aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Tuesday, October 31, 2006
Comedy Central on YouTube (continued)
I can’t find anything about this online, but on the local NBC news this morning, they reporrted that Comedy Central was not asking YouTube to pull all the clips from its show, only full episodes - a reasonable and wise position. It seems that cooler heads prevailed. YouTube is a magnificent new means of distribution and promotion. Now the key will be for Comedy Central to also make money on those clips; once that happens, the networks will fall over themselves to put their own stuff up.
it’s not over ‘til the fat kid stops singing:
I still say, make the player the ad and make everyone happy.
More on Pelosi’s agenda
If Democrats gain the 15 seats they need to win control of the House—and most analysts think they will—one of the first things the new House will do is restrict or end outright a slew of lobbying practices.
In a little-publicized statement, Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), the House Democratic leader, has promised to change the chamber’s rules to reflect the provisions of her not-so-modestly-named Honest Leadership and Open Government Act of 2006. The months-old measure would, among other things, prohibit House members from accepting gifts and travel from lobbyists or from organizations that employ lobbyists. [...]
That would be a major development for K Street. If the House rules were altered in ways that even came close to Pelosi’s preferences, lobbying of House members would be changed significantly and immediately. The new rules would apply as soon as they were approved by a simple majority.
Read the whole thing. A ban on gifts and travel; limit the access perks of former congressmen, require disclosure of earmarked spending and create an Office of Public Integrity. Right on Nancy!
I get that our races are important to the Republicans. I don’t get that they’re overlooked by Democrats:
About 6,500 people are expected at the Georgia National Fairgrounds and Agricenter today for President Bush’s second visit to Middle Georgia in a month, and his second visit to the state in two days.
All of the free tickets to the event are gone, according to the Georgia Republican Party. Gov. Sonny Perdue, Sens. Saxby Chambliss and Johnny Isakson, and Republican congressional candidate Mac Collins are expected to join the president at the event, which is being billed as a “Victory Rally.”
“It will be a huge event,” said Clelia Davis, spokeswoman for the the Georgia Republican Party. “The one (Monday) was huge.”
Bush was in Statesboro on Monday for a similar event in the 12th Congressional District, where Republican Max Burns is running against Democratic U.S. Rep. John Barrow. That race and Collins’ attempt to unseat Democratic U.S. Rep. Jim Marshall in the 8th District are among a limited number of races across the country considered competitive.
More from the WaPo on Bush’s visit to Georgia yesterday.
What do you make of the New Jersey decision?
I think it’s a very powerful decision that illustrates the difference between happy and satisfied. I’m happy to see a unanimous high court ruling that gay couples must be treated fairly. But I’m not satisfied because the high court opened the door to equality but didn’t finish the job [because it referred the decision to the legislature]. There’s only one way to provide equality and that is by equal treatment.
So not calling it marriage makes a big difference?
One of the main protections that comes with marriage is the word “marriage” and the security and certainty that come with that. There’s not a married couple in the country that would trade in their marriage for a civil union or something else. Marriage is more than just the legal protections and responsibilities. It’s a statement, a commitment that everyone recognizes. The best way to think about it is ask yourself this question. Either marriage and civil unions are the same-in which case why do we need two lines at the government clerk’s office-or they’re not the same, in which case why is the government withholding from these families and what reason does it have for doing that. It’s funny because when we’re discussing this question on the one hand, pretty much everyone agrees that marriage matters. And people have emotions and a rich set of feelings about marriage. But when the question is can gay people be denied marriage, people say it doesn’t matter at all. How can it matter and not matter?
Don’t try this on MySpace.
Monday, October 30, 2006
I wish you could hear the radio ads here:
Down in Georgia, Republican incumbent Mac Collins has used similar material to bludgeon his opponent, Jim Marshall. More in sorrow than in anger, the ad intones, “Jim Marshall joined his liberal leader Nancy Pelosi and voted to waste our tax dollars printing election ballots in Spanish.” It’s a complaint interrupted by the villainous voice of a Mexican bandido sneering, “Muchas gracias, SeÃƒÂ±or Jim Marshall.”
Collins’ ads are nothing compared to those from Max Burns.
