Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Mother Nature Makes Breaking News

AC360's Wednesday edition opened with news of natural disasters striking in the South Pacific. Yesterday's undersea earthquake that caused a tsunami in American Soma and the Soma Islands and today's earthquake in Padang, West Sumatra, Indonesia have taken lives, wiped out homes and villages and brought disaster teams to the area in hopes of assisting the victims. Though there are large cities in the area there are also very primitive and remote villages and it will take time to reach all the victims and determine the death toll.James Carvell and Bill Bennett joined Anderson Cooper to discuss speculation that the POTUS is in imminent danger. Bennett said that he thought many of the news articles on the subject are exaggerated. He said there was similar hate toward George W. Bush but that didn't catch the attention of publications like the New York Times. BB also said he is sponsoring a tea party in NYC next week and invited AC to join him and see the people attending are not extremists.
Carville was concerned for the President's safety sighting a recent spate of violence and a rough political atmosphere.Gary Tuchman was in Chicago to talk of the violence on the streets that is taking the lives of so many young people.
Anderson interviewed Chicago's top cop, Superintendent Jody Weis, on the subject. Weis talked of the procedures followed and of the frustrations of the job. He put the blame on society and said there has to be a change in morals and values taught to kids.
Anderson mentioned in the intro to the piece that a Congressional candidate has called for Marshal Law to be imposed in Chicago. That's not a bad idea or at least a strict curfew should be imposed on young adults. That would not have saved the latest victim though, who was murdered in broad daylight.Randi Kaye was next up with news of the Hollywood community rallying around Roman Polanski. She also talked of the nuances of the original case and shared footage from a documentary on the subject.
The highlight of Wednesday's 360, for me, was the follow up panel with Joy Behar and Lisa Bloom. I agreed totally with this one sided panel, who probably didn't win any friends in the movie industry for their tough stance against Polanski.
It was great to hear AC say, at the end of the panel, 'Nice to have Joy Behar with us'. I agree.Tom Foreman brought us a very interesting report on health insurance nightmares. He told the story of a woman in Virginia who broke her wrist ice skating and was denied coverage because the insurance company labeled it a pre-existing condition. He also talked of health insurance companies who use mounds of paperwork, confusing forms, voice mail runarounds and other methods to avoid paying claims. Most of you have experienced this and know how frustrating it can be.Erica Hill was at the 360 Bulletin desk and reported that the EPA is targeting the big polluters, Saturn is going out of business, B of A's CEO is stepping down and Tufts U has new sex rules for students living in dorms.
In the second half hour there was news of John Travolta's heartbreaking testimony in the trail of his alleged extortionists, Palin's new book is already a best seller 6 weeks before it is released and a 5 year old boy in Texas killed an 800 pound alligator.
The Shot tonight was dramatic animal video of elephants gone wild. Not bad but DH sent me a video today that I think is more worthy of The Shot. Nothing cuter than men who can't change a diaper without serious drama. Enjoy!

We didn't get 'standing Andy' at the beginning of 360 but we did get a very dapper Mr. Cooper on Wednesday's program. Not sure if it was the lighting, the great blue background or the pinstripe suit but it all added up to a very GQ AC. And on that note I'll start my weekend. ~Phebe


pebschua said...

Thanks for posting that clip, I had a good laugh! I'm glad I have ATA to go to, we didn't have AC360 on CNNI - his show was preempted by the coverage of China's anniversary celebration. It's great to see screencaps of a dapper AC, he indeed looks very GQ.

On_Love_Street_With_Jim_Morrison said...

The earthquake in Indonesia is terrible. Those poor people. My heart goes out to the. At least there wasn't a tsunami there. That would have made things even worse.

I think President Obama's safety could be at risk. There's people out there who just can't accept a black man as president and there are those who just don't like what he's doing.

Something needs to be done about the violence in Chicago. I liked Anderson's interview with Jody Weis of the Chicago police department. Apparently don't snitch is alive and well in Chicago. Anderson seems pretty interested in this story. Nice to see that and to see that 360 is keeping us updated.

I'm over the Roman Polanski story. Time for 360 to move on. This is just more proof that 360's biggest problem is not knowing when to move on.

Other than the Roman Polanski story, I liked 360. I thought it was a good show. And I liked the pin striped suit. Anderson did look GQ last nite. Very nice

Jaanza said...

