Monday, May 25, 2009

"Extreme Challenges: The Next 100 Days"

On the night of Memorial Day, Anderson enjoys the long weekend while a pair of repeats run. So tonight we'll take a closer look at the "Extreme Challenges" that face the president, as discussed by CNN's own experts in the field.

The first segment covers THE WARS and the panel is Christiane Amanpour, Fareed Zakaria, David Gergen, and Michael Ware. How the country handles the exit from Iraq and the increasing threat in Afghanistan will be part of President Obama's lasting legacy. (This clip had to be cut into two sections due to Blogger's limitations.)

The second segment covers FOREIGN POLICY and has the same panel of Christiane Amanpour, Fareed Zakaria, David Gergen, and Michael Ware. The Israel/Palestine issue has been an issue for generations, while Iran is now the focal point for a whole host of new problems.

Next up is THE ECONOMY, with panelists Ali Velshi, Fareed Zakaria, David Gergen, and Candy Crowley. The crisis may be over, but the recovery may take longer than we like and may leave us with a vastly different American Dream.

Segment four is about the plan to change AMERICA'S HEALTH. At the table are Ali Velshi and David Gergen, with Dr. Sanjay Gupta joining in via video. Will Congress get behind this? (Will we-the-people force them to?) And does it really tie into a piece of the economic recovery?

The next topic is the SUPREME COURT, with panelists Joe Johns, David Gergen, and Jeffrey Toobin. The president's first selection will be made sooner than anyone expected and, sadly, while the Republicans are still determined to oppose everything the new administration does. How will this president -- a former Constitutional scholar himself -- leave his stamp on the court?

The final segment looked at the president's desire for CHANGE IN WASHINGTON, and the panelists are Candy Crowley, Joe Johns, David Gergen, and Jeffrey Toobin. Can he play the game well enough to make actual changes? So far he has looked and sounded very impressive, but if his opponents continue to throw out anchors and are able to drag the ship of state to a halt, how long will he be able to maintain an even keel?

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A couple items from the ATA mailbox ... first, a tip from an anonymous reader that Anderson will be co-hosting Regis & Kelly on June 4th and 5th (which would be the Thursday and Friday of next week).

Also, last week I was able to meet 360 regular (and ATA fan favorite) Reza Aslan at a book signing, and wrote about it on ATC. Sadly, I had a fatal camera error that night (okay, I forgot to charge the battery beforehand!) and got no pics of the event; however, my friend Lynda decided to check out one of his appearances in the LA area, and sent these photos to share:

Okay, that's a wrap for tonight. Hope everyone had a great weekend!

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All Things Anderson is a blog dedicated to CNN's AC360 and its host Anderson Cooper.


Anonymous said...

Cyn: Thank you for your updates about when AC will be on R&K.
Glad you got to see Resa Aslan. I think he is brilliant and love it when he's on The Daily Show.
I didn't appreciate the repeat of Extreme Challenges. If Fox is able to broadcast live with subs, so should CNN. I know Randi Kaye updated, but there was the event with N. Korea which made the "repeat" yesterday's news, and CNN can ill afford that at this time.

Anonymous said...

If CNN had to show repeats, it was good to repeat Extreme Challenges. I liked it a lot more than the Larry King repeat of the American Idol people hosted by Ryan Seacrest since I don't watch AI and have no interest in any of those guys.

Thanks for the Dispatches from the Edge clips yesterday, very appropriate for Memorial Day.

Also liked the post from Saturday, 5/23, wish I could find Wyatt's book at a cheap price. I don't know how many Cooper family reunions Anderson has attended but it's not like he has to tell viewers where he goes or how often he sees his Mississippi cousins.
Wherever Anderson is this week, whether it's at a picnic in Meridian MS or surfing in Australia, I hope he has a good time.


On_Love_Street_With_Jim_Morrison said...

Didn't watch 360 since I had already seen the special.

@Kitzel, Randi Kaye was on??? When??? I didn't even bother to put CNN on last nite since it was all repeats anyway.

