Morning News Report; Nov. 16, 2009

MCCAIN AIDES DISPUTE PORTIONS OF PALIN’S NEW BOOK

If you’re not sick of Sarah Palin yet … you will be by the time she finishes pimping her book all over every media imaginable.

While you listen to her “aw, shucks” rhetoric for the foreseeable future, keep in mind that there seem to be a lot of discrepancies, including many with John McCain’s camp surrounding the 2008 presidential run.

The unbiased Associated Press also did a fact-check on her book, “Going Rogue”, and found several big discrepancies, too.

My take: It doesn’t surprise me, but who are you going to believe — the media-created monster that Palin became or the McCain camp? Anyway, there’s a lot of speculation that she’s testing the water for a run at the presidency in 2012; we’ll see how that goes.

For now, though, it appears the public isn’t buying her act — 52 percent of Americans view her unfavorably, while only 43 percent have a favorable view of her.

SEARCH ON FOR MISSING FAYETTEVILLE GIRL

In the most disturbing story of the past week, a search is on for the body of a 5-year-old Fayetteville girl whose mother allegedly sold her into prostitution, among many other horrible things.

My take: I was in Raleigh all weekend and the TV news was all over every angle of this story — and yes, it’s all disgusting. This mother was deep in debt and prostituted her 5-year-old, who is probably dead somewhere.

Remember our death squad talk of a week ago? Yep, it applies here, too. If it’s proven without a doubt that this mother is responsible for her beautiful 5-year-old dying and being made to have sex with men, there’s nothing that can happen to the mother that she doesn’t deserve.

I’m sure you’re with me on this.

BELICHICK ISN’T AS SMART AS HE THINKS HE IS

A really, really dumb call by New England head coach Bill Belichick cost his team a win at Indianapolis as the Colts rallied past the Patriots 35-34 last night.

Instead of punting on fourth and 2 with a little over 2 minutes remaining in a 34-28 game, Belichick had his offense go for it. It failed and the Patriots fell to 6-3 while Indy stayed perfect at 9-0.

My take: There’s overcoaching … and there’s what Belichick did last night. Common sense says you punt the ball and make Indy go 70 yards for a win — not 29 yards.

But the man has won three Super Bowls, so there’s something to be said for that. But his cockiness hurt his team last night.

The iPod shuffle

Behind Blue Eyes — Limp Bizkit

Redneck Woman — Gretchen Wilson

All Summer Long — The Beach Boys

Fortunate Son — Creedence Clearwater Revival

Dumb — Nirvana

Morning News Report; Nov. 13, 2009

KINSTON DOJ DECISION, MURPHY’S WIN IN LATEST ‘WORLD’ MAGAZINE

The conservative “World” magazine has an article on Kinston Mayor-Elect B.J. Murphy and the Department of Justice decision in its latest issue.

My take: As much coverage as the DOJ decision has received — along with Murphy’s victory — this seems like only a percursory, surfacy-type story. But good for “World” for getting Kinston’s name out. Like I’ve stated many times before, maybe this will help change the City Council’s mind about appealing the decision.

PALIN TAKES MORE SHOTS AT MCCAIN’S STAFFERS IN NEW BOOK

Without taking direct aim at John McCain himself, former Vice Presidential candidate and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin charges in her new book that his campaign staffers kept her bottled up and even charged her $50,000 for her vetting.

The book is already at the top of Amazon’s best sellers, even though it isn’t released until Tuesday.

My take: Not sure I want to read this, but heck, by the time she’s finished with Oprah, “Good Morning America” and every other show she’s going to be on in the next two weeks, you’re going to know everything that is in the book, anyway.

You think Tina Fey will play her in the movie based on the book?

THE WHO TO PLAY SUPER BOWL HALFTIME SHOW

One of the world’s best rock bands, The Who, will play halftime of Super Bowl XLIV in Miami on Feb. 7.

