Friday, July 13, 2007

Tom Foreman Questions & Answers

Hey gang,

Sorry to take so long with this response. Busy time in DC, as you know all too well. I loved all of your questions, and appreciate your interest in AC360 and Raw Politics. I read your comments on a regular basis and truly enjoy them; nice to have a sense of what folks are thinking.

I tried to keep my answers relatively short, but not too…so I hope they suffice.

Many thanks,
Tom


When I sent our questions off to Tom I asked if he had any pictures he'd be willing to share. He was kind enough to send along some from the early days of his career. Tom in Macadonia

From Mac:
Tom Foreman looks a little like John Chancellor, who was my second childhood favorite TV news guy after David Brinkley. Chancellor won my heart when security forces at the 1964 Republican convention ordered the press to clear the floor and he refused to leave his post -- he was arrested and literally carried out, signing off with "This is John Chancellor, reporting from somewhere in custody" -- droll, absurd, and gallant all at once. I loved Chancellor and I'm beginning to feel the same way about Foreman -- smart, quick, and knowledgeable, with a unique (and pervasive) sense of humor -- he must be a real joy to work with, and he certainly is fun to watch.
He was probably just a baby (or not born yet) in 1964 and may not remember Chancellor, but I wonder who his favorite TV news reporters/anchors have been, and who/what inspired him to become a journalist (or did he just stumble into it?). However he came to be reporting the news on TV, I'm glad he's here -- he does an outstanding job at whatever he's handling and it's always a pleasure to see him.


RESPONSE:
Your words are flattering and much appreciated. John Chancellor was the anchor of NBC nightly news when I began in radio as a high school student. A dinner I shared with David Brinkley some years ago remains a highlight of my career. Through thirty years of reporting, I have been fortunate to work and walk among giants.

Peter Jennings taught me a great deal. Ted Koppel is still an idol, and it is always a thrill when I run into him on the street and we stop to visit. Others inspirations, especially for their exceptional writing: Jim Wooten, Doug Kiker, Charles Kuralt, Lloyd Dobbins, and Charles Murphy, to name a few.

From Carrie M:
First, I would like to thank you for your time and effort in doing this. It's a great treat for all of us news junkies! Could you talk a bit about your time with National Geographic's 'Inside Base
Camp?' What interviews stand out and what did you enjoy most about doing that show?

RESPONSE:
I love being at CNN and working on AC360 more than perhaps any other job I’ve had, but Inside Base Camp was a blast. I typically spent a few days reading massive amounts of research about each guest, digesting the information, and then I threw away my notes and walked into the studio empty-handed. I found that this put my guests as ease, and they spoke freely and spontaneously.

The interviews themselves were a pleasure. Loved talking with Doctor Ruth. She was a highly skilled sniper in the Israeli military before becoming a sex doctor. Loved talking with Seth Shostak…guy who looks for intelligent life in the universe. (insert your joke here) Mike Wallace was hugely entertaining. Jane Goodall. Ted Nugent. Several former presidents. We won an Emmy award in our first year for Best Interview, and that made us all pretty proud.


From Book Asylum:
"The Lion In The Village" and "Ambush at the River of Secrets" are two of the best hours of journalism that CNN has aired. How did you end up getting involved with these two packages and what did you take away, personally, from working on them?

RESPONSE:
Our series of documentaries on the war grew out of hot summer afternoon in my office. I was frustrated that all the daily reports of attacks and the ascending death count seemed to lack context. Everything was running together, making the public disengage. I told our president, Jon Klein, that I wanted to do something different and he said go ahead.

A wonderfully talented and creative producer, Amanda Townsend, shared my interest and enthusiasm and we started calling military families all over the country, seeking out stories that would best convey what they and their loved ones are going through.

“Ambush at the River of Secrets,” “The Lion in the Village,” and our latest hour…which will air soon, ”The Anvil of God,” are the result.