Hope everyone had a great day yesterday and lets hope our favorite anchor is back tonite.

Em said...

@Cyn please thanks your friend for sharing her pic's of Reza. He is so brilliant. Love the last one!

Wow, NY Post is now on the bandwagon. Have to feel for Anderson as we all know he is pretty competitive and wants to excel at everything he does. Must be difficult knowing your program is in trouble.

Too bad Anderson is on R&K later in the week and not on his birthday...I can only imagine the ways Kelly could find to embarass him!

jasper said...

Em, I agree. I wonder how Anderson feels about all the low ratings lately?

I had not heard that he extended his contract last fall. Do we know how many years it was for?

Thank you,

Anonymous said...

Like they did with Aaron Brown, CNN must have an out and can still let Anderson go, like for bad ratings. Actually, I don't think Aaron's ratings were that bad. But they paid him through the end of his contract, pretty sweet deal.

Lynda the Guppy said...


You're welcome! I dragged a friend of mine and we both had a fantastic time. If you get a chance, go see him. He's pretty funny and very outspoken.

Cyn said...

ACAnderFan, Randi was on at the start of the program to update the North Korea issue. She spoke with the International correspondents they have covering the story. She also did a newsbreak at the half-hour. I didn't mention it because ... well, I didn't think anyone would really care. (Not to slight Randi, but, well, I figured clips with Anderson would be more appreciated.)

The NYPost is owned by Murdoch, so of course they are pro-Fox/anti-CNN. Do we really care what trash they talk about Anderson? Really? I'm sure Anderson would just consider the source and trashcan it...

Anonymous said...

@Cyn 1:46 PM: It's not just the trash Page Six or anyone may say about Anderson, just look at his ratings.

Em said...

@Cyn, Don't know what possessed me to read the story in the NY Post much less mention it. Being pretty much a west/west coast person, I'm not really familiar with the Post. We get the NY Times. I guess I should have understood the difference when I learned who owned the Post. Anyway after reading that article, I went back and read the comments (another clear lapse in judgement on my part!) OMG for the most part the comments were course, vile, and ugly. I was left thinking Anderson should be very proud that he is NOT appealing to that segment of the population. Dont get me wrong, I'm not saying all Post readers are ignorant but for 90% of the ones who took the time to comment on the ratings article...well, let's just say refering to them as ignorant would be overly polite.

olsond said...

@jaanza - I was going to give you a great lead to go on and get the used version of Families by Wyatt Cooper and I was shocked to see the used versions going from $89-$414. What is that all about?

@jasper - I just read that Anderson recently did resign for a multi million dollar deal for a few more years. They had mentioned it in some article because of the low ratings and that he was lucky that was in place.

Whew! I'm glad myself! I sure want him around.

Anonymous said...

@Cyn: The NYT said much the SAME thing about his show and the low ratings just a couple of weeks ago. Page 6 does sensentionalize, BUT, it is always has not a thing to do with who owns the paper. Unfortunately he has lost his audience, just look at the numbers on TVNewser.

Anonymous said...

@11:42AM: You are correct. Aaron Brown left when he was still under contract, because as he said, at the time, he was replaced with "a new and younger model." I don't think CNN has anyone else in mind, so for the "time being," AC is safe, but I get the impression, his ratings better improve....a lot.
At one time Fox, would have negotiated or matched CNN's deal, but now, they want "a following," just like in a hair salon, no one will hire you unless you have clients. ( I realize that's an over simplification)but a fact nevertheless.

On_Love_Street_With_Jim_Morrison said...

@jaanza, I bought "Families" last year for $89 and it is in perfect condition. Its a great book and I hope you're able to find a copy.

Anonymous said...

@Olsond 6:21 PM: regarding your comment of Anderson about his new contract being put in place before his ratings fall: it doesn't matter if he has a contract, CNN can still get rid of him if the ratings are bad enough. They did it to Aaron Brown - he was let go approx 1 1/2 before his contract ended, and his ratings were better than Anderson's. They have let others go early from their contracts as well.

