Tag Archives: Neocon

The Tattlesnake Campaigning on the Bizarre B-Side Edition

Was Ashley Todd’s Imaginary Attack a Desperate Rovian Dirty Trick?

Not to be callous, but your slow-on-the-draw Tattler admits that when he first heard, partially awake, on the radio that someone named Ashley Todd was assaulted by a tall black man in Pittsburgh because she had a McCain sticker on her car, and the added fillip that the alleged attacker had ‘carved a B on her cheek,’ I thought the announcer was talking about the insect, as in, ‘he inscribed a BEE on her cheek,’ and a surreal mental scenario followed that featured an angry tattoo artist yelling, “Hey, c’mon you, hold still while I finish this wing!”

The story seemed a little suspicious from the git-go and Thom Hartmann noted on his radio show Friday that the ‘B’ was backwards, the way someone not-too-bright and looking in a mirror would sketch a ‘B’ on her cheek.

Later in the day, after John McCain and Sarah Palin had rushed to the phones to offer their condolences to the 20-year-old Texas Republican, Ashley confessed that she had invented the whole lurid tale it was a tasteless hoax, apparently designed to make Obama supporters, and particularly those of the large black male variety, look bad.

Aside from the hideous Susan Smith aspect to the false charge, and the chance that the Pittsburgh police might have commenced a wholesale harassment of black men to find the nonexistent perpetrator, McCain and Palin’s haste to involve themselves in the incident bespeaks two things: a.) They were trying to make political hay out of this young woman’s misfortune, which calls into question their judgment or b.) The McCain campaign was somehow in on the deal, which paints them as over-the-edge con artists.

Todd had worked for the College Republican National Committee in New York, and recently moved to Pennsylvania to act as a full-time McCain-Palin volunteer on behalf of the group. (The College Republicans are the same organization that spawned such upstanding GOP choirboys as Jack Abramoff, Karl Rove and Ralph Reed.)

As yet, there is no evidence that the McCain campaign was directly involved, but it wouldn’t be hard to imagine the impact that the ugly tableau of a fiendish black male sexually attacking a young white lady might have on rural Caucasians in Pennsylvania, a state McCain must win in order to have any shot at the presidency. Joe the Plumber move over, here comes the Scary Obama-Supporting Black Sexual Predator.

Under-the-radar rumors of creepy McCainiacs trying to goad Obama voters into violence while media cameras are present have been floating around recently, the invective particularly aimed at inciting dark-skinned Obamaites, but not much has come of it up to now except some of the demented Starboard Side of the Blogosphere typically and perversely whining about those mean lefties trying to smack down Republicans who wave around McCain-Palin signs in public. (Yep from the same crowd that counts among its ‘base’ tolerant sophisticates who shout “Kill him!” and “Traitor!” at McPalin academic retreats.)

As the always effervescent-with-bile Michelle Malkin elucidates: “The Obamedia diaper-wetters are gripped with fear over a few over-the-line catcalls at McCain-Palin rallies.”

Uh, it’s not just a ‘few over-the-line catcalls’ at the downhome Bund affairs; it’s a river of right-wing effluvium oozing endlessly from the TV screen, computer monitor and radio speaker, as well. (And Michelle herself could use a mirror.)

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The Tattlesnake On the Media Beat Edition

Rumors Slipped Under the Doorway:

Word is billionaire George Soros, with additional backing from fellow moneybags Warren Buffett, is going to cause heads to explode in the right-wing media universe as he’s supposedly planning to spend mega-millions to buy Air America Radio, along with failing radio stations across the land, and start a well-financed alternative to Clear Channel’s network of conservative talkers. He’s also looking at purchasing some regional small-and medium-market TV stations that are down on their luck to compete with the typically GOP-friendly mumbo jumbo broadcast in those areas. Soros and Buffett aren’t doing this strictly for altruistic reasons they’ve studied buying patterns in the current depressed economy and it’s clear: the better-educated listeners of progressive talk radio have more disposable income than the downtrodden audience of right-wing media. While many advertisers have been shy to buy time on liberal radio, the trend is turning the other way now, what with the general unpopularity of the Republican Party and George W. Bush in particular. Will they be able to get the deal past the GOP-dominated FCC? Stay tuned

Speaking of which, Rupert Murdoch is said to be quietly seeking a buyer for the Fox television network, including the Fox News channel. Revenues and ratings are down at Fox in general and Fox News in particular, and some of the news channel’s nameplates, like Bill O’Reilly, are retiring soon or have become public punchlines, such as Sean Hannity and Steve Doocy. Bloomberg is rumored to have cast the top bid so far.

Look for rattled Republicans sensing electoral disaster to campaign this year without any reference to the party in their media advertising. Moreover, watch for them to campaign AGAINST some of the GOP agenda of the last eight years. “Appear to be independent,” is the private advice that went out from the RNC, according to rumor. Deflating the prospects of some GOP incumbents and first-timers is word from on high that the national party’s cupboards are bare and not to expect financial help even in tight ‘safe’ districts, only millionaires willing to spend their own cash need apply.

Hot on the heels of the success of ‘Reel Time with Bill Maher,’ HBO is allegedly on the verge of offering radio host Randi Rhodes her own weekly ‘no-holds-barred’ hour, featuring a free-wheeling stand-up/panel format similar to Maher’s show. With her rumored MSNBC deal scotched after her controversial separation from Air America Radio, HBO sees an opening for Rhodes’ savagely funny, profanity-laden style. Word is, the pay-cable channel wants to have her up and running by late summer, if she’ll sign on.

Meanwhile, speaking of MSNBC, Rachel Maddow keeps expanding her television orbit, regularly appearing on at least three of the ‘Place for Politics’ programs and as part of their election coverage, but the cable news channel’s execs continue to dither over giving Maddow her own show. They’d better act fast the dull and snarky Campbell Brown is gasping like a carnival goldfish over at CNN and they’ve been sizing up Rachel’s class act as a sharp and satirical and more youthful — addition to their political coverage including taking over Brown’s low-ball primetime hour, opposite MSNBC ratings star Keith Olbermann. It’s no secret that Olbermann and Maddow are good friends and simpatico politically would she mount a challenge in his time slot? All’s fair in love and TV, they say, so we’ll have to see how this plays out, but word is the Air America Radio talker is a little weary of parrying with the likes of ‘Uncle Fudd’ Pat Buchanan and his precious pup Michael Smerconish at MSNBC.