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Posts Tagged ‘Frank Rich’

Huff Post Live Explores Pop Culture’s Obsession with the Vice Presidency

h-VP-348x516Thanks to shows like “VEEP” and “House of Cards,” many Americans outside of Beltway are finding themselves fascinated with politics, Washington, and the Vice Presidency.

On Friday, June 13 at 12 noon, HuffPost Live will bring together a panel of experts to explore how the role of the VP has assumed more power in recent administrations and pop culture’s recent obsession with the position.

Sitting down with Huff Post’s Josh Zepps - one of the founding hosts of the “Live” series – will be former chief-of-staff to VP Gore and VP Biden, Ron Klain; Vice Presidential historian Joel K. Goldstein; Executive Producer of “VEEP,” Frank Rich; and Vice Presidency scholar Joel Goldstein.

Ask your questions and watch the segment here.
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Weekend Show Preview: 4.11 – 4.13.

SundayShows12Who’s on the talk shows this weekend? Glad you asked:


CBS’s “Face the Nation” : Michael Eric Dyson, Georgetown University; Nikole Hannah-Jones, ProPublica and The Atlantic; Evan Wolfson, Freedom to Marry; Tavis Smiley, PBS; Peter BakerThe New York Times; Leigh GallagherFortune; Michael GersonThe Washington Post; and Frank RichNew York Magazine

“Fox News Sunday” : Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC); Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI); Ways and Means Committee; Ranking Member Rep. Sander Levin (D-MI); and Rep. Charles Boustany (R-LA)

NBC’s “Meet the Press” : TBA

ABC’s “This Week” : Samantha Power, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations; Gov. Deval Patrick (D-Mass.); Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky); James Carville, Democratic strategist; Laura Ingraham, syndicated radio host; and Robert Reich, former Clinton Labor Secretary

Univision’s “Al Punto” : Luis Guillermo Solís, President-Elect of Costa Rica; Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill); Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla); Arianna Huffington; Natalia Lizeth López, Mexican Indigenous activist; and Franco De Vita, Venezuelan singer and songwriter

CNN’s “State of the Union” : 9 amJeff Densmore, director of engineering, Dukane Seacom; Ken Christensen, president, Integrated Aviation Solutions; Rep. Steve Israel (D-NY), chairman, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee; Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR), chairman, National Republican Congressional Committee; and Liz Mair, former RNC online communications director.  12 noonArnold Carr, sonar technology expert and Stephen Trimble, aviation journalist, Flight Global

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In Memoriam: Michael Hastings

Michael Hastings, a writer for Buzzfeed and Rollling Stone best known for the career-ending profile of Gen. Stanely McChrystal, was killed yesterday in a car crash in Los Angeles.

News of Hasting’s death first came Tuesday afternoon from BuzzFeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith, who posted a note on the site that said,”We are shocked and devastated by the news that Michael Hastings is gone.”

“Michael was a great, fearless journalist with an incredible instinct for the story, and a gift for finding ways to make his readers care about anything he covered from wars to politicians,” Smith said in his note. “He wrote stories that would otherwise have gone unwritten, and without him there are great stories that will go untold.”

Rolling Stone followed with an obituary a few minutes later.

Hastings’ hallmark as reporter was his refusal to cozy up to power. While other embedded reporters were charmed by McChrystal’s bad-boy bravado and might have excused his insubordination as a joke, Hastings was determined to expose the recklessness of a man leading what Hastings believed to be a reckless war.

Buzzfeed has a full story about Hastings here, there are tributes from the Buzzfeed staff here and finally, a collection of remembrances from other journalists, here.

Read on for a selection:

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HBO’s Veep Picks Up Three Emmy Nominations

Congratulations are in order for New York mag’s Frank Rich and the crew at HBO’s Veep. The send-up of Washington politics just picked up Emmy nominations for Outstanding Comedy Series,  Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series for star Julia Louis-Dreyfus, and Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series.

Rich is an executive producer for the show and by far one of the most likable Media Beat guests we’ve had, so we couldn’t think of a better person to get such an honor. Don’t believe me? Check out the video for yourself.

Part 2: Frank Rich Compares New York Times and New York Magazine
Part 3: Frank Rich on the ‘Great Theater’ of Politics and Pop Culture

Frank Rich on the ‘Great Theater’ of Politics and Pop Culture

In the final installment of this week’s Media Beat interview, Frank Rich, New York magazine columnist and executive producer of HBO’s Veep, discusses the meshing of politics and pop culture. Having covered Broadway for years, he says the nonstop spectacles, gaffes and minutiae that become “news” just make his job more fun.

“To watch [President Obama and Mitt Romney] grapple on the one hand with the changes in the news media [and] on one hand with the world of The Voice and American Idol, The Daily Show, and SNL, it’s fascinating,” Rich explained. “But people forget this didn’t used to be the case. It was considered a huge deal when Bill Clinton played the saxophone on The Arsenio Hall Show 20 years ago. It’s a development that’s spiraling; it’s developing. It’s interesting to watch. It’s great theater.”

