shows, if they pull back the curtain on corporate malfeasance and corruption with too much zeal and fact, they could find their contracts suddenly cancelled as well.

(The new prime-time MSNBC line-up, BTW, is O’Donnell in Keith’s slot at 8:00ET, with Ed Schultz moving into O’Donnell’s current 10:00ET berth. Rachel will stay in her current time slot.)

Thankfully, Keith is still owed $14 million on his contract, so he will have a chance to take a breather, review his options, and make a comeback elsewhere, perhaps even at the struggling third-place CNN. As Rob Soto at speculates:

“As for our opinion on what’s next for the liberal anchor, don’t be surprised if Olbermann ends up on CNN sooner than later. Their ratings are in the tank, their new Parker/Spitzer series is a disaster (with Kathleen Parker reportedly not very happy being there) and is a poor lead-in to the new Piers Morgan Show. The entire evening lineup needs a makeover, and fast. Olbermann reportedly still has two years on his contract and will get paid his annual salary of about $7 million. However, what is not known at this point if he has a non-compete clause in his contract that would prohibit him from appearing on a rival station until his two-year contract is over.”

VIDEO: Olbermann signs off on final Countdown

I’ve been a regular viewer and fan of Keith Olbermann’s since he first started Countdown eight years ago and I hope he shows up on the TV machine again soon; to paraphrase his sign-off, and mix in some Dylan Thomas, I wish him good luck, and I know he won’t go gently into that good night.

© 2011 RS Janes.

October 7, 2010

The Tattlesnake – Unuttered Utterations and Which Witch is Which? Edition

Tattlesnake’s ‘Media Insider’ says cool cats and kittens should not be swayed by the ‘official’ story regarding Rick Sanchez’s bouncing from the Corporatist News Network otherwise known as CNN. The reason Jon Stewart’s hilarious portrayals of Sanchez as something of a babbling idiot were so devastating is because, well, he’s something of a babbling idiot. (As evidenced by his comments about Stewart’s alleged ‘bigotry’ and Jewish ownership of the media.) Word is, CNN has been looking for a reason to dump this ratings-tank boob without having to pay off his contract. Like most Big Media bobbing heads, Sanchez’s contract no doubt had a standard clause that said if he did anything egregiously immoral, racist or embarrassing in public that had the potential of bringing scorn upon CNN, such as shaving his public hair on live TV or wearing a hood and announcing his selection as a Grand Imperial Wizard of the KKK, he could be summarily dismissed and his contract immediately cancelled with the balance due unpaid. CNN knew its man – with Rick’s fetid history of on-air loopiness, it was only a matter of time until Sanchez crossed the line, and this just happened to be that moment. Of course, Sanchez has now issued the stock Pro Forma Apology to the Universe, (you’ll find it between ‘Memo, Traditional Format’ and ‘Resume, Classic Form’ at your local Big Box stationery store), and eagerly looks forward to his “new future of opportunities” somewhere else. That ‘somewhere else’ will probably be the graveyard shift at Fox Business Channel where Roger Ailes has provided a comfortable if little-watched retirement village for dimbulb dogmatists who have bottomed out elsewhere in MediaLand. Here’s to not seeing you again, Rick!

vampira_odonaRepublican Tea Party senatorial candidate Christine O’Donnell, when not busy denying she’s a witch, told Fox News she was refraining from national campaigning to focus on the concerns of Delawareans. (That would be the denizens of tiny Delaware, not a race of talking plants in “Star Trek-The Next Generation,” although any confusion is completely understandable.) Howsomever, as Rachel Maddow recently exposed, the Anointed Chipmunk has not been doing much campaigning in Joe Biden’s home turf, either; no public events scheduled, nor interviewing forays with the local media. Is this evidence that she’s given up, facing a 20-point deficit in the polls and broad exposure of her two decades of public nuttiness? Her campaigning seems to be confined solely to running a batty ad where she informs voters up front she’s not a member of a coven (she only ‘dabbled’ in witchcraft, folks), and that she’s just like them, when they haven’t taken their meds. Aside from the roasting over hot flames any Dem candidate would receive from the rabid right for confessing even a fraction of Christine’s abuses of sanity, God Girl’s latest revelation that she’s been receiving ‘classified’ information that China is planning some kind of invasion of the US isn’t really classified or new. Your Tattlesnake has a couple of pals who were paid to teach English in China, only this was not the standard grammar-and-syntax English most of us think of when the subject comes up. Instead, what they were really hired to teach was street-American patois and the intricacies of our popular culture. (One friend spent a whole class on Elvis Presley, for example.) The Chinese ‘invasion’ is no secret, either, only it won’t be military – as reported by several financial publications, the Chinese are using their abundant hoard of US dollars to buy up large tracts of American land; it seems reasonable, more reasonable than Christine, anyway, that the Communist tyrants in Beijing plan to use that real estate to set up factories to manufacture their cheap junk here, once the US labor laws have been sufficiently weakened by Christine’s GOP to allow the kinds of unsafe job conditions and meager salaries Chinese workers endure. (Or maybe they’ll just use prisoners, as they mostly do back home.) What the little Non-Witch misses is that a good Christopublican corporation, Walmart, is the chief importer into the US of Chinese-made goods; her Republican Party has been the main driving force behind suspending tariffs and other regulations to prevent foreign nations from having this kind of power within our country; and notorious picked-by-Jesus ‘president’ Junior Bush borrowed $2 billion a day to pay for his bumbled, illegal war in Iraq and lavish tax cuts for his wealthy family and their rich friends. If ODon weren’t already losing large in the polls, it might behoove her opponent to point this out – yet another thudding contradiction that is going to kill the GOP in future elections.

