Friday, March 30, 2012

3-30-12: Real Americans Own a Car Elevator

Matt Doheny, a GOP congressional candidate running in New York's 21st District was caught (or, should we say, put himself) into a bad position while he was out and about in Washington.  Doheny, as you may recall, ran unsuccessfully in 2009 and 2010 against Bill Owens, and back then, had to explain his past BWI offenses.  Good luck to you sir, and thank you for keeping the 21st blue.


The Week That Was

Yes, folks, we too are exhausted from the media's coverage of Jeffrey Toobin's coverage of the Supreme Court health care battle.  Was the Obama defense a train-wreck or a plane-wreck? We are not certain about the answer.  Please enlighten us, Mr. Toobin!  The pundits were paying close attention to Justice Anthony Kennedy, who is considered the swing vote.  Democrats, TR teapartyscon the other hand, are seething at Antonin Scalia for a being the court jokester.  How bad does it look for the Obama White House?  Ask the broccoli.  Did we forget to mention that Jeffrey Toobin thinks the law will be struck down?

Now, we take you to the Court steps, where the Teabaggers, after months of introspection, have emerged from the psychiatric ward.  We don't have concrete evidence, but we're pretty sure some of them held recently-cut checks stamped by Koch Industries.  Anyhoo, we witnessed the typical congressional loonies blabbing about socialism, redneck mandates and whatever else appeases our four-digit friends.  And then, in the blink of an eye, they returned home to vote for that socialist Mitt Romney.

Mittens is finally getting the hang of the stand-up comedy routine.  This week, the Massachusetts liberal made a funny about how daddy shut down a factory in Michigan and moved production to neighboring Wisconsin.  George Romney then ran for governor in Michigan.  He won that race, of course.  (They forgave him?).  Ha ha, people losing jobs = funny!  Also, Politico "received" documents from a rival campaign that laid out Romney's plan for a fancy California beach house plus 4-car garage.  The cars will have their own lift. 
House Republicans voted overwhelmingly in favor of the Paul Ryan Path to Prosperity "Except for Poors" budget proposal.  Ryan says if his bill isn't made into law, we'll run the risk of "shutting down the American Dream."  Ha ha, we gave that up a longgg time ago.  Food stamps, federal worker retirement benefits and health care programs are said to be in the cross-hairs of our family-friendly representatives who just fled for spring recess.  If you plan on getting sick, do it before they return!

DSK released on bail.  What?  The former head of the International Monetary Fund was charged with involvement in a prostitution ring in France.  The lawyers say Strauss-Kahn had NO IDEA he was in the company of prostitutes in Washington and Paris.  You may remember that DSK was accused of sexual assault by a New York housekeeper.  That case was dropped, but Straussy admitted that his encounter with the housekeeper was "an error" and a "moral failure." Money: it can get you anywhere these days (unless you're Jon Corzine).

Are You Not Entertained?

Herman Cain is still trying to make connections, but to whom, we haven't a clue.  This latest cinematic creation from our resident pizza mogul is about "federal debt, crazy deficits, wasteful government spending, and more!"  Oh, and Herman hates stimulus, too.

TR twitterbieberIs wittle Biebs in twouble again?  As you know, millions of Bieber fans follow the singer on Twitter, which makes playing a prank all the more tempting.  His little game of "guess my number" has the victims lining up lawyers.  But Biebs isn't the only one getting in trouble on Twitter this week.

Greg Smith, who wrote a scathing op-ed burning Goldman Sachs, has a book deal!  He is said to have signed a $1.5 million deal for a memoir detailing his days at the financial giant.  To our money whiz readers: how long would it have taken Greg, if he had remained at Goldman "working in the best interest of his clients," to net $1.5 million?

Charlie Sheen is promising "awesome success" for his new show, Anger Management.  Did this guy attend anger management classes after his Two and a Half Men dismissal last year? fuzzies from us, Charlie.

Interweb Tomfoolery

Today is our un-official Facebook Day at Turner Central!  Just a reminder: Facebook will be switching all brand pages to Timeline today.  We hope that you’ve already picked out that snazzy image you’ll be using for your cover photo.  Facebook decided to transition to the new layout in the middle of the cherry blossom season, when you want to leave work early and enjoy the weather.  Seriously, Zuckerberg?  Change is coming, whether you're ready or not.

One of the latest features that Facebook has rolled out is interest lists.  Interest lists will help you weed through your news and pick information most interesting to you.  Lists can be public, private or available just to your friends.  If you are familiar with Twitter lists, you are basically set to go with Facebook interest lists.  So, start list building - and don’t forget to make them available to us as well!

