July 2011

Those hoping to make a quick buck on the troubles of Rupert Murdoch after the phone hacking scandal have found that their isn’t a market for wares.

Ad Age notes the difficulties anti-Murdoch merchandisers have  faced;

Exhibit 1: The final edition of Murdoch’s News of the World, which published on July 10. At press time, eBay had 32 copies for sale—and all of two bidders. The highest offer stood at $8.13; the other guy’s best offer was $1.61. (C’mon guys, these papers were in mint condition!) Nearby, a genuine autographed photo of Murdoch was selling for 100 bucks. No takers. (eBay did not respond to a request for comment.)

Murdoch merch isn’t moving very well over at gag retailer Zazzle.com, either, which is currently selling an apron that reads “I’m Grilling the Murdochs” and a “News Corp. Hacked My Phone” shirt. “The items appeared fast and furious,” said vp of marketing Jason Kang. “However, Rupert Murdoch isn’t something that translates well into being a hot consumer item.” Why not? “When bin Laden got taken care of, people felt enormous pride,” Kang explained. “The Murdoch thing is funny, but doesn’t engender the same emotional response.”

Even at pop culture gift giant CafePress, nobody wanted a little something to remember Rupert by, though the prices were tough to beat. Eleven bucks buys you a Rupert Murdoch notebook. A T-shirt that reads “Without News of the World, where can I read my phone messages?” has been reduced from $24 to $15. Still, no orders. “The recent news around Rupert Murdoch has caused barely a blip,” lamented PR manager Marc Cowlin. The scandal, he ventured, “is interesting—just not in a T-shirt or merchandise sort of way.”

There are a lot of people particularly on the left who despise Murdoch and he certainly didn’t handle the phone hacking scandal very well, but he doesn’t engender the emotional response necessary to gin sales of merchandise.

The same would go if Murdoch had done something heroic, people just don’t care or know very much about hims despite the headlines and that is a recipe for disaster when it comes to selling anything with his name attached to it.

Chalk this one up to another get rich quick scheme that fizzled.

Cincinnati Bengals star receiver Chad Ochocinco who has become more notorious for his tweets than his play on the gridiron raised the ire of many of his fans when he tweeted on Saturday that he was reading conservative radio talk show host Glenn Beck’s book Broke.

As Ochocinco told his fans after they fired off a barrage of unhappy tweets he isn’t a conservative but he wanted to see what all the fuss was about regarding Beck.

I’m not sure how fast a reader Ochocinco is but as long as the NFL lockout continues he’ll have plenty of time to finish reading Beck’s book.

Read the story here.


During a discussion on voting rights MSNBC Hardball host Chris Matthews told his guests that older people don’t drive cars therefore laws that require identification for voting would disenfranchise them.

Matthews: People in their 80’s don’t drive cars thank God. People in their late 70’s may stop driving. They don’t have driver’s license’s. they don’t deal with the government, they don’t have an  i.d. card.

Less than a minute later Matthews said that older people don’t drive.

Since when?  My father drove until he was 81 when a stroke incapacitated him.   A few years ago I was a passenger in a car on more than one occasion with a woman who was in her late 80’s on the freeway in Southern California no less. And just last week I was with an 87-year old man driving a car in New Mexico.

These people aren’t an aberration they are very much the norm in a society that is getting older.  And what about Florida?  Does Matthews thinks that the retirees living there only take buses and cabs to get around?

Liberals like Matthews make it seem that if a person doesn’t drive obtaining a government issued i.d. card  to vote would be a great burden when it would probably take less time than getting a driver’s license.

This isn’t about disenfranchised voters but about allowing anyone and everyone to vote which benefits the liberal candidates at the expense of those that want fair ad hones elections.

Watch the video.



Here we go again.

Mitt Romney the media anointed GOP presidential frontrunner had his Mormon faith questioned once again, more than three years after he thought he put the matter to rest with his “Mormon speech.”

The surprise though is that this time the attack on whether or not Mormons are Christians didn’t come from the Evangelical community of other religious groups that have a doctrinal difference with Mormons but by Saturday Fox and Friends host Ainsley Earhardt.

During a discussion on the Republican presidential hopefuls in which Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s viability was questioned Earhardt tried to single-handedly keep him alive by saying that Perry will get a lot of help from the Christian Coalition “with Romney obviously not being a Christian.”

Earhardt didn’t score any points for Perry with that statement especially since religion wasn’t a part of the discussion up to that point.

If Earhardt is going to attack someone’s religious faith, I suggest that she do her homework beforehand  and come back with some facts to make her case.  Otherwise she just looks like another media fool.

Watch the video.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi stood squarely on President Obama’s side on Wednesday when she told the press that the president had listened over and over to the Republicans on the debt ceiling and that he knows the facts and nobody can out debate him.

Is she talking about the same president who said this the other day?:

“If we think it’s hard now, imagine how these guys are going to be thinking six months from now in the middle of election season, when they’re all up.  It’s not going to get easier, it’s going to get harder. So we might as well do it now; pull off the Band-Aid, eat our peas.”

Sounds a lot like when my parents used to tell me to eat my vegetables when I was a child.  That’s very presidential.

As for Pelosi’s statement that Obama listened to the GOP. He listened all right,  until the point he didn’t like what was being said and then walked out on negotiations.


