Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Protect our Insurance Companies

Protect Our Insurance Companies featuring Will Ferrell, Jon Hamm, Olivia Wilde, Thomas Lennon, Robert Ben Garant, Masi Oka, Jordana Spiro, Linda Cardellini, and Donald Faison

I tried posting the video but for some reason it messed up the entire blog.

Monday, September 21, 2009


Did you not get the memo?

I would be more than happy to respond in private but you are a coward hiding behind a psuedonym like that.

I don't know who you are or what you even do for a living but please, feel free to release your name or at minimum an email address so that people can get in touch with you.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

2009 Emmy Winners for the 61st Primetime Emmy Awards

I didn't make any predictions for the first time in quite a while and I'm actually watching on the DVR because of the St. Louis Cardinals-Chicago Cubs game and because Rosh HaShanah just ended tonight.

Outstanding Supporting Actress, Comedy: Kristin Chenoweth, Pushing Daisies
Outstanding Writing, Comedy Series: Matt Hubbard, 30 Rock (Reunion)
Outstanding Supporting Actor, Comedy: Jon Cryer, Two and a Half Men
Outstanding Actress, Comedy: Toni Collette, United States of Tara
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series: Tina Fey, Saturday Night Live (Previously awarded)
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series: Justin Timberlake, Saturday Night Live (Previously Awarded)
Outstanding Actor, Comedy: Alec Baldwin, 30 Rock
Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program: Jeff Probst, Survivor
Outstanding Reality-Competition Program: The Amazing Race
Outstanding Supporting Actress, Miniseries or Movie: Shohreh Aghdashloo, House of Saddam
Outstanding Supporting Actor, Mini-series or Movie: Ken Howard, Grey Gardens
Outstanding Actor, Mini-series or Movie: Brendan Gleeson, Into the Storm
Outstanding Writing for a Miniseries, Movie, or Dramatic Special: Andrew Davies, Little Dorrit
Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries, Movie, or Dramatic Special: Dearbhla Walsh, Little Dorrit
Outstanding Actress, Mini-series or Movie: Jessica Lange, Grey Gardens
Oustanding Made for Televison Movie: Grey Gardens
Outstanding Directing For A Variety, Music Or Comedy Series: Bruce Gowers, American Idol (American Idol - Show 833 (The Final Three))
Outstanding Writing For A Variety, Music Or Comedy Series: The Daily Show With Jon Stewart
Steve Bodow, Jon Stewart, David Javerbaum, Josh Lieb, Rory Albanese, Kevin Bleyer, Jason Ross, Tim Carvell, John Oliver, Sam Means, Rob Kutner, J.R. Havlan, Rich Blomquist, Wyatt Cenac, Elliott Kalan, Rachel Axler
Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics: 81st Annual Academy Awards - Hugh Jackman Opening Number; John Kimbrough and William Ross, Music; Dan Harmon and Rob Schrab, Lyrics
Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Series: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
Outstanding Supporting Actor, Drama: Michael Emerson, Lost
Outstanding Supporting Actress, Drama: Cherry Jones, 24
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series: Ellen Burstyn, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (Previously Awarded)
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series: Michael J. Fox, Rescue Me (Previously Awarded)
Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series: Rod Holcomb, ER (And In The End)
Outstanding Writing, Drama Series: Kater Gordon and Matthew Weiner, Mad Men (Meditations In An Emergency)
Outstanding Actress, Drama: Glenn Close, Damages
Outstanding Actor, Drama: Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
Outstanding Series, Comedy 30 Rock
Outstanding Series, Drama: Mad Men

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Three's Company remake?

I think the premise of this DC-based sitcom is interesting but here's the thing: It should not be called a remake of Three's Company, because a remake is blasphemy.
"How I Met Your Mother" executive producer Greg Malins will try to resuscitate "Three's Company" for ABC -- only this time it's set in Washington and the three young people who are shacking up together . . . are all newly elected members of Congress!

But wait -- it gets better. Malins has partnered with Huffington Post's Arianna Huffington and founding editor Roy Sekoff to develop the sitcom. Huffington and Sekoff will be executive producers on the show if it goes forward and are hard at work cooking up Web tie-ins to the gestating series, including campaign sites for the fictitious characters.

This project is far from a certainty. So far, ABC has thrown some money at Malins for his pilot script -- one of the boatloads of scripts ABC has ordered for next season. Network suits have not decided whether to move forward with Malins's project.

