Friday, July 9, 2010

The TR: Stumping for 2010, Stroking LeBron's Ego and Starting That November Spending Spree

Non-DC peeps, please take note: this is not the place to be right now. Washington interns are LITERALLY melting from this record-breaking heat, and as the work slows down we are losing our capacity for rational thought. Grab your iced coffee, turn up the A/C and avoid taking the bus, chickens! You can stay calm, cool and snarktastic with us.


Obama has been stumping for clean energy and jobs in Nevada this week, before Congress is due back in session. We're waiting for three votes on FinReg and talking economic recovery.

But the longer term forecast is focused -- and heavily -- on November. Specifically, on the mythical "likely voter" (many of whom consider our President a socialist). Democratic fundraisers are in a tizzy over a circulating memo stating that conservative interest groups could spend up to $300 million over this campaign cycle. Guess Wall Street isn't happy about them Dems tryin' to protect Main Street, eh? This New York Democrat might be the exception. We'll be watching the money flow. And PS: keep those interns quiet!

Completely unrelated: Malia Obama is 5'9"?!

BP says it could stop the oil spill by the end of the month. Yeah, sure. In case you haven't guessed, the word "could" should be taken with a grain of salt. Let's hope this PR thing is sorted out by then. In the mean time, we're hearing that tar balls have finally reached Texas shores. Time to stop the apologizing, Gov. Perry? (By the way, if you haven't done this yet, scope out the size of the oil spill by seeing what it would look like if it covered your town. Not terribly comforting. Here, cheer yourself up with this oil spill board game!)

Obama's Justice Department filed suit against Arizona earlier this week in an attempt to prevent the tough immigration law from going into effect. Gov. Jan Brewer had another hissy fit and canceled the annual U.S./Mexican governor's conference.

Gay rights advocates had a victory in Massachusetts after a federal judge ruled that the Defense of Marriage Act was unconstitutional. The case will likely end up before the Supreme Court. Out in Hawaii, though, Linda Lingle disappointed us by vetoing a civil-unions bill. Do we smell a boycott brewing?

The Week That Was

Sentenced and deported: Russian spies caught last week were expelled. Every last one of them plead guilty in a New York federal court. The spy swap took place in Vienna, Austria.

General James "It's a Lot of Fun to Fight" Mattis was nominated by Robert Gates to replace David Petraeus at Central Command. Things are starting to calm down, but Petraeus has a hard job in front of him. Our advice? Avoid the limelight, get to work and let the stories be about what you can accomplish.

"I ain't going anywhere!" Oh, Michael Steele, keep on talking, (because it's worked so far!). Folks are lining up telling him to stay or go -- it may mean trouble if Ann is defending you. But Repubs don't want to get involved with all that right before November. You know, it might just be a fantasy, but having Sarah at the helm would be the best gift ever. She's already first out the gate in the 2012 race with a new ad. (And check out how that stock footage goes after crazy lefty regulatory practices like "grammar." Citizen, please. This is AMERICA.) Heck, even Michael's got a chance of taking it to the next level. Hah!

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited the White House Tuesday to do some relationship mending. Obama gave him some political cover and the PM vowed to go after peace talks. He'll be on FOX on Sunday, FYI.

The Guardian sat down with South Carolina senatorial candidate Alvin Greene. He's got some, er, creative ideas for job creation. (H/T to Queenie's normally respectable Repub informant, who adds, "If they want to see where Alvin's primary money came from, we want to see a birth certificate!" Queenie's response: "Maybe from the Teabaggers?")

Does D.C. have a superhero defending our streets? Maybe we should take a cue from The Viper, Columbia, Tennessee's very own champion of the town square (with ninja stars!). You know, Queenie used to do some kickboxing back in the day...

Are You Not Entertained?

Ohhhh, snap. EVERYONE is talking LeBron and his ego today -- even Turner Central. Why is this King James nonsense anything special? First off, an HOUR-LONG SPECIAL? Sponsored by BING?! And you knew this would incite violence from Cleveland fans (those poor, desperate souls), but who knew this would give so much press to that work hard, play harder font: COMIC SANS. Or that we'd attempt POLITICAL ANALYSIS of this BS. Look, it's everyone's fault that we care so much about LeBron. Take him, Miami. Make this publicity stop! Or we'll get more crap like this!

Most of us were off on Monday, but NBC's Brian Williams accidentally went to work. Excellent work ethic! We were most definitely sleeping in/sitting by the pool/recovering from the night before.

Beibs is going to North Korea! Just kidding. But damn, that was a GREAT hoax.

A California judge handed Lindsay Lohan a 90-day sentence. Let's see if she serves the entire three months. She might need extra help learning respect for the law (although we have to say, her court notes look a little more admirable).

Interweb Tomfoolery

Cease and desist! Tea Party candidate Sharron Angle's campaign sent the letter to Harry Reid's campaign after the latter mocked his opponent's fail PR move to clean up her image. The Internets are forever, my dear. Check out these fun examples of online mud-slingin'!

The Tea Partiers have another reason to celebrate -- they're the newest consumer group of Chrysler. Whoops.

Need a lesson in making shit up? Our favorite foamer-at-the-mouth Glenn Beck is starting his own University. Accreditation and Glenn Beck don't belong in the same sentence.

We don't know if this Florida state representative's ad is painful or funny. How about both?

These senators weren't laughing at their own death notices. Hey, if Justin Beiber can handle it, so can you!

So many companies are embracing this "blogging" thing as a way to champion their message, and we're sure the flacks (sorry, "strategists") among you have recommended the same a time or two. Well, watch out -- it's failed case study time! PepsiCo has successfully ruined their own credibility by attempting to partner (read: buying ad space) with ScienceBlogs and start their own blog about (hah!) nutrition. This was met with, well, disdain.

Conservatives, be disappointed: President who?

Out on the Town

This weekend (for those of you still watching soccer) is a pretty important one, no? Just ask Jose Andres, who has taken octopus off the menu in honor of the Octo-Oracle predicting Spain's win. (Want your own psychic cephalopod? We gotcha covered.) Get your fĂștbol party on at Beacon on Sunday and get there early for the free drinks.

Feeling French? Celebrate Bastille Day at the Embassy of France -- we'd mostly go for the food, but we're sure there's something else interesting to do there. You can also get your culture on at the Capital Fringe Festival, which starts today. Finally, Queenie is a sucker for fireflies, so encourages you to take the kiddies to the Firefly Festival in Arlington at dusk.

And some advance warning: nerds among you, in addition to Nerd Nite at DC9 on Saturday, meet the Atlantis astronauts at Georgetown on July 26 and hear some arguments for why we still need the space program. Also in Gtown and totally unrelated: a massive pig roast at Bourbon Steak on August 1, which sounds AMAZING.

Shameless Self-Promotion

The Environmental Defense Fund has just released a new video directed at President Obama. After 40 years of false promises, we need him to help pass a climate and energy bill. Check out the vid and add your name to this pledge!

Coming up: Turner's latest MediaMorphosis lunch discussion on August 5. "How can an organization transform itself into the kind of nimble, transparent and inclusive entity that succeeds in a digital world?" Join our own Suzanne Turner, the American Association of University Women, the Environmental Defense Fund and the Service Employees International Union to learn -- and then teach others -- how to fly in a digital world. (Click here to see our future discussions!)


Queenie's off to sunny San Diego next week to do some good old-fashioned social media trainings, but don't fret! She'll be back in time for snark. Let her know if there are things she just HAS to mention next week (and, ugh, no more about LeBron, okay?).

Happy weekend-ing!

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