– Why is it that this morning, an atheist
did not see an image of Richard Dawkins in her burnt English Muffin, or Madalyn Murray O’Hair in her Lay’s Sour Cream & Onion potato chip? For that matter, Buddhists have not reported visions of Siddhartha in the swirls of their Cream of Wheat, nor have Jews spotted Moses in bowls of chopped chicken liver. For some reason, only Christians, and especially those of the odiferous American variety, seem to have this penchant for apprehending the Christopublican-sanctioned Jeffrey Hunter Jesus in everything from Melba toast to grilled cheese sandwiches. What does that say about the dominant religious delusion in the US? “Whoa — I see God in my snacks!”

© 2010 RS Janes.

May 30, 2010

CNN: BP’s ‘Top Kill’ Has Failed

CNN reported Sunday morning (5/30) that BP’s ‘Top Kill’ scheme to staunch the flow of oil gushing from the seabed of the Gulf of Mexico has failed. (Read the CNN story and see the video here.)

Next up, BP plans yet another ‘cap’ that won’t work any better than the first one.

Carol Browner, former head of the EPA and an adviser to President Obama, has confirmed that this is the worst environmental catastrophe in American history.

For an appreciation of just how horrible and far-reaching is this disaster, read “10 Things You Need (But Don’t Want) To Know About the BP Oil Spill,” by Dana Perdomo, Alternet, here.

I have to wonder: How much is BP playing us? I’ll bet gas will be up to $5 a gallon by the end of summer and it will be blamed on the big oil spill – BP and their corporate colleagues will rake in even more billions while the oil continues to flow from the bottom of the Gulf.

The only thing that will stop this from happening again is criminal prosecutions for negligent homicide, gross malfeasance, and fraud, with senior BP execs going to jail and the US government seizing their assets and disallowing any past, present or future profits from this mess. Of course, common sense would also dictate that all offshore drilling leases should be cancelled.

I won’t hold my breath, made shorter by air pollution from the byproducts of BP’s main source of income.

December 31, 2009

The Tattlesnake – Odd Quotes at Year’s End Edition

Random blips on the mental radar selected randomly, with commentary in brackets:

“One of the very difficult parts of the decision I made on the financial crisis was to use hardworking people’s money to help prevent there to be a crisis.”
– George W. Bush, Jan. 12, 2009. [Translation to English from Bushspeak: 'I used your money to bailout my family and wealthy friends on Wall Street and in banking because my administration didn't do its job of properly regulating them.']

“Um, you guys said that we, um, did this for the show.”
– Falcon “Balloon Boy” Heene, to his parents during a TV interview, Oct. 15, 2009. [This should be the motto of the Republican Party.]

“I think we all have a screw loose in this business.”
– Kyra Phillips, inadvertently speaking the truth on CNN, Oct. 9, 2009. [This should be the motto of the US national media.]

“Give me a waterboard, Dick Cheney, and one hour, and I’ll have him confess to the Sharon Tate murders.”
– Jesse Ventura, former MN Gov. and Navy SEAL, on CNN, May 11, 2009.
[This line should be emblazoned across the bottom of the screen every time a clip of Cheney speaking is shown.]

“I don’t know anything about cars.”
– Edward E. Whitacre, Jr., when he took over as CEO of GM, June 9, 2009. ['Gee, how could we be going bankrupt?']

“You can’t convince me that the founding fathers wouldn’t allow you to secede.”
– Glenn Beck, April 14, 2009. [They might make an exception in Beck's case.]

