The Washington Post and BP may seem like the oddest couple since Felix and Oscar, but they've been spending a lot of time - and money - together.
A Business & Media Institute study found that the Washington Post earned up to $455,652 on 17 BP ads during the month of June, or about $15,188.40 per day. All 17 ads were a full page in size, nine appeared on the back page, six ran in color, and three ran on Sundays. In short, that's a fairly high-end ad campaign. However, companies typically receive discounts off of the open rate for large ad buys or for long-term contracts, so that final total may well be lower.
BMI analyzed all 30 issues of the Post in the month of June and calculated the rates using the Post's 2010 General Ad Rates Position Premiums. Based on the position premiums, a back page ad costs $28,954 daily ($31,456 on Sundays), ads on pages A2, A3, and A5 cost $208 daily ($216) per column inch, and other specified pages cost $103 daily ($110) per column inch. full page ad is 6 x 21 inches or 126 inches. BP back page ads totaled $260,586 and the Sunday ads, which appeared on pages A5 and A15 respectively, totaled $103,716, with color costs included in premium pricing.
Jon Stewart on Monday asked David Axelrod a truly extraordinary question: has this government proven itself competent enough to regulate industry?
Speaking to President Obama's senior advisor on "The Daily Show," the Comedy Central star was in the middle of a rather interesting discussion when he surprisingly said, "It's clear that this administration believes that government can have a stronger hand in regulating Wall Street, in regulating energy, in doing these things."
"But, has government during this time proved itself competent? And are our only two choices sort of an incompetent bureaucracy that doesn't quite regulate properly or free market anarchy?" he asked.
When Axelrod predictably tried to blame all the problems in the country on the previous administration's supposed lack of regulation and oversight, Stewart wasn't having any of it (video follows with transcript and commentary, relevant section at 1:50):
In an interview with ExtraTV, Redford said that Obama should "Grab this moment in history and get a decent energy policy." He also said "Here's a moment in our history where he [Obama] should grab leadership and run with it."
He said that "We blew it in the late seventies," referring to laws like the National Energy Act, National Energy Conservation Policy Act and the Energy Policy and Conservation Act made in the wake of the OPEC embargo and the Three Mile Island nuclear disaster.
Karen Nelson of the Biloxi Sun Herald wrote a report picked up by McClatchy Newspapers about the incredible level of frustration felt by the people living along the Gulf of Mexico over the severe lack of skimmers available in that region to combat the BP oil spill. She went into detail explaining the anger felt by the Gulf residents over the fact that few skimmers are cleaning up the oil. However, one thing that seems to be mostly ignored, except in passing, is WHY so few skimmers are currently in the Gulf.
First the frustration felt over by the Gulf residents:
GULFPORT, Miss. — A morning flight over the Mississippi Sound showed long, wide ribbons of orange-colored oil for as far as the eye could see and acres of both heavy and light sheen moving into the Sound between the barrier islands. What was missing was any sign of skimming operations from Horn Island to Pass Christian.
CNN's Carol Costello and Jim Acosta revealed their disdain for a federal judge's decision to overturn the Obama administration's 6-month moratorium on offshore drilling when the expert they interviewed on the June 25 "American Morning" made a convincing case against the moratorium.
Tom Bower, an author who has written extensively on the oil industry, tried to explain the devastating economic impact the moratorium would inflict on an already beleaguered industry, but Costello and Acosta were blinded by ideology: "But isn't safety more important than money?" queried Costello. "Because, I mean, these oil companies make massive amounts of money each day."
Bower, author of "Oil, Money, Politics and Power in the 21st Century," drew the ire of Costello and Acosta for calling the Gulf oil spill an "aberration" and noting the oil industry's "phenomenal" overall safety record.
"But that's what they say, it is just an aberration, but the BP disaster happened," argued Costello. "Nobody thought that could happen either. So, it's just not logical, is it, that argument?"
Seems the only thing gushing more than the BP oil spill these days is the disaster brewing in Paul McCartney's mouth. In an exclusive interview with The Sun, McCartney takes a major swipe at global warming realists, er, deniers, by stating (emphasis mine):
"Sadly we need disasters like this to show people. Some people don't believe in climate warming - like those who don't believe there was a Holocaust."
