Good morning and happy TV finale week! As the shows head off to their summer homes and the graduates to their parents’ basements to wait out the recession, our thoughts of nice spring things and vacations can officially begin. It’s a media-heavy Monday update this week because New York Times columnists have been being naughty, and icy, famous editors have come out in public to thaw. But stick around for the happy video at the end!
Maureen Dowd’s Sunday column plagiarized a paragraph from a post on Talking Points Memo about the timeline of torture and Iraq. The Times has issued a correction online, and, in an email to the Huffington Post, Dowd admitted that the “line” came from a conversation with a friend, who she didn’t know had taken it from TPM. But that hardly explains how the TPM writer’s entire paragraph appeared word-for-word in her column without attribution. Whatever happened here, MoDo definitely has it coming.
Also in acidic female journalist news, Vogue editrix Anna Wintour posed for 60 Minutes last night and explained, in her rarely-heard half-British, half-American accent, why she wears her sunglasses (“they’re armor”) and why she might, in fact, be a bitch (“if requiring excellence makes me a bitch, perhaps I am.”)
Pakistan is loading up on nuclear weapons faster than we can blink (shite!), and yet, incredibly, someone in the government—or a lot of someones—were considering giving them “billions” in military aid. What on earth is going on here?
The country survived graduation weekend without any major incidents: the President spoke at Notre Dame, where he talked about abortion and kind of admitted the divisions over it are irreconcilable. And wearing a metallic red cap and gown, Bristol Palin walked across the stage at Wasilla High School and collected her diploma. She finished with a 3.497 grade-point average. No word on Levi.
Speaking of abortion, the weekend news was filled with disclosures of conservatives’ no-longer-so-secret plans to block the President’s potential Supreme Court nominees. Gay marriage, several Republican senators said, has replaced abortion as the “flash point” of the confirmation hearings, and they plan to use the spectacle to encourage donations and unite the party.
23-year-old Alexander Rybak, universally and awkwardly described as a “boyish, fiddle-wielding Norwegian singer,” won Eurovision, the world’s biggest song competition held in Moscow on Saturday. A colossal event famous for its dramatic performances, stunts and pyrotechnics, was Eurovision was briefly visited by gay-rights protesters before Moscow police rounded them up. Rybak’s song “Fairytale,” which he performed while fiddling and dancing, took the top honor.
A first look at this week’s magazines: New York’s cover story, by the always-amazing Sam Anderson, is a defense of distraction; The New Yorker has looks into Justice John Roberts’ stealthy judicial activism and an item on Todd Palin’s awkwardness; Newsweek debuts its new format with an exclusive interview with President Obama; the Weekly Standard profiles former eBay CEO Meg Whitman, who’s now running to be the next Republican governor of California.
Finally, we’re to the good part: this morning’s start-your-day video, a collaboration of Andrew Bird, comic book artist Chris Ware, and This American Life: the animated musical adventure of Quimby the Mouse and his strange pet … head.
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