Today: Rachel talks about bogus letters to Congress, gives new developments on the aspiring American terrorists, and schools Chuck Grassley.
You may have noticed — and indeed, may have been falling to your knees daily to give thanks — that Rachel was carefully not covering the Tiger Woods scandal. Her logic was that sex scandals are only truly newsworthy when at least one of the participants has been trumpeting his or her family values/moral superiority/purity of essence or has called for someone in a similar situation to resign.
I, for one, cannot thank Rachel enough for bravely ignoring the story as long as she did. Who knows how many people would have snapped after just one more double entendre about putters? Lives were saved, people.
The story she could not ignore, however, was that of Tiger Woods’ “indefinite break” from professional golf.
TRMS executive producer and sports savant Bill Wolff dropped in to give a little perspective on what this means for the world of golf and the world of people who sell things to people who watch golf.
I know this is an unflattering personal calculation to make, but if you’re rich, famous, or powerful, it might be a good idea to assume that at least a percentage of the people who are after you are into riches, fame, or power rather than your own special wonderfulness.
And then it might be a further good idea to remember that those sorts of people tend to intersect heavily with people who will do anything to be on television.
Rachel showed us footage of some “unparliamentary language” during a debate in the Irish Parliament.
Dude. It’s supposed to be luck of the Irish.
Rachel introduced us to an insidious aspect of Facebook’s Mafia Wars game, and I’m not talking about those damned untraceable cell phones.
If you’re tried them out, you’ve probably noticed that Mafia Wars and the other Zynga games feature a ton of exclusive scam offers where you can spam your friends and give out your mother’s maiden name in return for 10 Godfather points and a super-exclusive Michaelmas-themed gun silencer.
I had assumed that everyone with enough brain cells to click a mouse also knew to ignore those things, but it turns out there are people dumb enough (or obsessed enough) to do it.
And it turns out flacks for the health insurance industry have figured out that once you’ve narrowed the pool down to those people, you’ve got a group who will do just about anything. Like fire off letters to Congress.
Something tells me Rachel won’t be completing the Beard Collection any time soon.
Last Year’s Model
Oh, God, Republicans, really?
Rachel gave us the baffling news that Senator John McCain (Arizona) is somehow back to being the Voice of the Republican Party. You guys know that we already figured out how that election goes, right?
OK, yes, he’s way less repellent than Newt Gingrich, Rush Limbaugh, or Dick Cheney and less ridiculous than Glenn Beck or Sarah Palin. And more in office than any of them.
But surely the Republicans can put their faith in the raw charisma of Congressmen like John Boehner (Ohio) or Eric Cantor (Virginia)? OK, no.
How about the bedrock commonsense appeal of Michael Steele or Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (Minnesota)? Oh, all right, that was mean.
Rachel gave us a rundown on how well McCain is stepping up to the Franklin Mint Commemorative Plate.
Senator Chuck Grassley (R – Iowa), says he isn’t a member of the creepball secretive political-religious group The Family even though Jeff Sharlet’s book indicates that he is.
Grassley does, however, admit to doing a lot of “good” work in Uganda, home of the terrifying kill-the-gays bill that has recently been downgraded to a report-and-imprison-the-gays bill.
One hour before Friday night’s showtime, Grassley (finally) released a statement to The Rachel Maddow Show. Which was a nice belated effort, but Rachel had some handy clip ‘n’ save pointers for next time.
Thank you, Senator Russ Feingold (D – Wisconsin) for being bold and terrific.
Also, Rachel found a way to make a story about grave robbing fun. She reported that someone stole the corpse of the former President of the Greek part of Cyprus, which is horrible, but at least he brought us joy by being named Tassos Papadopoulos.
But wait, it gets uncomfortable again. Rachel led into the story by talking about the wonderfully named wife of the former mayor of Providence, Rhode Island, Nancy Ann Cianci.
Only as far as I can discover, Buddy Cianci’s ex-wife is named Sheila. I can’t find a reputable source that mentions a Nancy Ann.
The last time I was skeptical of a TRMS story — the one about CIA cologne — I was thoroughly wrong, so I will not be surprised if I get spanked again on this one.
Nor will I be sorry. I so want Nancy Ann Cianci to be true.
You’ve Got Jail
You’d think the show would get less surreal after that, but no. Rachel returned to the story of the young aspiring American terrorists and how they were communicating with each other.
If you guessed “Facebook pokes and Mafia Wars gifts,” you are not so very far off.