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Archives: December 2012

Erick Erickson Confesses: I Am ‘The Media’

Politico‘s Glenn Thursh and Dylan Byers tag teamed RedState‘s Erick Erickson this morning over the attention NBC anchor David Gregory and the Sandy Hook elementary shootings are receiving.

To catch you up to speed, while anchoring Sunday’s “Meet the Press” Gregory held up a gun magazine, thus possibly breaking a D.C. gun law. Gun rights advocates pounced, calling for the prosecution of Gregory. It’s a story that’s been picked up mostly by media reporters and talked about on Twitter, but no thorough investigations outside of the conservative blogosphere have taken shape.

“Of course the media is dismissive of the David Gregory story,” Erickson tweeted today. “He broke the law to demand more laws.”

Thrush, who spent a larger portion of yesterday evening arguing with Twitter followers over the same subject, responded, “That’s because it’s a fake, joke story meant to divert attention from a serious [gun control] debate.”

“You mean like we need more laws like the one Gregory broke to prove we needed more laws? Yep, that’s funny.” Erickson said. Thrush reiterated his point that the Gregory story pales in comparison to the Sandy Hook shooting. Erickson, who wants you to know is not like the rest of the news world, returned to his theme that “the media” are covering up the Gregory story.

Thrush pointed out that Erickson is indeed part of “the media;” Erickson said he “resents the implication.”

That’s when Byers jumped in… Read more

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12 Things We Never Tire of in the Fishbowl

By Betsy Rothstein, Peter Ogburn and Eddie Scarry

We know you have one more year-end list in you. Or maybe you don’t. But wake up anyhow because here’s ours — the 12 things that never, ever make us want to take an afternoon snooze.

12. NBC Luke Russert‘s loud and fratboyish ways. Even House Speaker John Boehner has noted his decibel level and called him “loudmouth.” Though he’ll never get White House Soup of the Day quite right when he subs for Chuck Todd on “The Daily Rundown,” among our favorite moments with Luke this year was when he had a stop and smell the roses moment at a Nats game and took a picture of a spellbinding dragonfly, which he later posted on Twitter. Perhaps more poignantly though was when he covered a Capitol Hill presser and asked House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi if she was too old to remain in the Democratic leadership. The crowd of female lawmakers openly booed him. Pelosi told him he was offensive, even if he didn’t quite get it. Among the most entertaining comments sprang from CNN’s Hilary Rosen, who wrote on Twitter, “Note to Luke Russert: Mitch McConnell is 70, Harry Reid is 73. Oh and Bob Schieffer is 75. Think they should step aside? #NewGuysRule?” The question wasn’t an inappropriate one to raise, as lawmakers themselves had been discussing it out of earshot of Pelosi. Perhaps, as some noted, the time and setting and brash way in which Russert executed his questions were troublesome. Still, we especially enjoyed the commenters on Politico. There was the irate Wendy: “Luke Russert got his ass handed back to him. Any more questions, punk?” And the more sensible Chance: “Reporters should be asking tough, offensive and even stupid questions.”

11. Video journalist Michelle Fields flashing her breasts on national TV to get a job for Fox News. Her large male online contingency didn’t mind it much, either. In the meantime The Daily Caller gave her the axe for being lazy. Somehow Executive Editor David Martosko‘s lectures didn’t work? Favorite 2012 memory: There was the January manifesto from a convicted rapist that Michelle showed off on Facebook. But we’re torn between that and the more recent BuzzFeed party, where she unashamedly performed dramatic hair flips as our own Eddie Scarry snapped pictures.

