Friday, April 8, 2011

4-8-11: Put Down the Crackberry and Listen Up! It’s Queenie’s Last Stand

HOLD ON TO YOUR BLACKBERRIES, FOLKS. DC is a-flutter with talk of the Impending Shutdown, while the rest of the country is calmly going about their business. We in DC are doing what everyone assumes we are doing: picking people to blame; planning mass protests; still going to work; and, always a favorite choice, growing beards. (Any drinking games out there yet? Oh, wait, we've got pick-up lines. Even better!)

But this is still very real for all the federal workers and, ahem, soldiers, who will be missing paychecks as a result of this inability to make a #$%-ing decision. And no, we're not quoting the GOP line -- it's a lot easier to blame Democrats for not paying the troops when you're preventing a bill that would pay them to go through. (Hush, Bachmann. Stop making sense. It's weird.)

Uh, happy Volunteer Week, everyone.

Forecast

This is what you wanted, right, Tea Party? And it's all about tossing you guys a bone or two -- right, Boehner? (Oh, wait... did you miss one?) And it's all about scoring those victories for the Republican American people -- right, Pence? (We're actually holding back, here. This is absolutely rage-inducing.) Reid had some very personal words to say this morning while defending women's health (PLEASE stick to your guns, Dems!), while Boehner was in and out preeeetty quickly. Not to be outdone, Jon Kyl pulled some more Planned Parenthood falsehoods out of his a**. Say what you want about Obama's negotiation style, but we think it's working. He's been keeping the opps to negotiate on the table (along with, we hope, keeping the doors open) until so me deal is reached. Biden, however, is getting maaad. In completely out-of-left-field news, sources say Boehner's tears flowed, again, over possible shutdown.

It's official -- President Obama is running for re-election. WE ARE SO SURPRISED. Although, if this whole he's-an-alien thing is real (hat tip to Glenn Beck's THE BLAZE for hosting this piece, and hat tip to the Republican Informant for making sure Queenie saw that one), Millions of supporters received a video message from the campaign on the fourth day of the fourth month, for the 44th president. Great symbolism there, Barry. And self-described frontrunner T-Paw already had a response ready to go. Let's also not forget about his "hip" campaign staffers!

What else is up in "candidate" world? Hey, would ya look at that: Donald Trump is competitive in New Hampshire -- against Mitt Romney. Guess that pandering to birthers is workin' out, after all! Do you think he has a shot? Finally, Michele Bachmann tells us that she's qualified to be the leader of the free world. Happy Birthday, crazy.

What the... not again! Why is George Allen still running for office?!

On to Libya. We all saw Gaddhafi's letter to Obama earlier this week, and the coverage on the NATO airstrikes accidentally hitting rebels. But it turns out the biggest news of the week is this: if you've shortened a link on bit.ly lately, you can thank Gaddhafi's regime.

Violence is escalating in another African nation. Ivory Coast incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo was declared the winner of the election by one authority, but those results were condemned by many international powers, including the United States. Gbagbo has thus far refused to cede power. Supporters of both parties are engaged in deadly skirmishes in the the nation's largest city, Abidjan.

Japanese authorities say they've successfully plugged a hole at the stricken nuclear plant, which had been leaking radioactive water into the ocean. Large aftershocks continue to rattle the island nation. They can't seem to catch a break over there. We can't reiterate this enough: if you want to help, donate unrestricted funds to orgs like the Red Cross or Doctors Without Borders.

The Week That Was

Paul Ryan received all the attention this week, but he might be regretting the spotlight. His plan is to give tax cuts to the rich by taxing the poor and "modifying" those untouchable entitlement programs has been torn to shreds by everyone from political pundits to economists. Ahhh... hold on to those mythical unicorns, Paul. Hold on tight. But the worst part wasn't even the budget (we know, we know, but listen!) -- it was the fawning coverage given to the thing, hailing Ryan as the next coming of Fiscal Jesus. Rachel Maddow broke it down.

Congratulations are in order for Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, who was asked by Obama to become chairwoman of the DNC. Wasserman Schultz has been an outspoken supporter of cancer research, hate-crimes legislation, and the pro-choice movement. She will succeed former governor Tim Kaine, who recently announced a run for the U.S. Senate in Virginia.

Hell yes, Grandpa Joe! You just earned yourself some feminist street cred. Biden did some media time around fighting sexual assault on college campuses -- listen, if you haven't already! Takes us all the way back to 1994, when Mitt Romney believed in a woman's right to choose. Sigh. Memories.

Scott Walker is not out of the woods. The son of a lobbyist with close ties with the governor resigned. Haven't we heard this story before? Sadly, Scott's favorite justice on the supreme court fended off a stunning challenge in a hotly observed race. Uh, nice screw-up there, clerk. Ah well, we can't win everything -- but apparently the Kochs can.