In the debate tonight, Burns said that immigration was Middle Georgia’s most pressing problem. Huh? What planet are these people living on? We have the poorest county in Georgia, we have joblessness, we have education woes, and we do nothing about that.
These Republican pols are playing to nothing but fear and prejudice. I’m sad that it works. And have no clue how to combat that.
The Faithful in Georgia
I’m telling you, I haven’t been to Texas lately but when it comes to Bush lovin’, there’s no place like Georgia.
This is George Bush country.
Still and to the bitter end. He came on through today:
President Bush zigzagged from Georgia to his home state of Texas today, stumping for Republicans in Bush-friendly districts while looking ever more like the candidate himself. [...]
The intent is to fire up the party faithful and push them to the polls to vote, but at times it seemed as if Mr. Bush was the one getting fired up. The president seemed to relish playing the game of political expectations, as he tweaked Democrats for measuring for new curtains in Washington too soon.
“You might remember that around this time in 2004, some of them were picking out their new offices in the West Wing,” Mr. Bush said in Georgia. He paused to absorb the laughter and applause, then added dryly, “The movers never got the call.”
The believers here believe it and believe me I know that this, too, is absolutely true:
One of his biggest applause lines in Georgia was a reiteration of his position that “marriage is a union between a man and a woman.’’ The line brought the crowd to its feet.
We got us 2 Blue Dog Democrats here who he came to take down; and the Democrats apparently don’t much care. We’re not “key.” So the Republicans get the president coming through and I’ll keep complaining that the Democrats should stop writing off the South!***
They should be fighting hard to keep both Barrow and Marshall; most especially Barrow who was gerrymandered out of his own home district and is now attacked as an outsider in ads.
The attack ads are coming fast and furious (my phone doesn’t stop ringing) and it is all the state Republican party demonizing gays and immigrants. The campaign theme here is “one of us” and the point is that gays and immigrants are not. George Bush is:
“He’s still got legs,” [political science professor Bruce] Buchanan said.
Mr. Bush certainly showed his legs in Statesboro, Ga., where an estimated 6,000 people packed into the gymnasium at Georgia Southern University to see him campaign for Max Burns, a former congressman who two years ago lost his seat to Representative John Barrow, a Democrat. Hundreds more were lined up outside, apparently holding tickets but unable to get in.
In the crowd was Darin Van Tassell, a political scientist who said that if Mr. Bush could motivate Republicans anywhere in Mr. Barrow’s district, it would be at Georgia Southern, where Mr. Burns was a professor of business administration before going into politics.
“Barrow has a chance to be the only incumbent Democrat who might lose,” Mr. Van Tassell, who counts himself a Democrat, said. “I think this particular race has a chance to run completely counter to the rest of the country, which is probably why the president is here.”
I most certainly agree. Here’s the text of the Statesboro “victory rally” remarks.
*** I wholeheartedly support Howard Dean’s 50 state strategy and hold him entirely innocent in the abandonment of the South by Democrats. He’s come. Again and again.
Revver and the Mentos star
By sharing advertising revenue with makers of popular clips, Revver has begun shaking things up in the burgeoning sector. The industry, where amateurs post homemade movies to the Web, is looking for the next rising star now that YouTube has gone corporate. An heir apparent has yet to emerge, but Josh Martin, an analyst with the Yankee Group, said that paying top video makers is “where the sector is headed.”
Indeed, Revver’s investment in video makers appears to be paying off. Only a month since the Web site moved out of beta, the company has begun to attract some of YouTube’s top clip producers, including the makers of “Lonelygirl15.”
“It’s exciting to see people who posted on YouTube are now cross-posting on both YouTube and Revver," said Miles Beckett, one of the cofounders of Lonelygirl15.[...]
Beckett declined to say how much his group has earned from Revver. But the duo that made the humorous and wildly popular video known as “The Diet Coke & Mentos Experiment,” received $35,000 from Revver last July. (Look for a sequel video launching on Monday.)
not up yet here.