So how are our 2012 presidential candidates faring with the new Facebook changes and how can they improve their pages to improve their brand?  Not surprisingly, Barack Obama is winning the race with 25.8 million fans and counting.  The Obama campaign was one of the first to switch over to Timeline.  The Republican frontrunner Mitt Romney has a loyal following of just over 1.5 million people, but his engagement strategy requires a little more work from his supporters. (Laziness will not be tolerated).  One Turner colleague offers this helpful hint for Facebook Mitt: be more authentic.  Haha.

Out on the Town

You may not have money to throw around like our Mittens, but that doesn't mean that you can't have fun this weekend.
  • SBTRKT is at the 9:30 Club tonight.
  • Former LA Times reporter Josh Meyer discusses the hunt for KSM at Politics and Prose.

What's the matter?  Do you not own four Cadillacs and mansions in both New Hampshire and California?  Why don't you Believe in America?  Do not bother us with your troubles!

Until next week,


Friday, March 23, 2012

3-23-12: Click Here to Reset the Romney-Bot

Hopefully that headline didn't land this newsletter into your spam box.  We do, however, have a business opportunity that might peak your interest -- that is if you are planning to run for Congress.  Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington released a fancy report detailing the real work going on in the halls of Congress.  We hope you enjoy it as much as we do.  Is your representative a repeat offender?

We do apologize for the spam, but not for the snark.

The Week That Was

Okay, so, Mitt Romney won Illinois by a wide margin.  Well, whoop-dee-doo.  Tell that to the voters down in Louisiana who are heading to the polls tomorrow.  Right now, Santorum is the favorite to win.  No word yet on any special parties feting David TR romneybenderVitter.  (Insert your own joke here).  Romney is now battling the "Etch a Sketch" meme.  Suddenly, Newt, Rick and the internets are coming up with their own clean slate sketches.  Thanks for the laughs, Mittens.

Starting on Monday, Supreme Court justices will begin hearing three days of arguments (temper tantrums) from states, businesses and individuals that are dead set against the Affordable Health Care Act.  Opponents of the law contend that the individual mandate, which is set to go in effect in 2014, is unconstitutional.  The justices will be considering that and whether the remaining parts of the law can be left intact should the mandate be struck down.  When you think about it, taking away health care from 30 million people isn't a bad idea! 

While we're still on health matters, let's talk about the gender cap and how women in many states still pay more for health insurance coverage. (30 percent or more in some cases).  That same dastardly health care law being challenged at the Supreme Court includes provisions to eliminate gender ratings used by insurance companies to determine rates.  The insurance companies readily admit that they use these ratings in states that permit them to.  So the next time your Tea Party friend complains to you about the darned health care industry, just give him or her a shrug and a smile. 

These days, Americans are questioning whether they truly are on the "path to prosperity." Never fear, though -- House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan has the perfect anecdote for our ills.  Ryan's plan supposedly would eliminate the deficit and balance the budget 28 years from now.  And how, Mr. Ryan, could we achieve these mega-buck savings?  First, get rid of TR ryanbudgetObamaCare; then slash those overburdening taxes on corporations (think Apple); and then, finally, establish a Utopia in which half of America lives under highway overpasses.  Success!

Obama has nominated Dartmouth President Jim Yong Kim to be the next president of the World Bank.  Kim will continue the tradition of an American at the helm, because we are number one in contributions.  No argument there.  While Kim's confirmation is all but certain, we can bet there will be a few fringe petitioners calling for his birth certificate.

Mali.  Government.  Overthrow.  We in America tend to gloss over such stories for the more important things in our lives.  Who are we to argue with our media overlords?  Also, did you know that Obama is spending the weekend at the DMZ? Yes, that one.  The President is scheduled to attend a nuclear security summit in Seoul.

In other overseas news, our Russian friends are sending in "anti-terror troops" to bolster Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.  Well, that pretty much rules out American and NATO intervention, huh?  Here's to another term (or two) for Vladimir Putin.  Finally, we can't say we're surprised by the lack of will to take action, considering the EU is more concerned about shoes and jewelry.

Are You Not Entertained

Everyone is hungry for Hunger Games.  From what we hear, it's the next Harry Potter or Twilight series.  There's an intellectual component to the film, if Forbes is to be trusted.  Big Government is coming for you!  Post-apocalyptic North America be damned.  Some people were lining up six hours prior to the midnight release, so we have a feeling the Games will fare better than Ayn Rand's comedy remake.