Working on these shows, meeting all these brave and decent young Americans and their families, visiting their communities and the graves where some of them now lie, has been a profoundly moving experience for both of us. So much so, that I wrote these programs almost exclusively in the hours between midnight and five a.m., so I could be alone with my thoughts and the overwhelming awe and, sometimes, sadness that their service commands.

Even though I grew up in a military family, I have developed a higher level of respect for our troops than I have ever known before, and greater faith in the outstanding qualities of our nation’s young people. Amanda and I also made some great friends in the process; military families who honor us with continued interest in the series and their kind notes and calls.


From Sheryn Royce:
Tom, thank you for taking the time to answer our questions. Being the political junkie I am, I can't tell you how much I enjoy your Raw Politics segments! I'm always curious as to what events in history fascinate members of the media. If you had the ability to travel back in time, which event would you most want to cover and why?

RESPONSE:
Hard question. I am always reading history-related books. Right now, it’s a new biography of Houdini, and an account of the great Dust Bowl of the 1930’s.

One event? Not far back: World War One…saber battles, mounted cavalry charges, aerial bombardments…interesting stuff.

That said, however, I am just as intrigued by small things: I would love to have seen a gas lit stage show or a vaudeville review; gone to work for the day with a man during the Industrial Revolution; or witnessed a bit of the Civil War.

This one is my favorite, because of the caption Tom included "Nicaragua, 1990 (shortly after this picture was taken, I spent 6 years hosting a talk show under the pseudonym 'Sally Jessy Raphael')."

From CactusKid:
A lot of people in this country, young and old, have become disheartened about politics and won't go out to vote because they think the outcome will be the same. What would you say to these people to get them reenergized, thinking about the issues, and that their vote does count?

RESPONSE:

Frankly, getting people energized about the political process is what Raw Politics is about. I believe if we can point out the absurdities, underline the truths, and help people get the information they actually need to make a smart decision…despite all the noise and dust that a campaign season kicks up…a lot of folks might feel like they can make a difference. Why should people vote? Because, trust me, Washington is not going to fix itself.

From Purple Tie:
Love your style of reporting!
It's time for one of those obligatory questions that all interviewees get at one time or another but I'll mix mine up a bit.
If you could invite 5 people to a dinner party who would they be? Pick one from each category. (By the way, I hope I'm invited!)
80's rock star/band-
Presidential Candidate that didn't win-
Cartoon Character/Muppet-
Author/Writer-
Pop Culture Icon-

RESPONSE:
Of course you would be invited. Wouldn’t be a party without you.
1) Prince
2) Thomas Dewey (you’ve got to think he’d be good for a laugh)
3) Hobbes
4) Harper Lee
5) Tonya Harding (got to have someone to keep Dewey in line)


A Viewer in Virginia:
I'd like to where do you get your sense of humor from, and where did you go to college?

RESPONSE:
My Dad is a very funny guy. I also used to put a tape recorder next to the TV to record comedians on the Tonight Show when I was in junior high school, then I would rip off their routines. I actually had a couple of teachers who would ask me to stand up and do bits when they had extra minutes at the end of class.

College: Troy University in Alabama.

Tom in Albania

From Phebe:
Please tell us a little about the off camera Tom Foreman. Your family, hobbies, favorite authors, favorite episodic television, things in your life that you are the most proud of, etc.

RESPONSE:
I have a fabulous and understanding wife, Linda, who has spent twenty-one years as the most helpful, supportive, wise and caring spouse anyone could hope for; not a small trick in the national news business, which is famously hard on families. We have two wonderful daughters who want to be an astronaut and a veterinarian, and both have the chops to pull it off. One dog, named Nola, for our old home in New Orleans. A rabbit. A fish. Two birds.

My daughters and I run together every day, rain or shine, hot or cold. We all play instruments. Piano is the favorite for the girls, and I prefer the guitar. I used to play in a rock band, The Crabs, and we once opened for The Grass Roots.

I paint and draw, and have sold a few paintings but have never really worked at it.