10. Most things Matthew Boyle. The 20-something dogged journo never ceases to amaze. There was the time he insisted that the President of the Free World should allow him over for an interview. The more recent jaw-dropping moment from Boyle came when he fled The Daily Caller for Breitbart.com because he wants to be the next Andrew Breitbart. He started this adventure by taking his own photograph for the site, giving himself the unfortunate look of a triple-chinned Michelin Man. In his opening story out of the gate, he wrote an atrociously unedited right-wing rant about “magic vaginas.” We’re still not sure what those our, except we think they don’t involve Sandra Fluke. It was perfect. And terrible. And because we love Boyle in our own special way, we’d like to kidnap and deprogram him before it’s too late and the goose is boiled. Stick to breaking news Boyle and it’ll be just fine. And whatever you do, don’t stay there long.

9. Inside stories from The Washington Times. Always weird, unexpected, mind-boggling happenings at the ominous building off New York Avenue. Who can forget when former writer Julia Duin publicly accused then-editor Sam Dealey of verbally abusing her by canning her on the very day she decided to bring her daughter to work? She was also reportedly on crutches that day. And then there’s the more recent spate of stories concerning the impending layoffs coming in early 2013. The newsroom has dubbed their CEO Larry Beasley “Evil Santa” for a number of reasons, including recently moving a new sofa into his office while deciding whom to lay off. He also recently displayed a Santa doll holding a Christmas tree with the word “joy” on it. As the journalists await possible pink slips, they’re anything but joyful.

See the remaining eight entries of things that never bore us… Read more

Alex Pappas, Waffle House Cup Gift Survive Christmas Tornado

Fretting a natural disaster isn’t the ideal way to celebrate a large part of Christmas day, but it’s how The Daily Caller‘s Alex Pappas celebrated his.

Yesterday evening a tornado warning was issued for parts of Mobile, Ala., Pappas’ hometown and where he spent the holiday. About 40 minutes after retweeting the warning at 5:20 p.m., Pappas tweeted, “We can see tornado in midtown Mobile.”

He told FishbowlDC, “It was probably four or five blocks away when we saw it.” Pappas had just returned from a day at the beach.

Pictured above is the tornado taken by one of Pappas’ neighbors.

After the tornado had passed, Pappas tweeted that he and his family (15 people total) were fine but the power was out. He saw some people exit their homes holding martini glasses.

Pappas and other neighbors then went next door to a home powered by a generator. “In Mobile, we’re used to hurricanes,” Pappas said. “Not until this Christmas had we ever experienced a tornado. Thankful everyone is OK and my Waffle House coffee cup Santa brought me survived.”

Last we heard, Pappas was on a flight back to Washington.

After the disaster, he posted a full account of what happened to his Facebook… Read more

American Way is Friendly to Freelancers

Unlike other airline mags, the in-flight mag of American Airlines publishes twice a month, maintains a blog and keeps up its social media presence. “We’re trying to entice people to stay with American Way and use it as a go-to source for travel info even if they’re not on a plane. You can still go to the website and get useful information,” said executive editor Adam Pitluk. “We actually interact with our readers.”

With 90 percent of the magazine freelance-generated, there is ample opportunity for bylines at American Way. “We have our writers we like to kick stuff to,” said Pitluk, “but the best thing to do to break in is read the magazine and pitch specifically to that section. One thing I can’t impress upon enough is to not pitch a standard, stereotypical travel magazine story like a museum roundup. If you’re trying to break in, that’s not the way to do it.”

Find out the right way to get an editor’s attention in How To Pitch: American Way. [subscription required]

Julie Mason Finds Bob Woodward ‘Grumpy’

Just before the holidays, Borderstan, a Washington D.C. blog covering the neighborhoods of Dupont, Logan  and U Street chatted with Julie Mason, who hosts “The Press Pool” on SiriusXM’ Potus Channel.

The always candid Mason didn’t hold back on her most (and least) favorite interviews… Read more

Now Was This Really Necessary?

It’s not that hard to slap a stamp on an envelope or even pick up the telephone. But these days the laziest among us take to Twitter to bless and wish their professional loved ones a Merry Christmas. Such was the case with CNN Contributor and RedState‘s Erick Erickson and Fox News’ Brit Hume, who apparently don’t know the finer points of direct messaging or Hallmark. Thanks for making it extra churchy. What is this, The Waltons?