My take: Talked to Jon Dawson this a.m., and he’s convinced they’ll play all their CSI songs, i.e., “Who Are You”, “Won’t Get Fooled Again” and “Baba O’Riley”. Nothing wrong with that; I just hope they don’t try to play some new song that no one has ever heard…

The iPod shuffle

Sledgehammer — Peter Gabriel

Redneck Woman — Gretchen Wilson

Summer Love/Set The Mood Prelude — Justin Timberlake & Timbaland

Rock Of Ages — Def Leppard

I Feel Fine — Cream

Morning News Report; Jan. 21, 2009

KENNEDY SUFFERS SEIZURE AT INAUGURAL LUNCHEON

U.S. Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass, who is battling brain cancer, suffered a seizure at a luncheon yesterday following President Barack Obama’s inauguration. However, a report on NECN said Kennedy is feeling better and will likely be released from the hospital today.

My take: Combined with a report about 91-year-old Robert Byrd, the senator from West Virginia, also having a health issue at the luncheon, was the only relative bad news from yesterday’s inaugural activities.

WHO SAVED KATIE COURIC? SARAH PALIN

Katie Couric, who has been lambasted from all sides since taking over the CBS Evening News gig a couple years ago, has seen the ratings of her program increase … since her interview with then Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin.

My take: Admittedly, I didn’t watch it live (who watches network news any more?), but the snippets I saw seemed to hurt and affect John McCain and his campaign.

But — again — it hasn’t encouraged me to watch the CBS Evening News, although apparently a lot more of you are.

PAPELBON SETS RELIEVER SALARY RECORD

Boston closer Jonathan Papelbon signed a reliever record $6.25 million contract to remain with the Red Sox for another year.

My take: Congratulations to the emotional Papelbon, who received an 806 percent raise from last year’s salary.

And congrats to Red Sox Nation, which keeps one of the best (if not THE best) closers in the game for another year.

By the by, I’d love a 6 percent raise, let alone an 806 percent raise!

The iPod shuffle

Easy Lover — Phil Collins

In My Dreams — Dokken

What’s Going On — Marvin Gaye

I’ll Be There — Mariah Carey

Heaven — Bryan Adams

P.S. Don’t forget to send me your snow pictures; I’ll post them on that link below.

No more Carolina pictures, though; Chris Kelly already has exceeded the quota for those…

Morning News Report; Dec. 15, 2008

IRAQI JOURNALIST HURLS SHOES AT BUSH, ARRESTED

An Iraqi journalist threw his shoes at President George Bush during the president’s surprise visit to Iraq yesterday. The journalist is being held in a jail and is undergoing alcohol, drug and psychological tests.

From YouTube:

My take: Did you notice those cat-like reflexes by the president?

Seriously, though, you’d think the Iraqis would be happy that we got rid of that tyrant, Saddam Hussein. But when you see things like this, it makes you realize that maybe they don’t…

MCCAIN SUPPORTS OBAMA, BUT NOT PALIN?

I found this interesting from yesterday’s talk shows — John McCain is very supportive of the man who defeated him for the presidency (Barack Obama), but is NOT supporting Sarah Palin for president in 2012?

My take: The thing that stuck with the most is this — Palin is who McCain selected to succeed him if he would’ve died in office, but she’s not good enough to be president in 2012?

Wow.

‘EARTH STOOD STILL’ TOPS WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

Despite tepid reviews, “The Day The Earth Stood Still” was No. 1 at the box office over the weekend, bringing in $31 million of tickets. “Four Christmases” was No. 2 with $13.3 million, followed by “Twilight” ($8 million), “Bolt” ($7 million) and “Australia” ($4.3 million).

My take: Didn’t see it, but would like to know what any of you guys/gals who saw it, thought about it.

The iPod shuffle

You’re Crazy — Guns N’ Roses

Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town — Mariah Carey

Ice Ice Baby — Vanilla Ice

Fire Water Burn — The Bloodhound Gang

Fight For All The Wrong Reasons — Nickelback

Morning News Report; Nov. 21, 2008

WEREN’T WE PROMISED ‘CHANGE’?