Authors? Can’t begin to name them all. Dostoevsky, Dickens, Steinbeck, Twain. Lots of classics, but plenty of modern authors, too.

Television? Loved Sopranos, West Wing, Chappelle’s Show, Gilligan’s Island.

You didn’t ask for movies, but I was once a movie critic, so: The Hustler, Cool Hand Luke, Miller’s Crossing, Matewan, My Life as a Dog, Lost in Translation, Blue Velvet, Goodfellas, Tin Cup, The Big Lebowski, and pretty much anything by Woody Allen.

My wife hates it when The Hustler, in particular, comes on cable, because even though we have it on DVD, I’ll almost always stop whatever I’m doing to start watching and raving about it. Along with the book by the same title, it is one of the greatest character studies of our age.

From Copperfish:
What's the most important lesson you've learned in this tough business?

RESPONSE:
Never despair.


From ACAnderFan:
Out of all the stories you've covered which one has been the most emotional, and why?

RESPONSE:
Not an easy choice. The war documentaries this past year have been incredibly moving. Columbine was hard, because it was near my own home in Colorado and my girls used to dance on the Columbine stage. I covered the 1985 earthquake in El Salvador, and was quite touched by an all night effort to find survivors in one collapsed building. I think that affected me particularly, because my wife and I had just returned from our honeymoon when I got the call to go.

Here’s a general thought, though: When I started in this business, I was so busy trying to just do the job right, I had very little time to worry about emotions. Over the years, as I’ve grown better at it, I’ve become much more aware of the human tragedies unfolding before me, and sometimes that can make for very sad days.


From DH:
Thanks from all the visual learners in the world for being Mr. Google Maps. Does the fascination with mapping come from a stint in the Boy Scouts or military service? Also while on the topic of your segments on 360, are you encouraged to be snarky or is that just your natural delivery?

RESPONSE:
I’m pretty much naturally snarky, especially when it comes to people who are all puffed up about themselves, so you can imagine how much fun Washington is. The maps? Not sure. Maybe I’ve just been lost a lot.


From Cassie:
There has been a lot of talk lately about states moving the dates of their primaries forward. Do you think this will or could affect the outcome of the election itself? Does it contribute to a feeling that some states are more important in an election than others? (In a democracy, shouldn't all states, all votes be equal?)

RESPONSE:
Yes, yes, and sort of. The primary push could absolutely affect who emerges as the frontrunners, and whichever states ends up leading that charge will have a disproportionate influence. As to your last point: all votes should be equal, but that does not make all states equal. California, which I think has a billion residents now, certainly has more political muscle than Rhode Island, which has about 180.

Kidding aside, the bottom line is, even with the Electoral College, the biggest states have enormous punch in any national election, and nothing is going to change that in the near future.


From Anonymous:
There was a time when candidates' ads would tell you why that person was the best one for the job. Nowadays it seems that most ads just attack the opposition. Given the long campaign for president this time around, I dread the time when those attack ads start in again. I would like to know if you think this trend in advertising is likely to continue and if you think there is anything we as voters can do about it, when all the candidates seem to be engaged in this negative campaigning.

RESPONSE:
Brace yourself. Attack ads have become such staples for both parties that you can expect to be slammed by them in this election. Voters could change the practice by simply not voting for any candidate who engages in such things, but that’s not going to happen. On the other hand, if you dislike an ad, you can always call the campaign behind it and give them an earful.


From Lavendar Blue:
Tom - Do you have any hidden talents or tricks and where do you buy your ties?

RESPONSE:
I started a magic show when I was twelve and performed for about ten years…malls, schools, civic clubs, fairs…had thirty-two doves, floating ladies, ventriloquism, fire-eating. Lot of fun, but oddly, not such a good strategy for getting dates.

My ties come from everywhere. My wife and I are always on the look out for fine specimens, and we do not practice catch and release. We like it, we buy it.

From AR:
I'm a big fan of "Raw Politics" and you and Candy Crowley do an excellent job, but what is the goal with the comedic twist on the segment and the latest developments with candidates and government? I think the sarcasm is funny, so do you think of the quirks as you read the latest stories and is that what is put on the air?


