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‘Vote for Rangel’ Rap Ruins Youtube

Quite possibly the worst audio clip of the day is one encouraging voters in New York’s 13th District to vote today for Charlie Rangel for Congress.

So bad. So, so bad.

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HuffPost Opens Deutschland Bureau

Flag_of_DeutschlandWe know you’ve been on the edge of your seats for this one. HuffPost Deutschland launches tomorrow in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The editorial director is Cherno Jobatey, the 20-year host of popular morning show “ZDF-Morgenmagazin.”

The new edition is based in Munich with an editorial team of 15 journalists. It’s a collaboration with Hubert Burda Media’s TOMORROW FOCUS AG.

In case you weren’t keeping count, HuffPost is now in every major European market, and in five languages. The locations now include France, Spain, UK, Italy, Canada, Japan and North Africa. Brazil is in the works.

The names of the bloggers who will write for HuffPost Deutschland are so fantastic and some of their titles are difficult to comprehend — don’t try, just take in the names. Our favorite may be: Prof. Wolfgang Hünnekens (Institute of Electronic Business). Labor Minister Ursula von der Leyen comes in a close second.

See the others… Read more

Bardella Hasn’t Read This Town, Come Again?

Cover of This TownKurt Bardella, the Capitol Hill aide who infamously worked for Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), was fired for leaking journalists’ emails to NYT writer Mark Leibovich and then rehired six months later, says he hasn’t even read This Town.


He spent months secretly (well, until he got caught) sharing emails with Leibovich and meeting with him to quietly assist with his book depicting what can be the sickening nature of some Washington insiders. And then he doesn’t bother to read the entire chapter devoted to him that was also published in the NYT magazine? Do we even believe this?

Asked about Endeavor Strategic Communications, his new firm, and whether he’s capitalizing on the attention he received in This Town, Bardella told FishbowlDC this week, Read more

New ‘Yeas & Nays’ Columnist Abruptly Quits

Something fishy is going on over at Red Alert Politics.

On Sept. 10, just eight days ago, Francesca Chambers, editor of the site, wrote FishbowlDC about Nikki Schwab‘s replacement at Yeas & Nays. She said Nicholas Ballasy would be replacing Schwab, now at U.S. News & World Report.

Strangely, Ballasy, whom Chambers raved about in an enthusiastic memo, was supposed to start Sept. 13. But his work is still nowhere to be found on the site. An introductory blurb announcing his hire (pictured after the jump) is still on the site at the timing of this posting. But…BREAKING NEWS: Ballasy abruptly quit Tuesday after having “issues” with Chambers, FishbowlDC has learned.

“Nick Ballasy is the new Yeas and Nays columnist,” Chambers wrote FishbowlDC on Sept. 10. “He starts full time on Friday.” Only he never started Friday.

Ballasy was apparently traveling with his wife in Europe, hence an alleged delayed start date. His Twitter account and personal website make no mention of his new gig at Red Alert Politics. His Twitter has been on mute since Sept. 6.

Meanwhile, Ballasy takes his angst out on FishbowlDC, writing me today, saying, “I never officially signed on as the ‘Yeas & Nays’ columnist at Red Alert Politics. As usual, Fishbowl’s assertions  about me are inaccurate.” (Hey Ballasy, you may want to inform Red Alert Politics you don’t work there because there appears to be some grand confusion. See the aforementioned announcement after the jump or here.)

Email and phone requests for comment to Chambers have all gone unreturned. Read more

Crazy News Stories of the Week

Herpes-infected monkeys on the loose in Florida

In the 1930′s, a Florida tour guide was inspired by “Tarzan” to bring a rare species of wild monkeys to the state, NY Post‘s Natalie O’Neil reports. Originally, they were small in number and contained on a island, but in recent decades, they’ve learned to swim, and have been spotted many miles away on the mainland. And the worst part? Of the more than 700 monkeys caught in the past decade, most of them have tested positive for the Herpes-B virus. The monkeys are now considered a health hazard to the state.

See the rest of this week’s craziest stories… Read more

Politico’s Mike Allen Sees Dead People

Tuesday night’s big party celebrating the return of “Crossfire” was held at the Carnegie Library. As expected, it was QUITE the affair. Newt Gingrich, Stephanie Cutter, S.E. Cupp and Van Jones were all in attendance and mingled with all the V.I.P. guests.

