Thursday, November 29, 2007

RIP: Tommy Kron and Ralph Beard

It is a sad day for myself and Big Blue Nation as we mourn the passings of both Ralph Beard and Tommy Kron.

Monday, November 26, 2007

UK baseball signings

The University of Kentucky Wildcats baseball team has signed 16 new players including:
Five players ranked in the high school top-50 by Baseball America
Two Aflac All-America game participants
Two Team USA Junior Olympic Team invitations
Three first-team All-Americans
Participation in 13 major high school showcases (Perfect Game National, Area Code Games, East Coast Professional Showcase)
One high school state player of the year as a junior
Six high school all-state honorees
Here's a little bit more:
After the most successful two-year run in the 103-year history of the UK baseball program, Kentucky head coach John Cohen has announced the signing of 16 of the top prospects in amateur baseball, including five of the top-50 high school players in the nation.

“This is by far the most talented group we’ve brought in during the early signing period and it might be one of the best in the country,” said Cohen, UK’s fifth-year head coach. “A handful of these kids could have chosen virtually any school in the nation and they chose Kentucky because they are excited about what we are doing here and about the type of people we have in our program.”

“We are losing a significant amount of at-bats and innings after the upcoming 2008 season and it was important to sign a group that could step in immediately and have success in the best conference in college baseball, and we did just that.”

Highlighting the group are five of the top high school players in the nation, as ranked by Baseball America. Alex Meyer, a 6-foot-7 right-hander from Greensburg (Ind.) High School, tops the list, ranking fifth in the listing of the top-100 high school prospects.

Meyer was ranked as the No. 2 prospect by Baseball America at Perfect Game’s National Showcase in Cincinnati. A member of the Indiana Bulls travel team over the summer, Meyer played in the East Coast Professional Showcase in Lakeland, Fla. in August, in addition to playing in the Aflac All-America game in San Diego, Calif.

“Alex has tremendous upside – he has a great arm, he’s athletic, and he has a frame that can easily handle another 40 pounds,” Cohen said. “We expect big things from him during his career at Kentucky.”
I look forward to the great future of baseball at UK.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Exclusive Interview with The Daily Show's Rob Kutner

Danielle Solzman: Thanks for joining the Kentucky Democrat today. You're on strike at the moment. How is that going for you?

Rob Kutner: Very strange. Believe it or not, the past three weeks I've been so much busier than at work. Between the mandatory picketlines, I've been working on a number of campaigns to try and get this resolved. It really is like a political race, except we know it has to be won now, or the studios can wait us out and we could face a much longer strike.

DS: What is a day in the life of a writer for The Daily Show like?
RK: A hazy memory right now. :)

It's surprisingly businesslike. We work 9-6. We come in the mornings and watch a few packages of video footage from the AP wire service, decide which stories are the most Headline-worthy, then some people go off and write those, others work on the Jon-and-Correspondent dialogues (or "Chats"), and others take on whatever free-floating assignments are around (field pieces, special correspondent pieces like Lewis Black and Demetri Martin). You almost never know from day to day what you're going to be working on.

DS: A few years ago, there was talk of a Draft Jon Stewart for President campaign. Was it all a cover-up for Colbert's failed campaign?
RK: I can't tell you, b/c the NSA might be monitoring these e-mails.

DS: When did you decide to become a comedy writer and why did you make that decision?
RK: When I was in college, one day I realized that everything I was doing extracurricularly was comedy-related: editor of the humor magazine, founding member of the improv troupe, writer for the musical-theater group. Then, my friend's brother got a job writing for the Simpsons and I was like, "Wait, you can get paid for this?"

DS: While I'm asking about comedy, what's the percentage of Daily Show writers with a stand-up or improv background?
RK: Actually, probably the minority. A few of us go up now and then, but largely, we come from different writing worlds (journalism, Web humor, other TV shows, etc.). But our correspondents come out of improv: UCB or Second City

DS: So, um, what's the fourth male lead of Death to Smoochie like? Is his acting that bad?
RK: Seeing as how I would like to have a job to come back to if this thing ever gets resolved, I'm leaving this blank.