Oprah's OWN network laid off 30 workers or one-fifth of its staff.  TR geraldohoodieThe network debuted in January 2011 and has struggled to build viewership and a strong show lineup.  Rosie O'Donnell's short-lived talk show was canceled last week.

Geraldo Rivera couldn't keep his trap shut about the Trayvon Martin.  Thousands marched in New York City and Florida demanding justice for the African-American teenager shot to death by a neighborhood watch captain.  Does this mean that you get a free pass, Geraldo?

A few lucky ducklings and their mom took a tour of the White House grounds yesterday.  The young-ins struggled at first to gain entrance, but were quickly assisted by the Secret Service.  Cute. 

Interweb Tomfoolery

It's Friday.  Beyond the awesome weather, what better way to celebrate the beginning of the weekend than with a nice drink and a burrito from down the street?  Yum!  We love Chipotle, but because we are geeks, we are also impressed by the food chain's social media utilization.  How has Chipotle been so successful?  First, their social media team is hard at work across multiple platforms (Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare and YouTube) building significant brand loyalty.  Secondly, Chipotle's online operation has one of the best response rates to customers' questions and concerns.  By frequently interacting with customers, Chitoptle has managed to grow sales at an impressive rate.  Always remember, it is important to make a personal connection with your audience, whether online or offline.

Have you ever felt overwhelmed with all these new social media tools?  Even if you consider yourself to be a social media expert, you might feel a bit dizzy for missing the debut of the latest and greatest in the social media world.  Don't stress yourself out!  The real secret to social media is creating a strategy that works for you, with the right tools.  Here are some quick tips on how to improve your social media strategy with Pinterest, Facebook, and Google+.

Out on the Town

There's nothing better than warm weather and cherry blossoms.  Be sure to stand to the right on the escalators.
  • Find out what's going on during the Festival on the official website.     

Surprise!  There are no primary contests scheduled for next week.  Fortunately for the pundits, the Supreme Court health care law arguments will easily fill their wall-to-wall coverage.  Fun, fun, fun!

See you next week,


Friday, March 16, 2012

3-16-12: Shoot a Leopard, Become a Trump

Welcome to another Friday and another day of wonderful summer-like weather. Nothing could possible dampen our day... except, maybe reading about a recent report laying out what would happen if a nuclear device went off a couple of blocks from Turner Central. Think good thoughts. Think good thoughts.

Here's a dose of snark to brighten up your (and our) day.

The Week That Was

Rick's Surge surged, for lack of better words, through the South this week. Alabama and Mississippi Republicans emerged from time's past and voted for the real deal. He will not win. But the news wasn't all bad for Mitt Romney, who emerged with two overwhelming wins in Hawaii and the American Samoa. If you TR Surgedidn't already know, every election since the dawn of time has been determined by these two Pacific paradises. We kid. So much for connecting with real Americans, Mitt. In other news, NBC has done the deed - they've pulled the last embedded reporter from the Ron Paul campaign. How's that for an audit, Ron?

The AFL-CIO endorsed President Obama while acknowledging friction between the two camps stemming from card-check legislation, the Keystone pipeline and a number of free trade agreements. (We now urge you to read the colorful comments below said story). Oy, but if you thought that some Politico comment box rubbish would knock Barry off his game, just wait until you've skimmed over some new polling data! Our friends wayyyy below the Mason-Dixon line are still raising their fists in anger over that Muslim Kenyan-born usurper occupying the White House. And while you're still looking over the numbers, why not also take a trip back in time (but not too far!) with a few South Carolina patriots.

"Some conservatives are feeling trapped," say the wordsmiths over at the New York Times. The conservatives, of course, are the Republican men of the United States Senate. They are none too happy as Democrats push to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act in the coming weeks. We understand there's some contention surrounding provisions that expand programs to rural areas and Native American populations, legal assistance to domestic violence victims, and extend the definition of violence against women to include stalking. Wait a minute, are these bad things? Well, people, if you have something to say, take it to Facebook! The Los Angeles Times will gladly accept submissions, too. Finally, Mitt Romney wants to get rid of Planned Parenthood. There's still time to turn that flip-flopper around...NOT!

