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Posts Tagged ‘Brett Decker’

Journo Pens Op-ed With Ex-Boss: Tom DeLay

Unknown-1Veteran journalist and White House Writers Group’s Brett Decker and former House Maj. Leader Tom DeLay have co-written an op-ed for USA Today on America’s debt crisis and the shutdown. Decker is the former editorial page editor for TWT. DeLay, a former exterminator, served in the House for 22 years.

Here’s how it came about. David Mastio, Decker’s former deputy at TWT who  is now Forum Editor at USA Today, suggested the piece. So Decker called DeLay, who said OK.

So how was it working with DeLay? Was he a pain in the ass? Read more

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Rare is Cooked: Editor-in-Chief Bolts Site, Joins White House Writers Group

Uh oh. Trouble in paradise?

White House Writers Group has swooped in and hired Brett Decker, founding Editor-in-Chief of the new conservative digital media outlet Rare. After just five months he walked from the Cox Media-owned site along with Deputy Editor James Robbins and Op-ed Editor Anneke Green.

The release from White House Writers Group says Decker has spent the last several months building up the site and building it to 1.6 million page views per week by its third full month.

See what WHWG’s Managing Director had to say. Read more

TWT Names New Editorial Page Editor

After Brett Decker quit his job as TWT Editorial Page Editor in November 2012, the paper slid former controversial Editor Wes Pruden into the job. But just temporarily. True to their word, they’ve finally named a new editor to their opinion pages — it’s David Keene. He was appointed Sunday, according to a release distributed this morning. Previous editorial page editors included the now deceased Tony Blankley and Tony Snow.

Most recently, Keene stepped down as president of the National Rifle Association. He is also a former GOP presidential advisor to Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and candidates Bob Dole and Mitt Romney. He was also an aide to former Vice President to Richard Nixon, Spiro Agnew.

But for anyone who feared (or hoped) that Pruden might drift back into retirement, it just isn’t happening. “The Times also announced that Editor Emeritus Wesley Pruden, who came out of retirement to reorganize the opinion pages in January, will remain in a full-time capacity directing and producing editorials,” says the release. He will also continue writing his twice-weekly column.

See a few flowery quotes from TWT CEO Larry Beasley (a.k.a. Evil Santa)… Read more

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

Howie uses the f-word

“F-word: For those who object to my calling Daily Show fake news, Jon Stewart has used it many times. Doesn’t mean criticisms aren’t real.” — CNN and Daily Download‘s Howard Kurtz. Damn, we thought for a moment he was actually dropping an f-bomb.

AnonymASS Tipster of the Day I: “Dynamite post of the week (then again, it’s onlybMonday [sic]): Spotted: Sen. Harry Reid at City Church. With a great back of the head photo that could have been a zillion other people. Needless to say, I was riveted.” Thanks Ass. So glad you wrote in! Yes, it was only Monday, and actually it was, in fact, Sen. Reid. There were riveting pictures of the front of his face that we didn’t show you.

Reporter wants to shoot up coffee

“It’s one of those just-inject-the-coffee-directly-into-my-veins kinda days.” — National Journal‘s Elahe Izadi.

Politico Playbook Publish Time: Whoa! 5:25 a.m.

AnonymASS Tipster of the Day II: “Do a story about DCRTV Dave Hughes!” Great idea! We have. Gobs of them. See here, here and here. We’re bored of that washed up lizard for the time being, and he hasn’t blatantly stolen anyone else’s copy lately.

Stephen Tschida Condo Update

“Kids the condo quest continues… the first board rejected me because of my boys. This time another problem… 48 hours to make it work!” — ABC7′s Stephen Tschida. By his “boys” he means his adorable pooches pictured here.

Sadness is…

“Grim fatherless fathers day here at Casa Frum/Crittenden.” — Daily Beast/Newsweek and CNN Contributor David Frum.