RESPONSE:
I want people to pay attention. If they’ll listen for the jokes, but pick up the information, that’s good. And frankly, how can you not laugh at much of what happens in politics? You’ve pretty much nailed my method. I read the news…notice the natural humor…and then just cut loose.


From Alice Sung:
I love your take on Raw Politics, great puns and one liners. Did you write your own script for the segment? Where did you find all those buttons, dolls and other props for the show? Do you keep them afterward? Finally which job you enjoy more, political analyst or interviewing politicians. Thank you to making Raw Politics fun.
RESPONSE:
I write all of Raw Politics, but must give props to a couple of my producers, Katie Ross and Jim Spellman. They’ve come up with some screamingly good lines. (Not all of which I can use, by the way) We find the props around town; on the internet; sometimes people just send them. I usually throw them on a shelf in my office until I give them away to passing co-workers or guests. I like interviewing politicians, but only when they drop the talking points, and just tell me what they think.


From Annie Kate:
Tom explains things so well - with words, diagrams, maps, etc. - that the viewer actually understands at the end of his report the facts as well as the nuances of what he is reporting on and he always ends on a funny note - what kind of background does he have that enables him to do this especially when he has such a short time slot to report on a lot of stuff and he has to keep it succinct.

RESPONSE:
I’ve read an awful lot over the years, and I’ve come to be a great admirer of stories. Consequently, I think of every subject in terms of a story: beginning, middle, end. I think that helps me and our viewers understand what is happening.


From F.M.:
What irks you most about the federal government and the way it is run and why?

RESPONSE:
The federal government is huge and complex and can’t be painted with a single brush. Lots of good people work in it, both in elected, appointed, and merit jobs. However, in a general sense, what troubles me most is the extent to which some in government clearly believe the voters are here to serve them, not the other way around.



Tom in Kosovo

From Megan:
Do you believe there will ever be a time when we do not have to have a show called "This week at war" or will it always be around just with a new name?


RESPONSE:
War has been a constant in the world, and presumably always will be. That said, America has enjoyed wonderfully peaceful periods where armed conflict has seemed distant and of little concern. We will have such times again, and I’ll happily cancel my own show.


From Cindy:
Tom,
I'm a huge fan of yours. I think you do great work and I LOVE your Raw Politics segments. They are the best ones on AC360!! I have written in and told Anderson that several times. Here is my question:

Do you get to choose which story you want to do or is it assigned to you? And once you have the story how long do you have to work on it before it airs?

Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions. It is greatly appreciated!!

RESPONSE:
I choose most of the subjects for Raw Politics, and I propose some of the other stories I cover. Most often, however, our show producers in New York ask me to look into specific subjects in the news.

Most of my stories are developed in a day. Sometimes we have a few days to work on them…sometimes only a few hours.


From Maya:
Tom, you are such a versatile reporter. I really enjoy how you inject your sharp sense of humor into the day's Raw Politics as well as your heart-felt documentaries memorializing our fallen heroes of the Iraq War. I would like to know how difficult it is to have covered a cold case like the Jon Benet Ramsey murder. We always talk about how difficult it is for a family in these cases to live without a conviction or some type of resolution. I was wondering how frustrating something like that is for you, the reporter?


RESPONSE:
I’m not particularly frustrated by such stories, because I’m naturally patient. I accept that some cases may take many years to solve, and some may remain open forever. Maybe this is part of it, too: I have seen how absolutely awful it can be for families to never have an answer about the loss of a loved one, and consequently I have never felt right worrying about my own feelings in that context.



From Lisa:
The press seem to be a very powerful influence on politics. The media seem to focus so much on the "top tier" candidates that most people don't know much about the "bottom tier" candidates. Do you believe the average person seeks out balanced information about all the candidates to make up their mind at this point in the campaign? Does the press focus on who the public think are the front runners (polls) or does extended coverage of certain people make them front runners?