TR afghanprotests
You know, we were just getting somewhere, wherever THAT may be, in Afghanistan. First the Koran burning and now this horrific massacre in which a US soldier is accused of killing 16 Afghan civilians. The still unidentified shooter has been flown back to the United States and Defense officials aren't ruling out the possibility of trying the case in Afghanistan. Meanwhile, Karzai is demanding that NATO forces pull back to major bases. The Obama Administration is not backing off from its timetable of withdrawing troops in 2013. Barry wants us to leave responsibly so we "don't have to go back in." Call us pessimists, but we think we've screwed up enough already!

And we haven't forgotten about you, Syria. UN officials say that more than 8,000 have died since President Assad's government initiated a violent crackdown. Assad's uncle recently questioned British Prime Minister David Cameron (how timely!) - asking why no tanks had been deployed to slaughter British citizens during the London riots. Some people. Just ridiculous.

Are You Not Entertained?

Rush Limbaugh is taking his garbage to the Twitter after all these years. The "only genuine" Limbaugh account is relatively bare as of this posting, so we aren't certain if he knows how to raise up this army he speaks of. We so can't wait to cover his first Tweetup.

The Donald is having a little PR problem, but then again, any exposure is good for the Toupee. It seems his sons were on one of TR TrumpHuntingthose African safari tours, if we can even call it that. But instead of a set of trusty binoculars to take in the view, Eric and Donald, Jr. brought out the big guns, and put those endangered animals in their place!

Barack Obama's "The Road We've Traveled" campaign documentary thingy debuted last night. It's darn good propaganda as the critics would argue. Speaking of propaganda: Paul Ryan is desperately playing copycat in a new, low-quality video. (Darn those interns!). America deserves a better path, Mr. Ryan. Preferably one that doesn't entail you to producing campaign-like videos on the taxpayer dime.

George Clooney got himself arrested today outside the Sudan embassy, hoping to bring attention to the ongoing humanitarian crisis in the South African country. We would've been there as well, but, then again, you wouldn't be reading this if we had gone. That, and we don't know anyone from TMZ.

Interweb Tomfoolery

Hey folks, if you want to save more, you’d better get out that #AmEx of yours. Haha. Joking and fees aside, American Express stole the show at SXSW by launching a tweet-and-save program. Here’s what to do, loyal, chained American Express cardholders: sync your accounts with your Twitter handle, tweet with the specified hashtags, and save money. What’s the most famous hashtag thus far? #AmexMcDonalds. How dirty we feel for shilling this. Innovative capitalism at its best!

We’re calling this week “SXSW round up week,” because, again we are writing about another innovative tool announced at the technology and music festival. YouTube now offers Livestreaming for Non-Profits as an addition to its already solid nonprofit program. Nonprofits can now set up live cameras at events and solicit real-time action by viewers. Who knows, you may soon see one of us from Turner Central breaking new ground with camera in hand.

Out on the Town

Happy pre-St. Patrick's Day! There's plenty to do tomorrow and beyond.

  • Stop by Gaithersburg's 12th Annual St. Patrick's Day Parade.

Democrats are having a hoot watching our favorite Republican presidential candidates shredding each other to bits. Remember, just months ago, when people were writing off a second term for Barry? Well, we're off to celebrate at the firing range, "looking" at a few fuzzy animals.

Just kidding!


Friday, March 9, 2012

3-9-12: Plumbing the Depths of Ohio

Happy (belated) International Women's Day! So, who's the latest to get on board the #StopRush bandwagon? Advertisers are dumping Rush's radio show in droves. Considering the garbage this guy has spewed over the years, we find it hilarious/ fascinating/sad that these companies were advertising on his show in the first place. Ah, well, anything to make a buck. Republican politicians are also putting distance between themselves and Rush. (Although Newt really half-assed it). Maybe they came to a realization that women vote in the US of A.

Go away already, Rush.

The Week That Was

Folks, we've been waiting forever for a credible primary challenger to President Obama. Cheers to Randal Terry, who will be a force to be reckoned with as he charges towards Charlotte with a single delegate in his name. Now, let's move on to the GOP mess. Ohio was a nail-biter, causing NBC to declare that there would be no winner. That's a sure way to steal viewers from Wolf, Chuck! We at Turner Central weren't worried at all about a close vote dragging into the wee hours. Mitt's real base prevented that from happening. Guess that last-minute pander wasn't a gaffe, after all, eh, Ann? Is Mittens finally back in the driver's seat? (Sans four-legged friend, of course).