RELATED: Metacafe has revenue sharing too. “Payments start at 20,000 views ($100) and go up from there - e.g. 2 million views is $10,000. Videos must also have a rating of 3.00 or higher (maximum is 5.00) to qualify for payment, of which Metacafe notes: ‘this tells us that the viewers like the video.’’
Sunday, October 29, 2006
Social Networks & the dynamics of popularity
The Financial Times has a long profile of danah boyd and social networks. Lots in it, more or less at random, I’ll quote this:
The millions of people on the networks also hold vast potential for experimentation. In 2004, Duncan Watts and two of his students in the sociology department at Columbia University put a sign on bolt.com, a social network site, and managed to corral 14,341 volunteers. He and his colleagues wanted to show how much people are influenced by other people’s choices - and came up with a result that challenged the notion of causation.
The academics divided the users into groups and asked them to rate a list of previously unknown pop songs by unknown bands, steadily increasing the amount of information the users had about what other people had chosen. “You might expect the same songs to become popular under all conditions,” Watts said. “In fact, as the level of information that people have about each other’s decisions increases, things become more unpredictable. Those that win are not necessarily the best - in fact there is not necessarily such a thing as ‘the best’. Things that are popular tend to become more popular still, so that small, possibly random, fluctuations early on can get ‘locked in’ and generate a large difference in popularity over time. The potential to learn how people behave and influence each other is really exciting.”
GOP Congress addicted to porn
As the Republicans took gay porn money story spreads - to counter the GOP Harold Ford took porn money claim - I’m reminded of a 2005 CREW report, Addicted to Porn: How Members of Congress Benefit from Pornography.
The congressional porn money habit is long-standing and widespread. The CREW press release from March 10, 2005:
Washington, DC,—Earlier today, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) released a report Addicted to Porn: Members of Congress Accept Political Contributions from Porn Purveyors. The report details how 15 Members of Congress, including 11 Representatives and four Senators, all of whom revile pornography, have accepted campaign contributions from corporations and executives who derive substantial profits from selling pornography.
The report contains four sections: 1) how companies make money from pornography; 2) which companies have PACs that make campaign contributions; 3) which Members of Congress receive these contributions; and 4) the quotes of Members of Congress named in the report who have publicly condemned pornography. In addition, an appendix to the report details the contributions made from corporations and executives to Members of Congress.
CREW’s executive director Melanie Sloan stated “it is one thing to be silent on the issue and accept porn purveyor’s contributions. However, these Members of Congress attempt to slap pornographers with fines and legislative restrictions with one hand and turn around and accept porn profits with the other. Our report details the hypocrisy of this ‘skin caucus.’”
Some of the findings of the report: Kansas Senator Sam Brownback - who equates pornography with crack cocaine - accepted $17,000 from porn peddlers. [Right now he’s blocking a federal appellate court judge nomination because the nominee attended a commitment ceremony for a lesbian friend.]
Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman [up by 8 in his race against Lamont] - who has long campaigned against the growing coarseness of our culture—along with renown gambling addict William Bennet, handed out “Silver Sewer” awards to those who made immoral videos, and who has criticized MTV for having porn stars on the air, accepted over $16,000.
Cong. Fred Upton [not on anyone’s list], who leads the charge against indecency, accepted over $56,000.
Arizona Senator John McCain [here remembered praising Jim Webb’s novel], who claimed to be the “anti-porn” presidential candidate in ads that ran prior to the South Carolina primary, pocketed $46,000 from corporations and executives who profit from porn.
Melanie Sloan, CREW’s executive director referred to Rep. Heather Wilson (R-NM) [down in the polls as of Wed, googlebombed to #8] as “the biggest hypocrite of all” for having written a letter to former Vice President Al Gore demanding that he return a contribution from an adult entertainment web site and for sanctimoniously ranting at Viacom executives that they cared more about profits than morality, despite accepting $47,000 in porn profits.
RELATED Porn in the Bush years: 2001 earnings, $9.8 billion. Today, more than $12 billion.
How about a Free Culture badge?
You may recall that the Boy Scouts of LA struck up a collaboration with the MPAA “to teach young people about respecting copyrights.”
Liz Losh, a former scout and the parent of a current cub scout, wonders “How could such a one-sided, moralistic, anti-consumer marketing effort be foisted on a bunch of earnest and community-minded kids?”