RESPONSE:
The top tier candidates do get a tremendous amount of attention, the media does play a role in determining who is anointed that way, and that is categorically unfair to bottom tier players.

But all of those points may be necessary evils. Voters are trying to lead their lives…do the shopping, go to work, take care of the kids…few have the time to engage in a detailed study of all eighteen candidates. In truth, a great many voters don’t really know much about the positions of the person they ultimately choose. They vote on a general, positive feeling about the candidate, or a strongly negative feeling about the opponent.

I think we can and should do a better job of exposing people to the ideas of the second tier players. I’m not convinced that many of them will then rise to the first tier…after all, campaign fundraising plays a big part in making that happen no matter how good your ideas may be…but they can force the top players to address important issues they may prefer to avoid.


From Ruby Slippers:
Esquire Magazine has a regular feature called "Funny Joke From A Beautiful Woman"...I'm shamelessly borrowing their concept for ATA's "Funny Joke From An Intelligent Newsman". Go ahead, Tom: make me laugh!

RESPONSE: Obscure:
Two communists are at a nudist camp.
One says, “I say, have you read Marx?”
The other one says, “Yes! I think it’s the wicker chairs.”

Offbeat:

A minister, a rabbi and a priest walk into a bar and the bartender says, “What is this, some kind of joke?”


A suite of jokes from my younger daughter:

How do you get an elephant into a refrigerator?
Open it up, put him in.

How do you get a giraffe into a refrigerator?
Take out the elephant, put him in.

The lion calls a meeting of all the animals in the jungle. Which one is not there?
The giraffe. He’s in the refrigerator.

You come to a river filled with hungry crocodiles. How do you get across?
Wait until they go to the meeting.


Tom in Kosovo

Our deepest thanks to Tom Foreman for taking time out of his very busy schedule to answer our questions.



Caps from Thursday's AC 360 will be posted on Sunday night by Purple Tie. There will also be a clip of the PIP segment from Thursday's program. We look forward to reading what you have to say about Thursday's program and Tom's q & a in this post's comments. Don't forget Friday night our newest team member Book Asylum will be posting her first entry. You're going to love it! And Happy Birthday to ATA team member Sapphire! Have a great weekend everyone.

33 comments:

Sheryn said...

Tom, thank you so much for your wonderful and thoughtful answer to my question. In fact, all of your answers are so interesting!

And I love the pictures! Sally Jesse! I remember her!

You are an awesome journalist and I look forward to your reports and Raw Politics nightly! And Wow! you read ATA? COOL BEANS!!!

Thanks again!

Aruna said...

YAY TOM!!!! YOU TOTALLY ROCK!!!

Thank you everyone for such amazing questions! It was such a pleasure to read :)

Oh, and a shout out to Phebe for the connections and all her hard work for putting this all together! You're amazing, as always :-)

Purple Tie said...

Tom, thanks for answering our questions. I know we all appreciate the time.

Loved your jokes and your daughter's jokes (very cute)!

Also, I just wnat to say that "The Lion In The Village" and "Ambush at the River of Secrets" were so well done. They really brought me to tears. It's so important for all of us to know what the soldiers and their families have to go through for our country. You and your producers deserve Emmy's for those two pieces!

KYOKOONO said...

Wow, ATA.

You ladies have guest writers now!

I am impressed with the wordage of Mr. Foreman. What a bright and lively man he is.

ACAnderFan said...

TOM, YOU ARE SO COOL!!! Thanks you so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer our questions. And thank you for sharing those pictures with us.

Last nite's 360 was really good, and it was so great to have Andy back too!!!

The sikd row story...that is just sickening to me. I cannot believe that, that goes on. It's so sad.

Tom Foreman was a riot of course. I loved how at the end of the raw politics segment he had Andy shaking his head and saying, "Tom, Tom, Tom". Too funny.

