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October 8th, 2009
10:01 PM ET

Letterman – Social critic? Or dirty old man?

David Puente
AC360° Producer

For those of us in the TV news industry Howard Kurtz, The Washington Post’s media critic and host of CNN’s “Reliable Sources,” is the oracle of media analysis. On Wednesday, I called him at home before he made his way to CNN’s Washington bureau for a segment with Anderson. In our pre-interview I asked him about Late Night’s sex-extortion-explosion.

“How’s Letterman handling it”? I asked.

“Lots of people think he’s free and in the clear but I think the jury is still out. There’s a lot we don’t know yet and that could be a problem for Letterman,” he said. “The second this happened I said his ratings would be on fire. Everyone wants to watch the apology and does he poke fun at himself? The long-term question is the real one here. Will the audience see sleeping with a subordinate as something they can overlook?”

I reminded Kurtz that this week the National Organization for Women blasted David Letterman, accusing him of promoting an uncomfortable work environment. The organization’s statement said the scandal raises serious questions about inappropriate behavior in the workplace.

FULL POST


Filed under: David Puente • Letterman
October 8th, 2009
09:45 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 10/08/09

Tonight, new signs that U.S. Congressman Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., could be headed for trouble. He’s accused of playing fast and loose with his own taxes. We’ll also take a closer look at why many gay Americans are disappointed in President Obama. Has he broken his promises on same-sex marriage, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and more? We’ve also been digging on a story that’s put a spotlight on an obscure subgenre of rap music called “Horrorcore.” It’s violent and steeped in grotesque imagery. But did it lead a young California man to murder four people?

Scroll down to join the live chat during the program. It's your chance to share your thoughts on tonight's headlines. Keep in mind, you have a better chance of having your comment get past our moderators if you follow our rules.

Here are some of them:

1) Keep it short (we don't have time to read a "book")
2) Don't write in ALL CAPS (there's no need to yell)
3) Use your real name (first name only is fine)
4) No links
5) Watch your language (keep it G-rated; PG at worst - and that includes $#&*)


Filed under: Live Blog • T1
October 8th, 2009
08:43 PM ET

Missing In Action, Channel 78 and My Neighbors

David Doss
AC360° Senior Executive Producer

These days when I get home late after the show, or in the mornings, when I am headed back to CNN, more often than not a neighbor asks me, “What happened to Anderson? Where are you guys? I can’t find you?” Well, If you live in New York City then you know CNN and 360 used to appear on your cable channel 10. And then suddenly we were “missing in action.”

Here’s what happened: With little warning the cable operators in New York City moved CNN and 360° to channel 78. For my neighbors, and for many other viewers, it just wasn’t acceptable. They couldn’t find Anderson. So, if you live in New York City, Anderson and the 360° team are on channel 78.

I can assure you, we are still balanced between cable’s white noise on both the left and the right, producing the only original reporting at 10pm every night and as always, for us—it’s all about accountability. We’re Keeping Them Honest. And did I mention, in New York City we’re on channel 78.


Filed under: 360° Radar • Beyond 360 • David Doss
October 8th, 2009
07:34 PM ET

Evening Buzz: Did “Horrorcore” Music Lead to Murder?

Richard Samuel McCroskey has been arrested in connection with the killings of four people in Virginia.

Richard Samuel McCroskey has been arrested in connection with the killings of four people in Virginia.

Cate Vojdik
AC360 Writer

Tonight, raw politics on overdrive, starting with new signs that U.S. Congressman Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., could be headed for trouble.

The House ethics committee today said it will expand its investigation into Rangel’s alleged tax shenanigans—an investigation that’s been dragging on for a year now despite the promise Democrats made to clean up Congress when they regained control of the House and Senate.

In case you missed it, Rangel isn’t just any congressman. He’s the powerful chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, which writes the tax laws that the rest of us have to follow. The kicker: He’s accused of playing fast and loose with his own taxes. House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, today urged House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to force Rangel to step down from his post on the Ways and Means Committee. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Maryland, refused to say if Rangel should step down. Do these developments signal the tide could be turning against Rangel? We’ll dig deeper tonight.

There are also some new poll numbers from Gallup showing that Democrats are losing ground. With the midterm elections about a year away, the poll finds support for the two parties virtually tied among registered voters. In July, the Democrats held a six percentage-point lead. How worried should the president and his party be? We’ll chew over the raw politics with our panelists.

We’ll also take a closer look at why many gay Americans are disappointed in President Obama. During the campaign, Mister Obama made a lot of promises concerning gay rights. Has he broken his promises on same-sex marriage, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and more? We’re Keeping them Honest.

We’ve also been digging on a story that’s put a spotlight on an obscure subgenre of rap music called “Horrorcore.” It’s violent and steeped in grotesque imagery. But did it lead a young California man to murder four people? Richard McCroskey rapped under the stage name Syko Sam, performing songs with titles like “Murderous Rage” and “Evil Voices.”  Now he’s been arrested and charged in a quadruple murder. Does the twisted music he embraced cause kids to commit violence—or are troubled kids simply drawn to the music more than healthy kids? We’ll give you the facts and let you decide.