“So you need to get deep into why he is what he is, instead of just saying, ‘Well, he’s a homosexual so how do I handle him, and how do I be Christian?’ Well, I think you ought to tell him, ‘Listen, son, you know, here’s what the Bible says about this, and it’s called an abomination before God, so I’ve got to tell you the truth because I love you.’ That’s what I think.”
– Pat Robertson’s advice to the parents of a gay son, on CBN’s “The 700 Club” June 9, 2009. [Right after this broadcast, Pat ordered out for a BLT.]

“An Inuit hunter asked the local missionary priest: ‘If I did not know about God and sin, would I go to hell?’ ‘No,’ said the priest, ‘not if you did not know.’ ‘Then why,’ asked the Inuit earnestly, ‘did you tell me?’”
– Annie Dillard

“Ted Kennedy’s dad, by the way, Joe Kennedy, sympathetic to Hitler, sympathetic to the Nazis.”
– Rush Limbaugh, as quoted by Simon Maloy at Media Matters’ LimbaughWire, Aug. 8, 2009. [George W. Bush's grandfather, Prescott Bush, helped finance the Nazis even after WWII began, and was forced by the US government to stop. Whatever Joe Kennedy's sympathies, he never contributed financial backing to Hitler's Third Reich.]

“The Army, the Marines do not have uniforms that fit that big an ass.”
–The always classy Limbaugh again, commenting on Hillary Clinton, Sept. 22, 2009, also via Media Matters. [This from the manly Lard Lad whose 'anal cyst' was too big to allow him to wear the uniform.]

“Nearly half of all US children, including an overwhelming majority of black children, will eat meals at some point during their childhood paid for by food stamps, an indicator of poverty, a study showed Monday.”
AFP, “Half of US kids depend on food stamps during childhood: study,” Nov. 2, 2009. The study was done by the American Medical Association’s Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine. [Out of a population of about 300 million, 66 million Americans now collect food stamps, a record high number. Nearly 50 percent of US children need food stamps to eat regularly.]

“The urgent necessity is to make a decision — whether or not it is right.”
– David Broder’s sage advice to Obama on Afghanistan, proving once again why Uncle Fudd is the dean of doomed Washington punditry, from the Washington Post, Nov. 13, 2009. [Say, Dave, if your life were on the line, would you be this cavalier about whether Obama's decision was wrong or right?]

“The white Christian heterosexual married male is the epitome of everything right with America!”
– Michael Savage, from his radio show June 17, 2009, as quoted by Media Matters. [Okay, so when does the former Michael Alan Weiner come out of the closet?]


November 13, 2009

Dobbs Quits Before He’s Fired


September 12, 2009

The Tattlesnake – Stossel Gets Foxed Up and ‘Lord’ Boustany Fizzles Edition

Plus: Obama’s Playing Health Care Reform Chess with the Death Party – and He’s Winning

It’s About Time: Pretend journalist and right-wing dipthong John Stossel and his gay-porn-star-mustache have joined Fox News, his ideological home for the past twenty years anyway. Actually, the AP article says he’ll have a regular show on the moribund Fox Business Channel – which has an audience of about 150 poor wretches employed by owner Rupert Murdoch – and pop up on Fox News occasionally. The story-behind-the-story? ABC News couldn’t wait to get rid of this strutting little pimple and they’ve been gently pushing him out the door for the better part of a decade. After years of bellowing the tiresome “Give me a break!” to the point where some of his viewers volunteered to administer one to his neck, Stossel is finally getting his – hee, hee — ‘big break’ on Fox. The spoiled Stossel’s lowest and most hilarious moment at ABC came when ‘Mr. Honest Libertarian’ admitted on-air that he had a luxury vacation beach house that had been flattened by a hurricane that he then had the evil government pay to rebuild through just the kind of program for rich idiots like himself that he railed against on a regular basis on ABC’s “20/20.” Hey, he didn’t like stealing the taxpayer’s money, but as long as the program was available, what the hell? And he’d do it again, too, he said, because he really loved that luxury beach house. Never occurred to his hypocritical ass to pay for it out of his own fat wallet. Give me a f*cking break indeed. Have a nice time working for Rupert and Roger Ailes, Johnny – maybe you they’ll let you trade quips with Glenn Beck and Orly Taitz about Obama’s birth certificate and do in-depth interviews with ‘morans’ at teabag rallies — you know, real news.