Progressives paid close attention on Tuesday to the Democratic primary contest between Reps. Marcy Kaptur and Dennis Kucinich. Kaptur easily trounced the elfin progressive icon. A word of caution to our GOP friends in Ohio: while you succeeded in drawing blood between Democrats, you're now stuck with one heckuva fool in Sam Wurzelbacher. (Oh, sorry, can we use that name?). We has no idea that there existed a tax-cheating fake plumber shortage in this newly-drawn district. Thank you for handing Ms. Kaptur an early win, "Sam." Oh, yes, and Jean Schmidt -- you remember her, don't you? She's the congresswoman who called the late Jim Murtha a coward on the House floor. Come January, Mean Jean will be out the door. See ya!

A giddy Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell commemorated this International Women's Day, March 8, a wee bit early. He placed his seal of approval onto legislation that requires an ultrasound procedure for women before having an abortion. You might not have guessed correctly, but this anti-choice, pro-limited government governor is actually in favor of government intrusion.

Rest in peace, Mr. Donald Payne. The dean of the New Jersey congressional delegation passed away shortly after a recent diagnosis of colon cancer. Payne was known as an advocate for education and Africa-related issues.

Our thoughts go out to America's heartland, which has been the recipient of some particularly violent weather systems. We're not totally in the loop about Ohio's financial health, but we are absolutely certain that Gov. Kasich can take care of his citizens. "Federal assistance" - sounds kind of communist, huh? Tea Party policy IN ACTION.

Eric Holder got down to business Monday, defending the Administration's right to target U.S. citizens abroad suspected of pallin' around with terrorists. Conservatives say Barry is flip-flopping on terrorism, while the Left is concerned about the abuse of power. Priorities, people, priorities!

Change We Can Believe In! Ha, just kidding. Russia's Vladimir Putin is headed back to the president's office. Election observers reported rampant fraud (what's new these days?) and while the State Department quietly agrees with the critics, it still "looks forward to working with the president-elect." Done and done!

Are You Not Entertained?

Republicans, are you tired of your candidate slate? Why not take the leap and join the Obama-Biden team? The Obama campaign has released a teaser of a yet-to-be-released full-length recap of the President's term. Oh, we give up trying to convince you. Here is an outstanding pro-Santorum video that you should watch for liberty and traditional values.

Gawker Media, which owns Gawker, reported on the launch of Sitch News, a website that looks awfully like any other site owned by Gawker Media. Phew. Is this a joke? We'll stick with hard news leader CNN for any breaking news from the Jersey Shore.

Pat Robertson is for legalizing marijuana. But don't bother contacting him about appearing in ads - he says he's not a crusader.

The best rants occur at city council meetings, which this video perfectly captures. Hooray for freedom! 

Interweb Tomfoolery

Are you in a panic because it is your first time attending the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival? Do you represent your company and want to garner as much press coverage as you possibly can? If the answer is yes, then we are here to help you. Relax, pack your bag, and follow these basic tips. It's always a good idea to have a press page on your website. Also, make sure that your press page is easily accessible from the main page and is easily navigable. There should always be a human contact at the other end. Don't make the mistake of using emails that begin with "info@" and "press@." You want the press to love you and pay attention to your page. Be creative in the design of your press page and always have data available for hungry reporters. Numbers do matter. And last but not least, don't forget to enjoy the festival, meet new people, and of course, network!

Viewed by more than 55 million people on YouTube since Monday, KONY 2012 has become one of the most-viewed "viral" videos in history. The thirty minute film is part of a campaign by the charity Invisible Children to bring attention to the atrocities committed by Joseph Kony, a Ugandan guerrilla group leader, and his Lord's Resistance Army (LRA).  Tens of thousands of children are believed to have been conscripted into his "army." The conflict between the LRA and the Ugandan government has displaced more than 2 million since fighting began in the late 1980s. Critics of the video have already emerged, taking aim at an untimely campaign launch (the LRA was pushed out of Uganda six years ago), questionable finances at Invisible Children, and the reality of "millions of well-meaning but misinformed people". (Will all of this be forgotten by next week?). Nevertheless, the charity succeeded in putting Joseph Kony and his crimes back into the international spotlight.

Out on the Town

Remember, Daylight Saving Time begins on Sunday. Of course, if you live in Arizona and Hawaii, banish that thought.

Well, shucks, folks - it looks like that media-hyped solar storm was just a breeze. Life will go on. But we do have a plan. Let's get Newt elected so he can more forward with that lunar base fantasy of his. Then we'll ship Rush over with a one-way ticket so he can broadcast exclusively to the Martians.

See you next week!