The Weekly Wrap

Mar 16 2012 @ 10:28pm

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By Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

Friday on the Dish, Andrew explored Prime Minister Cameron's truly conservative view of Obama, understood Romney's campaign strategy as a Seinfeldian endeavor, matched the campaign directly to its demographics, called for more debates, marvelled at Coulter's sanity, and saw Santorum cross a true Dittohead redline. We delved into the roots of Romney's lies, chomped onsome popcorn while Santorum took the gloves off, checked in on the candidates' Puerto Rico campaigns, and tried to, uh, understand Montana's delegate allocation rules. Dependence on rural populations hurt the GOP, college degrees divided our political parties, anti-Obama racism was real, and debate kept up on the Mississippi racism video here and here. Ad War Update here.

The prospects for an Iran deal looked up, Hamas may – or may not – have decided to stay out of an Israel-Iran war, and the Syria didn't appear to be in store for a happy ending to the violence. Rowan Williams was a true Christian Archbishop (foll0w-up here) and the chronic pain thread continued. We wondered why there were no black Senators, ferreted out consequences of paying congresspeople more, thought through America's fertility rate, and examined whether health care reform could get you a raise. People hated censoring violence in entertainment, dystopia became the new YA vampire, television did psychoanalysis better than film, having the ending spoiled probably was alright, Don Draper went gay, and "Andrew in Drag" was "so post-post gay, it's almost post-trans." Mike Daisey deceived about China on NPR, comment sections on blogs sucked, 4G was oversold, Internet Explorer tried way too hard, and Apple-esque sex male toys hit the market. Moore Nominee here, Quote for the Day here, Chart of the Day here, FOTD here, MHB here, and VFYW here.

Thursday on the Dish, Andrew situated the Cameron and Obama Administrations in the same, intelligently conservative sphere, opened up about last night's dinner at the White House, aired a disturbing video of interviews about Obama in the Deep South (prompting dissent and further discussion here, here, and here), half-heartedly lamented the end of the GOP debates, and parsed Shelly's approach to funding in what remains of the primary. We chronicled an "enough, already" reaction to anyone pretending the GOP contest isn't over, noted that Romney had a good delegate month ahead of him, watched Mitt squirm when pressed on his former love for mandates, wondered whether he'd ever pick Santorum for veep, worried that Santorum's brand of conservatism would come to define the Republican Party, debated zombie Newt's effect on the race, and started a "Get. Out. Now." watch for the ego-maniac. Gingrich's $2.50 gas pledge was ridiculous and the GOP fielded an (un)-Orthodox candidate for Congress in New Jersey. Ad War Update here.

Andrew also explained why no priest could ever come out as gay and mocked the Pope's extravances. We made the conservative case for subsidized birth control, kept up the chronic pain and medical pills discussion, checked out an idea to save money by paying Congresspeople more, worried about our infrastructure, and examined the theory that overtime was counterproductive. Strange things surrounded Zionism and "Zion Square," #Kony2012 educated us on how social media does and doesn't work to advance causes, a screed against online publishing got refudiated, and fictionalizing journalism was not okay. Science explained love of violent movies, sibling rivalry, and a glorious light effect (follow-up here). Cool Ad here, Yglesias Nominee here, VFYW here, MHB here, and FOTD here.

Wednesday on the Dish, Andrew framed the election as a choice about a war over Iran, fit Cameron's state visit into Obama's reelection campaign, parsed the poll suggesting an Obama blowout, and found Santorum's nomination strategy in the video above. We compiled reax to the Deep South primary, wondered if Santorum could win Illinois, debated Rick's chances down the road, pinpointed the difference between a "brokered" and "open" convention, and aired a situational explanation for the "weakest field ever." SuperPACs grew by hurting the GOP candidate's chances and voters failed to grasp that Obama lowered their taxes. Ad War Updates here and here.

Andrew praised one of the most insightful reviews of Charles Murray's new book to date, wished the Derb well during chemo, and previewed tonight's South Park premiere. Syria divided evangelicals and neoconservatives, Assad's chemical weapons threatened both his people and the world, and withdrawing from Afghanistan faster was complicated. We shared another terrible story about gays in Catholic institutions (this time, the choir), noted Roy Moore's victory, thought about the consequences of the spreading anti-Limbaugh campaign, updated you on Balko's pain pill series, and checked McGinniss' experiment in online publishing.

