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PBS talk show host Charlie Rose, who spent the 1980s at CBS doing the overnight interview show "Nightwatch," is never a softer touch than when he has a network star on his show. Monday night’s interview with NBC anchor Brian Williams gave the anchor a platform to present his newscast as a "reasoned, serious" oasis from cable-news shouters, a "half hour of peace and tranquility" with "smart people" like David Gregory and Andrea Mitchell telling you about the world. Their discussion of Katrina coverage had no hint of regret that NBC misled people with Ray Nagin’s wild estimates of 10,000 dead. Williams said, "you remember people saying, well, the media have found their footing again and its name is New Orleans. They were asleep during WMD. But they're awake now."

The interview began with syrupy talk about Williams filling in for Rose during his heart-surgery break. Williams said it was his pleasure, since he was interviewing that genius who is the editor of Newsweek:



Starter topic: What are you thankful for? (politically or otherwise)

Good collection of Thanksgiving cartoons.

Football is also a Thanksgiving prediction so feel free to prognosticate on today's games. In the NFL, Miami is playing at Detroit, the Tampa Bay Bucs are taking on the Dallas Cowboys, and the Kansas City Chiefs are playing host to the Denver Broncos.

There's only one college game today, Miami (the Florida one) is playing #18 Boston College.



William Donohue of the Catholic League suggests that some celebrities get left out of the unforgivable-slur category -- when the targets are Catholics, even Mother Teresa. Take Penn Jillette, the loud, tall half of the magician duo of Penn & Teller, who now not only has a Showtime series called "B.S." but a nationally syndicated talk-radio show:



Over at the DNC's official blog, Tracy Russo thought he'd found another Macaca moment:

If a Democratic uttered something even close to this the media would be all over it like white on rice:



In the wake of “Seinfeld” comedian Michael Richards’ now well-publicized meltdown at a comedy club this weekend, the blogosphere has uncovered a little-known 1986 film entitled “Whoops Apocalypse” in which “Kramer” posed as a blind, black man (video here, h/t to Hot Air). As described by Wikipedia:

Whoops Apocalypse was originally a six-part 1982 sitcom by Andrew Marshall and David Renwick, made by London Weekend Television for ITV. Marshall and Renwick later reworked the concept as a 1986 movie with almost completely different characters and plot, although one or two of the original actors returned in different roles. […]

The 1986 ITC Entertainment film version, directed by Tom Bussmann, uses an almost completely different plot from the series, but also ends with an accidentally-triggered nuclear holocaust.

Though Wikipedia described Richards’ character, it isn’t clear why he would be posing as a blind, black man:



Actual caption:

President Bush, center, shows 'Flyer' the National Thanksgiving turkey to girls from a local Girl Scout troop after pardoning the turkey during a ceremony in the Rose Garden of the White House.



Earlier this year, a woman killed herself after being interviewed by CNN Headline News host Nancy Grace over the apparent abduction of her son. At the time (see this September NB posting for background), the relatives of Melinda Duckett were blasting Grace for her alleged role in driving the woman to suicide. They've since taken things a step further and launched a lawsuit against Grace:

Her parents in Lockport were outraged by the talk show hosts harsh, accusatory line of questioning. The segment aired just hours after her death.

Melinda's father, Jerry Eubank: "It was 3-4 hours after I heard that Mindy died and I'm watching this woman banging the table, and screaming about why aren't you telling us this, I mean she was judge, jury and executioner."

Melinda's mother, Beth Eubank: "She physically makes me ill. The night she aired the show on September 8th, it was less than four hours since Mindy's death, family members had not even been notified."



Wednesday’s Fox and Friends discussed the recent feud between Rosie O’Donnell and Kelly Ripa. Co-host Gretchen Carlson said what so many of us are thinking.



Sometimes, from the wilderness outside that insular liberal bubble known as PBS, the self-congratulations reaches new levels of absurdity. PBS is so insular that it hires bloggers to promote PBS documentaries, even PBS documentaries that lionize PBS programs.



The New York Times can't even give us an article on a lighter aspect of politics without slamming Vice President Cheney in some way, can they?

In Sunday's issue, the Times ran a piece exploring where the term "lame duck" came from...



USA Today takes stores to task for advertising toys to kids.



First Coast News in Jacksonville, Florida, did a fabulous piece Tuesday on how terrorists are using websites like YouTube and MySpace to recruit, train, and send messages to their cadre (hat tip to our friend Joe Myers). Some of the transcript was posted at FirstCoastNews.com, and the absolutely must-see video is here:

It's a video showing a room full of children sharing their dreams. They are not excited about being doctors, lawyers or teachers. Instead, the children shout, "We are the nation of Hezbollah. I shall sacrifice my life for Allah."

A group of children in training to be a mujahideen, or holy warrior.

Online there are videos of those warriors. One suicide bomber announces he is readying himself to blow up a group of American soldiers.

The article continued:



Michelle Malkin writes in her syndicated column that journalists complain about "the Bush administration for stifling its free speech, endless court filings demanding classified and sensitive information from the military and intelligence agencies, and self-pitying media industry confabs bemoaning their hemorrhaging circulations."

But this is nothing compared to what other countries' journalists face.



Today's starter: With the congressional elections out of the way, the presidential race is starting to get more serious, at least on the Republican side where Mitt Romney said in an interview that it's a three-man race between John McCain, Rudy Giuliani, and himself.

It seems that way at the moment but 2008 is still a long ways away. Who do you think are some of the dark horse candidates?

Oh, and how many of you are having trouble with making links, etc. now that we have different ads on the pages?

Update 13:34. I've taken down the ads. Too many performance issues for now.



Here's an interesting bit of irony: Knowledge of the media's ongoing fauxtography scandals has gotten so widespread that now entertainment shows are starting to make plots based on journalists faking the news. "CSI" recently ran an episode about it.