Malins is giving this version of "Three's Company" a thorough dusting off. This time, instead of two chicks (making a star of Suzanne Somers, but not of Joyce DeWitt) and a guy (making a star of John Ritter), it will be two guys and one chick who wind up sharing an apartment in Washington.[...]

Malins told Variety he'd always been a political junkie "following all that stuff."

We'll take a moment here, so you can savor that sentence.

Back to work: But Malins says he only recently learned that members of Congress "often live together," adding, "There's your story right there."

The trades said lawmakers who room together include Democrats Chuck Schumer, Dick Durbin, George Miller and Bill Delahunt, who share a house. And yet, not a chick in the bunch. Too bad!

Apparently "following stuff" does not extend to, oh say, reading the New York Times, which wrote about these same four Dems who shacked up together in 1994, 1995, 2005 and 2007. Too bad Malins didn't at least catch that 2005 article in which the reporter suggested "this has the makings of a television sitcom."

If ABC greenlights the series it would be produced by Fox Television, where Malins has an "overall" deal.[...]

And because the show would be a broadcast sitcom, Malins must adhere to the genre's One of This/One of That Rule.

So, he says, one of the politicians will be left-leaning, one will be right-leaning, one will be an independent -- and hilarity will ensue.

Also, one will have a wife back home, one will be single, and one will be recently divorced -- which is laugh riot right there.

L'shanah tovah

L'shanah tovah tikatevu v'techatemu! To those that this applies to, may you and your families have a safe, healthy, and joyous new year!

The system is down?!?

Check this one out by Ken Levine. Time Warner apparently has some issues. This sounds eerily similar to an Abbott and Costello routine.

The Toronto film festival, this past week, is, well, go read for yourself.

My condolences to her family but that sounds like it's a rather large funeral. I wonder how huge the dance floor gets at weddings and bar mitzvahs.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

RIP: Mary Travers

The rapture continues.

Louisville native Mary Travers, a member of the folk band Peter, Paul, and Mary died.
Mary Travers, who as one-third of the hugely popular 1960s folk trio Peter, Paul and Mary helped popularize such tunes as "Puff (The Magic Dragon)" and "If I Had a Hammer," died Wednesday after battling leukemia for several years. She was 72.

The band's publicist, Heather Lylis, says Travers died at Danbury Hospital in Connecticut.

Bandmate Peter Yarrow said that in her final months, Travers handled her declining health with bravery and generosity, showing her love to friends and family "with great dignity and without restraint."

"It was, as Mary always was, honest and completely authentic," he said. "That's the way she sang, too; honestly and with complete authenticity."

Noel "Paul" Stookey, the trio's other member, praised Travers for her inspiring activism, "especially in her defense of the defenseless."

"I am deadened and heartsick beyond words to consider a life without Mary Travers and honored beyond my wildest dreams to have shared her spirit and her career," he said.

Mary Allin Travers was born on Nov. 9, 1936 in Louisville, Ky., the daughter of journalists who moved the family to Manhattan's bohemian Greenwich Village. She quickly became enamored with folk performers like the Weavers, and was soon performing with Pete Seeger, a founding member of the Weavers who lived in the same building as the Travers family.

Cancer claims Myles Brand

NCAA president Myles Brand died Wednesday after a nine-month battle with pancreatic cancer.

Brand, 67, was diagnosed with the disease in January.

"Myles Brand was a dear friend and a great academic leader. He was a tireless advocate for the student-athlete," Michael Adams, University of Georgia president and the chair of the NCAA executive committee, said in a statement. "Indeed, he worked to ensure that the student was first in the student-athlete model. He will be greatly missed."

Brand has been the NCAA's president since 2003.

Not safe for work...

I spoke at a roast a few weeks ago. This is not safe for work, I repeat, this is NOT SAFE FOR WORK.

Friday, September 11, 2009

RIP: Larry Gelbart

We lost legendary comedy writer Larry Gelbart. I had the chance to email back and forth with him for the past few years.

Gelbart was born February 25, 1928 in Chicago. He was 81 when he died this morning.

Gelbart is probably best known for developing M*A*S*H for television.

Here's an obit from the LA Times:
Larry Gelbart, the award-winning comedy writer best known for developing the landmark TV series "MASH," co-writing the book for the hit Broadway musical "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum" and co-writing the classic movie comedy "Tootsie," died this morning. He was 81.