DS: If the strike does last till early 2008, how are we supposed to get our news for Indecision 2008?
RK: Fortunately, there's still a lot of good, entertaining blogs out there -- mostly what we read when looking for stories. I'm a big fan of andrew sullivan, wonkette, josh marshall's talking points memo, and mediabistro.

DS: Over the past few years, people tell me that they got their news from Jon Stewart. Now we are getting it from Nikki Finke at Deadline Hollywood Daily. Is that how the writers feel?
RK: Pretty much. No one seems to have the inside scoop faster or "insider" than she, and also she mostly attempts to straddle the middle.

DS: Have you gotten to know your fellow writers better while on the picket lines and have you met any big-names from years past like Sid Caesar, Mel Brooks or Woody Allen? Or are they not part of the WGA-East?
RK: Absolutely. In fact, this has been maybe the silver lining of the whole thing. We NY writers didn't really know each other at all before, and now we're much closer. I have gotten to spend some quality time with Seth Meyers, for instance, a terrific guy who's been out there everyday at the pickets. And yes, a few comedy idols: I met veteran SNL writer Alan Zweibel and Nat'l Lampoon founding member (and "Ian" the manager in Spinal Tap) Tony Hendra. Also Gilbert Gottfried and Robin Williams have been out with us. Obviously, the picketers in LA get a much better range and depth of celebs (not to mention weather). grrr!

DS: How did the Not The Daily Show video on YouTube come about?
RK: We saw the video put out by the writers and actors from The Office ("The Office is Closed"), and saw how quick, low-tech, but still sharp, funny and on-point it was. And we were like, "Why can't we do that?" So we set about constructing a Daily Show story by e-mail, which was actually kind of fun. The actual video was shot on the picket line at Battery Park by Eric Drysdale, TCR writer otherwise known as "Bobby."

DS: For my readers that are not familiar with why the writers are striking, can you explain?
RK: Sure. Two main issues: DVD and New Media. When you buy a DVD, know how much the writer gets? 4 cents. We're asking for 8, as that deal dates back to the 80s when the studios implored us to not ask for much money until home video became proven business, then they'd make it up to us. They never did.

Now we're concerned they're trying to pull the same game with New Media. As your readers may be aware, the future of movie and TV distribution is shifting over to digital media (iTunes, cell phones, sites like where you can watch full episodes of shows). Even though all of that is just burgeoning, the studios are already making money off the new platforms. We're asking for a modest 2.5% of whatever revenues they make off our work when shown digitally, the same re-use fee that's been in effect for TV and radio for decades.

Their opening/closing offer was "0." We felt we were at an impasse, so 90% of us voted to strike (and we never agree on anything, so that tells you something).

Hopefully, the new talks beginning will start off in a more deal making fashion this time around.

DS: Why do you think it is that so many Jewish people chose comedy or comedy writing for their profession?
RK: I think it's a combination of hyperverbality, our distance from the mainstream culture that lets us observe it, and the idea in our genes that everything could be taken away from us at any moment (hence, no attachment to sacred cows or institutions)

DS: I usually ask those that I interview to choose between Jon Stewart or Bill O'Reilly but seeing as how you write for Jon Stewart, I'll try something different here...Jack Benny or Groucho Marx?
RK: Give me a minute... I'm thinking.

DS: Have you ever collaborated with Judd Apatow in the past. If you haven't, would you like to?
RK: No I haven't. But I absolutely would like to.

DS: What are the odds of President Bush ever appearing on The Daily Show before January 20, 2009?
RK: They seem infinitesimal, but on the other hand, this guy has shown a penchant for doing whatever he feels like, and maybe as he's in the final waning days, he'll be like "What the hell?"

DS: Now, if it's called The Daily Show, why is it not on seven days a week and only four? Did I miss the memo and the fourth day is actually longer than 24 hours?
RK: I'm not really sure, but I believe it has something to do with dog years. And possibly Halley's Comet.