“When I walk into the spare bedroom in my house where Dad frequently stayed when he was sick, I can feel his presence as if he were still suffering there in bed, and I think, ‘Dad, I miss you.’ But then guilt and self-doubt strike. Did I miss you yesterday? Did I even think about you yesterday? Is the memory of you beginning to fade already? Am I sometimes still too busy with work to reserve even a few precious seconds every single day for the man who gave me life? God knows I neglected him enough as his life slowed down and mine sped up.” — Rare Editor-in-Chief Brett Decker in a Father’s Day first-person remembrance. Read the whole story here.

 

Morning Reading List 06.10.13.

Americans are sick of politics — National politics have been dominating the news lately, and as Salena Zito reports for Real Clear Politics, Americans are tired of it. The piece opens with an overheard couple at a restaurant in Dupont Circle deciding which tourist stop to visit next. Though they had two “Obama for America” tote bags with them, they made it clear the White House was not a place they wanted to see. They instead chose museums and other sites that had nothing to do with politics. Instead of partisan fatigue that occurs frequently in a party’s second term in the White House, Zito says the country is suffering from a bipartisan political fatigue. Starting with the 2012 election cycle, national politics has saturated the media. There was the fiscal cliff dilemma, the controversial gun control bill and now the news cycle is being consumed with the growing list of government scandals. Unfortunately for the sanity of Americans, it doesn’t look like political scandal coverage is going anywhere soon.

How “Verax” leaked NSA information — Speaking of government scandals dominating the news cycle, the newest scandal involving the NSA’s secret surveillance of Americans through large private communications companies has been in the spotlight since the news broke last week. And as of Sunday afternoon, the whistleblower who leaked the information has dominated the headlines as he came forward and identified himself as Edward Snowden. WaPo’s Barton Gellman details his communication with Snowden, or, as Gellman knew him for a while, Verax. The code name is Latin for “truth teller.” The 29-year-old used BRASSBANNER as a code name for Gellman and decided that getting the information out was worth risking being jailed for the rest of his life. Snowden leaked information to the reporter about the data mining operation PRISM, which collects surveillance data from Microsoft, Google, Facebook and other large communications companies, as well as giving Gellman a 41-slide powerpoint detailing the program. WaPo published only four of the 41 slides out of concern for national security. While waiting for the newspaper to consult with government officials to determine the national security risks, Snowden contacted Glenn Greenwald of The Guardian, who broke the story on the NSA’s secret collection of Verizon phone data on Wednesday. Snowden is now seeking asylum in a country with “strong internet and press freedoms,” and hopes global reaction to the leak will be positive so that a country will offer him asylum. If not, he says, he understands he may be behind bars for the rest of his life, but he’s alright with that.

See our third pick… Read more

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

MAKING AN ENTRANCE AND AN EXIT: Host of “CBS This Morning” Gayle King walked into the Washington Hilton on Saturday night in an eye-popping kelly green gown by Vicky Tiel. On Friday night, she was spotted leaving the Turkish Embassy residence where The Hill was hosting its pre-WHCD party.

“Don’t hurt yourself.” — A St. Regis employee to guests of Friday night’s TIME-People party at which partygoers, many of whom were White House correspondents, received gift bags so heavy they could give you a hernia. More on the contents later…

Humility is…

“I have been told many times I look like @MatthewPerry. I just saw him at #nerdprom. He is far better looking.” — The Hill’s Managing Editor Bob Cusack.

Editor wants WHCD weekend to be more substantive

“It kind of sickens me when you’re here for the White House Correspondents’ Weekend that there are not more substantive discussions.” — Steve Clemons, Editor-at-Large for The Atlantic, who hosted a discussion over the weekend with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow and Sen. Joe Manchin (R-WVa.) at the Ritz. The banquet room was packed. Breakfast disappeared too fast. The discussion centered on American military power today. Attendees included BuzzFeed Washington Bureau Chief John Stanton, NJ‘s Brian Fung, Yahoo! NewsChris Moody, Newsweek-Daily Beast‘s Eli Lake and The Atlantic‘s Jay Lauf.

A plea for help

“Someone catch me up on the last 9 days of news.” — Politico White House Correspondent Byron Tau.