[W]e’ve made up a new patch, for a much more challenging “Free Culture” badge, to be earned by intrepid, hard working, patriotic scouts. Here are some of the requirements:
- Appear at the door of a major studio, dressed in your full scout uniform, and try to talk them into allowing educational use of historical films commonly shown in public schools (Amistad, Schindler’s List, etc.)
- Raise money with a bakesale to go across the country to CMG Worldwide in Indianapolis or Intellectual Properties Management (IPM) in Atlanta to convince these organizations to free images associated with Rosa Parks or Martin Luther King and release them into the public domain for use in school projects, such as web pages
- Paint a colorful mural on a graffiti covered wall across the street from the headquarters of the RIAA with the 9 Reasons Digital Media Products Are a Bad Deal for Consumers.
- Using your knot-disentangling skills, visit a hospital or nursing home and help the aged with their DRM-hobbled digital products
- Go to an orphanage, battered children’s home, or juvenile detention facility and show kids how to use Creative Commons resources
- Put in 100 hours of community service at your local library and see the toll that new legislation against patron privacy and public connectivity takes on your local civil servants. Then imagine what it will be like if they have to deal with RIAA and MPAA lawsuits for circulating audio and video content.
Be not afraid
I’ve been waiting for Andrew Sullivan to comment on the Catholic bishops’ attempt to thread the needle - gay people are “objectively disordered” though not “rendered morally defective by this inclination;” we should come out to family, friends and priest but not be public; and priests should go ahead and baptize our children.
No comment from Andrew yet. In the meantime…
HH: But if God is interested in something other than the sincerity of your search for truth, that would be a problem for the seeker, wouldn’t it?
AS: Yes, but since God is truth, how could He possibly object to you trying to seek Him out?
There lies the difference between Christianism and Christianity, between what these fundamentalists preach and what Jesus actually taught. Be not afraid, Jesus told us - always. All some fundamentalists really know is fear. And they mistake fear for faith.
A lapsed Catholic who is far from conservative, I’d like to read the book.
High hopes for GooTube (continued)
Google, which announced this month that it was buying online video site YouTube for $1.65 billion in stock, has big plans to expand into video advertising. The firm hasn’t announced exactly what it plans to do with YouTube, but both properties are pushing a new kind of Internet advertising called “click to play.” The ads are essentially online video commercials that don’t play unless a visitor clicks on the image.
Google said it opposes “pre-roll” Web ads, which resemble TV commercials by interrupting site visitors and forcing them to watch a video before they can see the content they are seeking. With Google’s click-to-play ad service, advertisers will be able to select specific Web sites where they want their video ad displayed or allow Google to select the sites, based on whether the audience of a Web site or its content matches that of the advertiser.
Google thinks the ads will do well with movie studios, which could use trailers as click-to-play ads, and with carmakers, who can use video to draw Internet users shopping for a car. But the format remains new and largely untested.
Google should make the YouTube player the ad. And get the message to Comedy Central that fans are promoting their shows not stealing their shows. These fans are prime ad propagating agents. Embrace them.
Saturday, October 28, 2006
The MS Software Protection Platform
If you don’t like the mandatory antipiracy checks that Microsoft now enforces for Windows, brace yourself. The Microsoft Office productivity and collaboration suite is about to get a similar program.
The company’s Office Genuine Advantage (OGA) program will require mandatory validation of Office software starting October 27, the software vendor quietly disclosed today. After that date, any Office Online templates downloaded from within the Office 2007 Microsoft Office System applications will require validation of legitimacy.
Similarly, starting in January, users of Office Update will have to validate the legitimacy of their Office software before they can use the service, Microsoft added.
Users absolutely hated the first iteration of the Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) program, and their protests pressured the company into revising it about a year after it launched in July 2005.
Microsoft has integrated this check directly into the next version of its OS, Windows Vista, as part of what it is calling a “Software Protection Platform.” Through that automatic validation system, a Vista user must activate his or her copy of the software with a valid activation key within 30 days after purchase of the software, or see the OS enter a reduced functionality mode. In that mode, users can browse the Web for an hour but then the system will log them out, and they will have to log in again if they want to browse more.