Gelbart, who was diagnosed with cancer in June, died at his home in Beverly Hills, said his wife, Pat.

Jack Lemmon once described the genial, quick-witted Gelbart as "one of the greatest writers of comedy to have graced the arts in this century."

Gelbart's more than 60-year career began in radio during World War II when he was a 16-year-old student at Fairfax High School in Los Angeles. He wrote for "Duffy's Tavern" and radio shows starring Eddie Cantor, Joan Davis, Jack Paar, Jack Carson and Bob Hope, with whom he traveled overseas when Hope entertained the troops.

He moved into television with Hope in 1950 and spent the next few years writing for the comedian as well as for Red Buttons' comedy-variety series.

He moved into television with Hope in 1950 and spent the next few years writing for the comedian as well as for Red Buttons' comedy-variety series.

In 1955, Gelbart joined the fabled writing staff of "Caesar's Hour," Sid Caesar's post-"Your Show of Shows" TV comedy-variety series. Among his fellow writers were Neil Simon and Mel Brooks.

In the writers' room, as colleague Carl Reiner later told Time magazine, Gelbart "popped jokes like popcorn."

Indeed, after Gelbart went to work for "Caesar's Hour," Hope contacted Caesar to say, "I'll trade you two oil wells for one Gelbart."

During his time on Caesar's show, Gelbart shared three Emmy nominations for comedy writing -- in 1956, '57 and '58 -- and earned the admiration of Brooks, who once described him as "the fastest of the fast, the wittiest man in the business."

Moving to Broadway in 1961, Gelbart bombed with the musical "The Conquering Hero," for which he wrote the book. The show closed after eight performances.

But Gelbart returned to Broadway in triumph in 1962 with the hit Stephen Sondheim comedy musical "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum." Gelbart and Burt Shevelove wrote the book, which they based on the comedies of the ancient Roman playwright Plautus.

"Forum," whose cast included Zero Mostel, ran on Broadway for more than two years and won a Tony Award for best musical, as well as a Tony for Gelbart as coauthor.

Gelbart later wrote the 1976-78 Broadway comedy "Sly Fox," his updated adaptation of Ben Jonson's "Volpone"; the 1989 comedy "Mastergate"; and the book for the 1989-92 Broadway comedy musical "City of Angels," the Tony best musical winner for which Gelbart won a Tony for best book of a musical.

For films, he wrote the screenplay for "Neighbors" and co-wrote "The Notorious Landlady," "The Wrong Box," "Not With My Wife, You Don't!," "Movie Movie" and "Blame It on Rio."

He also received an Oscar nomination for his screenplay for "Oh, God!," the 1977 comedy starring George Burns and John Denver. And he shared a screenwriting Oscar nomination with Murray Schisgal and Don McGuire for "Tootsie," the 1982 comedy starring Dustin Hoffman and Jessica Lange.[...]

But most famously there was "MASH," the long-running series whose blend of laughter and tragedy made TV history.

Set in the 4077th Mobile Army Surgical Hospital during the Korean War, TV's "MASH" grew out of director Robert Altman's hit 1970 movie written by Ring Lardner Jr., which was based on the 1968 novel by Richard Hooker (the pen name of Dr. Richard Hornberger, who had been a military surgeon in Korea).

Gelbart and his family were living in London, and he was producing the British TV show "The Marty Feldman Comedy Machine" in 1971 when producer-director Gene Reynolds called him about writing a pilot script for a TV series based on "MASH."

In writing the pilot, Gelbart recalled in his 1998 memoir "Laughing Matters," he knew that it "was going to have to be a whole lot more than funny. Funny was easy. How not to trivialize human suffering by trying to be comic about it, that was the challenge."

"MASH" debuted on CBS in 1972, with Gelbart serving as executive script consultant. He and Reynolds were both executive producers of the show -- and shared Emmys -- when it won the award for outstanding comedy series in 1974.[...]

"MASH" ran for 11 years. But Gelbart's involvement ended in 1976 after four years and 97 episodes. As he later told The Times, "After four years, I had given it my best, my worst and everything in between."

The son of Eastern European immigrants -- his barber father was from Latvia and his seamstress mother was from Dumbrova, Poland -- Gelbart was born Feb. 25, 1928, in Chicago. Growing up on Chicago's mostly Jewish West Side, he spoke only Yiddish until he was 4.

