Saturday, January 26, 2008

saturday reads

U.S. arrests for pot possession were up to 739,000 in 2006.

A former aide to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney who also played a leadership role in Iowa's College Republicans was arrested by Des Moines-area police earlier in the week on outstanding warrants related to his status as a convicted sex offender.

With the cost of contraception skyrocketing on college campuses throughout the country, the price of the pill is suddenly big talk on Capitol Hill. And Congress, which apparently caused the jump in prices with a legislative error, is under growing pressure to intervene.

Kieth Olbermann: Mukasey Hangs A Portrait Of Orwell

Striking writers take act to D.C.

The striking writers behind Jon Stewart's fake news show and Stephen Colbert's fake talk show came here to explain to real lawmakers Wednesday a strike that has crippled creative television and threatens to wreck the Oscars.

But knowing it can be difficult to get a lawmaker's attention when not in a Learjet or on the links, the brains behind two of Comedy Central's most-watched shows couched the issues in terms Washington could understand: a mock debate.

On one side, in shirts, was the striking Writers Guild of America, played by "Daily Show" writers Rob Kutner, Tim Carvell and Jason Ross. On the other side, in suits, was the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, played by "The Colbert Report" writers Michael Brumm, Peter Grosz and Tom Purcell.

Crashing out of the starting gates, the shirts argued it would cost the suits less than 1% of their total revenue to give the writers everything they wanted. For Paramount Pictures, that comes to $4.6 million, or "half the amount it takes to get Reese Witherspoon into a movie."

"I ask you," one writer noted, "which is more important to a movie -- a script, or half of Reese Witherspoon?"

The studio suits thought for a second.

"Which half?"

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