I get that they are protected by the First Amendment, but I have to wonder how they could possibly be effective? I’ve only been push-polled once, but half the time I answer the phone it is a recorded voice from the state Republican party or the local Republican candidates. My voice-mail is littered with these repeated and typically despicable attack ads.
I gather they’re confident that this works. It may, but I don’t get it. I guess if you’re already planning to vote for these guys (and yes, they are all white males) it might work as a reminder; it certainly isn’t changing any minds. Why aren’t people downright offended to be interrupted and assaulted by a recorded message that in its effort to be quick is just plain rude? I certainly am.
The future of GooTube and Comedy Central
I continue to be all riled up about the Comedy Central takedown demands. Cory Bergman notes that Viacom appears not to be going along with the CBS strategy of forming a strategic partnership with YouTube. Cory goes on to observe that “after all, browsing video on ComedyCentral.com is not the easiest of experiences.”
A year ago when MotherLoad launched I complained that Comedy Central just doesn’t get it. Their play was original content and doled out highlights. But what their audience wants is to instantly find - and share - what everyone’s talking about:
As a Massive Media entrant they’ve got to get their content out there. I’d choose to link to them—even as the site seems designed to discourage it (and is not Mac friendly)—they are the source. That is the future.
But for now it will be interesting to see if any of the original content takes off. I’d choose instead to keep the 2 channels, web and cable, closely linked and not go so much for web only content.
Today TV still drives audience to the web; tomorrow the web will drive the audience to the TV. The next day there will be no difference.
My thought today is… why not strike a deal where YouTube serves up all of the video on the Comedy Central site? Just as Google provides search for sites, YouTube should become the video host/provider.
But more, YouTube’s been thought of as a promotional vehicle for content; that’s the wrong construct. The real deal is it’s their technology that we use. We, the audience, do the promoting.
If YouTube embeds the player, the entire player can become the ad. No more interruption or ad clutter. And think of the opportunities for adwords like synchronization of product and content!
The end of mass audiences sitting and watching a broadcast show at the appointed hour does not have to mean the end of the shared cultural experience of all of us talking about that show around the water cooler. The change is in how we share the experience. Today’s audience is an active engaged participant.
I’d allow remixing too. Comedy Central and YouTube are demonstrating their takedown muscle. If a remix goes outside the bounds, they send the letters. But that’s a post for another day.
Friday, October 27, 2006
Gay homecoming king. In Texas.
University of Texas at Tyler senior Chad Myers admits his recent election as the school’s first openly gay homecoming king surprised a lot of people - especially him.
“Everyone knows me as openly gay,” Myers said. “It was a surprise to me when I won.”
Myers was elected during homecoming activities on Oct. 14. He was crowned along with homecoming queen Lea Guard, who is a senior from Huntsville.
Myers, who came out his senior year in high school in Liberty Hill north of Austin, said the Tyler campus is hardly thought of as a liberal haven.
“I had never been called a faggot until I moved to East Texas,” Myers said. “I think it is a pretty big deal that an openly gay guy won homecoming king at such a conservative school. Thanks to everyone that voted for me.”
Myers, who was nominated by the student government association, defeated contenders nominated by the Black Students Association, the Baptist Student Ministry, the University Students Veterans Association and several others.
If you ask me, the Internet - and most especially YouTube - has made
Colbert & Stewart Comedy Central the success that it is. They apparently think they don’t need it any longer.
For a long time, Comedy Central has passively allowed the sharing of online clips of its shows-because let’s face it, it’s helped them generate the kind of water cooler talk that has made them a ton of money. In this Wired Interview, Jon Stewart and Daily Show Executive Producer even encouraged viewers to watch the show on the Internet…
But apparently, all good things come to an end when there is money and attorneys involved. I assume the only online clips that will remain will have to qualify under fair use - probably short clips, with social or political importance.
With Google purchasing YouTube, ComedyCentral figured there was now an opportunity aka profit center to target. And they’ve assumably made these DMCA requests to YouTube.
Clickthrough for the emails.
Via Xeni at Boing Boing.