The GOP Sleep Doctor: Why did the GOP pick a potato-headed southern doctor in a bad suit who resembles a Hicksville undertaker to give the Republican response to Obama’s health care speech? Easy, they knew they didn’t have anyone with the firepower to outdo BHO, so they went the other way and dredged up this boring drone named Charles “Lord” Boustany who by some cosmic accident was elected to a Congressional seat from Louisiana. Well, at least the Republicans avoided the embarrassment of another humiliating pratfall by a Bobby “Big Checks!” Jindal, the lame Louisiana governor who is now running around the state taking credit for Obama’s stimulus money that he once indignantly said he would refuse. Most viewers probably ignored Boustany, the same way you’d turn away at a whiff of formaldehyde, but he was actually entertaining, in a demented GOP way – the Republican’s puny rant was obviously written before Obama addressed Congress, so Lord B. was getting pissy over things Obama had already clarified in his speech. Not that truth has ever been any hindrance to GOP BS, but seeing it in such stark contrast to what Obama had just said a quarter-hour before was hilarious.


September 9, 2009

The Tattlesnake – Obama Must Stand Up, Van Goes Down, and Comedy King Beck Edition

“If you tell the same story five times, it’s true.”
– Larry Speakes, Ronald Reagan’s White House Press Secretary.

It’s a Given: President Obama must strongly stick up for a public option in his health care speech tonight or the game’s over. The Dems will lose big in 2010, maybe even a majority in the Senate, while Obama himself will be marginalized by the right, abandoned by his progressive base, and become a one-term president, battered into a cartoonish wimp by right-wing lies and smears. We’re begging you BHO – bring out your inner FDR; boil the corporate moonshiners in some salty Truman oil. Even if you don’t manage to pass a health care reform bill, at least stand up for yourself and those who supported you!

Camp Whiggy-Watchee: Howsomever, knees are knocking at Republican HQ these days at the idea that the GOP will be heading into the 2010 election without a solid trusted leader of the party and dragging the chock-full-o-nuts baggage of the screwy-squirrel teabaggers with them. While the shouters and doubters are good public theater for astroturf airtime to dilute health care reform, independent and MOR voters – most of us, in other words – are put off by these nattering ninnies yelling ‘Nazi’ at anybody who dares disagree with them. The TV shots of men armed with rifles and handguns at the various ‘protests’ didn’t help improve the GOP image of maturity and stability either. (White Ex-Republican Soccer Mom: “How can you trust Republicans when they cater to people like that?”) Outside of Old Dixie, how do you get Congress-Creatures and other GOP detritus elected without the moderates tossing in some votes? The Repos, to their distress, are about to find out the answer – you can’t, at least not without the help of quivering Democrats.

(Speaking of Teabaggers, Here’s Some Free Advice: Dip yourselves in boiling water for ten minutes, then add sugar or lemon to taste.)

Bell Curve to Hell-Care Reform: The Dems will also feel the pain in 2010 if they don’t smarten up their act on health care reform. The unions, as well as many progressive groups, have already said ‘nada’ to putting the ‘GO’ in GOTV in the next election, if a public option isn’t in the final bill. Some (alleged) Dems central to the health care issue – Max Baucus, Harry Reid and their mealy-mouthed, corporate cash compadres – may also feel the heat from the left as real progressives challenge their nominations. Sure, they might still win, but it would cost them a bundle and leave a residue of ill-will, making them easy pickings for the GOP. If somebody like a Gov. Brian Schweitzer challenged Baucus for the Dem nomination, I think Montana primary voters would dump Max in a mixed-cliche New York heartbeat.


August 7, 2009

Lou Dobbs’ Mexican Birth Certificate


July 31, 2009

Right-Wing Talkers: How Low Will They Go?

Sure, they are contemptible, cynical buffoons; drama queen fearmongers scraping the bottom of the barrel for ratings now that the neocon bubble has burst and they likely don’t believe a word they say. (It’s a performance!) Still, how much pure stupidity and racism do they have to spew before sponsors pull their ads and an outraged public demands their dismissal?


May 2, 2009

Stupid Quote of the Week: Swine Phooey

Filed under: Commentary,Opinion,Quote — Tags: , , , , — RS Janes @ 5:56 am

What does this even mean?

“[Swine flu] has not reached the full potential of what could happen.”
– Barbara Starr, CNN’s Pentagon Correspondent, May 1, 2009.

Or maybe it has:

“The swine flu outbreak that has alarmed the world for a week now appears less ominous, with the virus showing little staying power in the hardest-hit cities and scientists suggesting it lacks the genetic fortitude of past killer bugs.”
– Mike Stobbe and David B. Caruso, “Swine Flu May Be Less Potent Than First Feared,” AP, May 1, 2009.