The theme central to Barack Obama’s presidential campaign was “change”. It’s not shown up in his picks for his cabinet and other appointments.

My take: It’s this simple (and I don’t know why folks haven’t figured it out yet) — politicians will say ANYTHING to become elected. These youngsters and first-time voters who swept Obama into office will figure it out, though.

Also — our good friend Charlie Kraebel has his own post on this subject and goes into much deeper detail than I do here. He also has a FANTASTIC picture of the love child of Obama and Hillary Clinton that you HAVE  to see.

(See, CK, I thought about stealing it, but I want folks to go to your awesome blog! And I’m a good sport even though you pretty much knocked me out of the fantasy playoffs last week!)

MCCAIN VS. JACKSON BROWNE: IT AIN’T OVER YET

John McCain and Obama may have made nice after McCain’s butt-whoopin’, but McCain and singer/songwriter Jackson Browne are far from being BFFs.

My take: I appreciate the right of musicians to control their music (I really do, Dawson and Guitar Wrecker), but good grief, Jackson Browne — this has to be HELPING the sales of your records! Get over yourself.

In the interest of full disclosure, “Running On Empty” is one of my all-time favorites.

MICHIGAN UPSETS UCLA; WILL FACE DOOK TONIGHT

Unheralded Michigan pulled one of the top upsets of the early 2008-09 season, shocking No. 4 UCLA, 55-52, last night in the Coaches vs. Cancer semifinals. The Wolverines will face No. 8 Duke tonight in the championship game at Madison Square Garden in NYC.

My take: Duke better look out, too; Michigan’s defense — especially on the perimeter — could cause a lot of trouble for a Blue Devils team that depends so much on jump shots.

The iPod shuffle

The Tide Is High — Blondie

I Hope You Die — Bloodhound Gang

Working On The Highway — Bruce Springsteen

Yummy Down On This — Bloodhound Gang

Beautiful Girls — Sean Kingston

Morning News Report; Nov. 12, 2008

KINSTON CHRYSLER/NISSAN CLOSED FOR BUSINESS

This is breaking (ace reporter Jon Dawson is working on it), but Kinston Chrsyler/Nissan has been closed.

My take: That sucks for many reasons, not just that 60 people are out of a job, but for the money the business brought into town.

More on it at Kinston.com as developments occur.

BUSH: OBAMA ELECTION ‘GOOD FOR AMERICA’

While expressing regret that Republican candidate John McCain didn’t win the presidency, President George Bush said that Barack Obama’s election was good for America.

My take: Very classy, indeed. And he’s right — where else in the world could a member of the minority race take that country’s No. 1 political leadership position? No where — and that’s why (whether you support him or not) Obama’s election is good for our country.

ANISTON OPENS UP ABOUT PITT-JOLIE RELATIONSHIP

After years of keeping quiet, Jennifer Aniston shared some of her thoughts about her break-up with Brad Pitt (and home-wrecker Angelina Jolie) with Vogue magazine. Among the thoughts: it was “uncool” that Jolie flaunted the relationship while Jolie and Pitt were making “Mr. and Mrs. Smith”.

My take: I try not to pay attention to that Hollywood BS, but this was a story that I thought was intriguing: two of the most beautiful and successful actresses in our time fighting over the same guy, who most women would agree is one of the best-looking actors out there.

Although it doesn’t appear Aniston said much in the interview, she’s going to break down one day and say exactly what she thinks. That’ll be a hell of an interview.

The iPod shuffle

Signs — Tesla

Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting) — Nickelback

Sexy Ladies/Let Me Talk to You Prelude — Justin Timberlake

The Way I Are — Timbaland

It’s In The Way That You Use It — Eric Clapton

Morning News Report; Nov. 7, 2008

JOBLESS RATE NOW AT 14-YEAR HIGH

With cuts of 240,000 more jobs in October, the unemployment rate in America is now at 6.5 percent, the worst for our country since March 1994.

