Friday, August 6, 2010

8.16.10: Tracking Tax Cuts, Legalizing Love and Barry's Lonely Birthday

More fail from Metro this week. Queenie herself was nearly trapped in DC (the horror!) due to a, er, fallen roof at the King Street station. Not to mention these price hikes! Higher fares WILL mean better service, right? Anyone? ...Guys?

Forecast

Ah, the jobs report. Dems, did you have your Xanax ready for this morning? A meager report reveals that the unemployment rate is hovering around 9.5%. What's the plan, guys? IS there a plan? (Other than Geithner writing editorials?) Or are you just gonna keep taking hits on this one?

Tax cuts, tax cuts, tax cuts! Yes, Repubs are "looking out" for the "middle class." Move along, people, noooo hypocrisy here. But look! Some are splitting from the pack and arguing that extending tax cuts will only increase national debt. Um, yeah, pretty much. Expect more punditry on this and the economy all the way through Sunday -- maybe even NEXT Sunday, given that Christina Romer (head of the CEA) just resigned and, oh, this.

Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli is on a roll fighting the new health care law. His state became the first to have its case heard before a federal court. The AG also ruled that VA cops can ask for the immigration status of folks stopped or arrested. Meanwhile, congressional Repubs and fellow candidates are looking for ways to make sure money isn't used to fund new health care provisions.

Obama was in Atlanta, where he spoke about the coming withdrawal at the end of the month. The president says we'll still have 50,000 troops there through most of next year, but there are some worried rumblings about what withdrawal will mean for neighboring countries. His recent focus on the Middle East has also included revived attempts at reconciling a nukes deal and discussing Afghanistan with Iran -- something we're not so sure he has the political capital to do. (Speaking of foreign policy -- wow, Britain. Just wow.)

Democrats! Why, oh why, do you have to do this now? Maxine Waters followed Charlie Rangel into the doghouse this week. We're three months out and y'all are trying to shoot yourselves in the feet? But here's an interesting, somewhat deluded spin on the whole thing, courtesy of a top Dem. That is some optimistic thinking, my friend.

The Senate passed a $26 billion aid package to states to prevent teacher layoffs and provide for Medicaid payments. Speaker Pelosi called her colleagues back from recess to seal the deal in a vote next week. Wonder if anyone's gotten in a tan yet? On Wednesday, Debbie Stabenow introduced a bill extending unemployment benefits for another 20 weeks. The marching band of No can be heard in the distance.

Newsweek has been sold off the Dollar Menu, but what will happen next? Could non-profit status be the way to go? Don't worry about Harman's influence on the news, by the way -- seems like he has some fans already.

The Week That Was

Happy Birthday, Barry! It was a busy and lonely 49th, with the wife and kids elsewhere. Hopefully, the GOP didn't ruin the fun for ya. And it appears that a portion of America STILL won't admit that he's an effing citizen already. Seriously, people? This is old, old, OLD news.

Elana Kagan became the fourth female Supreme Court justice this week, no thanks to Ben Nelson and Scotty. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell gave Al Franken a piece of his mind, but we say it was the other way around. Kagan will be sworn in tomorrow. In other confirmation news, retired General James Clapper was confirmed as Director of National Intelligence.

A California federal judge issued a temporary stay after ruling Proposition 8 unconstitutional. Anti-gay marriage advocates are incensed that more people might be granted equality! But even Krauthammer is admitting that "the trend" is headed towards legalizing love, and we quite frankly agree.

BP is hoping to make the spill a thing of the past, and fast, although Gulf residents are anything but optimistic about this being truly over. Mud and cement were poured down the well to seal this thing for good. BP is also hoping people directly affected can be bought off for a one-time payment. Speaking of paying off people, lobbyists are foaming at the mouth to get in and influence the oil-spill bill. Finally, scientists from the federal government upped its official estimate of the total oil spilled to more than 4.9 million barrels, making it the world's largest accidental oil spill.

Sister Sarah was caught with writing on the hand again. She's using that magical skill to comfort Bristol after her latest breakup. Also, the lamestream media is to blame for her high unfavorable ratings. Don't blame Katie Couric! Her pal, Sharron Angle, is still making headlines this week. She's willing to answer the media's questions, provided they only ask questions she can competently answer. Harry has gotta be feeling ticklish these days.

