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A repository of random thoughts, odds and ends, and not-quite-fully-formed ideas.

Archive for February, 2007

Watching C-SPAN


Today I wrote about finally getting cable service for my television.

I’ve been having fun watching the Food Network and HGTV but a lot of the other programming is uninteresting.

Then a reader called to say watch the C-SPAN channels.

“They’re the greatest thing in television,” she said.

She’s right. I forgot about C-SPAN.

C-SPAN is a private, non-profit company. It was created by the cable television industry in 1979 to provide, as a public service, access to the political process. It gets no government money. It is funded by fees paid by cable and satellite affiliates who carry C-SPAN programming.

Here are some findings about its audience from the Pew Research Center.

Fifty-two million Americans watch C-SPAN.

They range across all ideological groups: 33 percent said they were conservative, 38 percent moderate and 24 percent liberal.

Fifty-six percent said they were under 50.

And not surprising, they’re interested in news about government.

Here are some of the recent most watched segments: Eric O’Neill, a former FBI agent on the Robert Hanssen case, Gov. Chris Gregoire, Democrat from Washington, and Mike Leavitt, the secretary of health & human services.

Posted by Noreen O'Donnell on Wednesday, February 28th, 2007 at 2:58 pm |
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One bombing a day


Lots of the liberal blogs have been making much of Laura Bush’s comments Monday night on Larry King Live:

“Many parts of Iraq are stable now,” she said. “But, of course, what we see on television is the one bombing a day that discourages everyone.”

Of course that one bombing a day has been killing many Iraqis. And as AMERICAblog.com wrote, Reuters reported two bombings on Monday and one was an apparent assassination attempt on Iraq’s Shi’ite vice president. Six were killed. Then in Ramadi, a suicide bomber blew up an ambulance. That attack killed 14, including women and children.

You can’t know what’s going to happen in Iraq in the end, but that’s more than television focusing on one bombing a day, however much the rest of the country might be stable.

Posted by Noreen O'Donnell on Wednesday, February 28th, 2007 at 12:23 pm |

Problems with the blogs


We’ve been having problems posting to the blogs. Apparently there was trouble with the “host server” so I wasn’t able to put anything up yesterday. We’ll see how it goes today.

Posted by Noreen O'Donnell on Wednesday, February 28th, 2007 at 11:46 am |
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Next post on Tuesday


I’m off until then

Posted by Noreen O'Donnell on Thursday, February 22nd, 2007 at 4:58 pm |

JetBlue’s comback?


First a disclaimer: I was not one of the unlucky JetBlue passenger stranded for hours out on the JFK tarmac.
My few flights on the airline have been uneventful, pleasant even, especially with the seat-back TVs.
One flight, in 2004, took place the night of one of the presidential debates and the baseball playoffs. Half the plane seemed to be watching the candidates, half the plane the baseball, and everyone was cheering in turn.
One time — that flight or another, I don’t remember — the CEO, David Neeleman, stood in the aisle chatting with the passengers. He wanted to know what you liked about the airline, what you would like to see. He appeared to be enjoying himself.
Today the airline took out full page newspaper ads to apologize for its performance last week. It’s been interesting to watch JetBlue try to recover. Maybe it’s just show, but it seems to be breaking molds again. It’s put out its own customer bill of rights — something the industry has fought — and has been apologizing for days. A far cry from many other American corporations, too afraid of lawsuits to admit mistakes.

Posted by Noreen O'Donnell on Wednesday, February 21st, 2007 at 11:37 am |
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Friends in high places


From the liberal blog, “TalkingPointsMemo”:http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com, more on Abdul Tawala Ibn Ali Alishtari.

The National Republican Congressional Committee had appointed the Ardsley business man accused of trying to help terrorists in Afghanistan to a business advisory council.

Click here for the “memo.”:http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com/docs/alishtari-nrcc/

Alishtari pleaded not guilty to various charges today in U.S. District Court in Manhattan.

He has donated $15,000 to the House Republicans’ campaign committee.

Posted by Noreen O'Donnell on Tuesday, February 20th, 2007 at 6:04 pm |


A woman in the White House?


Two-thirds of American voters say the country is ready for a woman as president, according to a new poll by the “Siena Research Institute”:http://www.siena.edu/SRI/.

Even when that means “Are you ready for Hillary Clinton?” support for a woman in the White House has grown, the institute said in a press release. In 2005, 62 percent said the country was ready.

And this time around, 81 percent said they would vote for a woman.

The Times Union/Siena College poll, which was released today, shows Clinton running even with two possible Republican opponents: 44 percent to 45 percent for former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and 45 percent to 44 percent for Arizona Sen. John McCain. Another poll, from Quinnipiac University, shows similar results. Clinton would get 46 percent to Giuliani’s 44 percent.

How would a woman fare in White House? Here are some of the results:

Fifty-seven percent said a woman would be better than a man on domestic issues, but only 15 percent though she would do better as commander-in-chief.

Posted by Noreen O'Donnell on Monday, February 19th, 2007 at 2:57 pm |

Picky Rudy


Courtesy of the Smoking Gun, former Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s demands as a $100,000 per appearance speaker.

1. Transport on a Gulfstream IV or bigger

2. Two-bedroom hotel suite, flanked by rooms to be occupied by his security team

3. No press conferences to be scheduled. He’ll decide whether to do a Q&A.

Details “here.”:http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2007/0216071giuliani1.html

Posted by Noreen O'Donnell on Friday, February 16th, 2007 at 3:26 pm |
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Rudy Giuliani to speak at Christian college


Interesting tidbit in light of the pundits sure America’s mayor won’t fly with social conservatives

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) — Former New York City mayor and Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani will speak to business leaders at Regent University in April, the school founded by religious broadcaster Pat Robertson.
On Wednesday, the school announced that GOP presidential contender Mitt Romney will speak at Regent University’s commencement May 5.
Giuliani will be the featured speaker at Regent University’s monthly Executive Leadership Series on April 17. The luncheon at The Founders Inn on Regent’s campus is open to the public. Tickets cost $50.
Founded in 1978, Regent has some 5,000 students studying on campuses in Virginia Beach and Washington, D.C., and also via online education. The school offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from a Christian perspective.

Photo: Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani gestures during his address at the California Republican Party convention in Sacramento, Calif., Saturday, Feb. 10. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

Posted by Noreen O'Donnell on Thursday, February 15th, 2007 at 6:02 pm |
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Spitzer on Ground Zero illnesses



Gov. Eliot Spitzer supports Mayor Michael Bloomberg on 9/11 illnesses:

“Mayor Bloomberg’s report sheds light on how more than five years after
September 11th, New York City’s first responders, the residents and workers
of lower Manhattan, and their families are still suffering from the
aftermath of our great national tragedy. Exposure to dust and debris has
left many who lived, worked and volunteered countless hours of their time
in the difficult weeks and months that followed with serious lingering
health problems and need for sustained medical assistance. As a nation, we
have a duty to provide appropriate funding to address this serious problem.”

Bloomberg wants $150 million a year from the federal government for the costs.

Posted by Noreen O'Donnell on Thursday, February 15th, 2007 at 1:02 pm |
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About the author
Noreen O'DonnellNoreen O'Donnell For the last 20 years, Noreen O'Donnell has written about Hillary Clinton's run for the Senate, rebuilding Ground Zero, the Korean immigrants who travel north each day from Queens to work in nail salons, deadly runaway fire trucks and other stories in Westchester and Putnam counties. Now she's a columnist.

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