Gyllenhaal: More Cash for the Wimp!
Plus--Tomorrow's contrarianism today
Do you think, like the NYT, that Democratic "Frustration Over Iraq Vote Unlikely to Trouble [Hillary] Clinton"? Think, with Ron Brownstein, that the main threat to Hillary from the anti-war left in the presidential primaries will likely come in the form of the little-known, noncharismatic Sen. Russell Feingold? Well, think again! 12:06 A.M. link
Maybe it would be good for Bush if Karl Rove were indicted--Rove seems to have given bad, conventional advice on how to turn the President around the polls, at least according to the aides who dished to WaPo (which, by the way, is unlikely to endear them to Bush):
Rove, Republican National Committee Chairman Ken Mehlman and White House strategic planning director Peter H. Wehner urged the president to dust off the 2004 election strategy and fight back, according to officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity to share internal deliberations. White House counselor Dan Bartlett and communications director Nicolle Wallace, however, counseled a more textured approach. The same-old Bush was not enough, they said; he needed to be more detailed about his strategy in Iraq and, most of all, more open in admitting mistakes -- something that does not come easily to Bush.
Although Rove raised concerns about giving critics too much ground, the younger-generation aides prevailed. ...
If I were a paranoid homophobe or a blogger locked into a rash prediction I might be suspicious that BoxOfficeMojo has no figures for how Brokeback Mountain did Tuesday, 12/27. They have Tuesday results for Kong! They have Tuesday results for Geisha. They have Tuesday results for the hapless Producers and tiny little Bee Season. But nothing for Brokeback. According to the B.O.M. site, this means the movie's "studio is no longer tracking it on a daily basis." But that begs the question ("Why?") doesn't it? If this universal love story is capturing the hearts of mainstream America as Frank Rich said it would, Focus Features should want to tell us! (Do they actually not know the results? Or are they just clamming up? [They might be on vacation--alert reader S. That's what they'd like you to believe!]) ... 12/30 Update: Estimates now up, showing a non-huge 12/27 drop. 10:59 P.M. link
When I or virtually any other mainstream journalist writes something, it goes through several filters before the reader sees it. At least four experienced Times editors will have examined this column, for example. They will have checked it for accuracy, fairness, grammar, taste and libel, among other things. -- The late David Shaw, Pulitzer-winning L.A. Times media critic, 3/27/2005
I almost hate to write this item--the LAT has been getting livelier recently, and if it goes into a fit of fact-checking in response to its latest round of screw-ups that will only put the bloodless twits back in charge. But you had to wonder where were those fabled four layers of experienced editors these past few days when a) the paper ran an April Fool's press release in a front-page story as if it were actual news and b) publisher Jeff Johnson's Sunday opinion section ran a piece charging that "the Rev. Jerry Falwell claimed that Ellen DeGeneres played a role in the 9/11 terrorist attacks and Hurricane Katrina because she was the host of the Emmy Awards ceremony preceding both events," something the paper now admits Falwell didn't say. Update: Reader B.Z. notes that the bogus Falwell tale seemingly also started as a joke on Dateline Hollywood--about Pat Robertson, not Falwell. And B.W. notes that April Fool's release was pretty hard to not recognize as a joke. ... [Maybe one of the four editors took a buyout, two were on vacation and the last was the sort of turkey that comes to roost in any large organization over the years--ed More likely the Times was faced with the standard end-of-year newspaper dilemma--it has to generate lots of stories to wrap around those lucrative Christmas sale ads, while at the same time everyone's taking time off for the holidays. The result is you publish a lot of junk. Blogs don't have that problem! We don't need to generate lots of copy during the holidays because nobody's reading us then anyway!] 10:35 P.M. link
Photograph of Judith Miller on the Slate home page by Mark Wilson/Getty Images.