Monday Night Open Thread

You know what? Ezra Klein had a good day today. On his blog and on Olbermann. Frank. On point. And good analysis. Keep it up Ezra. Imo of course.

This is an Open Thread.

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    I'm in a pissy mood tonight. (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by jeffinalabama on Mon Dec 07, 2009 at 10:40:57 PM EST
    What about New Orleans? What about poor people? What about--- does it matter? We're saving the frikkin BANKS.

    Yeh. What happened to my party?

    I should tke less or more of these pain pills, because I am thinking about los olvidados.

    Rockin' around the Christmas tree . . . (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by nycstray on Mon Dec 07, 2009 at 10:47:13 PM EST
    Cute (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by gyrfalcon on Mon Dec 07, 2009 at 11:37:48 PM EST
    Must have taken them a lonnng time to put that together.  OTOH, can you even imagine trying that with cats?  Hah!

    John Conyers (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by jbindc on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 09:10:28 AM EST
    says that Obama told him to "stop demeaning him (Obama)."

    President Barack Obama recently called Rep. John Conyers Jr. to express his frustrations with the Judiciary Committee chairman's criticism.

    In an interview with The Hill, Conyers said his opinions of Obama's policies on healthcare reform and the war in Afghanistan have not sat well with the president.

    According to the lawmaker, the president picked up the phone several weeks ago to  find out why  Conyers was "demeaning" him.

    Obama's decision to challenge Conyers highlights a sensitivity to criticism the president has taken on the left. Conyers's critical remarks, many of which have been reported on the liberal-leaning Huffington Post, appear to have irritated the president, known for his calm demeanor.

    Conyers, the second-longest-serving member of the House, said, "[Obama] called me and told me that he heard that I was demeaning him and I had to explain to him that it wasn't anything personal, it was an honest difference on the issues. And he said, `Well, let's talk about it.'"

    Sitting in the Judiciary Committee's conference room two days after Obama delivered his speech on Afghanistan, the 23-term lawmaker said he wasn't in the mood to "chat."


    Or, buy him a healing beer (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by Inspector Gadget on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 11:08:55 AM EST
    Is it because Conyers is a Democrat? Does he call everyone in congress who "demeans" him openly? No wonder he can't get anything done :)

    Regarding public television: (none / 0) (#2)
    by andgarden on Mon Dec 07, 2009 at 09:28:36 PM EST
    has the fact of this recession created perpetual pledge season? I seem to recall that when I was a kid the beg-a-thon took place once or twice a year.

    One practice that amuses me is when (none / 0) (#6)
    by andgarden on Mon Dec 07, 2009 at 09:40:13 PM EST
    they run a marathon of some show that I have absolutely no interest in during pledge season. They effectively hold their normal schedule hostage.

    Oh, and did they mention tote bags? Oh boy do they have tote bags.


    What gets me is the schedule (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by gyrfalcon on Mon Dec 07, 2009 at 11:31:23 PM EST
    distortion.  That isn't even confined to "pledge weeks," but happens all the time for other random reasons.

    I love a great deal of what PBS and the individual stations do, but these people just are not professional, they're relentless, virtuous amateurs, and proud of it.

    Except even your average amateur choral group understands that you build an audience, and contributors, by providing a reliable product.  You cannot build an audience on TV by screwing around with your schedule unpredictably and making people hunt for the programs they've become interested in.

    And the galling thing is if you call to ask when X is going to be one, they smugly tell you that you can find that out if you contribute whatever their minimum amount is these days and get the schedule in the mail.

    They've got the whole audience development thing exactly backwards.


    The built their audience on Mr. Rogers, Big Bird, (none / 0) (#14)
    by andgarden on Mon Dec 07, 2009 at 11:53:55 PM EST
    and the BBC. But frankly, it's mostly the kids stuff that keeps them from being the TV version of an opera house (apologies to oculus): an opulent outfit for the overeducated.

    Not true at all (none / 0) (#17)
    by jbindc on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 07:48:22 AM EST
    As of a Nielsen Ratings study in August 2006, the demographics of PBS viewers very much mirror society at large, including 1/3 having a head of household with a high school education or less, and almost 62% having household incomes less than $65,000.