DS: What do you tell people when they say they want to go into comedy?
RK: Make sure there's nothing else you'd be just as happy doing first. It's really really hard breaking in, and there are so many talented (and untalented) people clamoring for every opening,

It could be a long road. It took me five years to get my first break, and although I have no regrets, that's pretty average.

DS: The media has pretty much said Clinton will be the nominee for President. Has The Daily Show jumped on the bandwagon or will Stephen decide to run in all 50 states and become the dark horse?
RK: We try to stay as far away from bandwagons as we can. We'd much rather stand back and mock everyone else jumping on board. Although some of those wagon-groupies... quite enticing.

DS: When does the coup to overthrow Jon take place? Or are the bloggers making that up?
RK: You really are trying to get me fired so I can come and blog for you full time, aren't you?

DS: Is the writing room similar to that of Caesar's Hour, which is arguably the smartest room since Thomas Jefferson dined alone at the White House?
RK: We don't have the same kind of traditional 'room' that you'd find on a sitcom, as we do some work individually, in pairs, or in smaller groups. That said, our morning meetings are pretty raucous, fairly unfocused, and extremely un-PC. Pretty much everyone there is a comic genius and it's equally exhilarating and intimidating to just try and keep up.

DS: Thanks for joining us. Before you go, is there anything you would like to plug?
RK: Yes, I'd like to urge fans of our shows, other scripted TV shows, and just those who support creative people being paid for their work to help make our case to the studios to join up with fellow fans who are taking action, at and

All joking aside, we are very concerned about who we're up against -- so a strong show of support from the public (sooner rather than later!) might be the critical factor that pushes the studios to give us a fair deal.

Catching up on news...

It's been a while since I've blogged about non-strike news.

Here's a tidbit about the upcoming December movie from Judd Apatow, Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story.
John C. Reilly gives voice to 50 years' worth of popular music in Columbia's "Walk Hard," which opens Dec. 21. His tour de force performance as the Johnny Cash-like Dewey Cox was the subject of an afternoon panel with writer-producer Judd Apatow, director Jake Kasdan and the film's songwriting team.

"Before we'd even begun writing, Judd and I almost immediately said it should be John," Kasdan said. "It's a well-known secret that he's an amazing singer and the kind of actor who might play someone for their entire life in a biopic. It's a level of acting that you just wouldn't expect in this kind of movie."

On the Columbia soundtrack, due Dec. 4, Reilly sings all 15 songs, which were penned by such names as Marshall Crenshaw, Van Dyke Parks, Dan Bern and Mike Viola. Sony's Vollack said an expanded edition of the album with 15 additional tracks will be available on iTunes.

"He covers a lot of different genres and a lot of different kinds of singing," Kasdan said. "He was the other major voice in this writing development process of getting the songs together and then making them sound right coming out of his mouth."

Among the songs previewed during the panel was "Let's Duet," which Cox sings in the film with backing vocalist Darlene Madison (Jenna Fischer). "As soon as we heard that phrase, "In my dreams you're blowing me ... some kisses,' we knew we'd found our duet," Kasdan said.

"Walk Hard" features cameos from artists including Eddie Vedder, Jack White of the White Stripes and Ghostface Killah, which Apatow said helped "to create a credible world." Apatow even wrote some lyrics with Ghostface, which he describes as "as uncomfortable a moment as you could imagine for me. But he was very cool and was not at all offended when I asked if we could get the word 'shiv' in there."
Apatow recently spoke about the writers' strike. Longtime writer Larry Gelbart also commented on the strike.

How about an Oscar nomination for Steve Carell's performance in Dan in Real Life? After his great performance in Evan Almighty, I'd say he deserves it!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

A Thanksgiving Message - 2007 Edition

May you have a safe, healthy, and happy Thanksgiving.

On this Thanksgiving, I am thankful for my family and friends.