Growing up as a child I can remember sitting by my transistor radio (remember them) listening faithfully to my beloved but hapless Washington Senators.  Those were the days of Dick Bosman, Eddie Brinkman, Toby Harrah and local hero and fan favorite Frank Howard who was the Senators version of Harmon Killebrew without the patience at the plate.

Every July I would look forward to baseball’s mid-summer classic the All-Star game where I could watch the true stars of the game play for bragging rights as to which league had the superior talent.

Back then the stars were selected by players and managers and the system worked well and television ratings were solid as cable television and the internet didn’t exist to coax viewers away.

Gradually MLB gave fans some say in the game by allowing fans to vote their favorites in changing the game from one where the best players of the year were selected to one where popularity mattered more than statistics.  And that was all well and fine since if that’s who the fans want to watch then they should be able to.  Then they made another change requiring that every team have at least one representative further diluting the worth of a selection to the team.  However this year so many players that were voted in opted out of playing due to injury or other reasons that the game became a farce.

Predictably then without Derek Jeter and other big name stars playing the ratings sank to an all-time low.

As someone who throughout my childhood and teenage years who rarely missed an All-Star game I pretty much forgot about it and only checked the score a couple of times on the internet.

If baseball wants to revive fan interest in the game they need to let the fans both the best players in, drop the one representative per team requirement and limit the number of substitutes if a player is injured and can’t play.  Since the game has little significance except to gain home field advantage in the World Series (another dumb idea) who cares if the team has a full roster?  Just set a maximum number of players per team of 30 and let the chips fall where they may.

The current system cheapens the value of an All-Star selection and is more about being politically correct than promoting the national pastime and it’s time to put an end to this folly.

Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar sound off against GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann’s signing of a pledge against gay marriage and pornography.

The pledge issued by Iowa group The Family Leader has since been amended to remove the reference to slavery but that wasn’t good enough for Whoopi.

While there is no defense for the slavery section at least it has been removed so Whoopi should just calm down.  It’s so typical of liberals like her to see racism in everything conservatives do and this is no exception.

As for Behar she made light of the gay issue by saying Bachmann had 150 foster kids and one of them was bound to be gay and that no one believes that being gay is a choice.  Really?  I know plenty of people who think exactly that and take issue with the so called science claiming that homosexuality is genetic.

Also Behar poked fun at the anti-pornography clause of The Family Leader’s pledge by telling the audience that if porn is banned wives will have to sleep with their husbands again.  Where is NOW when you need them?

Pornography is one of the most destructive addictions on the planet and has destroyed countless lives and marriages and resulted in women being verbally and physically abused.  And Behar is making fun of it.  Women’s rights groups should be outraged that she said this but since Behar is a liberal she will get off scot-free.

The lone conservative Elisabeth Hasselbeck didn’t help Bachmann by saying that teh signing of the pledge effectively put the nail in her coffin for her presidential hopes.


Even though Barack Obama’s Twitter Town Hall consisted largely of carefully selected softball question tweets that didn’t stop users of the microblogging service from generating 169,395 tweets.

The breakdown according t TVNewser:

  • Jobs – 18,957
  • Budget – 15,000
  • Taxes – 14,777
  • Education – 8,833

Despite the preferential treatment and controlled questions Obama still managed to muff the answers according to the Associated Press who did  a quick fact check on the president’s answers.

My recommendation is that maybe next time e could have the answers appear to him in a tweet format via his teleprompter.

The first Columbus Tea Party convention was held this past weekend in Columbus, Ohio and if it is any indication of the state of the Tea Party movement in Ohio the Republican Party should be worried.

Organizers who had expected thousands of Tea Party activists and promised as much to vendors barely cracked the 300 mark leading some to wonder about the state of the movement and their potential effect on the 2012 elections.

The convention was oddly organized with a short opening welcome session which was then followed by nearly three hours of workshops.  A lunch with Tea Party co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots was the main event of the day.  After lunch it was more workshops followed by a separately ticketed dinner with Dick Morris who bowed out at the last minute and had to be replaced.

The second day wasn’t much different with workshops, a lunch with John Fund sponsored by Americans for Prosperity and RightOnline  followed by more workshops.  The convention concluded with another separately ticketed dinner with presidential hopeful Herman Cain.

While the organizers wouldn’t publicly express their disappointment the vendors had no qualms about doing so.  They were charged $500 per table and another $200 for extra booth personnel above two to pitch their wares to a tiny crowd.  The event organizers claimed that they had over 1,000 in attendance but that was only due to their creative accounting which treated the convention and each dinner as separate events thus allowing for double and triple counting to boost the total figure.

With the exception of the luncheon and dinner speakers the convention didn’t attract or maybe they didn’t bother to invite any big name speakers locally or nationally and the convention and as a result the convention lacked any buzz or enthusiasm.

The convention also lacked attention from the media but that was probably largely due to the fact that a majority of the agenda was just plain boring.

What the organizers failed to realize is that while a Tea Party convention seems like a good idea on paper, it is much harder to execute when their is no one central governing body and dealing with the differing factions takes a lot of skill and talent.

It’s possible that attendees might want to return next year for another convention but many of the vendors won’t after this fiasco and without their financial support it will make holding another meeting very difficult.

Hopefully the poor turnout and general lack of enthusiasm is not reflective of the general mood of Tea Partiers in Ohio because if it is the Republicans may well lose much of what they gained last year in 2012.