Important Q to Ponder: “In a cab going to the airport but our driver is sleepy so he has the window down – to freeze or get into an accident?” — Oversharing Sherri Shepherd, co-host of ABC’s “The View.”

HuffPost‘s Sam Stein “impressed” with Politico

ThinkProgress‘ Judd Legum: “Politico currently has 54 separate links to stories abt WHCA Dinner on its front page.”

Huffpost‘s Sam Stein: “I’m kind of impressed.”

And in Bob Schieffer, Claire Danes father-daughter news… 

“Someone asked Bob Schieffer if he was Claire Danes’ daddy.” — former White House reporter Myles Miller.

Some buzz on BuzzFeed Party

“CSPAN showing super long line for @BuzzFeed party. A lot of sad faces who can’t get in #buzzfeedbbq” — Washington Examiner‘s Charlie Spiering. And this from Roll Call HOH’s Warren Rojas: “Crowd in #BuzzFeedbbq just let out very self-satisfied collective whoop after @cspan live shot of line @JackRoseinDC #counterwhcd”

Psy or is it more like Sigh?

“Psy just walked by me. I feel somehow cooler. Or at least more relevant.” — WaPo‘s Chris Cillizza. Good thing Cillizza didn’t actually try to communicate with Psy.

Starting new pub is stressful

“Rare has oped from Jeb Bush today so big relief we can get the big names when so new. I’m on pins and needles every day.” — Rare Editor-in-Chief Brett Decker. See here. Will Jeb run or won’t he? Who knows, but his last graph sounds rather presidential. He writes, “American greatness comes from the power of individuals – not the government – to create wealth and opportunity through competition, innovation and empowerment. Not only must we pursue reform, we must do a much better job communicating how these reforms protect and promote the genius of America.”

 

More WHCD fallout…

Read more

A Rare Party in Washington

Donning a dark suit from the Donald J. Trump Signature Collection, Editor-in-Chief Brett Decker spent much of Monday in a mild state of panic before the big evening launch party. Creating a new publication can do that to a person. So could launching it on the day of a terrorist attack when parts of downtown Washington were in lockdown mode. Still, Rare, the new conservative news outlet banked by Cox Media Group, successfully rolled into town this week with an elegant cocktail party at the Newseum. Guests pass through a gauntlet of drinks, as pictured above. Turnout was high — about 250. The mood was low-key but buzzing with a specialty bourbon drink with honey and lemon and miniature tureens of Butternut Squash soup.

Rare‘s Publisher Leon Levitt was in full mingle mode. “We think there’s an opportunity for a strong conservative voice that’s not mean spirited,” said Levitt, senior veep at Cox. Really, never mean? “I think you can have an edge without being mean,” he replied.

Though Levitt’s clearly on the business side of the operation, he studied journalism at the University of Las Vegas in 1979. Asked what he learned there, he said, “The most important thing is honesty and integrity.” Then he leaped into the state of journalism today. “We have made journalism much more time-starved,” he remarked. “If you can find the 25th hour in someone’s day, you win.”

Soon enough we got down to the business of asking the members of Rare‘s staff to name the rarest thing about themselves. It’s not an easy question — you don’t want to seem like a pompous prick and yet you’d like to think there’s something worth mentioning. As we reported earlier in the week, American Spectator Editor Bob Tyrrell struggled with the question and finally declared he wasn’t a narcissist like ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner and had no response. He told us to bug his wife, Jean, about it. But she slipped away before we could grill her.

The first person we approached, Rare‘s Managing Editor Tabitha Hale, had an easy time with her answer. “I’m a bit of a hippie,” the long wavy hair blonde in the vintage-style low-cut dress said. “I was raised by Dead Heads.” She spent six years in Nashville working in publishing followed by stints at Freedom works and The Franklin Center. With the tattoo “Love” cascading down her left arm, it was clear she wasn’t a typical political Washington type. She told us she has two other tattoos — one, Ephesians 6, 12 and 13 on the top of her foot; the other she wouldn’t initially discuss (our imaginations went to bad places) but ultimately she said it was something tribal on her back.