Erickson: “@brithume Merry Christmas Brit. God bless you and yours.”

Hume: “@EWErickson Same to you brother, and thank you for the wonderful diary entry on 12/21. Blessings.”

In other could’ve left this off Twitter news…ABC “The View’s” Sherri Shepherd writes on Twitter, “Jeffrey has had a fever since yesterday – I’ve been sneezed on, coughed on, snotted on… all he wants is hugs from mommy-Lord plz help me.” And this… “Merry Christmas! (We’re marking the traditions today because we’ll be in Disney-Florida tomorrow-Thursday.)” — National Journal Editorial Director Ron Fournier. Thanks for letting us know your schedule Ron!

Peter Ogburn contributed to this report.

 

Coming Soon: The Spawn of David Shuster

As far as big announcements go, Current TV and Exec. Editor at Take Action News David Shuster made a big one over the holidays. He and fiancé, Kera Rennert, are expecting a baby! Rennert is a freelance writer, producer and director in Manhattan. Congratulations to the happy couple!

Shuter wrote on Facebook:

“And baby will make three. Kera Rennert and I are thrilled to announce that our new family is growing! After getting engaged in July, our doctors suggested we ‘get on that baby thing’ because of our ages (at least mine.) So we did. We feel humbled and blessed! Wedding as planned this winter (with a little extra fabric in Kera’s dress), baby in late June. PS I found this baby picture on the internet. If this is your kid, please don’t sue me.”

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day — Home for the Holidays Edition

HOLIDAY JOKESTER: “My favorite 2012 picture of Steve Buttry.” — Mimi Buttry, wife of Steve Buttry. Buttry is the Digital Transformation Editor at Digital First Media. Nice, fancy title, Buttry!

Blogger goes nuts over bourbon balls

“Soaking nuts in Bourbon before I make Bourbon balls and I’m totally going to eat these nuts aren’t I?” — Laurie White, photographer, writer and blogger.

Roll Call researcher gets on wrong Metro car

“Of course I got on the Metro car with the puddle of barf in it.” — Katie Kovach, international affairs and defense researcher for Roll Call.

Important Question to Ponder: “I can’t believe people are tweeting about politics on Christmas Day. Why aren’t you people drunk struggling with electronics?” — InTheseTimes labor reporter Mike Elk.

“Fuckers”: The new way to say Happy Holidays!

“Happy Holidays to you too, fuckers.” — HuffPost‘s Sabrina Siddiqui to BuzzFeed‘s John Stanton, Politico‘s Kate Nocera and TPM‘s Igor Bobic.

Someone had to say it… “U.S. Senator in Deep ‘Crapo’ After DUI Arrest” — El Sharko blogger of Miami. (The Mormon senator from Idaho, Mike Crapo, got a DUI Sunday night. Nice timing!)

BuzzFeed editor gets weepy over gay weddings

“Watching a bunch of gay wedding videos and slowly getting emotional.” — BuzzFeed senior editor Stacy Lambe.

Uh oh. Scratch the drunken driving jokes

“Drunk driver jokes aren’t funny, folks. Especially if someone you love has been taken from you by one. Not a GOP or Dem. thing.” — Paul Brandus of  WestWingReport.

“People, there is nothing funny about drunk driving. Nothing.” — Politico‘s Ben White.

“Good thing people sending gleeful tweets re Crapo DUI have never needed compassion after some stupid/hypocritical human failing.” — Harold Pollack, University of Chicago professor.

Not a happy ending for this journo

“Merry Christmas to the TSA agent who touched my junk.” — Free Beacon‘s  CJCiaramella.

Editor copes with new holiday traditions

“My Presbyterian brain can’t process my Catholic wife’s family’s tradition of unwrapping presents on Christmas Eve.” — National Journal “The Hotline’s” Editor-in-Chief Reid Wilson.