January 23, 2009

The Tattlesnake – Random Notes on Bush’s Exit, Obama’s Entrance, and the Dying of the Right Edition

Part the One

– Wow. Obama’s been president for three days and already he’s signed Executive Orders closing Gitmo; banning torture; suspending those odious ‘military tribunal’ trials; ending revolving-door lobbying; preventing lobbyists from occupying senior positions in agencies they once lobbied; requiring ethics courses for all of his staff (and he took the course himself); limiting the use of secrecy classification, even imposing Justice Department oversight on his ability to classify documents secret; and expanded government transparency, directing his administration to err on the side of Freedom of Information Act requests rather than the other way around. He also froze the pay of senior White House staff and informed them that as long as he’s president, none of them will quit and then turn around and lobby their friends still in his government, reversing years of Bush/Cheney corruption, sleaze, secrecy and illegality.

What’s more, he did all of this while acting like a grown-up, speaking in full, clear, grammatical sentences, and taking his job seriously. It will be difficult, but pleasant, to adjust to a president who doesn’t have a smirk perpetually playing about his mouth, doesn’t need someone else to run his brain, and can think on his feet. We’ve gone from Barney Fife to Denzel Washington, and the change is striking. I’ll be criticizing Obama in the future I’m sure, but for now all I can say is: Wow. I think he’s one of those rare politicians who really meant what he said when he was campaigning.

– The Dying of the Right 1: While the vast majority of America is celebrating our new competent president, the peevish drones over at Fox News, led by Chris “My Dad’s the Journalist!” Wallace, have been foaming at the mouth over whether Obama’s really president, since Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts bumbled the reading of the oath on January 20th and Obama followed him. This is the largest load of unprocessed fertilizer since the questioning of Obama’s birth certificate. (Hint to all the ‘reporters’ at Fox: As well as the certificate itself, long available online and sanctioned as genuine by fact-checking organizations, there was also a birth announcement in the Honolulu Advertiser newspaper welcoming Barack H. Obama Jr. into the world in 1961.) In fact, the law says that, as the victor in the last election, Obama was officially president at Noon last Tuesday, whether he was sworn in or not, and documents were signed after the inaugural ceremony signifying that official transfer of power. Just to head off frivolous lawsuits from tinfoil-hat pinheads, Obama had Roberts drop by the White House the next day and redo the swearing in. Incredibly, some of the bloviating scoundrels claimed this was a – oooohhhh — ‘secret ceremony’! Horse pucky. The press was invited in, still photos were taken and an audio track was recorded – it was as secret as an American Idol audition. Only the TV cameras weren’t involved, and that was likely because Obama wanted this formality completed quickly and didn’t want to get bogged down with silly questions from the Usual Media Meatheads like Fox News. (“Mr. President, will you now come clean about your place of birth? Weren’t you really born in Kenya or Cuba or Mexico? Isn’t it true that Patrice Lumumba is your real father and Squeaky Fromme is your real mother?” )

– The Dying of the Right 2: Rush “Rhymes with Limbo” Limbaugh, who once went apoplectic criticizing liberals as ‘unpatriotic America-haters’ because he had convinced himself they wanted the Little King to fail in Iraq, has now joined the ranks of unpatriotic America-haters, according to his lights. On his radio show the other day, he confessed openly, “I hope Obama fails.” Aside from the fact that about 83 percent of the public doesn’t agree with him, even some the brain-dead rubes who still give any credence to the great blubbery gasbag, suffering under the GOP economy and dying in the senseless Republican wars Rushbo helped peddle, had to be appalled by this statement. He wants the country to go down the drain to what – make the era of conservative Republicans look good? That’s some patriot; George Washington would be proud. Prediction: This is the sort of nasty, psychotic hypocrisy that is losing ratings for the neocon hustlers of the broadcast media and it’s going to result in Limbo being dropped from the airwaves across the country. In eight years, Rush will have lost his syndication deal and will end his miserable existence shouting through a tin can at a little 1000-watt daytimer in North Peckerwood, Alabama. (“Hey, Limbaugh, y’all forgot to take out the trash from the studio last night!” “I’ll get it, boss, I’ll get it!” “Yeah, and don’t forget to mop them washrooms extra good while you’re at it.” )

– Laugh-A-Bullroar: If you were watching the inaugural ceremonies on CNN or MSNBC, did you notice they cut the mics picking up the crowd sounds when Bush, Cheney and the Republicans were introduced? And the band was cranked up extra loud to try and drown out the tidal wave of booing. Earlier in the day, even addle-pated ‘Morning’ Joe Scarborough remarked on the two to three million Obama fans flooding into Washington that the GOP had better pay attention to this political shift or risk being the minority party far into the future. Forget Dimmy and Dick, they’re gone, but I wonder if those Congressional Republicans got the point? (Some of them nearly lost their safe seats last election.)