Edited to remove my rash kiss-off Viacom reference.
Peeved that there are no Georgians included (Marshall? Barrow? I know, they’re not key--and far from liberal) I almost sat it out. I like the tactic and agree with Bowers’ transparent reasoning. Given that it’s not too late I’ll take the plunge, even if a bit ambivalently stealthy (only in the extended entry). Here’s the link if you’d like to add the code.
Shut Up & Sing
“It’s a sad commentary about the level of fear in our society that a movie about a group of courageous entertainers who were blacklisted for exercising their right of free speech is now itself being blacklisted by corporate America,” Harvey Weinstein said in a statement. “The idea that anyone should be penalized for criticizing the president is profoundly un-American.”
According to the Weinstein Co., NBC’s commercial clearance department said in writing that it “cannot accept these spots as they are disparaging to President Bush.”
The Fox effect
Republicans who indicated that they were voting for a Republican candidate decreased by 10% after viewing the [Michael J. Fox] ad (77% to 67%). Independents planning to vote for Democrats increased by 10%, from 39% to 49%.
Negative ad round-up
Positive ads come off as fluff. Negative ads give people a reason to vote a certain way… Are Democrats afraid to go negative? Do the people making the ads realize how unpopular the Republican Party is right now? Here in Illinois, we are about to reelect a corrupt Governor. The only thing he has going for him is that he is not a Republican. In this environment, negative ads against Republicans will work. What are we waiting for?
People are already voting. The last-second blitzes should be going on now.
I just don’t like negative ads. And it seems to me Dems don’t need them this time around. Political wisdom holds that they work. WaPo has a good round-up of this year’s doozies:
Rep. Ron Kind pays for sex!
Well, that’s what the Republican challenger for his Wisconsin congressional seat, Paul R. Nelson, claims in new ads, the ones with “XXX” stamped across Kind’s face.
It turns out that Kind—along with more than 200 of his fellow hedonists in the House—opposed an unsuccessful effort to stop the National Institutes of Health from pursuing peer-reviewed sex studies. According to Nelson’s ads, the Democrat also wants to “let illegal aliens burn the American flag” and “allow convicted child molesters to enter this country.”
To Nelson, that doesn’t even qualify as negative campaigning.
“Negative campaigning is vicious personal attacks,” he said in an interview. “This isn’t personal at all.” [Ã¢â‚¬Â¦]
The National Republican Campaign Committee is spending more than 90 percent of its advertising budget on negative ads, according to GOP operatives, and the rest of the party seems to be following suit. A few examples of the “character issues” taking center stage two weeks before Election Day:
Ã‚Â· In New York, the NRCC ran an ad accusing Democratic House candidate Michael A. Arcuri, a district attorney, of using taxpayer dollars for phone sex. “Hi, sexy,” a dancing woman purrs. “You’ve reached the live, one-on-one fantasy line.” It turns out that one of Arcuri’s aides had tried to call the state Division of Criminal Justice, which had a number that was almost identical to that of a porn line. The misdial cost taxpayers $1.25.
Ã‚Â· In Ohio, GOP gubernatorial candidate J. Kenneth Blackwell, trailing by more than 20 points in polls, has accused front-running Democratic Rep. Ted Strickland of protecting a former aide who was convicted in 1994 on a misdemeanor indecency charge. Blackwell’s campaign is also warning voters through suggestive “push polls” that Strickland failed to support a resolution condemning sex between adults and children. Strickland, a psychiatrist, objected to a line suggesting that sexually abused children cannot have healthy relationships when they grow up.
Ã‚Â· The Republican Party of Wisconsin distributed a mailing linking Democratic House candidate Steve Kagen to a convicted serial killer and child rapist. The supposed connection: The “bloodthirsty” attorney for the killer had also done legal work for Kagen.
Ã‚Â· In two dozen congressional districts, a political action committee supported by a white Indianapolis businessman, J. Patrick Rooney, is running ads saying Democrats want to abort black babies. A voice says, “If you make a little mistake with one of your hos, you’ll want to dispose of that problem tout de suite, no questions asked.”