Well that's putting things in perspective. I'm not sure global warming has been proven to have caused the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion. Missed that report. Regardless, it remains unclear how the theory of global warming is in any way similar to the reality of the Holocaust.
McCartney goes on to defend President Obama from any and all criticism concerning the Gulf disaster, culminating with the revelation that he "really love(s) him."
The economic damage is another entirely different animal that is going to rock the Gulf Coast and head inland with reverberations that will be seriously felt around the whole country.
The Obama administration is completely lost on how to deal with the spill and the president seems helpless except to appoint commissions and place blame anywhere except 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
I know that an oil leak at this depth has never had to be dealt with before and is a seriously difficult thing to fix, but somewhere on this earth, somebody knows how to fix it and it's high time to find him or her.
Previewing the "Gut Check" segment, Costello gleefully teased, "Coming up next, environmentalists are revitalized and it's over the Gulf oil spill. Could this disaster be what we need in this country to change the way we feel about oil?"
In lockstep with the Left's environmental agenda, the fill-in anchor pondered whether the Gulf oil spill would crystallize support for a climate bill or would "it be back to business as usual?" Costello articulated the same phrase environmental groups frequently employ to manufacture a false sense of urgency around their liberal initiatives.
Interviewing David Rauschkolb, founder of Hands Across the Sand, a liberal group opposed to offshore drilling, Costello praised the forerunner to Rauschkolb's new group – Earth Day – for "strengthening the Clean Air Act and helping President Nixon create the Environmental Protection Agency." Costello did not reach out to conservative critics who argue that draconian environmental regulations stymie economic growth and breed unemployment.
In reality, the seven-member panel, recommended by the National Academy of Engineering, said Salazar's proposed moratorium would be "punishing the innocent." The policy "will not measurably reduce risk further," the panel explained, "and it will have a lasting impact on the nation's economy which may be greater than that of the oil spill."
Despite the panel's clear opposition to the policy, Salazar implied that they supported the moratorium. Salazar was forced to apologize after the panel publicly rebuked the Secretary's implications. "The Secretary should be free to recommend whatever he thinks is correct," said one member of the panel, "but he should not be free to use our names to justify his political decisions."
Another leg tingle is on the way for MSNBC "Hardball" host Chris Matthews. Wednesday on "Andrea Mitchell Reports," Chris Matthews asserted that the President's image had been tainted because "BP has been the front institution, not the United States government, in this whole horror down in the gulf."
Yet, the White House no longer needs to worry, because to Matthews, the releasing of General McChrystal benefits the President's image of handling the oil spill by creating a "chance for him and somewhat in a way or somewhat in a personnel manner to insist on his role as Commander in Chief."
When Hurricane Katrina destroyed New Orleans in 2005, numerous media members blamed racism for President Bush's supposedly poor response to the disaster.
According to LexisNexis, there were almost 1,000 reports in the nine weeks following the storm's passage through the Gulf of Mexico that tied racism to the government's post-hurricane strategy.
Five years later, as oil slams the same region and polls show the public actually more unhappy with the response to this crisis than they were after Katrina hit, no such nefarious connection is being espoused.
Consider the media firestorm the following remark by rapper Kanye West set off just a few days after the hurricane hit New Orleans (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Editor's Note: The following originally appeared at Andrew Breitbart's Big Hollywood.
Appearing on CNN with Anderson Cooper, film director Spike Lee implored President Obama to infuse his handling of the Gulf oil spill with more emotion. Demonstrating the astute analysis we have come to expect from the director, Lee implored Obama to “one time, go off.”
Perhaps he is of the same mind as Bill Maher, that the authentic black man is one who is always armed and resorts to violence and loud-talking when things do not go his way. (Note to self: On the way home from the liquor store, I must pick up my Glock from the gun shop.)
Both Lee and Maher seem to share the opinion of a great many progressives that emotion is the same as leadership and that problems are most easily solved by decree. It is no mistake that following criticism by Lee and others, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs was declaring to the media that he had “seen rage from him [President Obama].” Apparently, when Obama gets angry, he clinches his jaw.