How Andorable was Andy when he was messing with that stupid crackberry After Tom said not to use devices like that out side...LOL!!! I swear Anderson is such a dork. But his dorkiness is what makes him so adorable and all the more loveable.

PIP...very good. I am glad to see that wolves are back in Yellowstone Park, and you could tell Andy really liked being out there and seeing the wolves. OK now that that's over I can get all fangirly!!! LOL!!!

~*~*~WARNING PIP FANGIRL MOMENT COMING UP~*~*~

OMG, how amazing did Andy look as he was carrying that camera equpimet??? And his hair wasn't really comebed either...NICE!!! I like when he dosen't comb his hair...lol!!! Let me just say that Wilderness Anderson makes me want to go camping, but only if he is there with me!!! lol!!!

~*~*~I now bring you back to our regularly scheduled FanGirl moment~*~*~

FanGirl moment: How pretty did Anderson look last ntie??? WOW!!! That is my new favorite outfit of his. I really like him in all blue. He was just too pretty for words last nite!!!

BookAsylum said...

Tom- thank you for taking the time to answer all of our questions!

I'm looking forward to seeing "The Anvil of God".

Also, thanks for the great pictures!

copperfish said...

Many thanks too, Tom Foreman for taking the time to answer our questions. Very interesting responses, nice pics and funny jokes too.

@Phebe, another job well done..congrats!!

@Sapphire, everyday is a wonderful opportunity to love, to learn, to laugh, to care and to celebrate the JOY of life! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

May you all have a great weekend!

MeshugahMazal said...

Wow... I wasn't expecting such a long q&a here! I was smiling a lot at some of his comments as well, lol. TF sounds like a very nice and kind man here; I have to admit, it's really refreshing when you can hear from the journalists themselves, since it reminds the viewers that journalists are not cut-out-cardboard figures merely reading off of a teleprompter. Many thanks for TF in taking the time from his busy schedule to answer all these questions! And keep up the good humor on "Raw Politics"!

anne carter said...

That was a fantastic Q@A with Tom-what a great guy to take the time to do this!I love your ideas for a Q@A session with different CNN people,and can't wait to see who might be next-dare we hope for "the man himself"?
I'm sorry to report,but I have an extreme case of fangurl that just has to come out-how handsome did Mr.Cooper look up on that roof last night,all decked out in blue?
But,wait-when I saw the PIP segment
I thought my heart would stop!There
was our Andy carrying that equipment with those big,strong arms,hair tousled, and with stubble-OMG,that was HOT!
Raise your hands if you want to go
wolf hunting in the bushes with Anderson!LOL
OK,thanks for letting me get that out of my system-sorry,but the man has that effect on me!
I can't wait to see some screencaps
from Thursday's show.
Happy Birthday Sapphire!

Sina said...

I LOVE TOM!!! haha His answers made me laugh.He's such a nice,educated and intelligent person.
ATA's next guest writer should be Michael Ware! I'm sure you ladies could pull that off ;-) lol

About Anderson last night:
He was soooooo cute with the wolves!!And did you notice his 3-day stubble?!? Waaay too cute :-)
Ok I'm done gushing now lol

sydney said...

As if we needed more reasons to love Tom! Raw Politics is probably my favorite segment. It took me a few moments to get the Marx joke, but once I did I loved it (I have a pretty skewed sense of humor)! Interesting tidbit about Dr. Ruth, too; I didn't know that. A bit of trivia to file away for a rainy day... :-)

Thanks!

ACAnderFan said...

Oooh did anyone notice that Andy had a little mustache during the PIP segment??? Looks like he forgot to shave for a couple days!!! He needs to not shave more often. I like when he has a little facial hair.

Anonymous said...

tom is made of awesome :)

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for answering our questions Tom! That was great! The pictures were terrific as well.

And speaking of pictures, may I just put in a vote for stubble Anderson when the caps are posted? *begs*

Em said...

