Jason Zengerle
Senior Editor

Top This, Ron Burgundy
November 26, 2007

Say what you will about Dan Rather, but I always thought it was kind of great to have someone so clearly stark-raving mad in a position that was (supposedly) vested with so much gravitas. This New York Magazine piece does a great job of capturing Rather in all his madness, including this excellent detail: The next night, Rather’s last as anchor of the CBS Evening News, he wore a T-shirt under his suit and tie that read F.E.A.—“Fuck ’em all.” Somehow, I can't imagine Charlie Gibson--a boring Fruit of the Loom guy if there ever was one--doing something like this. --Jason Zengerle 

Department Of Self-parody
November 26, 2007

From today's big NYT article on Condi Rice and the Middle East: Ms. Rice, who had heralded the election as a symbol of the new stirrings of democracy in the Middle East, was so blindsided by the [Hamas] victory [in the Palestinian elections] that she was startled when she saw a crawl of words on her television screen while exercising on her elliptical trainer the morning after the election: “In wake of Hamas victory, Palestinian cabinet resigns.” “I thought, ‘Well, that’s not right,’” Ms. Rice recalled.

This Week's Sign Of The Apocalypse
November 16, 2007

Oh lord. John Fund floats a trial balloon for a Lou Dobbs presidential bid: Friends of Mr. Dobbs say he is seriously contemplating a race for the first time, although it's still unlikely. They spin a scenario under which the acerbic commentator would parachute into the race if Michael Bloomberg, the New York billionaire and favorite of East Coast elites, enters the field as an independent. With Hillary Clinton continuing to score badly in polls in the categories of honesty and integrity, and with the public's many doubts about Rudy Giuliani and other GOP contenders, Mr.

Friday Afternoon Reading
November 16, 2007

I missed the debate. I haven't seen anything terribly interesting in today's blogosphere. In other words, I'm at a loss for a good Plank item. So, in lieu of one, let me recommend this really remarkable article in this week's New York about Gerald Boyd, the late New York Times managing editor whose career was ended by the Jayson Blair scandal. Even if you care nothing about the Times or media gossip, it's a thoroughly reported, wonderfully written, ultimately tragic story about race in America--and well worth your time.

The Osmond Primary
November 15, 2007

Mitt Romney may not have won Pat Robertson's or the NRLC's endorsements, but he doesn't need them now that he's got this. From the Boston Globe: Interviewed on "Larry King Live," the singing Osmond family has nothing but nice things to say about Mitt Romney, according to clips posted on CNN's website.

Is A Unified Field Theory Of Hillary Hatred Possible?
November 15, 2007

Ross Baker gives a quote to the NYT about Hillary that shows why political scientists make bad political strategists: "Edwards and Obama are still waltzing around her rather than hitting on doubts about her that would really resonate with voters," said Ross K. Baker, a professor of political science at Rutgers University. "One absolutely devastating accusation that could resonate is that she is gullible--she bought into two false story lines, one from her husband about Monica Lewinsky and one from President Bush about Iraq," Mr.

Animal Planet
November 14, 2007

Brad's already highlighted one good animal story from today's Times, but would you believe there's another one? This NYT article about a Texas ornithologist on trial for shooting a cat--and the ill will his trial has created between the birder and cat fancier communities--is great.  My favorite bit is the interview with James Stevenson, the sharpshooting birder at the center of thestorm: In an interview in a courthouse elevator during a break in the trial, Mr.

He Loves New York
November 14, 2007

Rudy's first TV ad in New Hampshire looks a lot like a cross between Reagan's Morning in America and a tourism commerical for New York City (at least after the first 25 seconds or so):  But is the ad going to convince people in New Hampshire to vote for Rudy--or just make them want to head down to NYC for a weekend of theater and Christmas shopping? --Jason Zengerle

Would Edwards Really Not Endorse Hillary?
November 13, 2007

Today's NYT notes that John Edwards refused to offer the standard answer to the standard question about whether he'll endorse Hillary Clinton should she win the Democratic nomination: Between campaign appearances last week, as he rode through eastern Iowa in his campaign van, Mr. Edwards declined to answer whether he would support Mrs. Clinton. “I’m not willing to talk about that at this point,” he said, waiting silently until the next question was asked. I don't think this is that surprising.

News Of The Ewwwwwwwwww
November 13, 2007

If you thought the GHB-laced Aquadots were bad, China Daily reports on the latest questionable Chinese merchandise: Used condoms that have been reprocessed into rubber bands and hair ties have been sold in Dongguan, Guangdong Province, raising concerns about public health. In addition to being sold at local bazaars, the recycled condoms have been found at local beauty salons in the prosperous Pearl River Delta city, according to Guangzhou-based New Express Daily.

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