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Archives: August 2011

WTOP.com Adds Causey Column

Premiering today on WTOP.com is  a new weekly column being by Mike Causey, senior federal correspondent at WTOP sister station Federal News Radio 1500 AM. Causey will pull from his long career in Washington media to cover everything from breaking news stories and entertainment to cultural observations in his new “Mike’s Take” column.

Before joining Federal News Radio and WTOP, Causey served more than 30 years at The Washington Post, where he covered an array of local topics and news.  Congrats to Mike!

NYT’s Hulse Gets Promoted

Longtime Capitol Hill reporter for NYT Carl Hulse has landed the job of NYT Deputy DC Bureau Chief. A memo went out this morning.

Capitol Hill is rather excited about it. “A very big congrats to @hillhulse for his well deserved promotion to NY Times Deputy DC Bureau Chief,” wrote Brad Dayspring, Communications Director for House Maj. Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.).

Hulse remarked to FishbowlDC: “I will miss reporting and life in the Capitol but this will be fun and challenging. Hopefully more fun than challenge. David is great and we will be aggressive in pursuing the news.” (Hulse is referring to NYT Washington Bureau Chief David Leonhardt.)

Congratulations to Hulse.

A few words from his fan club…

Politico‘s Jake Sherman: “Congrats dude.”

WSJ‘s Neil King: “Congrats to @hillhulse for his ascendance to NYT Washington deputy bureau chief.”

Slate‘s Dave Weigel: “Win.”

NYT investigative reporter Michael Luo: “Congrats to NYT’s @hillhulse for his promotion to deputy Washington bureau chief. Big shoes to fill, tho, for us on Capitol Hill…”

ABC’s Rick Klein: “So @hillhulse is now @nytimes management? Good luck to all of us, but Mayor of Capitol Hill still = preferred title.”

The Hill‘s Puff Piece on Geoff and Norah

Items you will need in order to read The Hill‘s recent story on Chef Geoff Tracy and his wife, CBS Chief White House Correspondent Norah O’Donnell: A pillow (to take periodic naps), a brick wall (to bang your head against) and a red pen (for rewriting purposes).

The journey begins with a picture on the front page of the Washington Scene section. Though the story is about the couple, the picture shows Tracy with the V.P.’s wife,  Jill Biden. No, O’Donnell’s husband hasn’t run away with the second lady. The full picture inside shows the couple and their children posing with V.P. Biden and his wife.

We’re going to keep this simple since the story itself is a torture chamber.

Five Ways the Story Unnecessarily Cozies to the Couple

1. Affection abounds. The writer begins with Tracy (with his hidden warm blue eyes) kissing his wife. Shortly thereafter we must endure Norah playfully tapping her husband on the shoulder after a particularly unfunny canned joke about how long they’ve been married. “Yeah, thank God he bought me diamond earrings for our anniversary,” O’Donnell said, hitting Tracy on the shoulder playfully. (Did they choreograph this before the interview?)

2. Soundbites. A reporter is supposed to steer interviewees away from quotes that make readers want to crawl into a hole. Instead, the piece reads as though author Kate Oczypok let her interviewees sit down and write it, not the other way around. Example: Norah: “CBS came to me and offered me an incredible position so few women have held. I’ll have a front row seat to history and be the principle substitute for Face the Nation and contribute to 60 Minutes—It’s my dream.” (No questions about the poor treatment of women in the business. Not even a single question about whether Norah has ever experienced sexism in the course of her career.)

3. Missed opportunities. In two random lines, we learn that O’Donnell, when she was little, used to pretend to be Barbara Walters and that she wanted to be the female Tim Russert. We get zero details. Really? You don’t even ask Norah how she distinguishes between being a man versus a woman or if she looked in the mirror and did a Wawa imitation? You don’t ask her to do one now? And Russert — is this really her eventual goal? How would she critique the current NBC “MTP” hosted by David Gregory? The lack of tough questions throughout this puffy piece is daunting.

4. Pointless sucking up. Norah “hates the idea that women can’t have a high-powered job and be a mother.” She says, “It’s absolutely archaic.”  “…And sexist,” Tracy added. (Yes, they are a modern couple trying to make the life-work balance work. There’s nothing new or interesting about this. And what a relief to see that Geoff also thinks sexism is “archaic.”)

5. Soundbites II. This one made us cringe. “Norah’s the national and international star and I’m just the local mayor, unelected of course,” Tracy joked. “In all seriousness, I’m very fortunate that I get to entertain people on a daily basis.”

Remember that brick wall we asked you to bring? Time to use it unless you prefer the pillow.

Read the complete monstrosity here.

 

C&E Gets Makeover

If you subscribe to Campaigns & Elections, you’ll notice some pretty drastic changes to your next issue.   After being purchased by Political Holdings US, the magazine got a new look and layout, which debuts this month.  C&E was kind enough to share with FishbowlDC a few pages from their latest issue before it lands in mailboxes.  So, what do you think?

Good Morning FishbowlDC Readers

Quotes of the Day


Editor tries to reason with ravenous mosquito

“Why can’t this mosquito floating around my room call it a day after 3 bites?” — Gawker’s Political Editor Jim Newell. Weirdly, TBD‘s Jeremy Binckes also recently wrote of mosquito bites on the bottom of his feet.

Easily the most jarring sentence in Sam Chapin‘s story in the new Highbrow Magazine headlined “In Defense of Rep. Weiner and Other Scandal-Ridden Politicians.” He questions Weiner getting such a raw deal when he committed no actual crime, writing, “What makes Gingrich untouchable and Weiner so easily rubbed out?” One might call this wording lowbrow. (Read the story here.)