A great variety of news stories on Wednesday night. I've been wondering why we haven't heard more about the earthquake/tsunami in the south Pacific but I guess it's been difficult to get news reports from the area.

Carville and Bennett said pretty much what I expected them to say but it was still a good segment. Shout-outs to Gary Tuchman and Tom Foreman for excellent reports. Could have done without the Polanski segment and panel but Joy Behar did add a bit of spice to the proceedings. The Shot wasn't very impressive; elephants just aren't as interesting as goofy dogs or flying pigs.

All in all, a very good show, a nice mix of news and everybody did a great job. Love the look on Anderson's face in that last screengrab.

Tedi B said...

Funny video about diaper changing. can go out and wage wars but can't change a dirty diaper? Oh please..... lol

aries moon said...

Good lead reporting on the earthquakes and tsunami. The aftershock was 6.8 which is incredible.

President Obama has not been in office a year yet and he's been the target of an enormous amount of threats and anger - yes George Bush had some problems with people who disagreed with him, but I don't recall anyone reporting about people bringing GUNS to a Presidential event back then - the vitriol directed at President Obama is on an entirely different level and when you add in the racial factor it becomes almost laughable when Bill Bennett and others like him attempt to compare the two. I wonder if AC will take Bennett up on that offer to attend the Town Hall, who knows, but it wouldn't surprise me.

"Stop snitchin" is still a problem because of a lack of trust of law enforcement within inner city communities - people don't feel that the police will adequately protect them if they step forward and that's something that needs to be addressed. Anderson seemed to miss that point.

I also enjoyed seeing Joy Behar on the program and loved her outspoken commentary about the celebs who are backing Polanski. Joy's first show on HLN was very good, IMO.

AC360 needs to bring insurance company whislte blower Wendell Potter back on the show again. Insurance companies are out to take in as much money from consumers as they can get and will stoop to any form of deception and confusion to achieve that.

Ah, Phebe, I'm glad you said it first - I feel a little nervous when it comes to discussing AC's clothing/appearance and I've been trying to avoid doing it since many people here feel it's pointless, shallow and disrespectful to the work he does as a reporter and while I completely understand that, tonight I can't hold back - I thought he looked fantastic in that pinstripe suit - he used to wear it all the time on 360 Red, but for whatever reason he stopped - it was nice to see him in it again. I apologize in advance if I've offended anyone for mentioning this!

TheOtherAnne said...

Thank you as always for the recap, Phebe!

I'd like to add my two cents to the discussion from yesterday. I think Anderson asking Michael Moore "Do you think the president is spineless?", is not necessarily implying he is, or that he thinks so, and I think you should consider who he's asking the question to. It's Michael Moore for goodness sakes, he hardly shies away from making strong statements such as this one.

My impression of Anderson's view of the president has been switching. Sometimes he seems negative, but I myself think he has also appeared favorable to him on occasion. I also think if he does have a negative view of him, it doesn't necessarily mean that he's more conservative. And sorry, but Anderson on Fox News I just really can't picture, thankfully.

Someone brought up it might be because he's displeased with Obama's actions on gay rights. While I don't think it's because of the inauguration speech, where it seems clear to me the president meant Atheists, I do follow the gay rights movement, and I have to say while I'm obviously glad for a democratic president, I've been pretty frustrated with him more than once as well, the last time being only an annoyance regarding the non-response from Gibbs to President Clinton's support of gay marriage, so I can definitely picture that too.

Oh, and he might be friends with Barry Diller, but he's also friends with Arch-liberal Kathy Griffin. Friends don't say everything.

Em said...

The earthquakes and Tsunami are horrible. We have a very large Polynesian population here and many people have families who are impacted. My thoughts and prayers are with my friends and their loved ones.