Watch the full video for Rich’s take on that supposed liberal media bias and to find out what he thinks the “real danger” in today’s news reporting is.

For more videos, check out our YouTube channel and follow us on Twitter: @mediabistroTV

Part 1: Veep Executive Producer on DC: ‘Young People Jockeying for Power in Offices that Look Crummy’
Part 2: Frank Rich Compares New York Times and New York Magazine

‘Veep’ Executive Producer on DC: ‘Young People Jockeying for Power in Offices that Look Crummy’

“People outside of Washington, you know they come on high school trips, they think it’s all like movie sets.  They think it’s all like ‘The West Wing,” longtime political columnist Frank Rich, who is an executive producer on the new HBO series “Veep,” said in the first part of our “Media Beat” interview with him, talking about DC.

“In fact, it’s a lot of oftentimes young people jockeying for power, doing mundane jobs, trying to stab each other in the back… and often in offices that look crummy” (video below).

For more mediabistroTV videos, check out our YouTube channel and follow us on Twitter: @mediabistroTV

Part 2: Frank Rich Compares New York Times and New York Magazine
Part 3: Frank Rich on the ‘Great Theater’ of Politics and Pop Culture

“Veep” Stars Walk the Carpet in D.C.

Julia Louis-Dreyfuss

The cast from HBO’s upcoming series “Veep” were in town yesterday to promote the political comedy with a screening at the U.S Institute of Peace.

It was mostly peaceful, but packed which made for dicey moments on the red carpet.

“Veep” focuses on a clueless vice president, played by Julia Louis-Dreyfuss, and her bumbling staff.

FBDC asked the show’s starring actors about their thoughts on the D.C. culture and what parts of it were amplified in the series.

“The closer you are to the popular kids, the more powerful people feel,” said Tony Hale, who plays a personal aide to the Vice President. “[It's] just like high school. There’s a lot of high school happening in both here and L.A.”

Timothy Simons took special note of Washington’s crappy sense of style. “There’s a fashion sense from 10 years previous,” said the actor who plays the White House Liaison to Dreyfuss’ character. “A general sense that nobody has time to ever buy new clothes. So I think it’s like the clothes you have in college, you just hope that those fit you until you’re 35. And at that point you would have time to shop for new clothes.”

Simons said he prepared for his role by reading “D.C. Interns,” a popular blog about interns in Washington. He said the blog taught him about about “calling interns out on wearing their intern badges” at inappropriate places.

Matt Walsh plays the Communications Director in “Veep.” He told us the first thing he learned about the D.C press corps in preparing for his role is that “the best play in any crisis or any gaffe is to not say anything [else] and to smile your way through it.” Smaller blogs break the stories now, he said, “so you really have to watch every word that you say. You can never be off camera. You’re never off the record.”

NYT's Frank Rich


Sarah Palin is famous for her media mishaps when she was the Republican vice presidential candidate. We asked Dreyfuss if she did any media prep for the show. She said she spent more time trying to “pull back the layers of politics” than news media, but that “it really is extraordinary now how every move a politician makes is documented. And one false step and they’re screwed.”

Space on the red carpet was tight (and even tighter with the five-person crew ABC’s Amy Walter and Yahoo! NewsDavid Chalain had in tow) but went smoothly enough.

The actual screening was like an oversold flight. More tickets than seats were handed out and many attendees were left standing.

“Veep” officially premiers April 22.


CNN’s Wolf Blitzer and Dana Bash (sans John King); Politico‘s Jonathan Martin; Mother Jones‘ (and alleged public tantrum thrower) David Corn; New York magazine’s Frank Rich; HOH’s Warren Rojas; MPAA Director Chris Dodd; The Hill‘s Judy Kurtz (aka Howeesha); The Washington Examiner‘s Nikki Schwab and Jenny Rogers; Glittarazzi‘s Ali Lewis and Greg Blakey.


“They just want him to get off.”– An apparently perturbed videographer remarking on the news that George Zimmerman was charged with second-degree murder.

TNR’s List Happy Phase

TNR is, at the moment, a list factory.

This week they are releasing 10 lists in total that will appear in the Nov. 3rd issue. They are releasing them online daily, in some cases just portions as some are locked behind a paywall.

First up: Most Powerful, Least FamousPolitico Publisher Robert Allbritton is number one. They mostly praise him but not entirely: “Though his efforts to monopolize Washington journalism haven’t been entirely successful (TBD, his hyper-local news site, laid off half its editorial staff after just six months), Allbritton has reshaped the way we follow politics.”