Factory farms and PETA alike made their killing of animals invisible (albeit on different scales), while corpse flowers merely smelled awful. Nerds went mainstream, John Carter's in-the-know trailers destined it for box-office flopdom, and rom-coms weren't necessarily so staid. Encyclopedia Britannica ended print publication, TED turned people into ideas, millenials looked likely to move out (eventually), the waiting population boomed, cellphones outpaced toilets in India, and a man charted his life. Chart of the Day here, Correction of the Day here, VFYW here, MHB here, and FOTD here.

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Glen Ellyn, Illinois, 10 am

Tuesday on the Dish, Andrew liveblogged Santorum's Southern resurgence (with no real prediction), guessed evangelicals were punishing Romney for insufficient radicalism, glumly noted that we "live in a country where Obama polls just a few points higher than Rick Santorum as a potential president," recanted his criticism of Game Change, and chuckled at sign language Santorum. Romney won where it counted, the GOP establishment hid out of fear, Newt cleaned up with the demographic who opted to recriminalize interracial marriage in a poll we debated here and here, and Santorum, amusingly enough, lashed out at Fox News for bias. We wondered if immigration would hurt Romney against Obama, thought Obamacare wouldn't really risk its eponymous architecht's reelection, labelled the bully pulpit overrated, and asked for clarification on when the Kenyan Socialist Plot would take over America. Ad War Updates here and here.

Andrew also decried continued participation in the Afghan war by any NATO state, worried about Israel's direction, and raged against Bill Donohue and the Catholic hierarchy's attitude towards sex abuse. We documented pro-gay "Cameron conservatism" in the UK, kept track of the worsening Murdoch scandal over there, flagged some parody AIPAC-friendly tweets, compared Israel's semi-socialist reality to Sheldon Adelson's capitalist ideal, proposed an "odious debt" tactic with respect to Syria, and watched Putin's iron fist rot. The interaction between political dynasty and democracy was complicated around the world, the US probably was more unequal than its global peers, and friends of politicians lobbied them professionally. "Homeless hotspots" created an online ethical uproar, gays went in for terrible treatment under the new management of LA's parochial schools, dogs withstood weed, and science suggested psychoactive drugs (including heroin) to treat heroin. Pundits debated the impact of advances in genomics on the health market, robo-surgery took off, nuclear power went out of style, pink existed, comments created a whole new site in a Community review, and the rom-com felt super-staid. Yglesias Nominee here, Cool Ad here, VFYW Contest Winner here, VFYW here, FOTD here, and MHB here.

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By Carli Davidson

Monday on the Dish, Andrew penned an encomium to the Conservative-led drive towards marriage equality in Britain, situated the Cathlolic Church's attitudes towards homosexuality at the heart of its troubles, and noted that the openness of The New Republic's top gay brass was a sign of the times (follow-up on TNR's new direction here). We collected reax to the murder of Afghan civilians by a deranged American soldier, were sickened by Fox Nation's response to the massacre, examined the pschology surrounding the drive to war with Iran, listened to an expert Holocaust historian on whether Iran was a similar level of threat, flagged an amusing cartoon about AIPAC, worried about Syria's long war, and saw tragedy unfold for Iraqi youth.

Andrew also acknowledged the election could well be close, guessed at what motivated Sheldon Adelson to donate the way that he does, and gaped at the above instance of Palinsanity. No one knew who was going to win tomorrow's primaries in Alabama and Mississippi (seriously, no one knew), Deep South bigotry lived on, Santorum attempted to keep Romney under 50% of delegates despite Newt's obstruction, and Mitt dominated the early voting rounds. Ad War Update here.

Finally, Andrew explained the last ever round of Ask Andrew Anything and the new Ask Anything series that would replace it. A cashless world seemed likely to have a middling effect on crime, computers were today's architectural marvels, the GIF (re)took the internet by storm, typing altered our thinking, driverless cars eliminated traffic lights, and the first Monday of Daylight Savings time caused lazy web surfing to surge. DST also didn't cause people to save electricity, fasting offered an end-around past jetlag, band-aids mailed to bone-marrow clinics saved lives, changing routine fixed bad habits, and humans couldn't OD on pot (but dogs could). Victorian London was photographed, a man broke his penis, and a British beard mashup baited the Dish. Malkin Nominee here, VFYA(irplane)W here, VFYW here, MHB here, and FOTD here.

 - Z.B.