Gelbart, who studied clarinet for 10 years while growing up -- "I wanted to be the next Benny Goodman" -- inherited his sense of humor from his mother.

"My mother was extremely witty and caustic," he told People magazine in 1998, "and my father knew more jokes than anyone I've ever known."

In 1942, Gelbart's family moved to Los Angeles, where his father's Beverly Hills clientele included actors and agents.

Gelbart had his father to thank for the launch of his comedy writing career in 1944 at age 16.

One of his father's show business customers was comedian Danny Thomas, who had a weekly segment playing a Walter Mitty-type character on "Maxwell House Coffee Time," a radio show starring comedian Fanny Brice.

After Gelbart's father boasted that his son had a gift for writing comedy, Thomas told him, "Have the kid write something and let's see just how good he is."

At the time, Gelbart recalled in his memoir, "my only real 'gift' was for showing off, doing imitations, putting together sketches, speeches, monologues at Fairfax High School."

But he wrote a sample comedy sequence for Thomas, who showed it to the radio show's head writer, and Gelbart suddenly had an after-school job writing comedy for "Maxwell House Coffee Time."

He was an 18-year-old staff writer on radio's popular "Duffy's Tavern" when he received a postwar draft notice.

But his career was not sidelined by his military service: Assigned to Armed Forces Radio Service, he continued to live at home while writing for the star-studded AFRS variety show "Command Performance," as well as continuing his other radio-writing jobs.[...]

He continued writing until three weeks ago, said his wife.

Gelbart married his wife, Pat, a Broadway actress and singer known professionally as Patricia Marshall and the mother of three children from a former marriage, in 1956. They had two children, Adam and Becky.

In addition to his wife and two children, Gelbart is survived by his stepchildren, Gary and Paul Markowitz; six grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

Remembering 9/11

A poem written by Jack Buck

Since this nation was founded under God
More than 200 years ago

We've been the bastion of freedom...

The light that keeps the free world aglow.
We do not covet the possessions of others,
We are blessed with the bounty we share.

We have rushed to help other nations...

War is just not our nature...we won't start
But we will end the fight.
If we are involved we shall be resolved to
Protect what we know is right.

We have been challenged by a cowardly foe
Who strikes and then hides from our view.

With one voice we say, "There's no choice
Today, there is only one thing to do"

Everyone is saying the same thing
And praying that we end these senseless
Moments we are living.

As our fathers did before, we shall win
This unwanted war

And our children will enjoy the future,
We'll be giving.

Written by Jack Buck
September 14, 2001

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Rob Kutner talks to the Jewish Journal

Rob Kutner speaks with the Jewish Journal about being observant in Hollywood, why he preferred Bush humor, and why he doesn't believe one ever makes it in Hollywood.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

The Shofar and the Pooch

You know you want to...

Get paid to take surveys!

Freaks and Geeks marks 10 Years

Judd Apatow discusses Anchorman 2.
Interesting, interesting… and so, what have those discussions yielded, Mr. Apatow? “When we made Anchorman, Adam and Will had a lot of ideas about what the sequel would be – they’d always laugh about where they’d take the characters.”

And where that is, as it happens, is in a particularly intriguing direction. “The great thing is, Will can be any age and play that character. Those anchormen sometimes have their jobs until they’re 75 years old. So we would always laugh that this movie could work if everybody’s really elderly.”

Ron as an OAP? Brian Fantana adding a catheter to the winning team of The Octagon, James Westfall and Dr. Kenneth Noisewater? Brick Tamland with a severe case of arthritic hip? This could take us into Grumpy Old Anchormen territory… but while we’d love to see the Channel 4 News Team back on the big screen in any incarnation, we’d rather not wait another four decades for it to happen.

Fear not, though – Apatow feels your pain. “I hope we do it before that,” he laughed. Amen to that, sir. Amen to that.
Newsday remembers Freaks and Geeks. This year is the 10th anniversary of the debut of the cult classic series that only lasted for one season.
With the 2009 TV season unofficially kicking off tonight, we thought we'd take a look back 10 years ago and recall one of the most influential shows that debuted that fall.

We speak of "Freaks and Geeks," the drama set at a high school in 1980 created by Judd Apatow. NBC gave the show the death slot of Saturday (!) at 8 p.m., so it's no wonder nobody watched, except critics.