Rep. Carolyn Kilpatrick became the latest incumbent to fall. (And this time it wasn't because of well-informed Teabaggers). Alvin Greene launched his first attack ad, and hoo boy, he obviously has some seasoned campaign professionals on the team! Also, Rand Paul has some 'splainin' to do about mine safety regulations. He told Kentuckians that he's not an expert on these issues, so don't vote for him! We'll take that to the bank!

Punked! Michael Steele sure loves the talk and that's fine with us. And everyone is puzzled about why Michael is seeking audiences with ambassadors. You guys, who even knows anymore? He's so far gone that we're amazed he's still getting coverage.

Are You Not Entertained?

Michaele Salahi on The View. Allegedly, there was a smackdown courtesy of Whoopi. And you DO NOT mess with Whoopi. Seems like the Salahis have gotten all the attention they wanted and THEN some recently, especially after the premiere of Real Housewives this week. Queenie was bored silly by it, actually, but she can't wait for the behind-the-scenes on the WH crash.

We told you so: Lindsay was in the slammer for a whopping 13 days! How many other inmates would kill for that deal (and the seven figure interview thereafter?). Wait... bad joke.

Our good friend BasilMarceaux.com is out of the running, but the media tires are still spinning. Check him out on Jimmy Kimmel and take a shot every time he says something you'd actually vote for. If you drunkdial Queenie, you probably shouldn't be a TR fan...

It's promotion time in the White House Press Room! AP got dibs on the front and center, and FOX News gets a front row seat. We're, uh, saving the obvious comments about news organizations that don't actually report news getting front row access.

Only 16 and Biebs is writing his first memoir. And when we say he's writing it, we mean it just like how Sarah wrote hers.

Snooki got arrested over the weekend and told the cops who's boss.

Wyclef Jean is running for president in Haiti. That's gonna be a real tough job to fill.

Interweb Tomfoolery

Meme of the Week: Bed Intruder! (Journalists, could you seriously have reported on this story with a straight face?)

The kiddies are heading back to school soon. Why not take that last-minute vacation? Tip: Don't go to Colonial Williamsburg -- the Teabaggers are looking to ruin it for ya. They do realize that the real Founding Fathers have long since passed, right?

It isn't a new idea, but Kanye picked one fan he will follow on Twitter. Only problem is he 1. isn't a fan of Kanye's music and 2. really isn't happy about all this attention. Er... how do you justify blocking Kanye? What if he unfollows?!

Have you ever tried to leave a hateful and mocking post on Sarah Palin's Facebook wall? Queenie NEVER has (ahem), but now we finally know why those posts you put up always get taken down. Slate did an interesting experiment and revealed just what kind of feedback Palin REALLY gets. What was all that about controlling the message, you social media gurus?

If you're traveling to the Middle East anytime soon, you might want to leave your Blackberry behind. Meanwhile, Research in Motion is prepping yet another model to steal Apple's thunder.

Wait, wait, wait... so you mean to tell us that people can influence sites like Digg by making sure certain links don't rise in popularity? We are SHOCKED.

Ever wanted to escape for seven years at a time? This whole family did on a boat. Talk about cramped quarters.

Net neutrality under attack, again. Google and Verizon are (allegedly -- thanks, NYT) taking over the world of the Internets. Queenie and apparently Google learned what to do in these situations from the Jersey Shore: deny, deny, deny. In similar news, the FBI is taking whack at Wikipedia over logo use. Read Wiki's hilarious response.

Out on the Town

Bit of a slow weekend this time, kids. Queenie is taking off to the beach tomorrow for some relaxing in the sun, but she would never leave you hanging!

Whoooo's a Redskins fan? For the few of you out there, hit up Fan Appreciation Day this Saturday and make them give back to you. Seriously. Make a linebacker buy you a hot dog or something.

Festival Update: Queenie loves the look of the Summer Spirit Festival with Erykah Badu, B.o.B. and Janelle Monae. Get your hippy on at the Living Earth Festival this weekend at the Native American Museum -- check out their incredibly detailed schedule here. Finally, LEGO nerds (we know you're out there) can get their brick fix in Chantilly.

Queenie's English nerd instincts make her sad to miss Shakespeare in the Park tonight, since she'll be headed to a comedy show. Someone want to take her next week? (In case you're into this kind of thing, here's the August theater schedule. Bring on the dramz!)

Scorecard

Thanks to those of you who came out to the MediaMorphosis discussion on Thursday! If you missed it, we'll be posting video next week. Watch out for our third event coming up in the fall.

Have a fabulous weekend,

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