My take: Christmas hiring will help slow that number — a little — but I really worry about what’s going to happen after the first of the year.

I also thought it was interesting that the AP report that I linked to says we are “almost certainly in a recession.”

Duh.

LIEBERMAN ABOUT TO FACE THE WRATH OF THE DEMS?

After his ardent support of Republican John McCain in the presidential election, U.S. Sen. Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut is likely on his way out from leadership roles in the new Congress.

My take: I’ve always liked Lieberman, even when he was Al Gore’s VP selection in the 2000 election. He has shown he has his own mind and won’t be swayed by Republicans or Democrats.

So it bothers me immensely that the Dems, who are trying to sell this “across the aisle” line of BS, are considering removing his chairmanship of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

Politics as usual, eh?

REPORT — CUBAN WON’T OWN CUBS

To all those Chicago Cubs fans who were hoping Dallas Mavericks’ owner Mark Cuban would buy their team, there is “zero chance”, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

My take: Evidently, MLB’s old guard isn’t going to allow it to happen.

That’s too bad; Cuban would’ve been good for the stodgy old owners in baseball.

The iPod shuffle

One Way Or Another — Blondie

Gravel Pit — Wu-Tang Clan

Going Nowhere Slow — Bloodhound Gang

Santa Claus Is Coming To Town — Frank Sinatra

#1 — Nelly

North Carolina goes blue

It’s official — North Carolina is finally declared as a Barack Obama state by the Associated Press this afternoon.

My take: Not that it mattered, since Obama got all the Electoral College votes he needed Tuesday night.

But it does show how well Obama campaigned in our state — one that hadn’t gone blue since 1976.

And I’ll say it before Heelatious or Guitar Wrecker: how well did that turn out?

Morning News Report; Nov. 6, 2008

WORLD WELCOMES OBAMA AS NEW PRESIDENT-ELECT

Agree or disagree with President-Elect Barack Obama’s politics, you have to admit that he’s made quite a splash on the world scene. It’s been almost universal acclaim for Obama since he won in a landslide on Tuesday.

My take: With the world economy crashing and all the hatred of our country abroad, this is certainly a positive.

NEW RECORDS FOR TV RATINGS TUESDAY NIGHT

More than 70 million people watched election results Tuesday night, shattering TV ratings records for the primetime (8-11 p.m.) bracket.

ABC led the way with 13.1 viewers and was followed by cable giant CNN (12.3 million), NBC (12 million), cable’s Fox News Channel (9 million), CBS (7.8 million), MSNBC (5.9 million), Fox broadcast network (5 million) and Spanish language Univision (4.1 million).

My take: With all the crowing Fox News Channel does, I’m surprised their numbers weren’t higher. I was also surprised that ABC was the leader; I’m a Brian Williams fan and thought NBC would beat everyone.

However, how about CBS and its putrid numbers? To finish fifth behind two cable stations is embarrassing. How long before Jon Dawson’s love interest Katie Couric is sent packing?

MAN ‘ACCIDENTALLY’ STEALS A CAR

In what sounds like a story from Charlie Kraebel’s youth, an Alaskan man was arrested for auto theft after “accidentally” stealing a car after a night at a strip club. He thought he was driving a Chevy Cavalier; it was actually a Ford Escort.

Oh yeah, he also blew a .166.

My take: The kind of story that brings tears of memory to ol’ Charlie’s eyes.

The iPod shuffle

Electric Avenue — Eddy Grant

I Want Your Sex — George Michael

Salome (Zooromancer Remix) — U2

Cold As Ice — Foreigner

Hot in Herre — Nelly

The wisdom of Czaban

I’m guessing our good friends Heelatious, Guitar Wrecker and Flagan will agree with Steve Czaban’s post today, where he compares President-Elect Barack Obama to the sleazy monorail con-man on the Simpsons.

My take: A little over-the-top, but still priceless Czaban wit and wisdom. His ability to compare real-life situations (i.e., politics) to silly Simpson-type things is genius.