Benny's World

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Media's Iron(ic) Feet

There's "whoopee-not-to do" over one of Edwards' volunteers staff calling Wal-Mart to get a Sony PS 3.

My favorite inaccurate reporting of this flap, in which a correct link to the article where it based its post is by Tom Bevan, who has a blog called "Real Clear Politics" at Time. Of course, it's supposed to be about ironies in the news, but the blogger put a nice ironic foot in his mouth by posting this:

Running To, From Wal-Mart
Posted by TOM BEVAN | E-Mail This | Permalink | Email Author

Here's an interesting contrast of two potential 2008 presidential candidates. On one hand you have Wal-Mart uber critic John Edwards apologizing for one of his staffers setting foot in the big-box retailer seeking an elusive PlayStation 3 for the Edwards kids.

Here's what I responded by e-mail yesterday (and I have provided BW readers to an e-mail as well):
Dear Mr. Bevan,

This is what you wrote on your blog today:

"Here's an interesting contrast of two potential 2008 presidential candidates. On one hand you have Wal-Mart uber critic John Edwards apologizing for one of his staffers setting foot in the big-box retailer seeking an elusive PlayStation 3 for the Edwards kids. "

Let's get the facts straight, based on your link to the story.

1) No staffer set foot in Wal-Mart; it was a phone inquiry
2) It was not even a staffer that made the phone inquiry, it was a volunteer, who was a teenager (young kid is Edwards' words) and he should not have used Edwards name.

Now that the facts are straight, let's look at the problems with this story in general.

1) Wal-Mart releases a name of a customer who makes an inquiry about a product? Does any customer have a right to privacy in that regard? Do you want Wal-Mart to tell the press if you as a consumer bought a certain product?

2) Wal-Mart released this information the same day Edwards was on a teleconference call with Wakeup Wal-Mart, an organization that is trying to bring attention to human resources issues such as wages, hours, the right to unionize, etc.

Update: Wading Through the Wire blog reports that Edwards made a volunteer stand in line at Wal-mart. I wonder if they are listeners of Rush and Coulter to write such farce.

Media Matters also noticed the AP published the side of Wal-Mart, despite getting information from Senator Edwards' office. Normally if the story can be easily refuted, such a story never gets any space anywhere. Interesting.

Tags: John Edwards, media bias, Wal-Mart, media matters, benny's world

Oliver Willis Strawpoll #1

Oliver Willis, who has his own blog (and blog rolled here and vice-versa for BW on OW), but also works for Media Matters, has posted his first 2008 Straw Poll.

Yes, John Edwards is on the list. No, Al Gore is not.

Tages: 2008 Presidential election polls, Oliver Willis, John Edwards, benny's world

JRE Home Tour: Halfway There

Welcome BW readers. Sorry I've been away, been a busy week.

I wanted to say that Edwards is having a relatively successful book tour with his new edition, Home: The Blueprints of Our Lives. I'm about half-way through it as he is on his tour.

(Pic from AP & librarian's vision: READ poster in foreground with a voricious reader himself, JRE)

The best review I have read is from the Associated Press, which the Cincinnati Enquirer published this morning. I also borrowed the pic to the left from AP.

Arranged alphabetically by last name, the 60 people featured in the book share their experiences more than the descriptions of the house, except where certain rooms carried the themes of family life of their in lives. In this post, I am writing about two I enjoyed reading in which music became a major influence.

For example, Mary Catherine Brouder, a college student, wrote about her family's apartment in the Bronx. When her older sister was run over outside of their building, it was a long time in the hospital then in a body cast when she returned home. Brouder's mother was so grateful that her daugher was recovering, albeit slowly, so she decided to do something uplifting: turn the family in a musical group that would sing at hospitals, nursing homes, and rehab centers. The group, the Spirits of Gilbride, became well enough known that they were asked to perform at the White House, Disney World, and Yankee Stadium.

While they have pursued their own interests, they still get together and do a gig. Brouder says each time they do a show, she is reminded of where they started: at home, in their living room.

Another musician, a tad more famous, and one of my favorites, Nanci Griffith, remembers hangng out at her grandparents' house, in which her grandfather rested in one of the original Barcaloungers, and she sat in his lap and took a nap. Her grandparents were also musical, in which her grandfather sang in a barbershop quartet and he played the piano. Griffith says that "to this day, when I hear a song, I hear it in four-part harmony. Every song."

Those are two stories not on the One America site, but if you wish to read Danny Glover's and Robert Carr's, go here. Senator Edwards also invites any BW reader and other bloggers to share their pictures and stories there too.

Coming soon: I will post his links to tv and radio appearances that occurred this past week.

More buzz l8tr..

Tags: John Edwards, Home: The Blueprints of Our Lives, music, benny's world

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Russ Feingold: A Fine Patriot

Last night, as many others did, I received an e-mail from Senator Feingold to tell us that he has decided not to pursue a run for the Democratic Party's nomination for President in 2008. Feingold must have been torn about his decision, but he seemed firm when he wrote:
I'm sure a campaign for President would have been a great adventure and helpful in advancing a progressive agenda. At this time, however, I believe I can best advance that progressive agenda as a Senator with significant seniority in the new Senate serving on the Foreign Relations, Intelligence, Judiciary and Budget Committees. Although I have given it a lot of thought, I cannot muster the same enthusiasm for a race for President while I am trying simultaneously to advance our agenda in the Senate. In other words, if I really wanted to run for President, regardless of the odds or other possible candidates, I would do so. However, to put my family and all of my friends and supporters through such a process without having a very strong desire to run, seems inappropriate to me. And, yes, while I would strongly prefer that our nominee in 2008 be someone who had the judgment to oppose the Iraq war from the beginning, I am prepared to work as hard as I can through the Progressive Patriots Fund, and consistent with my duties in the Senate, to maintain or increase our gains from November 7 in the Congress and, of course, to elect a Democrat as President in 2008.

Senator Feingold's PAC was the only one who gave my candidate, David Gill, any sails for his campaign in IL-15. While Dr. Gill didn't win, he represented hope to many of us. Feingold helped many others too.

I thank Senator Feingold for his PAC and his continued patriotism in the Senate. He is right in that he is needed there for oversight, especially now that he is part of the majority, a majority albeit who will have to help fix the gosh awful mess the previous 2 Congresses and the current Administration have created.

Tags: Russ Feingold, Presidential Race 2008, Progressive Patriots Fund, benny's world