I am thankful for promising Democratic leaders in Jonathan Miller, Steve Beshear, Daniel Mongiardo, Ben Chandler, Crit Luallen, Jack Conway, Steve Gold, John Yarmuth, Howard Dean, etc.

I am thankful for a party that works for the working class.

I am thankful for my great-grandparents getting out of Europe and Russia before the war started.

I am thankful for my public school education, although the state has a lot of work to do.

I am thankful to those of you who have forgiven me for doing that which will not be mentioned.

I am thankful for our troops serving us overseas even if I disagree with why we went over there in the first except for Afghanistan which was justified.

I am thankful to be living in a free country which allows the freedom of religion.

I am thankful for the Jewish comedians of the vaudeville and Borscht Belt eras for paving the way for comedians like Jerry Seinfeld and Jon Stewart.

I am thankful for President Bush for providing so much comedic material even though I only have just over a year to perfect my act.

I am thankful for the members of the Writers Guild of America fighting for the residuals for current and future members.

I am thankful that shows like Heroes, The Daily Show, Late Night with Conan, The Tonight Show, The Late Show, Saturday Night Live, The Office, and The Colbert Report were approved by the networks so that I have television to enjoy.

I am thankful for the writing room of Caesar's Hour, considered to be the smartest and funniest room since Thomas Jefferson dined alone at the White House.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Mitch McConnell's approval ratings

Mitch McConnell's approval ratings came out this week. Forty-four percent approve of him. When Ernie Fletcher heard this news, he smiled.

Did you hear about this Jim Gooch guy? A state representative from Kentucky recently held a panel on global warming but refused to invite former Vice President Al Gore. That's like holding a drinking panel and not inviting Britney Spears or Lindsay Lohan!

Did you hear this one today? The Louisville Metro Council is holding hearings on 86-64. I'd like to 86 their 86-64 plan. What's next, 86-65?!?

Thursday, November 15, 2007

No joke...FOX employee spent half an hour here

And they were probably paid with the money earned from new media revenue or maybe your magazine subscription. Or maybe they just wanted to watch a Jon Stewart video. No actually, it was the Boycott MySpace posting.

Don't these people have real work to do?

Colbert Report writers chime in

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Official Myspace Boycott

A lot of musicians, comedians, and filmmakers use MySpace to promote themselves. A lot of them also usually go on talk shows, but have been refusing to make the rounds anywhere that they would cross a picket line. How am I any different if I proclaim my support for the writers, yet log in and use this site, which is owned by one of the moguls that the writers are currently striking against?

So until the strike is over, I will not be using MySpace, and I encourage you to join the boycott, whether you're an entertainer who uses MySpace to promote themselves, or a viewer who supports the writers. Here's how.

1). Download this photo

2). Upload it onto your MySpace profile and make it your default pic.

3). Repost this message as a bulletin and a blog to explain why you support the writers' strike, and how your boycott of MySpace reflects that.

4). Contact MySpace customer service with the following message:

I am boycotting MySpace until its corporate parent, News Corporation, plays its part in settling the Writers Guild of America strike and fairly compensates writers for residuals from internet broadcasts of films and television series. I will not log in, I will not give page hits for its advertisers, and I will encourage all my friends, family, colleagues, and favorite musicians, comedians, writers, and filmmakers to join the boycott.

5). Post the same message on your page, in profile editor, and in your away message, in miscellaneous settings.

6). Log out of And don't come back until the strike is over!

7). If you have Facebook or Livejournal accounts, if you frequent a bulletin board, or even if you just send out an e-mail to everyone in your address book, let everyone know about the boycott!

Well, it's not The Daily Show

They have to be productive, somehow, right?


Monday, November 12, 2007

Dark Tuesday

No blogging from me on Tuesday.


I am showing solidarity with several entertainment blogs and I assume individual bloggers as well. See Nikki Finke for more at DHD.

The Late Show

You can see what The Late Show writers are up to at LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com

I wish that they were back at work but the studios apparently don' want that.