    How can you say "not true" (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 07:52:03 AM EST
    to a hypothetical situation that hasn't arisen?

    What's hypothetical? (none / 0) (#20)
    by jbindc on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 08:09:32 AM EST
    Your theory was that, but for Big Bird, it would just be television for rich educated people. I said that isn't true - all those "poor dumb" people aren't just watching Seseame Street - they watch Frontline and Newshour and Rick Steves and Masterpeice Theater too.

    And if you read the PBS link - it shows you the data from the Nielsen Research Study (yes, I understand that PBS is going to self promote, but Nielsen is independent.  It's also not the first time I've heard the fact that PBS demographics closely mirror that of society at large, which I will bet, is better than FOX or MSNBC, or CNN, etc.)


    You cannot isolate the acclimating effect (none / 0) (#22)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 08:37:26 AM EST
    of the kids programming.

    BTW, your link doesn't help (none / 0) (#19)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 07:55:04 AM EST
    PBS, effectively a broadcast network (often with a great channel position like the big three/four) is comparing itself to nice cable channels in 2004. You would expect a free, OTA, broadcast channel to cast a wider net. How do they compare to Fox, for example?

    And actually (none / 0) (#21)
    by jbindc on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 08:10:46 AM EST
    I bet PBS does better than in 2004 since it IS free and with 10% unemployment, people do things, like get rid of cable.

    Perhaps, but NBC's experience (none / 0) (#23)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 08:38:05 AM EST
    suggests the opposite possibility.

    We'll never know (none / 0) (#30)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 06:03:12 PM EST
    because they make it too dam difficult to find their programming.  That's my point.  You need a pretty fair amount of persistence to be able to find out when something you might be interested in is airing.  And then you're just plain out of luck if the Mystery episode you got interested in suddenly isn't on when it's supposed to be because it's Pledge Week or your local station decided to air a city council debate instead.

    There's almost never any warning for these preemptions, and rarely any notice even at the beginning of the event that's doing the preempting.  It's just brain-dead.  Often enough, they don't even get the info to TIVO so your DVR ends up with that city council debate instead of episode 3 of Mystery.

    A lot of the stations don't even have decently navigable schedules on their Web sites.


    If you look up the actual program, such as (none / 0) (#31)
    by oculus on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 06:05:38 PM EST
    Nova, you can identify, by your station, when that station plans to air a particular episode.

    Don't forget (none / 0) (#12)
    by Radiowalla on Mon Dec 07, 2009 at 11:34:58 PM EST

    Joseph Bruno 80 (none / 0) (#5)
    by NYShooter on Mon Dec 07, 2009 at 09:35:59 PM EST

    Somewhere Mario Cuomo (none / 0) (#11)
    by gyrfalcon on Mon Dec 07, 2009 at 11:32:14 PM EST
    is doing a happy dance he'll have to go to confession about on Sunday.

    Remember how we used to joke about (none / 0) (#7)
    by oculus on Mon Dec 07, 2009 at 10:07:36 PM EST
    another person inhabiting Josh Marshall's persona?  Anyone think that may have happened to BTD after FL lost to AL?  Complimenting Ezra.  What the . . . .

    Let Russia deal with it. (none / 0) (#16)
    by Fabian on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 06:50:09 AM EST
    NPR has a piece on big heroin problems in Russia.  It includes a Russian official blaming the United States for the increased flow of heroin from Afghanistan.  

    Let's pull on outta there.  Let Russia deal with Afghanistan.  Let's put our efforts to create regional stability in Pakistan and India instead.  If Russia has a problem with Pakistan, let them take care of it.  

    Oh, Oh....more Tiger Trouble (none / 0) (#24)
    by Inspector Gadget on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 08:42:29 AM EST
    Ambulance took a blonde woman to the hospital from his house this morning. So far, that's all my local news has released.

    I read (none / 0) (#27)
    by jbindc on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 09:10:50 AM EST
    a "middle aged" blond woman.  Mother-in-law maybe?

    Yes--- (none / 0) (#28)
    by Inspector Gadget on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 11:05:52 AM EST
    stomach pains.