December 29, 2008

The Tattlesnake – Is Gov. Rod Getting Rammed? Edition

What’s the Republican Political Angle to the Blagojevich Prosecution?

Is Illinois’ F**king Golden Boy Merely the Stooge for a Partisan GOP Attack on Obama and the Dems?

Had Enough Leading Questions Already?

While some may choose others – such as Billo, Hannity, the Savage Wiener or Radio’s Anal Cyst Rush — as a reliable weathervane of what not to believe, I have my own preference – second-tier CNN newsreader Kyra Phillips. In the case of the first four names, we know they are regurgitating their daily Talking Points from the Ministry of DoublePlusGood Neocon Truth, but Kyra aspires to a level of journalistic integrity that renders her eructations of state-sanctioned Big Media hooey more entertaining – and she’s easier on the eyes and ears than the Cave Boys.

I first noticed Kyra’s particular talent in this regard back in May of 2003, following Junior’s Commander-Cody-with-a-Codpiece moment on the deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln and his hilariously boneheaded ‘Mission Accomplished’ ramblings afterward that ‘major combat operations’ had been completed in Iraq.

The Most Trusted Name in Newspeak had Kyra onboard the carrier that day and, with time to fill and a Glorious Victory in Eastasia to celebrate, she was given a free ride on a US Navy jet at the taxpayers’ expense. After landing, the breathless and excited Ms. Phillips gushed — only verbally, as far as I know — over the sea-going military, jet pilots, aircraft carriers and the whole goddamned Good War thingie – we had kicked Iraqi behind and all was right-wing with the world! But I noticed something in Kyra’s flushed smiling face and twittering-with-glee voice – why, it reminded me of a time decades before when I ran into a notorious groupie just hours after she had ‘balled’ (late ’60s slang term for copulation) every member of her favorite band! Of course, the video of Bush’s dumb publicity stunt is only useful now as a platform to launch a thousand jokes, and I’m sure Kyra’s embarrassing orgiastic spurt of militaristic slathering, wearing a flight helmet, no less, has been filed in the root cellar at CNN never to be seen again.

In the years since, whenever Kyra decides to editorialize the news, whether it be Rudy Giuliani’s popularity with Dixie-Fried Republicans, Fred Thompson’s manly irresistibility to voters, or Sarah Palin guaranteeing a big McCain win with the womenfolk, I have sure knowledge that whichever way Kyra blows, so to speak, the opposite is true.

This came up again a few weeks ago as the news of Scooter Libby prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald’s December 9th arrest of Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich blanketed the airwaves like an all-day Chicago blizzard. There was Kyra, frowning eyebrows crawling toward one another, serious-minded caterpillars an omen of the bad news to come, hyperventilating that the Blago scandal was “ten times worse than Watergate,” an attitude likely shared by some of her second-string Big Media cable colleagues but not expressed in so grandiose and historic a phrase.

Really, Kyra, ‘ten times worse than Watergate’? Hint to Phillips’ fevered brainpan: Blago didn’t have a private ‘Plumbers’ force breaking into his political opponents’ offices, he didn’t suborn perjury, he didn’t claim executive privilege to protect himself, he didn’t have a slush fund with millions of dollars in it to pay off criminals in his employ, and any scandals he’s alleged to be involved in are fairly pedestrian examples of political corruption and not a Constitutional crisis for the nation.

Perhaps she was taking her cue from Fitzgerald, who buzzed that Blago was on a “crime spree.” Whoa! Al Capone went on ‘crime sprees’ such as the infamous St. Valentine’s Day Massacre – Blago’s babbling about wringing cash out of various politicians and bigwigs comes nowhere near that level of violent wrongdoing.

Whatever Blago’s crimes, no one died, no one was injured, he didn’t start any unnecessary wars based on lies, he didn’t authorize torture or the waste of billions of dollars in taxpayer money through no-bid contracts, he didn’t order Ken Blackwell to finagle the Ohio vote in 2004 to shoehorn Junior back into the presidency, he didn’t conspire to steal an election and jail the winner, as in the Don Siegelman case in Alabama, all of which seem to me to be much more serious than these routine instances of alleged malfeasance by Blagojevich.

But there’s more to this story than has been unearthed by the corporate BM, using the telescope from the wrong end, as usual.

Here are a few facts that have been missed in the rush to convict Blago:


November 30, 2008

The Tattlesnake – Post-It Notes From the Underground Edition

Riff, Raff and Other Chaff

“For your information, I would like to ask a question.”
– Samuel Goldwyn

Worried about Obama’s experience as a leader? He just ran an organization for two years that had outlets in all fifty states, took in over $600 million dollars, and successfully completed its goal, against long odds. Compare his performance to the overpaid touts on Wall Street and the dunderheads of the Big Three US auto corporations, begging for bailouts.

