Filling in on July 17 for Keith Olbermann, MSNBC's Alison Stewart devoted a "Countdown" segment to criticizing the dress Wendy Vitter wore during a July 16 news conference in which her husband, Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), admitted to an affair with a prostitute.

With "Fashion Ho-Pas?" emblazoned on-screen (pictured at right), Stewart interviewed Radar Online's Jeff Bercovici, who snarked that Vitter's sartorial choice could mark "a complete reversal of the laws of skankery." [Video (1:37): Real (2.54 MB) and Windows (2.90MB), plus MP3 audio (753 kB)]

Olbermann returned to his program's hosting duties the next day and also hosted the July 19 program before turning over the helm yet again to Stewart for his July 20 show*, despite having had three days to become aware of the "ho-pas" segment, take disciplinary action against Stewart, and make her issue an apology. Olbermann either saw the light or felt the heat over the weekend, apparently, as he issued an apology about one-third of the way through his July 23 program (h/t Ian Schwartz):

He's a "burly man" with "rhetorical punch" from Catholic, blue collar roots in Baltimore who trekked a "remarkable rise" to become "one of Maryland's most powerful public officials." But today former state senator Thomas Bromwell (D-Md.) finds himself facing a judge and entering a guilty plea in a federal racketeering case that's been years in the marking.

Just a moment ago, radio host Rush Limbaugh was blasting the mainstream media's notion that the YouTube debates represent a revolution in American presidential debates.

Not so, says Limbaugh, at least in terms of the content of the questions asked. They're still as inane and moronic, or brilliant (in rare circumstances) as they've always been because they're the same inance, moronic, or brilliant (rare circumstances) people asking them.

Instead, Limbaugh insists, we are seeing a revolution in media technology being confused for a nascent political revolution.

A Democratic presidential contender has hinted that he thinks some form of sex ed is appropriate for the nation's five-year olds.

I'm not exactly holding my breath for media outrage or at least interest in the topic, but I though Good Lt. at the "Jawa Report" has some good observations about how yet again, life seems to be imitating South Park:

Amazing. Simply amazing.

Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., told Planned Parenthood Tuesday that sex education for kindergarteners, as long as it is "age-appropriate," is "the right thing to do."

The left, at the rate of almost several times per month now, is intent on mimicking South Park's proverbial "theater of the absurd" in real life and real time. The episode? Season 5's "Proper Condom Use," in which the school board decides that condom use has to be taught to progressively younger grades to the point that the kindergarteners are learning about it.

Say you write for or edit the metro section of a major metropolitan newspaper and you have a juicy story of a local ex-mayor who was arrested for running a brothel. It's right on the heels of the Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) prostitution scandal and the politician in the local story in question was once a sheriff's deputy, clearly no stranger to anti-prostitution laws.

Party affiliation is just one more tidbit of information that couldn't hurt your readers, right?

Not for the Washington Post.

The Hill newspaper can be a good read for Capitol Hill coverage. It goes deeper than the superficial treatment the MSM often gives legislative matters.

That said, it seems to me the paper is taking at best a curious tack on an issue dividing fiscal conservatives of late: whether to sew up a federal tax loophole on private equity compensation and effectively raise some taxes as a result.

At a conservative Web activist happy hour yesterday, I learned about a new Web site that's a great resource for press and public alike, although I doubt many in the liberal media will catch on quickly, if at all. is a Web site "maintained by Jim Harper, Director of Information Policy Studies at the Cato Institute, in his spare time, as a public service." Harper puts a dollar figure on the bright (or frankly mostly not-so-bright) ideas that Congress toys with day in and day out.

There's surely some deeper lesson to be drawn from the tantrum liberal activist Michael Rectenwald threw on yesterday's "Tucker." But in the meantime, for sheer entertainment value it's hard to beat Rectenwald's display of purple-faced apoplexy.

Rectenwald is the man behind the left-wing "Citizens for Legitimate Government," whose mission, according to its website, is "Exposing the Coup" and "Ending the Occupation." Its current pastime is exposing the names of people, including Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), on the DC Madam's client list.

Tucker brought him onto his MSNBC show to discuss "whether the sex lives of elected officials should be dissected, judged and discussed in the first place."

Here's the video, from the MSNBC site. The fireworks begin about 2:30 in, after the libertarian-leaning Carlson tells Rectenwald he ought to be ashamed of himself. Excerpts from Rectenwald's rant:

You are despicable . . . you're an unapologetic Republican partisan . . . you only turned against Bush when everything went down the toilet . . . you're a preppy punk, parading your bow-tie [NB: Tucker wasn't wearing one] . . . once you got done destroying our candidates, you wanted [politicians' sex lives] to be off limits . . . you are nothing . . . you worked for the National Review!

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is at it again, waging war on another person who has dared to speak out against radical Islam.

This time it's syndicated columnist and friend of the MRC and NewsBusters, Cal Thomas, who, in a WTOP radio commentary compared radical Islam to a "slow-spreading cancer."

You can read more about it at

CAIR is calling on its adherents to call WTOP to complain about Thomas.

So there was Elizabeth Edwards, wife of the Blow-Dried One, berating Ann Coulter on the art of civil discourse last week. After her phone-in appearance on the Chris Matthews show, St. Elizabeth was the toast of the media town, making the rounds from one network to the next, with rose pedals strewn in her path to guide her to her seat, denouncing the “hatefulness” and “ugliness” of conservative commentators. “We can't have a debate about issues if you're using this kind of language,” she lectured.

It’s a good thing none of her interviewers pretended

This was a rare treat. Seeing a self-described liberal hitting the Washington Post for liberal bias. In this case the writer, one Philip Evans of Kensington, Md., sees the bias stemming from a case of lazy reporting:

Following a report on fisticuffs in the Alabama State Senate, CNN reporter T.J. Holmes cracked a joke about Sen. Lowell Barron (D) being on the receiving end of a punch to the face from Republican Senator Charles Bishop.