Just Us Sunday

FRC ad for Senate Democrats are still trying to avert the nuclear option (blocking every last bit of Republican legislation). They are asking nicely that Bill Frist pull out of a telethon to fan the flames of ignorance and Christian fundamentalist righteous indignation.

According to Reuters, the telecast is

organized by Christian conservatives that portrays Democrats as “against people of faith” for blocking President Bush’s judicial nominees…

Frist aides said he had no plans to withdraw from the event, scheduled for April 24 and billed as “Justice Sunday.”

The telecast may come just days before a Senate showdown over Republican threats to change the chamber’s rules to ban procedural hurdles known as filibusters that Democrats have used to block 10 of Bush’s judicial nominees while helping confirm 205 others.

Wait. It gets worse.

Organized by Family Research Council, a conservative Christian group, the telecast is to being offered to churches and Christian radio and television networks nationwide, a spokesman for the group said.

A flier for it includes the message: “The filibuster was once abused to protect racial bias, and now it is being used against people of faith.”

Personally, I think Democrats like Ted Kennedy and Harry Reid, who are urging Frist not to do this bad thing, should instead continue the successful strategy used to fight the fake Social Security crisis: ignore it. If Republicans scream and sputter and no one takes the bait, they are left running back and forth, mouthing both sides of the “debate.” Works for me.

Olbermann Says Hosts Do Not Usually ‘Coach’ Guests

Over at TV Newser, cable news insiders wrote in to defend Sean Hannity for coaching his guests on how to deliver talking points. Hannity’s defenders say the women were very nervous, and Sean was just trying to help them focus.

Balderdash, says Keith Olberman in an email:

“Sorry, ‘most hosts’ do not give ‘media training’ to guests before a broadcast. Conceivably, you might calm down a nervous guest by going over the topics in advance, or telling them stories of the commonality of nervousness. But that’s not what the tapes indicate Hannity’s doing: he’s telling them how to avoid questions by his own co-host so that their story — true or false — goes unchallenged. It would be considered journalistic fraud, if Sean Hannity were a journalist and not a propagandist hack.”

Bush’s Sex Appeal Rated Very Low in Poll

Bush's Sex Appeal Was Rated around 2 PercentReuters is reporting more bad polling news for Chimpster. He did not fare so well in Esquire magazine’s “Global Survey of the Female Species,” in which women worldwide were asked to rate the President’s sex appeal.

He may be leader of the free world and Time magazine’s “Person of the Year,” but a new international survey of women makes certain that President Bush is far from being the sexiest man alive.

In a recent online poll conducted by Esquire magazine, 11,000 women in 15 countries were asked to rate Bush’s sex appeal on a scale of one to 10, and America’s commander-in-chief failed to register much more than a two.

Women in Australia, Germany and the Netherlands were the harshest judges of George W.’s sexual allure, giving him an average rating of 1.4 each, Esquire said in its survey released earlier this week.

By contrast, Indonesian women were the most generous, giving Bush an average score of 2.2; American women found their president slightly less appealing, rating him a 2.1

The fact that he even got a 2.1 makes me suspect ballot tampering. The PR demands to know – what did Peggy Noonan know about the balloting, and when did she know it?

Hannity Caught on Tape Coaching His Guests

Hannity Gives You the FingerAnother open mike and another rightwing message-meister caught showing how propaganda gets made. Faux News host Sean Hannity was caught on tape coaching guests on his March 31 show, instructing them the tried and true GOP technique of staying on message no matter what.

The guests were two nurses who had tended the late Terri Schiavo who were brought on the show to say that Schiavo – whose cerebral cortex had filled with fluid 15 years before she died – was actually fine, not brain dead at all. (This alone should give us pause about the quality of professionals in the nursing industry today.)

“Just say, ‘I’m here to tell what I saw,'” Hannity can be heard instructing his guests. “No matter what the question, ‘I’m here to tell you what I saw. I’m here to tell you what I saw.'”

Hannity adds helpfully: “Say, ‘I’m not going to be distracted by silliness.’ How’s that? Does that help you? Look into that camera. Look at me when I’m talking.”

On the air, [One of the “nurses”] performs beautifully. “I don’t have any opinions or judgments. I was there,” she declares

After the segment ends, Hannity gushes off the air to the nurses: “We got the points out. It’s hard, this isn’t easy. But you did great, both of you. Thank you, guys. Those nurses are powerful, aren’t they?”

The story was broken last Saturday by the great Harry Shearer (who was referred to on C-Span this morning as “an investigative comedian”) on his weekly public radio extravaganza, LeShow.

Animal Cruelty: Slime Mold Beetles Named after Slimy Moldy Pols

Beetle HeadThis is just mean. What did the poor slime mold beetle do to deserve this :

President Bush, Vice President Cheney and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld have shared a common political vision for most of their careers. Now they’ll share something else: a slime-mold beetle named in his honor….

Naming the beetles after Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld had nothing to do with physical features, but was intended to pay homage to them, said Quentin Wheeler, a former professor of entomology and plant biology at Cornell for 24 years until October.

“We admire these leaders as fellow citizens who have the courage of their convictions and are willing to do the very difficult and unpopular work of living up to principles of freedom and democracy rather than accepting the expedient or popular,” said Wheeler, now the head of entomology at the Natural History Museum in London.

Thanks to PR reader Jim and our Guru & Consulting Editorial Director Susan D. for the tip!