Monday, July 30, 2007

Deaths, sharks and PTSD

Tom Snyder's passing will be marked by night owls (I was one once), who long-watched the talk-show host interview interesting people as he puffed away on cigarettes. (I think exec producer of "Letterman" and "Late Late Show" Peter Lassally said it best, "Tom was a true broadcaster, a rare thing. When he was on the air, he made the camera disappear. It was just you and him, in a room together, having a talk.)

Snyder and Hall-of Fame coach Bill Walsh died within a day of each other from leukemia. The combination of Walsh, Joe Montana and Jerry Rice was almost unstoppable. Brilliant.

Discovery Channel recorded its highest household rating ever for a SHARK WEEK premiere program. "Ocean of Fear," the story of U.S. sailors trying to survive in shark-thick waters, was watched by 3.9 million people. 2003’s "Anatomy of a Shark Bite" was seen by 3.2 million.

Sunday night's repeat "Law & Order" riffed artfully on the Walter Reed Medical Center scandal and the fact that we're sending youngsters off to get limbs blown off without proper protection or care when they get back. These stories are increasingly being mirrored in the culture, a sign that artists are beginning to cry out about the madness and dictatorial reign of Dick Cheney and the Dubya Dolt. "War on Terror": botched. Hunt of Osama: botched. Recognition of global-warming crisis: Botched and foiled. Iraq regime-change: Botched horribly. Economy: Not bad, except for the increasingly chasm between super rich and super poor. Innovative solutions to our social problems: Not even attempted. Forward-looking energy policy: A horrific joke, just as it was in Reagan and Clinton administrations.

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