Hipster expert on the loose

All the young legislative staffers are dressed in their best “August recess Hill hipster” attire. Think VC conference casual. — NBC News cameraman Jim Long.

Bio of the Day: NBC Producer Andrew Gross Handle: @TVMediaAG Description: “Monkey fighter, network tv producer for NBC, hater of hot weather, coffee lover.”

French pooler goes into the bowels

“The motorcade drove into the bowels of the Minneapolis Convention Center at 10.47″ — Agence France-Presse’s Stephen Collinson in a Tuesday pool report.

Reporter poses random q

“If you or anyone you know graduated from high school in 2005, message me. The more random the place, the better.” — WaPo Express’ Clinton Yates. We inquired about this mysterious story, but Yates said he can’t share just yet. Developing…

TWT reporter goes on anti-diet

“I am on this great new diet where I am eating only processed sugars and complex carbohydrates. I don’t even feel like I’m dieting. #amazing” — TWT national security reporter Eli Lake.

Journo says even pops insists on OTR

“Also, my own father, a union leader, occasionally asks to go off the record in conversations w/ me.” — Labor journo Mike Elk.

 

Separated at Birth: The Rick Perry Edition

Tribune‘s Mike Memoli has come up with a brilliant Separated at Birth idea for GOP presidential hopeful Rick Perry. He pairs Perry with West Wing GOP nominee Rob Ritchie. We’re also throwing in actor Josh Brolin to play Perry’s much hotter double on the trail. See Perry below – at top left and bottom right.

 

Today’s Most Popular Stories 8.30.11

Every afternoon we surf your sites for the most popular stories of the day. Here are the top headlines for August 30, 2011:

Washington Post: Suspected North Korean cyberattack on a bank raises fears for S. Korea, allies

Washington Times: Mugshot: Obama’s Uncle Omar in jail

Washington Examiner: GOP needs to articulate a vision for health care

USA Today: Recession leaves many in permanent cutback mode

NPR: Flooding From Irene Damages Roads, Strands Towns

The Hill: ATF head removed by DOJ after ‘Fast and Furious’ controversy

Politico: Kenneth Melson, acting ATF chief, steps down

Roll Call: Weprin Drops Out of Debate in N.Y. Special

National Journal: Promise of Jobs from Solar, Wind Power a Hard Sell in the Desert

The New Republic: Yes, We Can Do Stimulus Without Adding Debt. Here’s How.

The Daily Caller: Rick Perry’s camp defends 1993 HillaryCare praise

TNR and Kennedy Center to Reflect on 9/11

The Kennedy Center and TNR are joining forces to commemorate, in words and in music, the 10th anniversary of the tragedies that transpired on September 11, 2001.

Hosted by ABC “This Week” host Christiane Amanpour, 9/11: 10 Years Later—An Evening of Remembrance and Reflection will take place Thursday, September 8 at 7:30pm in the Concert Hall.  Artists will include Denyce Graves, Emmylou Harris (pictured here), Wynton Marsalis (pictured here), and the National Symphony Orchestra conducted by John Mauceri. Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, Madeleine Albright, Leon Wieseltier, and other guest speakers will offer remarks.

The event is invitation-only and will include members of the 9/11 community and other special guests. TNR will publish “9/11: 10 Years Later”, a special commemorative issue of the magazine, which will be distributed to those attending the event. It will include reflections and recollections by “distinguished thinkers and writers exploring the many meanings of this anniversary.”

Want a Marion Barry Fix?

Photograph of Barry’s car posted on Twitter by WaPo’s Tim Craig

If you’re itching to hear what former Washington Mayor and current City Council Member Marion Barry is up to these days, you’re in luck because WaPo City Hall reporter Tim Craig has been catching up with him. He has the pictures and the details that Barry is having car troubles he says were the result of a hit and run.

“Marion Barry drives up to JAWB with car bumber off, dragging down street. He says it was hit and run,” Craig reported on Twitter some three hours ago. He also wrote, compassionately, “Barry’s car was also heavily, heavily keyed. I felt bad. Major, major vandalism to it — seems separate from ‘hit and run’.”

TBD “On Foot” reporter John Hendel is also all over this story. It’s clear that he, too, feels for Barry and that the car shows “signs of more damage than a  hit and run would suggest. Who knows. But what a city we live in, right? How weird does all that sound. Poor guy. Let’s hope he fixes his car soon.”

See his full account here.

 

 

Taghizadeh Launches Highbrow Magazine

You may recall Tara Taghizadeh from FishbowlDC’s Brag Book.  She appeared in the feature after being laid off from Gannett News Service, where she worked as an entertainment reporter.  But it seems job hunting wasn’t her bag so Taghizadeh took matters into her own hands and instead launched Highbrow Magazine.

The new publication calls itself “a liberal, general-interest online magazine for arts/entertainment, news and politics, media, food and travel.”  Some of the site’s debut headlines include:  ‘Top 10 Films Every Highbrow Should Own’, ‘In Defense of Rep. Weiner’, and ‘The Return of Candidate Obama.’

Taghizadeh, who serves as publisher and editor, says the goal of the goal of the magazine is to feature thought-provoking, intelligent writing — with an edge.

“We plan to cover issues of the day, but also offer insight into more unusual subjects that are not always covered by the mainstream media,” she explained.

The site has already nabbed a handful of contributors and it appears they’re looking for more.  A recent tweet from the publication says: “If you’re interested in writing for Highbrow Magazine or submitting photography and artwork, send an email to magazineeditor16@yahoo.com.”

Note to Tara:  Betsy has offered to pen a biweekly column about eyebrows for Highbrow with her fav broadcaster and exquisite eyebrow raiser, ABC 7’s Steven Tschida.  Hit her up if interested.

Everyone else can check out Highbrow here.

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