Naturally, Politico’s Mike Allen ran through some of the faces spotted in the crowd. Bill Burton, Dylan Byers, Laura Ingraham, Rep. Mark Sanford and his fiancé were there, according to Allen. One name that stuck out in his Tuesday morning Playbook was former “Crossfire” host Tom Braden and four of his children.

The only problem is… Braden is dead. Read more

Click Bait: Chicken In The Sky With Diamonds?

Remember that episode of “Friends” when Joey’s duck ate Ross’s grandmother’s engagement ring?

Well, that actually, really happened in Berkshire, England recently, to 38-year-old Claire Lennon.  Lennon’s pet chicken, Sarah, nipped a diamond earring off Claire’s ear and swallowed it whole. Read more

Crazy News Stories of the Week

“Dragon” corpse found on beach in Spain

A “dragon corpse” has washed ashore on a beach in Spain, according to FNC. Photos of the object show a long mess of organic material that appears to be fairly large. The official guess is that it may be the corpse of a thresher shark. The creature, which FNC calls a “sea monster,” is far along its decomposition process now, so scientists are relying on photos of the corpse to try and determine what it is.

Canadian dentist attempting to clone John Lennon using tooth

When Canadian dentist Michael Zuk bought one of John Lennon‘s decaying teeth for $30,00 in 2011, he said it was to raise awareness for oral cancer. But The Daily Caller‘s Taylor Bigler reports that he’s done using Lennon as a poster boy for dental hygiene, and is now using the tooth in an attempt to clone the late Beatle. Zuk announced the ambitious goal on his website and said he will work alongside a scientist to bring Lennon back. Bonus points on the headline.

Body builder has one-man party on a plane. Intruder wants to give back rubs. Fun times, right?  

Read more

This Week’s WTF Moments In the News

How much crazy did you guys dredge up this week? A lot. Here’s our list of the most WTF moments in the news from the last few days:

WaPo: NSA broke privacy rules thousands of times per year, audit finds

We’re not sure what’s more alarming about this story, that the NSA gets to determine all on its own which of its “errors” regarding privacy rules are actually errors and therefore reportable to overseers, or that much of these problems could be prevented with better employees. Almost 60 percent of FISA violations at the NSA in just Q1 of 2012 were due to “operator error” like not following standard operating procedures, training issues and typos.

Guess who’s getting more viewers than Bill O’Reilly…

Read more

Plea to Matthew Yglesias’ Editors: Don’t Ever Let Him Outside Again

Quick piece of unsolicited advice for the editors of Slate‘s Matthew Yglesias: next time he pitches a story about eating lunch outside as opposed to eating sad salad at his desk, tell him to go enjoy his sad salad at his desk and leave it at that. Chain the doors shut if you have to.

Look, we know it’s August, times are tough and Weiner stories are coming to a trickle. But really, was this monstrosity of a story necessary?

The url was particularly fantastic in a horrible kind of way: It included the words “eating_lunch_outside_sucks_stay_inside.”

Seriously Slate. You allowed this?

Best (of the worst) sentences: “Outside proponents like to refer to this dirt as ‘grass’ but if you look at it you’ll see that the blades of grass are mostly just resting atop dirt. If you sit on the ‘grass’ for a while and then stand up, the parts of your body that were in contact will the grass will be covered in ‘dirt.’”

Worst (of the worst) sentences: “Inside has other crucial advantages. If someone wants to excuse themselves briefly to use the restroom, they can do so easily. Obviously in principle it’s possible to relieve oneself outdoors as well, but this is generally frowned upon in urban green spaces. There are also electrical outlets where you can charge your phone. If the breeze coming through the window gets to be unpleasant, you can close the window.”

Seriously, Slate. You allowed Yglesias to make the crucial point to the world that taking a leak or defecating outside is frowned upon and finding a toilet inside is rather easy?

His conclusion is something we “all know?” He writes, “Inside is great and humanity has struggled for tens of thousands of years to spend as much time as possible there.” Actually, Yglesias, inside is for nerds who can’t bear to be away from a charger for 30 minutes — don’t lump us all in there, it’s undignified.

And Slate editors, please return to our first sentence and crucial advice. Do not put us through this again unless you tell us you gave Yglesias a bag of weed and told him to write whatever he wants. Then, at least, this would make a lettuce shred of sense.