Next: D.C.’s Over-Rated Thinkers. Not all are Washington-based, but who wants to get all technical about it? Some include GOP Presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich and MSNBC’s New York City-based Rachel Maddow, New York Mag’s Frank Rich, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and CNN’s Fareed Zakaria, who resides in Manhattan. Read the list here.

They don’t skimp on scathing write-ups. On Gingrich: “In Time magazine, Mark Halperin extolled his ‘blistering brainpower.’ It’s certainly not evident to us. Gingrich has one of the loosest, least rigorous, most pretentious minds in politics. He loves ideas, he’s just no good at them; and the idea of ideas is not enough to make a man a serious intellectual.” And Maddow: “Maddow is a textbook example of the intellectual limitations of a perfectly settled perspective. She knows the answers even before she has the questions.” Read the list here.

And this: Our Favorite People. This list includes people such as PBS’s Gwen Ifill for her “calm, dispassionate” style and Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) for not suffering fools gladly. We’re not sure how seriously this one can be taken — William Shakespeare makes this list. But it’s in interesting pick. They write, “Is there any more perfect counterpoint to the ubiquitous blather of the city?” Read the list here.

Visit here for an overview.

The FishbowlDC Interview With Political Wire’s Taegan Goddard

Say hello to Taegan Goddard, founder of publisher of Political Wire. He owns and operates the site, while advertising is sold by CQ Roll Call. He grew up in Hartford, Conn. and graduated from Vassar with a major in economics followed by a public policy degree from Harvard. “I’m not even sure I’m a journalist now,” Goddard says with a brief chuckle. “I’m not even sure what journalist is. If it’s that I try to figure out what’s going and tell people, then I guess I am.” People tend to get confused by Goddard’s politics in that he has worked for a Democrat, a Republican and an Independent. He likes that he gets accused of being a Republican and a Communist. Goddard’s job doesn’t feel like work. “It’s almost what I’d do anyway,” he said. “I thoroughly love it.” Where does he work? “Absolutely everywhere,” he said. “One of the worst things is that it’s 24/7,  but one of the best is you can be anywhere.” Most of the time he’s in his study.

If you were a carbonated beverage which would you be? No doubt about it: Coca Cola.

How often do you Google yourself? Constantly, thanks to Google Alerts.

What’s the worst thing you’ve ever said to an editor (or vice versa)? I got in a heated argument with a New York Times editor over online journalism, which ended with me saying I looked forward to reading your newspaper on the bottom of a pet cage.

What’s the best advice you ever received in the course of your career? An old boss once told me to always remember that a monkey can do 95 percent of any job.

Who is your favorite working journalist? Frank Rich is brilliant.

Do you have a favorite word? Absolutely

Who would you rather have dinner with – First Lady Michelle Obama or Bestselling Author and former V.P. candidate Sarah Palin? Sarah Palin, even though she called me an idiot a few months ago. (Read here.)

What’s the name of your cell phone ring? Old-fashioned telephone.

What word do you routinely misspell? Reince Priebus

What swear word do you use most often? Fuck, as a noun, verb and adjective.

What word or phrase do you overuse? Fuck

What TV show do you have to watch? With the exception of Red Sox games and C-SPAN, I rarely watch television.

Where do you shop most often for your clothes? There is nothing I enjoy less than shopping for clothes. I try to make them last as long as possible.

Whom do you prefer for daytime talk, Dr. Phil, Ellen, Oprah, Tyra or the women of The View? None of the above.

Find out who Goddard wants to play him in a movie….(Hint: Saturday Night Fever)

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Slate’s Shafer Sours on Kurtz

Slate‘s media writer Jack Shafer thinks the world of The Daily Beast Washington Bureau Chief/CNN “Reliable Sources host Howard Kurtz.

But that’s the thing, the world is vast. And Shafer can’t find Kurtz as easily as he could when Kurtz was at WaPo. His story focuses on NYT’s Frank Rich, who he worries could drift into the ether when he moves to New York Magazine. Rich will write a monthly column there as opposed to a weekly he writes now. Shafer wonders whether his new schedule will make his stories less disciplined. Then he lumps in Kurtz, saying he can’t quite figure out where the “iron man” of media went since his move to The Daily Beast last fall.

He writes, “It’s not my fault that I don’t read Kurtz as much anymore, and it won’t be my fault if I start missing Rich’s copy, either, even though I read every copy of New York that another Slate staffer doesn’t steal from my mailbox.”

…”Howard Kurtz, one of the iron men of journalism, has been floating in the ether ever since leaving the Washington Post for the Daily Beast last fall. He’s writing prolifically about the media and other topics for the Beast, as he did
for decades at the Post. But Kurtz’s copy used to be hand-delivered to my front door step. Now, even though I’ve got Kurtz’s RSS feed in my Google Reader, he’s sorta vanished on me.”

Kurtz told FishbowlDC: “I’m crushed. I’ve offered to deliver my pieces to Jack each morning while he eats his corn flakes.”