If I had to hear about Polanski and the folks who don't understand the law in terms of child abuse, at least I was able to share the experience with Joy and Anderson. I like the way Joy thinks and doesn't beat around the bush. Glad to see Lisa had calmed down. Sometimes her indignation gets in the way of telling people the facts. I have been so irritated by this coverage that I have refrained from comment. Looks like they aren't going to stop covering it anytime soon so I have a few things I would like to comment about. No matter how the Hollywood elite want to paint it and, although the plea doesn't reflect it, the crime was rape. In most states, the age of consent is at least 14. This means that intercourse with a child under that age can never be consensual and is rape of a child. That Polanski was able to plea down to unlawful sexual intercourse (i.e. statutory rape) was a gift from the judicial system. In my community, we have seen a several cases in the last 5 years where men have been jailed for sex with girls under the age of 14; most notably, the conviction of Warren Jeffs for his role as accessory to rape. Our courts sentenced Jeffs to two consecutive terms of five to life. The majority of the cases I have seen prosecuted were young men between the ages of 19-22 who were in a “boyfriend/girlfriend” relationship that parents had allowed. However, even if the girl is willing, the young men are charged as it is legally impossible for the girl to consent. The thought behind the law is that the girl lacks the emotional maturity to understand the ramifications of what she is consenting to and is often easily manipulated. In every case I am personally familiar with the young men spent a minimum of 6 months in jail, 5 years probation and the requirement to register as a sex offender for at least 10 years. Recently our state changed the law to require them to be registered for the remainder of their lives. Like Lisa said, Roman's fame got him a sweet deal and Hollywood needs to shut up while he faces the consequences of a brutal assault on this girl.

That diaper clip is hilarious. Reminds me of coming home as a child to find my Dad wearing huge work gloves and a respirator to change my little brother! It is one of my favorite memories. When my grandsons were born, we wondered how my son would deal with this chore. He is a germaphobe. I have some wonderful pictures of him changing that first nasty diaper in the hospital. The look on his face is priceless!

olsond said...

@aries moon - didn't offend me at all talking about AC's looks. He is the only reason I watch the show or even sometimes the news! If I wanted strictly news and and not someone nice to look at, I'd have 20 other stations to watch! How liking his looks might take away from his journalist talents is beside me. I think you did just fine!

Isabel Siaba said...

AC360 was not transmitted yesterday on CNN International because it was China Anniversary. It was transmitted the commemorative parade in China.
Nothing against China, but was unfortunate the exchange of AC360 for it. It's registered my protest here!

ff said...

"a Congressional candidate has called for Marshal Law to be imposed in Chicago"

To be enforced by Marshal Dillon? Who will marshal his forces? Or will he just deploy them in a martial manner?

MichellenLomita said...

I thought the Polanski panel was awfully irritating. It was a waste of time to hear them all agree with one another and spout off about how terrible his crime was, since we already know it was an evil act. Anderson started laughing and clowning around at about that time, like he was just playing on the show and didn't care about the quality. Everything went downhill from there. I emailed 360 and suggested that they put AC in a new 2-hour format--have him live on-location in the field every night on stories across the nation. He is an excellent anchor when he wants to be, but he really has to work hard to put his heart into it. I think he's restless in the studio, so he kind of acts out.

Parker said...

In response to Phebe's comment on yesterday's post.....

@ Phebe – I think I speak for all of us when I say we respect & appreciate your time, effort & dedication you & your team put into this site to maintain it’s up keep. Without a doubt, we’d all be hard-pressed to find a more respectful tribute to this Journalist, Author, Anchor & Humanitarian – Anderson Cooper, & for better or worse we come together to share & discuss our views, opinions & thoughts not only as it pertains to what the AC360 Program brings us each night, but we also discuss issues pertaining to the Anchor himself.

Of late however, as you mentioned, you’d be hard press to find positive feedback on the contents of the show’s ratings due in large part to the decisions made behind the scenes as to the content of the Program, that have obviously not only hugely impacted viewership of the show itself, but your Blog as well, which by no means is a reflection of you or the work you & your team put into maintaining this Blog.

Obviously with so much going on not only in the US, but around the Globe, it’s sometimes a tad difficult for folks both Internationally & domestically to maintain their positivity while watching this Show, which obviously has a trickle affect on your Blog. It is by no means a reflection of your efforts, & I understand how frustrated you must feel after all your hard work, the feedback dwindles to a handful of responses as reflected in the comments.

We sincerely appreciate what you & your team do, but we all are also extensively frustrated at the “substandard programming” produced by the Show’s current Team, & unfortunately our frustrations are reflected through our comments on your Blog.

I know how frustrated I have become personally while watching this Program, & of recent have voiced that frustration, as I continue my travels across the Globe, I come across so many things taking place, stories that should be covered by Mainstream Media, yet these large conglomerates like CNN & their Anchors settle for mediocrity in the contents of their Programs.

