Friday, October 16, 2009

The TR: Look! Up in the Sky! It's... the Hoax that Hijacked the Entire News Cycle!

Now that all this balloon drama is over, we are working extra hard to remind you that there is ACTUAL NEWS happening this week. We swear! So kick off those still-wet-from-trudging-through-the-rain-this-morning shoes and grab yourself some afternoon coffee -- we're ready to roll! And, first up, the latest Autotune the News. Not as great as usual, but worth it for the first 20 seconds.


Since the healthcare bill that was in the Senate Finance committee passed, it's been a race to prepare for what now seems inevitable: reform! We can has! Or can we? This is going to be even more grueling than before, since the special interest groups are now hauling ass to make sure their interests are protected. Obama is also getting a little more into it, and using all kinds of "mopping" metaphors to describe the situation. Women, don't let your needs get washed away in the chaos (and don't use these mopping metaphors around your daughters, or this might happen). Check out Pelosi's call with BlogHer recently for starters, and watch her negotiating with the Blue Dogs in coming weeks.

We're still putting off a decision on Afghanistan, in part because of the fraudulent election results over there that still haven't been resolved. But these delays could get dangerous, making us look weak and potentially empowering insurgents. We don't have any advice for you, Mr. O -- just don't screw it up. No presh!

The DOW hit 10,000! ...And has virtually nothing to do with the state of the economy. You knew that, though, didn't you? Although things are (sort of) looking up, the "storm clouds are gathering" over the sinking dollar and rising spending/debt. Most Main Street Americans haven't been feeling too optimistic about the state of things, anyway, since recovery has been and will keep being slow.

Rush Limbaugh vs. the NFL has caused an incredible amount of sturm und drang on right-wing radio, in cable chatter and in the blogoshere. Limbaugh allegedly successfully defended himself against claims of racist statements, but the investors voted him out. The Right is saying Limbaugh is being persecuted for political beliefs -- even that someone involved with the team was a *gasp* "friend of O," so the fix came from the WH. Others (like Eugene Robinson) say he's a loudmouthed windbag who makes his living by spewing hatred, so he got what he deserves. Queenie already pays no attention to football (except as background noise that reminds her of fall), and is just really ticked that Limbaugh's First Amendment Rights have to be part of her pre-coffee morning chats with her Prince-Consort, aka, "The Crank."

Expect more mockery of the new GOP website in coming weeks, and especially of Michael Steele's blog and EXCELLENT writing skills. The hits just keep on comin'!

Geek alert! You can now use your iPhones on the Metro, sort of! But for the love of everything holy, please text only and save your conversations for when you're outside. Our Culture Minister doesn't need to hear about your weekend plans or that co-worker you hate or ANYTHING ELSE while she's trying to nap in her seat.

Blago versus The Trump. Cue your DVRs now!

The Week That Was

Obama went to New Orleans this week for the first time since taking office, and, blah blah blah, h'ray! He's not G.W. Bush!

The National Equality March in DC happened, and, while it received very little media coverage (or firm commitments from Obama), it was good stuff. Here are some speeches, here are some great photos and (we couldn't resist snarking it up a bit, even if we support the cause wholeheartedly) the 10 funniest signs carried by protesters. Also, a must-read about "glamdalism" and the way the media spins homosexuals.

Well, this is f&*ed up. A Justice of the Peace in Louisiana denied an interracial couple a marriage license so he could "protect the children" they will have. We just threw up a little. Racism is not dead, folks, and don't start thinking it is -- this is a great big country with a LOT of people in it, and most of them don't think like us.

We’re trying to feel sorry for Meghan McCain and her boobs, but we just can’t. Putting such a MySpace-y picture up was a stupid idea, Ms. “I am a Serious Pundit (LOL, Hi Daddy!),” and it's not because you have cleavage or because we enjoy slut-shaming. Men who do shit like this and try to pass themselves off as "people who should be taken seriously" also get made fun of. Just ask Levi Johnston.

There's been a Photoshop scandal raging through the Internets lately over Ralph Lauren and their propensity for grotesquely misshapen women to wear their clothes. And what makes it even rage-ier? The fact that one of the models in question was fired for being TOO FAT at a size 4. To the Ralph Lauren PR people: HAHAHAHAHA.

OMG, this baby is alive.

In Memoriam, Childhood Dreams Edition

We were peacefully working through the day yesterday when suddenly our Twitterstreams were HIJACKED. Small boy in a balloon? Trapped thousands of feet in the air?? IT CANNOT BE! It's a Roald Dahl book come true! This little boy is LIVING THE DREAM!

Uh, or not.

WTF, y'all. Turns out the whole thing was faked. The Internet memes started almost immediately, and most of America is understandably disappointed (we saw this on the Simpsons already). Way to go, Balloon Boy. This story is officially played out, and our childhood fantasies of sailing away in a balloon are shattered. (By the way, this, by far, was our favorite response yesterday.)

Whatever. Let's all go see Where the Wild Things Are and get our imaginations back.

Shameless Self-Promotion

Maybe you've seen the front page TIME Magazine coverage on women's new roles in society? Or you're anticipating tonight's Dateline piece, Sunday's Meet the Press interview and NBC's week-long coverage-a-thon? Well, we didn't have anything to do with any of that -- the big hat tip goes to Maria Shriver herself and the Center for American Progress. We do draw your attention, however, to the one missing piece: actual POLICY RECOMMENDATIONS so society can catch up with women's progress and provide things like, say, child care and equal pay. Congrats, client AAUW, for promoting the social change that still needs to happen.


Thank god all that Nobel Prize bullshit died down, but check out what happened at the fiesta we mentioned last week: Presidential salsa dancing scandal!

Got your Halloween costume yet? Our Culture Minister is heading over to the National Opera's costume sale to scope for ideas, but if you so much as TRY to snag anything pretty out of her hands, she won't hesitate to use violence. Just sayin'.

Stay warm and we'll see you next week!

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