@Tom thanks so much for answering all our questions. I am a political junkie and think "Raw Politics" is fantastic. IMHO I think your are doing exactly what you intended; informing us through humor. Politics with a little snark is definitely my cup of tea! I also want to thank you for the wonderful stories about our soldiers. I am the wife of a Vietnam vet and can't tell you how much it means to see such quality programs focused on the soldiers and their families. I will admit though that watching them is usually a three-hanky affair for me!

@ATA friends, thanks for coming up with such great questions for Tom. I have a lot going on and couldn't think of anything coherent to ask him. I'm glad to know I can always count on you!

Loved the program last night. I found Peter Bergen's report to be especially informative and loved the way he had some very concise points to make. I am so glad they are paying more attention to Iraq. You know I have been screaming for that and more Michael (BOS) for weeks.

I had a tough day yesterday spent half in meetings and half with my little nephew in the hospital. I was stressed and Tom's banter with Anderson was just what I needed. They gave me a couple of good chuckles and the tension just melted away!

Question...who did you think was more breathtaking, those beautiful wolves or that beautiful man? Can you imagine how funny it would be to watch Anderson read our comments about his appearance. He would probably turn beet red!! I don't think he'd really mind as long as we are giving equal time to his program (which is often hard to do when he insists on looking so darn cute!)

Happy Friday everyone and Sapphire hope you had a wonderful BD!

ACAnderFan said...

I agree with Anonymous 8:59AM, I'd like to see some pics of Andy with his facial hair when we get the screencaps from last ntie's show.

Shaving is higly overated. I think Anderson should shave only... say once a week if that. He needs facial hair...LOL!!!

Evelyn said...

I've always loved Tom Foreman, but now I love him even more. What a great guy! Thanks for answering questions Tom!

Happy Birthday Sapphire!!!

WOW! I sure do love clean-cut-suit-and-tie Andy, but wow does he look GOOD in some jeans and a North Face jacket, with messy hair and scruffy stubble, while carrying camera equipment and checkin out some wolves at Yellowstone. Mmmmmm-mmmm-mmmmm boy did my heart leap out of my chest! :)

m.minkoff said...

Tom, Thank you so much for taking the time to answer our questions. You even read our comments regularly - how cool is that! I always enjoy your reporting which is intelligent, thorough, and down to earth. Yes, you are enormously patient to deal with all the pompous characters you must encounter in your work.

I was the Anonymous who asked the question about campaign attack ads. I was new to ATA, and didn't have a Blogger display name at the time. Well, obviously I hate the negative campaigning as it tells the voter very little other than who can be the biggest (expletive deleted). And that's not exactly important to me in deciding who gets my vote!

OK, Tom, you can stop reading here, because I'm going to do something rather out of character for me right now. I can't help myself, but I just have to comment on Anderson's appearance and demeanor last night. He looked so happy and relaxed and after weeks of glumness, it was a joy to behold. I loved his clothes, the combination of colors was extremely flattering. And Yellowstone Anderson, God my heart skipped a beat at the unshaved Anderson and his excitement at seeing the wolves in the wild. It made me want to howl myself!

Phebe said...

We've received several tips this morning about an upcoming PIP segment. CNN is denying this rumor so I am not going to post the 'tips'.
We do appreciate readers sharing information they find with us and we do are best to get confirmation or denial before posting. Since this one proved false we won't be posting the comments relating to it.

MarcieGee said...

Absolutely fascinating reading. Thank you, Tom, for your time! I was a fan of AC360, and you, before, but I think now I'm an even greater one.

Thanks for doing all you do!

Anonymous said...

Phebe, the information about Anderson going to the South Pacific for a PIP story is on CNN's web site

http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2007/planet.in.peril/

Click on location and then on Carteret Island and it says

"Anderson Cooper and Jeff Corwin will visit the islands in late July to investigate the issue."

I'm not sure if this is what CNN is denying or if you heard something else that is false.

gray angst said...

Tom Foreman is a blast and my respect and admiration for him and his work has grown immensely after reading his responses to the fantastic questions that the ATA gang submitted. I'm always amazed at how quickly Tom can come up with a witty remark, like last night when AC was asking him about the running of the bulls. It's obvious from reading his answers to the questions that he has a vast amount of knowledge, experience and interests. What a cool guy!