Transocean Ltd. had a major PR fail this week. The owner of the now-destroyed Deep Horizon rig planned on paying top execs. of the firm major bonuses for what the company called the "best year in safety performance in our company's history." The money will instead be going to charities. A little thinking and a lot of heart and you wouldn't be in this mess!

Are You Not Entertained?

CBS News anchor Katie Couric is leaving the big chair after five years. Couric is already being recruited by several networks to host a talk show in beginning next year. In other network news news, Meredith Vieira is expected to leave the Today Show sometime before the end of the year. We're also hearing rumors about Matt Lauer's future in 2012.

Looks like sex sells. Or having a baby pays. Or... screw it -- being Bristol Palin pays.

If you or someone you know is on the staff at Media Matters, BOY, are you having a good week! Or a bad one, depending on how you look at it. Glenn Beck is "transitioning off" from his Fox News Channel show at the end of the year -- who will be your go-to crazy now? Check out Jon Stewarts passionate tribute to one of his favorite targets, too.

What's the hottest new trend in politics AND business, y'all? Giving jobs to six-year-olds. A boy in York, PA, applied to be the new director of the National Railway Museum and almost pulled it off; another one will be governor of New Jersey for the day. And, hey, Turner is hiring summer interns -- anybody have a precocious child or two to be our new VP of Pokemon?

Bob Dylan played two censored shows in China for the first time, but we didn't get the subversive messaging we were hoping for. Any crazed Dylan fans out there want to microanalyze the setlist and tell us what we missed?

Interweb Tomfoolery

Looks like Obama is officially in the pocket of Facebook, just like the rest of America, and the State Dept. is now in love with Tumblr, just like the cooler people in America.

Are the brains of liberals and conservatives truly different? We report. You decide.

We love Rep. Anthony Weiner SO MUCH. Check out his Twitter battle with Rep. Lynn Jenkins, and notice his informed use of hashtags. Respect, sir. From one social media junkie to another.

We can't stop giggling over this: one Oregon lawmaker decided to RickRoll the entire state legislature without anyone noticing -- and then had the smarts enough to tell everyone he did it (you know, so someone might notice). Kudos, Jefferson, for bringing together two sides of the aisle in the revered name of Rick Astley!

Thanks a lot, Congress.

History buffs, we have two presents for you today: one, a Google Earth-powered interactive timeline of conflict history (it is MUCH cooler than we just described it, trust us); and two, the latest from the FBI's online public records database, which are totes searchable. Isn't technology fun?

Out on the Town

Hey, this could end up being a long weekend for you, DC-ers! Celebrate the shutdown by finding out exactly what's in store for you. Queenie's gonna trip on home to Virginia and go to the library after she takes her trash out.

Step away from town for a night at Countdown to Yuri's Night in Arlington.

The Cherry Blossom Parade is still ON should the government shutdown in the coming hours. Also, don't let the weather dissuade TR cherryblossomparadeyou from attending. The U.S. Cherry Blossom Queen will be crowned at the 63rd Annual Grand Ball and Sushi Reception at the Renaissance. Sushi, yum.

New York City Ballet is at the JFK Center on Saturday.

History buffs will want to attend the Art of Naval Aviation Exhibit at the Navy Memorial.

Next Tuesday, drop by Kababji Grill, for 2nd Tuesday's Schooze Salon & Professional Networking Party. Come for the drinks, appetizers and 80s music. (Haha?)

Just a heads up -- remember to finish filing your taxes -- if you haven't already. Don't start slacking and end up with the IRS on your tail.

Queenie's Last Stand

In what might be the saddest news you'll hear for, like, a while, Queenie has one major announcement to make: it's officially her final day as your beloved, honored and adored Queen of Snark.

Don't panic! Here are some FAQs so you know how to get through this time of turbulent transition:

OMG!
Yes. We know.

But... but...
Ssshhhh.

Where is she going?!
Queenie is headed to Vital Voices, and to expand the reign of snark to new and unexplored offices. (And, presumably, to whomever is following her on Twitter.)

Is Turner Central experiencing a Royal Shutdown?
Please note that neither Boehner or Reid are official members of our Royal Court. For this reason, court members have no problem resolving fiscal issues in order to keep our offices open and functioning -- unless the Diet Coke in the fridge runs out. Then we're in real trouble.

How will I get my weekly snark fix?
Our Royal Executioner, Jon Soohoo, has bravely and courageously offered to assume an Executor of Snark role. Whether or not he will wear the official Queen of Snark Tiara© has been put to a vote amongst the court. Please tell Jon hello!

(But seriously, folks, it's been an amazing few years here, and Queenie would sincerely like to thank the entire Turner Central team AND her faithful readers for everything. As Garrison Keillor should have said, be well, do good work and why not recommend me on LinkedIn?)

Scorecard

We hope you enjoyed the Republican Informant's little prank last week! You KNOW we'd never seriously go to the dark side, as easy as it is to imitate the Drudge Report's complicated web design.

Have fun trying to figure out if you're going to work on Monday, and adieu, adieu!

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