@ Aries Moon, Anne, Cole, Austin & Judy, - Personally & professionally, I have always tried to maintain some element of positivity in my comments no matter what topic we maybe discussing, I always try imagine myself walking in someone else’s shoes before I state my opinion, but I will not hesitate for one moment to call out any one who denigrates the Institution of the Office of the President or this current American President himself (not after the 8 years of hell we’ve been go through), & to me that was the last straw in Tuesday night’s program. I respect the balance Anderson Cooper has to maintain during Interviews as a Journalist, but when he stoops to a level of rhetoric the likes of what is televised by the Fox News Network anchors & journalists, I have no tolerance for such stupidity & disrespect.

I appreciate & respect where you all are coming from as well & I take heart your comments based on Tuesday night’s program. We all have our moments, & some days are more trying then others to maintain civility, but I am of the opinion, never, ever should we ever put ourselves in a position where we find ourselves disrespecting the Institution of the Office of the President, I don’t care what Country you are in or from.

Freedom of speech does not equate DISRESPECT, & neither does being a Conservative (if that indeed is what he is). That’s a big NO NO in my book. In fact, many so-called “Conservatives” are often the worst offenders when it comes to respect or the lack there off, unfortunately!! Thank you all for your kind words yesterday & I look forward to reading your ongoing comments in the days & weeks to come, & to possibly share my own.

Parker said...

@ TheOtherAnne – If it is indeed the Positions & Actions on Gay Rights issues President Obama has or has not taken action on that has ticked Anderson off (hence the “spineless” question), then so be it, but unfortunately as a Journalist the cardinal core rule of Journalism is to set aside you own opinions & beliefs on such a personal choice no matter what the topic.

Every piece of Journalism should be covered without bias or prejudice. I know that from personal experience, no matter how strong you may feel on an issue, you never become part of the story, you never inject your own predispositions or impartiality on any subject matter to sway your audience. This is the cardinal rule of Journalism that should never be broken.

TheOtherAnne said...

Hi Parker! :)

Oh, I totally agree journalists should be objective! It was just speculating reasons for why so many seem to feel negativity from Anderson.

I don't think it's bad persé to criticize the president. Though he's obviously tons better than Bush, Obama, like everyone, is not completely without faults. I'm not even sure Anderson did mean something with the question or was just leading Michael Moore into his response, which is something he does more often with guests to get them to make their point, so I don't really find it denigrating the Institution of the Office of the President to ask that, though he definitely could have phrased it a lot better. From what I've noticed, Anderson always insists on addressing Obama as President, and I believe I recall him criticising someone who didn't. As Fox News is now pretty much openly calling the president a black racist communist out to kill your grandmother, I think that comparison is a bit extreme, in my opinion.

(Phebe, if this is not okay to post, would you please edit it out? Thank you!) As for him being a conservative, some guy who is pissed at the government or something has a website where he posted bits of official information on celebrities, and Anderson was noted as a registered democrat.

judy said...

I can't see how Bill Bennett can even compare the contempt shown to the first Afro-American President and that of W. Please! George W's life was never in actual danger and he knows it. What is even more appalling is that Sarah Palin's book is #1 on Amazon. What craziness! Who cares what she thinks, sorry I used the word "think." We know she doesn't or can't, whatever.
I didn't like the discussion concerning the President's safety. I know it exists, but to publicize it gives me more than a brief pause. The vitriol is just too hateful and we can't assume everyone watching is "normal."
I liked the follow up on the violence in Chicago and I don't like it that Michelle is out there trying her best to steer the Olympic Committee in Chicago's direction. The city doesn't deserve it, until they reduce the violence that plagues that city.
@Parker: You are absolutely right. The word "spineless," from a journalist that we all admire rubbed us all the wrong way. Would AC have said that about W? I don't think it would have ever entered his mind.
@To the Other Anne: "We are judged by the company, we keep."

TheOtherAnne said...

@judy That's a nice proverb, but I was just pointing out the company Anderson keeps varies beyond media mogul billionares. He seems to have both conservative and liberal people as his acquintances. (Barry Diller, by the way, is a lifelong democrat, big democratic donator, and a supporter of progressive causes.) But I respect your opinion that he went too far with using the word spineless.