Coop1223 said...

@Olsond...Thanks for the news about Anderson re-signing. I'm glad he'll be around for a few more years at least!

Anonymous said...

I'm really beginning to feel sorry for AC. His ratings were absolutely pitiful on Friday. I know it was a holiday weekend, but he followed his friend Seacrest with the Am. Idol bunch and he couldn't hold on to the lead in. I actually had to go back to see if he was there with a 177, in his own demographic.
All the money in the world can't make up for the lack of self-esteem he must feel if this keeps up.
I know he gives no indication that it is bothering him, but we know he is sensitive and his numbers are just the pits.

Laurie Beth said...

Thank you, Lynda the Guppy! That picture of you and Mr. Aslan is adorable. I'm so glad you had a nice time, and thank you for sharing your experience with us.

I'm not going to deny that ratings are dreadful, because they are--but that doesn't mean that the Post isn't trash. The Post has been trash for thirty years; it doesn't need any recent addendum to confirm that.

@ Anon 11:42 "Like they did with Aaron Brown, CNN must have an out and can still let Anderson go, like for bad ratings."

True. However, no television network ever fires anyone without having someone with whom to replace him/her. These days, major networks have it kind of easy because if they have a sitcom that's tanking, they have forty seven thousand pilots sitting on the back burner that they can use--so that's why you see scripted shows cancelled constantly. On the other hand, cable news networks don't have that luxury. If they fired Anderson, what could they possibly put in his place?

On_Love_Street_With_Jim_Morrison said...

@Laurie Beth, I've always wondered the same thing. Who would CNN get to replace Anderson??? As bad as his ratings are, I think anyone else in the time spot would do far worse. Just my opinion though.

Anonymous said...

I was delighted to see John King in for AC tonite. It was almost a relief, sorry to say, to see him and John is always able to anchor with such ease. It was like "old home week"...and he seemed enthusiastic about being there which made him even more welcome.
I started thinking, John can practically sub for anyone, but honestly, could AC take over State of the Union just as easily, for four hours?? Just asking.

aries moon said...

Can someone PLEASE explain why some people here even watch 360?! How can you find it a "relief" to see a sub in for Anderson? John King is ok, but given a choice and even considering the show's current troubles, I still prefer to see Anderson anchoring his OWN program. And it is of no importance whether or not Anderson could sub on SOTU - though I'm positive he could - he's a smart, well-rounded reporter, but what does it even matter? - that's not what he's there for. Yes, we are all aware that 360 has its problems, but I'd imagine that a large majority of us here would prefer that it get better than see it and Anderson off the air. There are posters here who seem to revel in the fact that the show is doing badly - the mindset of some of these commentors is completely baffling. Are they genuine fans of Anderson or just that odd group of people who can find NOTHING positive to say about him EVER. As AC would say, it's compeltely mind-boggling.

On_Love_Street_With_Jim_Morrison said...

@Aries Moon I agree completely with everything you said. Why would anyone feel reilef to see JK in the anchor chair??? And why in the world does it matter if Anderson could anchor SOTU. I know I would prefer to see 360 get better than see it and Anderson off the air.

Anonymous said...

@Laurie Beth @8:57 PM: Who could they put in Anderson's place? There are many many people who can take his place just as there were many people there before him. Everybody can be replaced.

I am not trying to be snide or start something but Anderson is not the only talent out there.

It is my understanding advertisers want the ratings as well and might have something to do it. CNN has a business to run, not cater to Anderson or whatever.

Anonymous said...

@aires moon: Why is it mind boggling if someone compliments someone other than AC? I've complimented AC for a long time and I also have not disrespected him by asking a relevant question. AC is human and human beings have flaws as we all do.
Why do I bother watching him? Because I consider myself a fan, but one that is not obsessed to the point that I cannot see beyond that or him. He is having his problems now and there is a reason, and being in denial doesn't alleviate the situation.