Morning Reading List 02.25.09

Good Morning FishbowlDC!

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Its day 37 covering the Obama administration and week 4 for us. Happy Birthday to Bob Schieffer, Jessica Yellin and Anne Kornblut!

And congratulations to Ryan Lizza and Chris Cillizza and their families, who welcome baby boys into the world. (h/t Playbook)

What we know and what we’re reading this Wednesday morning…



In WaPo’s online chats yesterday, Gene Weingarten was asked about pre-empted column printed in Sunday’s paper. He calls the editor’s note a mistake, but a well-intentioned one, and a “dismaying overabundance of caution.” He was also posed this question, “Weingarten, you magnificent bastard, you engineered that whole promotion for your Sunday column, didn’t you?” He answered that the column did get 400 percent more online readership than it ususally does.

Heart Corp. announced yesterday possible significant cuts to staff at the San Francisco Chronicle.

Why everyone should care about the future of newspapers, from Paul Starr at the New Republic.

It is the end of an era for gossip columnist Liz Smith. After 33 years, the NYPost will be dropping her column.


Liberal bias? A study at Indiana University indicates the opposite of what most people would think about television coverage of Democrats and Republicans during elections. The three major broadcast networks favored Republicans in elections from 1992 to 2004 and the professor conducting the study says that effect was largely due to journalists censoring their own reporting out of frustration at being accused of a liberal bias.

Broadcasting & Cable’s Marisa Guthrie has Q&A with NBC’s Brian Williams. Among many questions, she asks whether the Obama team has been successful in handling the media since they’re been in Washington? “I get a kick out of the coverage. I heard it as recently as last night on cable: ‘Have they lost their way?’ Now, we might want to remind everybody that the first few weeks of the Bush Administration were no different. It’s our attention span these days. It’s laughable.”


Rachel Sklar at the Daily Beast has the “smart power” list– what she calls “a subtle combination of brains and the wisdom to use them to get things done.” All the rage in Washington. DC journo NBC’s David Gregory makes the cut. Other journso on the list include CBS’ Katie Couric and CNN’s Rick Sanchez. NYT online, the Atlantic online and Politico also get a nod.


Best Actor Sean Penn is in talks to star in “Fair Game,” the story of Valerie Plame, according to E! News. Naomi Watts is already lined up to play Plame.

The Courier-Journal of Louisville, KY has Q&A of WaPo’s and MSNBC contributor Eugene Robinson. He talks about the stimulus, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and the difference between his column and cable news, to which he says, “What cable does, increasingly, is blur the line between reporting- which if done at all properly is going to be fair and nonpartisan- and commentary. And in the medium of cable television, that blurring seems to work. I say that only because it leads me to the conclusion that we’re going to see more of it.”


News Distribution Network, Inc. is looking for an account manager. From the release: NDN has developed a unique business model to address the challenges of news properties, ownership groups, and organizations not currently equipped with legal, professional video content, advanced multimedia features, or effective distribution. NDN has debuted “Political I.Q.,” the first product in a portfolio slated to include offerings in the business, entertainment, sports, travel and general news categories.” More info and application available here.

HAT TIPS: Mediabistro, Romanesko, Playbook