Ã‚Â· In the most controversial recent ad, the Republican National Committee slammed Rep. Harold E. Ford Jr. (D-Tenn.) for attending a Playboy-sponsored Super Bowl party. In the ad, a scantily clad white actress winks as she reminisces about good times with Ford, who is black. That ad has been pulled, but the RNC has a new one saying Ford “wants to give the abortion pill to schoolchildren.” [Ã¢â‚¬Â¦]
The “pays for sex” ad against Kind in Wisconsin—along with a similar one aired against Rep. Brad Miller (D-N.C.)—may be the most extreme. It says Kind spent tax dollars to study “the sex lives of Vietnamese prostitutes” and “the masturbation habits of old men” and “to pay teenage girls to watch pornographic movies with probes connected to their genitalia.” Cue the punch line: “Ron Kind pays for sex, but not for soldiers.” The Wisconsin Republican Party denounced the ad, and several TV stations refused to air it, but that only got it more attention. It is the centerpiece of Nelson’s Web site: “This ad is so powerful, a sitting U.S. Congressman threatened TV stations with legal action if they dared to play it.”
Thursday, October 26, 2006
Katie, her dad & Michael’s privilege
LATER: The Carpetbagger nominates Kaitie’s old co-host Matt Lauer for the worst of all possible Michael J. Fox coverage.
Katie Couric had an exclusive interview with Michael J. Fox. Interesting how full disclosure works:
COURIC: By the way, in the spirit of full disclosure I think it’s important to mention that my dad has Parkinson’s Disease - he told me today it’s okay to tell you that - and in the past I’ve made contributions for Parkinson’s research through Michael J. Fox’s foundation.
I wonder what Rush will have to say about that? Damned if she do, damned if she don’t I’d say. Can you imagine if she hadn’t made that disclosure? Then there’s this:
Fox told Couric that despite it being tough to sit for interviews as his symptoms worsen, he feel privileged to be able to do so.
“Honestly, I mean, I really feel this: That you get in your life very few chances to make a difference. And I really feel privileged to do this that I get a chance to do this. But having said that, it’s not pretty. It’s not pretty when it gets bad,” Fox said. “I’ve learned to throw vanity out the window. I’ve had enough years of people thinking I was pretty and teenage girls hanging my picture on walls. I’m over that now.”
The stem cells are thrown away, he addressed the “slippery slope” argument, he called Republican Senator Arlen Specter “my guy” and said that “disease is a non-partisan problem that requires a bipartisan solution.”
Limbaugh can go ahead and pull one from the Coulter 9/11 widows playbook. Said he, “Democrats have a long history of using victims.”
Replies Fox, “I am not a victim. I am someone whose in this situation, I think I’m in this situation along with millions of other Americans and we have a right, if there’s answers out there, to pursue those answers with the full support of our politicians. And so I don’t need anyone’s permission to do that.”
For the record, I saw the Fox commercial the moment it was released. I thought it powerful but did not post about it. What the Right accomplished through its demonizing is to turn it into an issue I am following closely. Does anyone want to bet I’m the only American that’s happened to?
TiNo v. To not watch a TV show saved on a TiVo or other personal video recorder. —n. An unwatched show saved on a TiVo or other PVR. [Blend of TiVo and no.]
I think not
In terms of so-called “October Surprises” that might affect the election, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruling that opens the door to gay marriage certainly ranks below the congressional page scandal involving former Florida Rep. Mark Foley. But the decision could be a welcome boost for a White House and congressional Republicans who are worried about firing up the conservative base of their party.
They say it won’t make a difference in NJ but:
Measures to ban gay marriage are on the ballot in nine states, including Virginia and Tennessee, and conservative activists will point to the New Jersey decision as a reason people in those states should go to the polls, even if they’re dissatisfied with how the Republican majority has run the country. If that message resonates, the same people celebrating the New Jersey decision could be having mixed feelings about it come election day.
I will have to comment in detail on Georgia in a future post - I have been avoiding it because it is so profoundly depressing to me - but I am not blindly optimistic. I expect 8 of those 9 state ballot measures to pass.
Still, the bigger their win the more to goad reasonable people, the American people, into realizing that the other side has gone way too far. On to 2008!