Oh, really?

Oy, do I hate corporate bullcrap, and by that, you know exactly what I mean...

Jason Bateman rocks!

Enough said

Saturday, November 10, 2007

To my usual readers

Expect a full-out focus on the current writers' strike until it ends. Presidential and Kentucky politics can take a back seat right now. Yes, I am still following my beloved University of Kentucky Wildcats basketball and football teams but there won't be that much blogging on that.

It's up to us to get our favorite shows back in production and to prevent more crew from being laid off.

Contact the studios. Email them or call them. Tell them that the writers should be getting a fair share of the pie.

CBS Television
51 West 52nd Street
New York, NY 10019

CBS Paramount Television
5555 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90038

King World
2401 Colorado Avenue, Suite 110
Santa Monica, CA 90404

Jeff Zucker
30 Rockefeller Plaza
New York, NY 10112

4000 Warner Boulevard
Burbank, CA 91522
(818) 954-6000

1325 Avenue of the Americas, Suite 3240
New York, NY 10019
(818) 954-6000

10201 W. Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90035
(310) 369-1000

1211 Avenue of the Americas, Third Floor
New York, NY 10036
(212) 852-7000

10202 West Washington Boulevard
Culver City, CA 90232
(310) 244-4000

550 Madison Avenue, Eighth Floor
New York, NY 10022
(212) 833-8833

7800 Beverly Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 575-2345

4024 Radford Ave.
Studio City, CA 91604
(818) 847-6000

500 South Buena Vista Street
Burbank, CA 91521
(818) 460-7777

77 West 66th Street
New York, NY 10023
(212) 456-7777

Sunset/Gower Studios
1438 North Gower Street
Hollywood, CA 90028
(323) 467-1001

5555 Melrose Avenue
Hollywood, CA 90038
(323) 956-5000

NBC / Universal
100 Universal City Plaza
Universal City, CA 91608
(818) 777-1000

30 Rockefeller Plaza
New York, NY 10112
(212) 664-4444

NBC Burbank
3400 West Olive Avenue
Burbank, CA 91505
(818) 840-4444

We're bringing the fight to them and we will prevail!

Steve Bodow writes on the strike

Steve Bodow, the head writer for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, wrote about why he went from the punch lines to the picket lines.

'Daily Show' writer: Why I went from punch lines to the picket line
Be Our Guest

As you may have heard, Hollywood writers (including about 2,400 of us in New York) are on strike. Yep, all of us: the serious ones, the funny ones, the soap opera ones with whose help Todd Manning discovered that not only had his biological son survived, but he was living as Marcie and Michael McBain's adopted boy Tommy.

We've stopped working because our contract with the big studios ended last week, and though we've been negotiating in good faith with them, we're having a pretty fundamental disagreement about how we should make our livings in the years ahead.

It's all about the Internet. Maybe you've heard of it. We think we should get paid for when our work appears or is sold online - just like we do when it's on the tube or in theaters. We're up against conglomerates such as CBS, Disney and Fox, which have, after much searching in their souls (sic), determined they'd prefer not to pay us.

Now, we writer types are notoriously bad with numbers. Our skills lie more in the deft crafting of well-turned phrases - "neat-o word-packet makery," we call it.

But even we can tell that, for the right to rebroadcast our work online, "zilch" is a crummy offer. And that's why Wednesday you were watching Jay and Dave and Conan and Jon crack weeks-old jokes. And it's why we were marching around waving placards outside the "Law & Order" production studios.

If you've never had the pleasure of picketing, there's a lot to learn from life on the line. For instance:

1. Doughnuts: not a food group. That queasy feeling on day three of picketing? It's not from a lack of resolve. It's from the all-Dunkin' diet. Hopefully, today will be better - we'll be marching outside Time Warner, i.e., upstairs from Whole Foods.