The Skid Row report was infuriating. I could not believe that TWO years after the report first aired that the horrible practice of patient dumping is still going on. It's despicable and indefensible.

Anderson at Yellowstone, carrying heavy equipment on his shoulders, the Anderstubble, the beautiful wolves, certainly one of 360's finest moments.

Mac said...

Tom Foreman for President! What a guy -- thanks so much.

sydney said...

Good show last night. Went by way too fast.

Loved the PIP segment. It made me think of my mother because she was obsessed with wolves. Not sure I like scruffy-faced Anderson; IMO, it makes him look older. But I was digging the messy hair and jeans! And the lavendar shirt last night is my favorite.

Even though DH doesn't watch with me everyday, he's already got a handle on the "new format". At the end of the first hour when Anderson was talking about downloading the podcast if you wanted to see this again, DH pipes up "Why would I bother - aren't you just going to repeat everything in about 5 minutes?" LOL!

Ruby Slippers said...

Hi Tom,
I don't know which got me laughing harder, your "catch-and-release" tiesnark, or "A minister, a rabbi and a priest walk into a bar..."

All I can say is:
Monthly internet connection: $50/month
A Q&A with Tom Foreman: Priceless!
[copyright infringement lawsuit from Mastercard: probably about $20million]

Thanks for your time, effort and continued good humor!

cactuskid said...

Tom, thank-you so much for the Q&A you did for us! I know you are a busy person and it meant alot to us that you would take time out of your busy schedule to make time for us. I love your "Raw Politics" segments on AC 360 and your snarkiness. You help us to really have a good time with politics. You do a great job! You went to school at Troy University in Troy, Al. I know where that is! Go Trojans!!

The PIP segment on the wolves in Yellowstone was so awesome. They are such magnificent creatures. When you look into their eyes it's like looking into the windows of their souls. Sweet. I think 24 new pups born this year is so wonderful. I haven't been out there in a long while, but when I go back I hope I get a chance to see a wolf the next go round. There are so many wonderful animals out there and it is an remarkable park as Anderson stated.

Phebe said...

I just wanted to give you an update on what transpired in comments today. We were sent several tips that said AC would be traveling to the Carteret Islands for PIP the end of July. There was no source listed so we contacted CNN/NY 360 PR to get verification. Here is what they replied "Appreciate you checking on this but AC and Jeff are not scheduled to travel to Carteret Islands". So we didn't post the tips. When we later received the PIP link we emailed CNN again and this time received no response. We have no idea what to believe at this point, someone on the 360 payroll or the PIP site. Time will tell.

cactuskid said...

Happy Birthday, Sapphire! Hope you have a great birthday and a good vacation!

cactuskid said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sapphire said...

Tom - thank you so much for taking the time to answer all the well thought out questions from our ATA readers. I truly enjoy watching you every night....if possible. Alot of your answers had me laughing so thank you so much again......and how awesome are you for reading ATA!!!!

@ everyone - thank you all so much for the wonderful b~day greetings. They are all very much appreciated. I did have a fantastic birthday!!!

Anonymous said...

Tom, I like your reporting ... very insightful, descriptive, and informative. Please keep up the good work. However, I have just a minor observation/request that's been irking me for a while: You have a very distinctive vocal style, perhaps a little too distinctive at least for my taste. Could you try turning down the overdramatism just a tad? That's all - just a tad. Your vocal inflections are detracting from your great reporting! :-)

Phebe said...

@anonymous 10:11 Sorry, but are you nuts? The snark and the excitment are the best things about Tom Foreman Raw Politics.

wordup said...

hey! great interview. i'll reiterate someone else's comment... tom IS made of awesome :)
i'm new to this blog (which is brilliant by the way), and i can't see the pictures that came with this interview. does anyone know why?
thanks in advance, and well done for the site!