But watch they did. They raved about the show's dead-on, painfully accurate portrayal of high-school life as seen through its cast of young unknowns, who included Linda Cardellini, Seth Rogen, James Franco and Jason Segel.

The show has a particularly strong influence on "Glee," whose story -- call it the ultimate tribute to "Freaks and Geeks" -- also takes place at William McKinley High School.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

The Jewish Wedding Entrance

This was bound to happen sometime. The Jewish version of the JK Wedding Entrance video:

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Charles Gibson to retire, Diane Sawyer will replace

It was announced today that ABC's World News with Charles Gibson anchor Charles Gibson will retire at the end of the year. He will be replaced by Glasgow native (though raised in Louisville) and current Good Morning America anchor Diane Sawyer.
Charles Gibson, who has served as anchor of "World News" since May of 2006, announced this morning that he will step down from the post at the end of this year and retire from full-time employment at ABC News.

"Good Morning America" anchor Diane Sawyer will serve as the next "World News" anchor, beginning in January.

"It has not been an easy decision to make," Gibson said in an e-mail to the "World News" staff. "This has been my professional home for almost 35 years. And I love this news department, and all who work in it, to the depths of my soul."

ABC News President David Westin said that he and Gibson have been talking about the decision for several weeks and that Gibson "has persuaded me that this is both what he wants and what is best for him."

"I respect his decision, just as I respect the enormous contribution he has made to ABC News through the years," Westin said.

Westin also announced Sawyer's move to "World News."

"Diane Sawyer is the right person to succeed Charlie and build on what he has accomplished," ABC News' Westin said in a statement. "She has an outstanding and varied career in television journalism, beginning with her role as a State Department correspondent and continuing at 60 Minutes, Primetime Live, and most recently Good Morning America."
Here is the email that Charles Gibson sent to the ABC News staff:
I have always been taught you should never bury the lead  so I write to tell you that I have told David Westin I want to step down as anchor of World News, and retire from full time employment at ABC News.

It has not been an easy decision to make. This has been my professional home for almost 35 years. And I love this news department, and all who work in it, to the depths of my soul.

I have received much comment, and quite a few emails and letters referring to the signoff Eddie Pinder convinced me to use - wishing that everyone has had a good day. But the proudest part for me has been saying "...for all of us at ABC News...", since those words signify in my mind that I have been in a position to speak for an entire news department that I consider second to none.

It had been my intention to step down from my job at Good Morning America in 2007 but with Peter's illness, Bob's injuries, and Elizabeth's pregnancy, the job at World News came open in May of 2006, and David asked me to step in as anchor. It was an honor to do so. The program is now operating at a very accelerated, but steady, cruising speed, and I think it is an opportune time for a transition  both for the broadcast and for me. Life is dynamic; it is not static.

I have told David I would like to continue in some capacity contributing occasionally to ABC News. He has been receptive to the idea  and we will be discussing what that role might be.

Most importantly, my heart is full of gratitude for those with whom I have had the privilege to work as a correspondent, as a host at Good Morning America, at Special Events, and now as anchor at World News.

I'll be anchoring World News through December and will have a chance to thank many of you personally. In the meantime let's get back to the news.

ESPN moves Yankees-Red Sox Game

After the New York Jets had their game moved from 4:15 PM to 1:PM because of Yom Kippur, ESPN moves the Yankees-Red Sox nightcap to it's original 1 PM start and will still televise the game due to Yom Kippur starting that Sunday evening.
ESPN and Major League Baseball have agreed to switch the starting time of a New York Yankees-Boston Red Sox game to avoid conflicting with Yom Kippur, the holiest day on the Jewish calendar.

ESPN told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the Sept. 27 game was returning to its original start time of 1 p.m. ET. It had been changed to 8 p.m.; Yom Kippur, a day of fasting and atonement, begins at sundown that evening.

"I am pleased we were able to resolve this sensitive issue that impacted many baseball fans and are able to move the game at Yankee Stadium to 1 p.m.," Commissioner Bud Selig said in a statement.

ESPN will still televise the game.

Earlier this year, the NFL agreed to move the start time of the New York Jets' home game against the Tennessee Titans on the same day from 4:15 p.m. to 1 p.m. That change was made after Jets owner Woody Johnson sent a letter to commissioner Roger Goodell suggesting the switch, so that fans could arrive home before sundown.
Unfortunately, there's not enough of a Jewish community in the state of Kentucky to merit Kentucky and Louisville moving the BIGGEST GAME OF THE SEASON to a date when it isn't Rosh HaShanah. This is where Rich Brooks makes me angry. He'd rather play Louisville during the third week of the season as opposed to opening weeekend.