Peanut Gallery du Jour: “I bet Jesus gets super pissed that his birthday is so close to Christmas.” — FBDC and “Full Court Press” co-host Peter Ogburn.

Real HuffPost Headline: “Not having sex? 7 ways to start again”

Oops! Wrong address.

“Someone sent us five pounds of dry aged steak for Christmas. Sent it to the wrong house. Sat on a porch for a week. #tryingnottocry.” — CNN Contributor and RedState‘s Erick Erickson. As our own Rachel Ray (a.k.a. Ogburn) explained it, “aged meat = good, aged meat outside = not good.” Erickson also doubles as an imbibing Santa. He wrote, “The kids are sound asleep. Santa is about to put together the toys as soon as he finishes his bourbon.”

HELP!

“Just drove past a car completely engulfed in flames on the Ohio turnpike. Scary stuff.” — National Journal daily production employee Michelle Bloom.

Dicking Around With John Dickerson

“During Christmas service tonight, my 3rd grade daughter: ‘Mom what’s a virgin?’” — CBS Political Director and Slate‘s John Dickerson.

Um, constituents?

“Good morning Twitter constituents! Everyone have a Merry Christmas, a happy holiday and I hope u all experience the joy the season brings.” — Javonni Brustow, Washington editor of TheDCPundit.com, who transformed himself into a politician as millions of Christians celebrated the birth of Christ.

Holiday gun jokes: too soon?

“20-year-old twins Bob and Jim give Christmas gifts to 14-year-old Jefferson and 12-year-old Emerson: GUNS!” — Conservative blogger and ex-TWTer Robert Stacy McCain.

“I’m told a bearded guy may break into my house tonight. Should I greet him w/ AK-47 or Glock?” — Current’s David Shuster.

“Idea: arm every air traveler.” — Wired senior reporter and third tier Boybander Spencer Ackerman.

Unnecessary Tweet of the Day

“Hostess told me I just booked the last available reservation tonight at our local Chinese restaurant. #christmasmiracle.” — Howeesha Kurtz (a.k.a The Hill‘s gossip columnist Judy Kurtz.)

Down and out journalists… Read more

Fox News Picky On Who Can Talk Guns

A story by New York magazine’s Gabriel Sherman Monday left readers with the impression that FNC was stifling debate on gun control in light of the Sandy Hook shooting. But subsequent stories and coverage of the issue concerning FNC have shown that’s actually not the case.

“It’s by no means universal,” Sherman told FishbowlDC. “It’s more nuanced. They’re just taking a low-key approach.”

Sherman’s initial story said FNC’s weekend producer David Clark had instructed lower producers not to broach gun control, given the current sensitivity of the subject. Despite the email, gun control was discussed several different times that weekend (13 times, by Jeff Poor‘s count at The Daily Caller). Stories in both The Hollywood Reporter and The Daily Caller pointed these instances out, though Sherman’s story did as well.

Since then, a few seemingly contradictory events have taken place in the FNC world… Read more

Boring Goes Meta

When Betsy sent me the link to listen to this week’s episode of “Sadly Lacking Radio” featuring DCRTV’s Dave Hughes as a guest I thought, “This will be fun.” But it’s not fun. And there’s a reason they’re sadly lacking a radio gig and it’s not a lack of options.

The SLR host was excited to have Hughes on because the last interview with him was “big in Australia.” But this show sounds so horrible even a dingo would refuse to eat it.

Nothing makes for a less compelling radio interview topic than a wannabe radio host talking about real radio hosts with someone who makes their living bitching about radio hosts. It’s so meta it’s meta. The worst part: Hughes goes on about his own site being such a high trafficked mecca that it crashed several times this week (that’s right, in the confines of his brain, it crashed).

So if you have an hour to kill, and sticking bamboo slivers under your toenails isn’t an option, but only because you don’t have enough bamboo slivers, give it a listen. But listen at your own risk. After I listened I began to resent the Mayans for being wrong.

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