Since some of you are fans of John Oliver, news from the Atlantic Wire:
John Oliver’s stint hosting The Daily Show was an audition of sorts, but it turns out not for Jon Stewart’s job. HBO has swooped in and poached Oliver, giving him his own “topical comedy series” that will begin next year. Oliver, however, will not go up against his old boss. His show will air weekly and on Sunday nights, a night when The Daily Show is not on the air….
Also at the Atlantic Wire, Philip Bump talks to fans of an entirely different celebrity demographic, “They Came to Adore Her“:
… If you’re Palin, there’s only one place better than Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus, to launch a book about Christmas: Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, only about 70 miles west of New York City, where she had spent Tuesday giving interviews (to mixed reviews). Except that Bethlehem doesn’t have a Barnes & Noble, so the event was actually in Easton — just a smidge east of Bethlehem, but distinctly less symbolic…
As I was talking to one couple, a man drove by in a pick-up truck. “I hope she runs again!” he yelled out the window. Some of those I spoke with shared that sentiment, adamantly offering their eternal support to Palin in any future political campaigns. But here’s the thing: Most didn’t. Some gave tepid support to the idea of backing Palin in 2016; as the mother of the two semi-excited teens told me, it would depend on her “values and viewpoint” having not changed. Connor, the kid in the Alaska sweatshirt, said he wasn’t sure if he’d support Palin when he could vote someday, nor did the field hockey players. Some thought the toll from 2008 and ensuing critique made a Palin candidacy impossible. Dick and Mary Kay — the most stereotypically Tea Party types, who drove the six hours to D.C. for the “Restoring Honor” rally — said that they wouldn’t back Palin against, say, Ted Cruz. “We gotta get the old farts out of there,” Mary Kay said, taking care to point out that I could quote her on that. Palin didn’t seem to be included in that descriptor, but the point was: fresh blood.
For the people I spoke with, Palin was no longer a politician. She was a communicator, a symbol of conservatism and Christian forthrightness and traditional values. Of the three or four people I asked, none could remember who they’d voted for in the 2012 Republican primary. Politics, for most of us most of the time, is a clunky, complex irrelevance. For many, it seemed, Palin had moved outside of that sphere into the realm of symbolism. They showed up to buy a book that hadn’t been widely reviewed, that, for all they new, contained nothing but blank pages. But its message and the name on the front were good enough. Buying the book and meeting Sarah Palin were reinforcements of a world view — central to who they are and what they believe.
When I said above that Palin didn’t offer personalized signatures, that turned out not to be entirely true. As I stood outside of the bookstore talking to Rob (“I told her she’s a young, female Reagan”) a woman with him jumped in. “She personalized a book for my 90-year-old Aunt Marge,” she said, “and that was very nice of her.” Marge loves Sarah Palin, but didn’t want to come because it was “too late” and there were “too many people.” I asked if the woman was going to give the book to Marge now or wait for Christmas. “I was going to save it for Christmas,” the woman responded, “but I’m going to get in my car and take it over to her now because …” She took a breath. “She’s 90. She’s going to love it.”…
Apart from applauding entertainers finding their niche, what’s on the agenda this evening?