The Batman pictures do very well when America is in a dark mood. Here’s the trailer for the 2005 franchise reboot, Batman Begins. Its sequel, The Dark Knight, opening in three weeks, shows universal recognition in audience surveys, and will be one of the year’s biggest movies.
** SUNDAY SHOWS, AND MORE. As first reported here, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger was Tom Brokaw’s first guest on the post-Tim Russert Meet The Press, the interview fiilmed several days ago at the Reagan Library in the distant Los Angeles suburb of Simi Valley. Brokaw asked Schwarzenegger some tough questions about California’s chronic budget crisis, recurring with the economic downturn, which the former action superstar handled with relative aplomb, though he might have mentioned his various attempts to reform the budget process. Schwarzenegger, while making it clear he disapproves of John McCain’s oil policy, stuck by his endorsement of the Vietnam War hero, which had enabled McCain to effectively win the Republican nomination by knocking Mitt Romney out of the race with a big win in the California primary. The show also featured other Western governors, Colorado Governor Bill Ritter and Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal, playing up the newfound importance of the West in this year’s presidential race. To his credit, Schwarzenegger did not try to insist that McCain has much chance in California against Barack Obama.
On other shows, General Wes Clark, one of Hillary Clinton’s biggest backers, took a big smack at McCain with regard to his national security credentials. Clark, a former Ranger and highly decorated infantry company commander in the Vietnam War who went on to become supreme commander of NATO, scoffed on Face The Nation at the idea of McCain as national security guru, saying he never commanded anything in wartime, has no executive experience in national security matters, and went so far as to say that getting shot down isn’t much of a credential. Whoa! Who let the dogs out? Clark’s move came a day after McCain said, at a Kentucky fundraiser, that Obama is not “trustworthy.”
In other action, two Californians from opposite ends of the spectrum were on This Week with George Stephanopoulos. Arianna Huffington, head of the now massively trafficked liberal Huffington Post, jousted with radio host Hugh Hewitt of the conservative TownHall.com.
Meanwhile, another type of show, this one a feature film, hit the $300 million mark today in domestic box office. Again belying some early tidings of woe, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, which we’ll just call Indy 4, is well on its way to being the biggest movie of the year around the world. If it’s not caught by the new Batman film.
** SUNDAY — WHERE THEY ARE TODAY.
Barack Obama is in Chicago, off the campaign trail.
John McCain is in Asheville, North Carolina, meeting with evangelists Billy Graham and son Franklin Graham, and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. McCain had been criticized for taking 19 of the past 20 weekends off the campaign trail, though he did host potential veeps at his Arizona “cabin.”
** OBAMA AS THE “RADICAL MUSLIM MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE.” The Washington Post, with the assistance of Dr. Danielle Allen of the Institute for Advanced Studies, delves into the origin of the endless e-mail attacks on Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama as a radical Muslim “Manchurian candidate.” Proving, among other things, that those making the charge have never seen The Manchurian Candidate. It turns out that the far right web site Free Republic is the constant aggregator of these spurious charges. I get into this issue at the end of the column referenced below, “Obama’s California,” which notes that various such rumors, conflated into more complex permutations, emanate from arguably more sophisticated sources in Los Angeles.
** SCHWARZENEGGER ON FIRST POST-RUSSERT ERA MEET THE PRESS. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger appears as the first guest on the first full-fledged post-Tim Russert edition of Meet The Press on Sunday. Check your various markets for the time. Schwarzenegger, whose wife, California First Lady Maria Shriver, was one of the late Tim Russert’s best friends, will be new Meet The Press host/former NBC News anchor Tom Brokaw’s first guest, is expected to discuss his views on energy policy and climate change, as well as the late longtime host of the show, whose death shocked and saddened so many of us.
** SATURDAY — WHERE THEY ARE TODAY.
Barack Obama was in Washington, DC to address the National Association of Latino Elected Officials. Obama, incidentally, will travel in July to Iraq, Afghanistan, Israel, Jordan, Germany, France, and Britain.
John McCain was in Washington, DC to address the National Association of Latino Elected Officials.
** APOLOGIES. To the readers, for the unaccountably small font size now employed on this site. The change was effectuated by the technical manager of NWN, which would be PJ Media. This change was undertaken without the approval of the owner of NWN, who is me. They have been instructed to correct their error, say that the error is being corrected, but the error has not been corrected yet, apparently as it is a weekend. For what it’s worth, I now have eyestrain from reading my own site.
** OBAMA’S CALIFORNIA. It began as Clinton Country. For awhile, it seemed John McCain might stake his claim on the Golden State. But now, it is clearly Barack Obama’s California. From my other blog.
** MY LATEST PODCAST. The road ahead. Which actually holds up very well. This is the podcast from last week. The producers of the podcast, PJM, had the requisite equipment misplaced by an airline. Hence the absence of this week’s show.
** 24/7 LIVE TV NEWS FEED FROM RUSSIA TODAY. Russia has re-emerged as one of the world’s great powers. Click here for a live TV news feed on your computer, bringing you English-language, jargon-free, fast-paced coverage of global and Russian news from the new Russia Today channel. You probably already know about CNN International, BBC World, and Al Jazeera. Russia Today, which also features culture, entertainment, and sports, is based in Moscow and is owned and operated by the TV Novosti division of Russia’s state news agency, RIA Novosti.
While it’s quite foolish to expect to see, say, criticism of Vladimir Putin on Russia Today, which I know as a former DemRussia advisor, the channel is very interesting nonetheless. With U.S. cable news chattering away as it does, this sort of respite can be informative. The NWN live link to RT does not constitute an endorsement of the channel’s views. It’s presented as an otherwise unavailable new media window.
** TRACK GLOBAL AND U.S. ENERGY PRICES IN NEAR REAL TIME VIA BLOOMBERG ENERGY MARKET WATCH. Crude oil closed Friday at a record high of $140.90 per barrel. After it hit another record trading high of $142.99 per barrel. The markets in gold, equities, and the dollar all hit appropriately record and/or bad levels. Energy markets are closed on the weekend.
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