October 22, 2013 |
Conservatives with long memories had to laugh at the recent New York Times front-page headline: "Fiscal Crisis Sounds the Charge in GOP's 'Civil War.'" That diagnosis largely hangs on the judgment of 1970s New Right direct-mail impresario Richard Viguerie, whose ears have been ringing with the thunder of Ft. Sumter for a quarter-century. Within a week of Ronald Reagan's 1981 inauguration, Viguerie was denouncing the Gipper as a traitor to the cause. The Associated Press ran a story headlined "Conservatives Angry With Reagan.
September 30, 2013 |
A.C. Lyles, a producer whose affiliation with Paramount Studios spanned more than 85 years, has died. He was 95. Lyles died Friday night at his home in Los Angeles, said his assistant Pam Gibson. His long association with the studio began when Lyles was 10 and started handing out fliers for a Paramount-owned theater in his hometown of Jacksonville, Fla. It continued after he came to Hollywood, knocked on the famous studio gates and got a job in the mail room. PHOTOS: Notable deaths of 2013 He eventually became a studio publicist and then a producer best known among western-film buffs for such B-movie westerns in the 1960s as “Young Fury” and “Waco.” He was active as a producer into his late 80s, contributing to the HBO western series “Deadwood.” His best friends included James Cagney and Ronald Reagan, and when Reagan became president Lyles advised him on private sector initiatives.
September 27, 2013
By utilizing the dual threats of a government shutdown and a default on the debts owed by the United States, House Republicans have moved far beyond traditional political horsetrading and into the realm of government by extortion. Rush Limbaugh and the partisan crew at Fox News, of course, echo GOP talking points that say any shutdown or default will be President Obama's fault because he failed to bargain with Republicans. But that is akin to saying a warehouse owner is at fault for the fire that destroyed his warehouse because he refused the ransom demands of the arsonist who set the fire. In a normal political negotiation, one party grants something the other side wants in order to get something they want.
September 14, 2013 |
Our Comedy Radar is going off because … Who: Russian comedian Yakov Smirnoff. What: His one man show, “Happily Ever Laughter,” has been extended through Sept. 28 at the ACME Comedy Theater in Hollywood. The Punchline : Forget Mikhail Gorbachev and Ronald Reagan -- or any other political superpowers of the 1980s, for that matter. Comedian Yakov Smirnoff says his '80s-era “sidesplitting stand-up” was partly responsible for ending the Cold War. He's not joking.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 21, 2013 |
White House tapes released Wednesday capture President Richard Nixon grappling with the growing Watergate scandal while continuing to press forward on major foreign-affairs initiatives, including a historic meeting with Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev. The 340 hours of recordings released by the National Archives and Records Administration cover about three months in 1973, from April 9 through July 12. They include excerpts from Nixon's meetings with several heads of state and discussions about Watergate, the implementation of the Vietnam peace settlement, and Washington's relationships with the U.S.S.R.
July 29, 2013 |
A cringe-inducing FoxNews.com interview between religion scholar Reza Aslan and "Spirited Debate" host Lauren Green has gone viral, with Buzzfeed calling it “the most embarrassing interview Fox News has ever done.” Aslan's book “Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth” paints a portrait of Jesus based on the tumultuous era in which he lived and the threat he posed to the stability of the Roman Empire. His version of Jesus doesn't completely jibe with the pacifist figure of the Gospels, which is why some conservatives - or at least other denizens of Fox News - have suggested that Aslan is biased because he is Muslim.
July 1, 2013 |
Twenty-one years after the King of Late Night retired from NBC's "The Tonight Show," Johnny Carson is back on television, thanks to Turner Classic Movies' new weekly series, "Carson on TCM," which premieres at 5 p.m. Monday. TCM will air selected interviews this month featuring some of the biggest stars who appeared during Carson's 30 years behind the desk at "The Tonight Show. " Most of these interviews have not been seen in their entirety since they originally aired. Unabashed Carson fan Conan O'Brien, the host of TBS' late-night "Conan" series whose short-lived stint as the host of "The Tonight Show" ended in 2010, emcees the 25 interviews that will be shown.
June 25, 2013
Re "Immigration bill gains support - at a price," June 23 Add 20,000 more Border Patrol officers to protect us from poor people gambling with their lives and freedom, and several more drones to check it all out, and "we've practically militarized the border," according to a pleased Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.). Add in the National Security Agency's surveillance of all of us, a "kill list" that our president justifies as the equivalent of a SWAT team responding to a sniper (and that includes American citizens)
June 23, 2013
Re "A tax system that targets workers," Opinion, June 20 Bob Lord's and Sam Pizzigati's analysis should form the conclusion of any study of the effects of supply-side economic policy since the time of Ronald Reagan. The evidence is in: Tax cuts do not pay for themselves and they are a poor strategy for growing our economy. At the end of 2012, the deficit topped $1 trillion, and in March, the government began implementing $85 billion in spending cuts. With regard to these cuts, Lord and Pizzigati omit a critical point: Back-door taxes in the form of fees have skyrocketed while the quality and quantity of public goods and services has plummeted.
May 22, 2013 |
Longtime comic and impersonator Rich Little is extending the run of his one-man show, “ Jimmy Stewart and Friends ,” in Las Vegas . The show will now continue through July 1 at the LVH resort. The master mimic has more than 200 voices in his repertoire. Little was a favorite of Ronald Reagan . Following one of his several performances at the White House, the impersonator recalled the president telling him, “Rich, you do me better than I do.” Reagan is one of the more than 30 celebrities Little invokes during his graceful journey through the life of the legendary actor Stewart.