Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Carson, Turner, and Summers

Like many millions of people, I was saddened by the death of Johnny Carson. In "A Voice for All of Us," Harold Meyerson explains Johnny Carson's place in our culture. He concludes,

In today's America, it's impossible even to imagine a figure possessing the cultural authority that Carson once wielded, or inspiring a Cronkite-like level of trust. Everyone came to Carson's couch, and was subject to his devastating deadpan when the occasion demanded it. But that was when we had more of a culture, and a politics, in common, and a generous, skeptical comic who looked askance for us all.

* * *

Drudge reports that Ted Turner went on a rant, publicly comparing the popularity of Fox News with the popularity of Hitler when he rose to power in Germany. Fox News responded, "Ted is understandably bitter having lost his ratings, his network and now his mind -- we wish him well."

Ted also compared Rupert Murdoch to Hitler in 1996 and later had to publicly apologize, according to this report.

Ah, well. Proves you don't have to be poor to be ignorant and stupid. After all, this is the guy who married Jane Fonda.

* * *

In the Washington Post, Robert Samuelson takes an interesting look at the gender issues raised by the President of Harvard University recently. Samples:

Larry Summers -- the economist who was President Bill Clinton's last Treasury secretary and is now Harvard's president -- has a knack for getting into trouble. He did it again the other day by seeming to suggest that inherent differences between men and women might explain why so few women go into science and engineering. Well, the proverbial dung hit the proverbial fan. "Harvard Chief's Comments on Women Assailed," said The Post's headline. That was typical. Actually, the furor Summers provoked is more revealing than anything he said. ...

These are complicated issues; we cannot understand them without discussing gender differences openly. Our reluctance to do so may explain, for example, the biggest under-covered story in education: how poorly boys do.


Blogger Gindy said...

"Ted is understandably bitter having lost his ratings, his network and now his mind -- we wish him well."

I have to agree with that. If FOX's ratings were not impressive than he wouldn't say a word.

12:04 PM, January 26, 2005  
Blogger Kevin said...

Oh c'mon, Tom. You know that romantic attraction is a highly subjective thing. Just because you nor I would have married Jane Fonda doesn't mean Ted is ignorant or stupid for having married her. Besides, from what I can tell his politics may well be to the Left of her's. And she is a physically attractive woman...

I rather imagine their chemistry is made up both of physical attraction and intellectual attraction. I can relate to that. I think it's a powerful combo when it comes to affairs of the heart.

3:06 PM, January 26, 2005  
Blogger Tom Carter said...

Kevin, I think what you're saying is they deserve each other. Hmmm. OK, I can go with that.

3:14 AM, January 27, 2005  

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