Latest Hot Under-the-Door Rumor: Word is, Al Gore is topping Obama’s list of nominees for the next Supreme Court vacancy. This means Big Al could be there every day, within spitting distance of three of the five justices who denied him the presidency in 2000. (Does the irony never stop?) Also supposedly on the short list: University of Chicago Professor Cass Sunstein, US District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor, Georgia SC Chief Justice Leah Ward Sears, fired Bush prosecutor David Iglesias, and Scooter Libby prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald.

Speaking of the ‘high’ court, 88-year-old Justice John Paul Stevens is alleged to be aching to retire, as is Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 75, who is in poor health. Antonin Scalia is getting up there at 72, and has no intention of quitting, but his health is said to be questionable. Anthony Kennedy is also 72, but in better shape than Scalia. Obama could name as many as four new SC justices during his term.

MSNBC’s loudmouthed sometime-neocon ‘Morning’ Joe Scarborough has been consistently offending his colleagues, his viewers and his bosses. Plus his ratings are soaking in bilgewater. The ‘Countdown’ is on – how long until NBC management buys out Joe’s contract and packs him on his way? (Stephanie Miller and other able portside replacements wait in the wings.)

Speaking of MSNBC, looks like Chris ‘Tweety Bird’ Matthews is going to bring his Hardballs to Pennsylvania, challenging ancient GOP vampire Arlen ‘Single Silver Bullet’ Specter for his Senate seat in 2010. Although Matthews publicly denies he’s a candidate, it’s said he’s been in close contact in with some of Obama’s team about making the run. I can see the bumper stickers now, “Screamer for Senate 2010.” (Perhaps Chris divined that his career as a TV talker is coming to a close.) So, when is Pat Buchanan tossing his spiked helmet in the ring to become Lord High Chancellor of Germantown, and when will Tucker Carlson be running for Dog Catcher – excuse me, Chief Executive Canine Control Consultant — of Park Avenue?

Don’t waste your time on D.L. Hughley’s Saturday show on CNN, “D.L. Hughley Breaks the News.” The man’s a stand-up comic and good in his element, but this ain’t it. Hughley does his best, but he’s trying to coax laughs and knowing nods out of an audience of what appears to be mostly white undertakers who’ve huffed too much formaldehyde. (I think they pine for the cozy family jokes of Cosby’s Dr. Huxtable.) Well, it’s CNN, after all, where Lou Dobbs is just short of donning Napoleon’s bicorn hat and proclaiming himself Emperor of El Norte; Prince of Mars Dan Senor’s wife Campbell Brown has a job; Larry King calls the likes of Suze ‘Invest in Your 401K!’ Orman a ‘financial expert,’ and they have the odd notion that Sanjay Gupta is a real doctor rather than a Bollywood wannabe. (Say, CNN, Dennis the Miller’s looking for TV work…)


November 15, 2008

The Tattlesnake – Miller Shills for the Wasilla Chinchilla on Billo and Other Atrocities Edition

Plus a Weird Election 2008 Factoid and a Plea to the GOP

“In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican.”
– H.L. Mencken

Gov. Snowjob said on Larry King Nov. 12th that there is nothing wrong with “calling people out” on their past associations, defending her lame McCarthyite attempts to link Obama to Bill Ayers and the Weather Underground. She added that she expected she would be called out on hers as well. Good. Let’s see, she’s openly palled around with and supported for reelection convicted felon Sen. Ted Stevens, corrupt ex-Governor of Alaska Frank Murkowski, and she’s married to a former member of the Alaska Independence Party, a group that despises and wants to secede from the United States. Imagine if Obama had strongly supported two crooks and his wife once belonged to an organization that hated America? C’mon, Big Media, time to apply some fairness here, and Sarah asked for it.

Speaking of Sarah the Terror: Miller and Palin, Sittin’ in a Tree:

“Listen, she’s a great dame. People are fascinated by her because the left hate her. I think the left hate her — mostly women on the left hate her, because to me, from outside in, it appears that she has a great sex life. All right? I think she has non-neurotic sex with that Todd Palin guy. I think most of the women on the Upper East Side, their husbands haven’t been aroused since Mailer signed copy [sic] of The Executioner’s Song at Rizzoli’s back in the early ’70s.
“So they look at her, and they hate her. I think that snowmobile looks like mechanized foreplay to me, and that’s why people are fascinated by it.”