See you at 10 p.m. ET!


Filed under: Cate Vojdik • The Buzz
October 8th, 2009
06:02 PM ET

Documents: CBO's preliminary analysis of health care reform bill

Editor's Note: A compromise health care proposal widely seen as having the best chance to win Democratic and Republican support would cost $829 billion over the next 10 years, nonpartisan budget analysts concluded Wednesday. It also would reduce the federal deficit by more than $80 billion.

Congressional Budget Office

The Congressional Budget Office has issued its preliminary report on the Senate Finance Committee's most recent version of Health Care Reform. Take a look:

Preliminary Analysis of the Chairman's Mark for the America's Healthy Future Act, as Amended


Filed under: Health Care
October 8th, 2009
05:53 PM ET

Timeline: Same-sex marriage legislation by state

Four states -- Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts and Iowa -- currently allow same-sex marriages.

Four states - Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts and Iowa - currently allow same-sex marriages.

National Conference of Senate Legislators

State Legislatures and courts have struggled with the issue of same sex relationships for more than ten years now. Click here to view the timeline that covers recent events beginning with the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court decision in November 2003 that held rules and laws barring same sex marriages to be unconstitutional.


Filed under: Same-Sex Marriage
October 8th, 2009
05:47 PM ET

Beat 360° 10/8/09

Ready for today's Beat 360°? Everyday we post a picture – and you provide the caption and our staff will join in too. Tune in tonight at 10pm to see if you are our favorite! Here is the 'Beat 360°' pic:

The Dalai Lama and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi bow to each other during the International Campaign for Tibet 'Light Of Truth' Awards ceremony on October 7, 2009 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Kris Connor/Getty Images)

Have fun with it. We're looking forward to your captions! Make sure to include your name, city, state (or country) so we can post your comment.

UPDATE BEAT 360º WINNERS

Staff:

Brooke Turnbull

“I guess two heads aren’t necessarily better than one.”

Viewer:

Barbara Boyd, Whites Creek, TN

"Proof that Nancy Pelosi is not afraid to butt heads with anybody."

_________________________________________________________________________________ Beat 360° Challenge


Filed under: Beat 360° • T1
October 8th, 2009
05:41 PM ET

Agency predicts health care bill will cost $829 billion

From left: Sens. Michael Crapo, Jim Bunning, Jim DeMint and David Vitter discuss their resolution Wednesday.

From left: Sens. Michael Crapo, Jim Bunning, Jim DeMint and David Vitter discuss their resolution Wednesday.

CNN

A compromise health care proposal widely seen as having the best chance to win Democratic and Republican support would cost $829 billion over the next 10 years, nonpartisan budget analysts concluded Wednesday.

It also would reduce the federal deficit by more than $80 billion, according to a report from the Congressional Budget Office.

The review of the Senate Finance Committee's amended bill sets the stage for the next step in the politically charged debate over health care reform. Committee members have been waiting for the Budget Office's cost analysis before voting on their version of the bill.

The Finance Committee is the last of five congressional panels to consider health care legislation before debate begins in the full House and Senate.

Keep Reading...


Filed under: Health Care
October 8th, 2009
05:33 PM ET

Rangel scandal timeline

Program Note: Tune in tonight to hear more from Peter Flaherty tonight on AC360° at 10 p.m. ET.

Peter Flaherty
President, National Legal & Policy Center

With the spotlight this week on House Ways and Means Chairman Charles Rangel (D-NY), we found this timeline of his current issues posted by the National Legal and Policy Center.

July 11, 2008- New York Times’ David Kocieniewski reports that Rangel occupies three rent-stabilized apartments in a luxury building, and uses a fourth as a campaign office.

July 14, 2008- NLPC files Complaint with the Federal Election commission alleging use of a rent-stabilized apartment for a campaign office comprises an illegal corporate contribution from the landlord. Rangel announces he will close the office.

July 15, 2008- Christopher Lee of the Washington Post reports that Rangel solicited donations on Congressional letterhead to the so-called Charles B. Rangel School of Public Service at City College of New York (CCNY), in violation of House rules.

Find the rest of the timeline here...


Filed under: Ethics • Raw Politics
October 8th, 2009
05:29 PM ET

What is 'horrorcore' music?

Program Note: Tune in tonight to hear more about the case from Gary Tuchman on AC360° at 10 p.m. ET.

Richard Samuel McCroskey has been arrested in connection with the killings of four people in Virginia.

Richard Samuel McCroskey has been arrested in connection with the killings of four people in Virginia.

AC360°

A 20-year-old from Northern California is suspected of brutally killing four people. Richard Samuel McCroskey is a musician who calls himself 'Pyscho Sam' on YouTube. His lyrics are offensive and included messages about abuse, rape and killing. Authorities say he is accused of carrying out the same type of crimes about which he rapped.

The type of music that McCroskey practiced is known as the "Horrorcore" genre.

To learn more about this type of music and to hear samples, go here.


Filed under: 360° Radar • 360º Follow • Crime & Punishment
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