Anneke Green, a Rare contributor, also didn’t have to think too hard. “I have a motorcycle, an ’86 Rebel 450,” she said. “They only made them for two years.”

Read about more rarities, see who showed up…

Read more

American Spectator Editor Has Thoughts on Weiner

There’s no way to write “weiner” or “Weiner” without it sounding dirty. Turns out it’s difficult to even discuss former ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) without at least one penis joke popping into the conversation.

Such was the case last night at the launch of the new conservative media outlet, Rare, at the Newseum where American Spectator founder Editor-in-Chief Bob Tyrrell was mingling and toasting his longtime friend and Editor-in-Chief Brett Decker (both pictured at right). Asked if he was worried about Rare digging in his readership, he remarked, “I’m not nervous about much of anything, especially after a glass of wine.”

The longtime conservative Washington editor reasoned, “Financially we’re a lot stronger than the liberal media. Rare is starting out, I think it looks very promising.” Tyrrell joked about the Washington Post constantly changing it’s bottom line. And what about TWT‘s ongoing financial issues? “They’re still coming out everyday,” he replied.

Turns out Tyrrell is quite the talker after a little vino. We’re not suggesting he was inebriated, just that he was ready to let his hair down a little and dish, especially on the recent NYT Magazine story about Weiner. Asked to name the rarest thing about himself, Tyrrell hemmed and hawed and struggled to come up with an answer. Instead he said, “Answering this question assumes that I’m a narcissist. You want a narcissist? Ask Anthony Weiner and Eliot Spitzer. Weiner? Hell, he’ll even send you a picture!”

Asked if he’d read the lengthy weekend magazine story on Weiner, Tyrrell said that there have been a shocking three NYT stories on Weiner in recent days, including a piece by Frank Bruni. “I found it soporific,” he said of the magazine feature (which means it induced drowsiness, much like a narcotic). “He’s interested in you women, so how you feel about him matters.”

And then, the penis joke. Read more

Rare Editor Says There’s a Missing Obit

“Of all the beautiful tributes out there, the best obit of Thatcher is missing — the one that would have been written by my late friend and mentor Tony Blankley, my predecessor as TWT Editorial Page Editor,” writes Brett Decker, Editor-in-Chief of Rare, the new conservative media outlet, to FishbowlDC on the death of British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. “No doubt those two are in heaven together talking politics now. Tony was born in London and became an American patriot, serving in the Reagan White House and in Congress for Speaker Gingrich. Tony’s dad was Winston Churchill’s accountant, and Tony never quite shook that subtle lingering English accent. They don’t make ‘em like Maggie or Tony anymore — tough and principled political fighters who are also classy.” Tony Blankley died of cancer in January of 2012.

Fish Food

(A sprinkling of what we think you ought to know…)

New conservative publication brands itself with Bush sloganRare, an online news site for “today’s conservatives,” makes its official debut April 15. The publication, headed by former TWT Editor Brett Decker, is hosting two events at the Newseum to mark the occasion, one an interview by Decker of a to-be-named “high-profile” guest, the other a video showing “a modern, fresh, technologically savvy approach to conservative media.” Noteworthy: The video calls for “a new way forward” in branding conservative ideas, according to a press release from Rare. “New way forward” was the slogan adopted by the Bush (43) administration in the Iraq War troop surge of 2007.

Glenn Greenwald on Margaret Thatcher and “death etiquette”– Unless the person was truly vile, it’s customary to withhold any strong dumping on someone immediately after his or her death. Writing in The Guardian, Glenn Greenwald says it’s time for that to stop when it comes to political figures like former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. “When a political leader dies, it is irresponsible in the extreme to demand that only praise be permitted but not criticisms,” Greenwald writes. “There is absolutely nothing wrong with loathing Margaret Thatcher or any other person with political influence and power based upon perceived bad acts, and that doesn’t change simply because they die.”

In any case, Thatcher helped invent soft-serve ice cream… Read more

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