Dennis Miller on “The O’Reilly Factor,” Fox News, Nov. 12, 2008.

I remember when Dennis had a functioning frontal lobe and was even occasionally clever, but years of drinking, drugs, chickenhawk fear, raging ego and his wiseguy notion that he’d just jump on the money train of what he thought would be generations of Republican rule softened his gray matter to the point where he’s defending a vacuous Alaska opportunist he once would have gleefully impaled with humor. BTW, I wonder what ‘non-neurotic sex’ is — the Moose Mama ‘Missionary Position’ (that would be a ‘rear mount’) or the opposite of whatever you call it when Miller picks up his paycheck these days?

My sympathies to the frustrated Mrs. Miller, if she’s still around – married to a goofball who thinks snowmobiles equate with foreplay can’t be a pleasant existence.

It’s was so bad even Billo took note of what had surfaced in his ‘No Spin Zone’ punchbowl:


October 24, 2008

The Tattlesnake – The Worms Turn On the Wormy Edition

Plus: Palin Prop Blames the Hired Help, the Rove-Rezko Connection, and the GOP Fear of Michael Moore

Well, you know it’s really hit the fan when all McCain can do is babble on vacuously about Joe the Plumber while Sarah the Terror veers off the reservation with an eye to her own future political career and the Backstage Crew, Steve Schmidt and Rick Davis’ crack squad of Rove-inspired GOP intelligentsia who have managed to mount one of the worst and most negative political campaigns in modern history, are eviscerating each other anonymously in the pages of The New York Times magazine. The End is Near, but not in Palin’s ecumenical concept of that notion, as the Solons of Scat have realized they simply can’t chisel and cheat enough and in a sufficient number of states to overwhelm the Obama juggernaut. With a dozen days to go and the Dem ahead by as much as 10 points in rock-ribbed Republican Indiana, the game is up. Expect resumes to be sailing out of McCain’s HQ any day now, if they haven’t been already. Meantime, The Tattler will stick to his earlier prediction: If Indiana goes to Obama, the rest of the Rust Belt Midwest, from Iowa to PA, will follow and it will be an early night and a landslide of over 300 electoral votes for BHO.

The barely mentioned saving grace this time around is that Rove’s nasty tactics aren’t working for McPalin, just as they didn’t work in 2006, nor in the subsequent special Congressional elections in GOP districts in Illinois, Louisiana and Mississippi, all won by Dems.

Thankfully, we are seeing the final death of this horrific negative-campaign monster — created by Nixon’s dirty tricksters, perfected by Lee Atwater, and adopted with a few new kinks by Rove — played out in the Palin-McCain fiasco, a proof of that Euripides quote: “Whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad.” Is there any doubt that what is destroying McPalin at this point is their own insanity?

When asked by David Shuster on MSNBC, Oct. 23, 2008, to explain ‘non-elitist’ regular-gal Sarah Palin’s expensive taste in clothes and accessories, ‘Republican Strategist’ Jennifer Millerwise-Dyck fell back on the time-tested and threadbare GOP excuse – blame the underlings. She basically said that Caribou-Slayer Mom was too busy herding her kids and mucking-up campaign appearances to do her own shopping, so it was all the fault of her clueless staff forcing her to wear those pricey duds from Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman-Marcus. Yes, Sarah really wanted to go to ‘Tar-Zhey’ but her damn staff fouled up! Do you laugh at the ludicrous flop-sweat desperation or moan at the pathetic lack of imagination? The Palin-McCain crack-up is like watching a limbo contest – how low will they go?


October 7, 2008

Turns Out Palin’s Been Lying About This Too…

Filed under: Commentary,Opinion — Tags: , , , , , , , , — RS Janes @ 8:48 am

When I first heard Sarah Palin make the claim that she could “see Russia from her house” it sounded weird and, checking a map, seemed preposterous. Now, thanks to CNN, it’s been definitively proven an outright lie:

Sarah Palin Has Never Actually Seen Russia From Alaska
By Jed Lewison, Huffington Post
Posted on October 2, 2008

Just when you thought the whole “I can see Russia from Alaska” thing couldn’t get any funnier … CNN’s Gary Tuchman delivers the goods: it turns out that Sarah Palin has never seen Russia from Alaska.

Tuchman went up to the part of Alaska from which you can actually see Russia, a remote island called Little Diomede located just 2.4 miles from its Russian twin, Big Diomede.

It turns out Gary Tuchman’s trip to Little Diomede sets him apart from Sarah Palin — because she’s never actually been there, nor has she set eyes on its neighbor in Russia.

Here’s the video of Tuchman’s report: [see the Huff Post website]


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