That third week coincides with Rosh HaShanah. I had to upgrade my cable television package just so I can DVR the game.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Saturday Night Live is keeping busy

There's been a lot of activity lately involving Saturday Night Live. Just when you think it was over, it's not. Christine Nangle is the latest addition to the SNL writing staff if Twitter is any indication. Here's a bit on her background.
Christine Frances Nangle has studied improv and sketch at the UCB Theatre since the summer of 2007 with teachers including Kate Spencer, Curtis Gwinn, Charlie Todd, Chris Gethard, Shannon O’Neill, Zach Woods, Charlie Sanders and Neil Casey. She is currently a sketch writer for the UCB Maude Team High Treason, and a proud alum of the Maude Team 27 Kidneys. She also writes for the internet sketch group Bobby Chicago. She wrote and co-starred in the Untitled Nangle/Donnelly Sketch show and co-wrote and co-starred in H.G. Wells' Sex Machine. She got her start on Harold Night as a member of Whorenado and now performs with The Bishop.

Nangle fell into improv and sketch comedy in Pittsburgh with the longform group Hustlebot, as well as the improv and sketch group The Cellar Dwellers. In 2009 she rewrote the lyrics of Beyonce's "All the Single Ladies" as a football fight song "All the Steeler Ladies" and some friends recorded it. The song was a huge hit in Pittsburgh and beyond, and she is working hard to make sure that this ridiculousness is not her legacy.
Nangle's blog can be found here. Here's the video of the song:

Also, two female members are slated to join the cast and while nothing is official yet, it appears that Casey Wilson is no longer a cast member, which stinks because she's fricking hilarious. Jenny Slate and Nasim Pedrad have been hired, probably to take a load off of Kristen Wiig.

Jenny Slate is a part of a comedy duo consisting of Gabe and Jenny. Brief bit from Heeb:
Jenny Slate is as beautiful as she is comfortable making jokes about blowing cocaine out her ass. Along with her comedy and nonsexual life-partner Gabe Liedman, the charming Columbia alum hosts “At Night With Gabe & Jenny,” a standup show in the East Village, and has a comedy series percolating at the TV website Super Deluxe. Originally from Milton, Massachusetts, the 25-year-old phenom currently lives in Brooklyn and has no discernible sense of shame or fear.
Via The Comics' Comic, linked above, here's some background on Pedrad:
Born in Tehran, Iran, Pedrad is a UCLA grad and has worked with The Groundlings, the UCB Theatre and Improv Olympic. She recently has been a player in the Sunday cast of The Groundlings.

Over the past couple of seasons, Pedrad also has been featured elsewhere on NBC, playing "Nurse Suri" in several episodes of ER. The clips from her one-woman show, however, were taken down from the YouTube.

What's happening?

I didn't start the fire but I believe that Billy Joel did.

Some sadness that comes with the recession is cutbacks to educational awareness:
Among the expected cuts, reported by USA Today, are Tennessee's allocation of $128,300 for the state's Commission on Holocaust Education; the executive director of the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education, Paul Winkler, said he expects the state to cut 20 percent of his annual $250,000 budget; Stephanie Hartman of Nevada's Holocaust Education Task Force said she believes her state's Governor's Advisory Council on Education Relating to the Holocaust is slated to decline $70,000 a year for the next two years; and Pennsylvania Holocaust Education Council vice chairman Christopher Gwin said his council does not expect to receive its usual $60,000 budget from state coffers this year.

"We are kind of on notice that we are either going to have to re-establish ourselves with the state or be looking for our funding elsewhere," the Tennessee Commission's chairwoman, Felicia Anchor, told USA Today.
One of the Katrina success stories can be found here.

Alex Grass died. He founded Rite Aid.

Matisyahu crosses over.
Matisyahu, 30, pays any hecklers no heed. An underground curiosity-turned-mainstream star, he's not about to remain in his unusual genre of one.

"I think the vast majority of people that respect what I do are willing to move with me. I think it's not so much about genres or styles of music as it is about expressing the emotion or the idea," he says. "Whatever allows you to do that, whatever style, as long as it's authentic."
J Street has the criticism coming.