2. Political pandering can be cool. Earlier this week, Barack Obama, John Edwards and Hillary Clinton spoke out in support of the Writers Guild. Normally that's the kind of toothless sucking up I'd spend my time satirizing. But this time they're pandering to me - very different. In fact, I heard all three candidates have pledged to return all donations from Hollywood studio execs unless the strike is resolved. (Correction: they're totally not doing this in a million years.)

3. If you want to win a labor dispute, bring duct tape. Sure, you can fasten your oaktag placards to your cardboard tube with staples. But you'll be restapling it in about 20 minutes. Not a huge revelation, but remember, we're not used to making anything with our hands.

Which brings up another point. Our picket days have all been unusually windy. Coincidence? Or meteorological conspiracy at the behest of a corporate entertainment cabal with access to billions in special-effects machinery? Tuesday we lost several good people to a 30-mph gust. We're not the most physically robust specimens, is what I'm saying.

4. Hollywood producers can be greedy. The real shocker in all this, I know. The execs have argued time and again that television content appearing online is strictly promotional, and under Guild rules, they don't have to pay for promotional uses of our work.

So I checked this out - I'm nothing if not a fair-minded word-packet maker - and it was true! I watched last week's episode of "The Office" over at, and it was promotional. It was promoting BlackBerrys and Fidelity Investments and Clorox bleach. Nice of NBC to give those ads away for free ...

What's that? NBC got paid for those ads? Just like if they ran on TV? It's the same over on the very fine new Web site for "The Daily Show," by the way: unlimited clips, sponsored in part by - get this - TiVo. I assume that's some ad-sales guy's idea of irony.

Is it absurd to see writers picketing? Perhaps. We realize things could be worse. We could be lawyers, and this could be Pakistan, and then we'd have to get dressed up in those black suits and throw rocks. But picketing writers are less absurd than writers not getting a cent for their work.

We create something people value. It is our livelihood. We take it seriously. It's being threatened. And we're going to fight until we get what we need.

Normally I'd end with a joke, but sorry - I'm on strike.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Cooler heads must prevail

If you've been living in a cave, then you probably did not know that the writers of your favorite television shows are on strike. They are not working right now. They are picketing. They are picketing because the studios will not pay them residuals for what has become to be known as new media.

I encourage you to stop downloading television shows on iTunes since the writers do not see a dime from those sales.

And that show you missed last night? Don't watch it on the network website as no one but the studios see a dime from that either.

That, my friends, is why we are looking at an extended hiatus of our favorite shows this winter.

This strike could last into the springtime, maybe even the summer.

It's all because the studios don't think that new media is the way of the future and they don't want the writers, cast, or crew to see a single penny from online viewings.

In 1988, the writers struck for five months and the fall season was delayed until December of that year.

You might be thinking that people in Hollywood are rich. That is not the case. Most people depend on residuals just to pay their apartment. Not their house but their apartment. It's not just the writers affected by this but cast and crew members, too. Production assistants in LA struggle if they don't have work.

You might be asking yourself, why am I even doing this.

I care. I'm a future WGA member and I want a good deal in place when I break into that industry. I'm an aspiring actor-comedian-screenwriter and I support these people and show my solidarity with them. They deserve it.

As long as writers, cast, and crew don't see a dime, I won't be watching a single show online and I sure as heck won't be watching that reality crap that they are on television because that's just an easy way out in order to make a profit since those shows are so inexpensive to produce.

Show your support for the WGA and sign this petition. They need to know that you support them in this fight against the studios.

Why the writers must prevail...

The writers must prevail in this fight. My future depends on it.

The studios are corporate assholes that don't give a f**k about anyone but themselves, kinda like the fatcats that deal with the oil industry. You know?

On strike, shut it down, Hollywood's a union town!

I will not watch any alternative programming at all during the extended rerun season and you want to know why, because those programs are inexpensive to produce since they don't pay writers or have several cast members that get paid so much per episode.

And I know that there are Republicans out there that must be pro-union when it comes to this.

2008 Candidates

This is the listing of names that I have heard so far of folks considering running in 2008 for Congress or Senate. I will update this as we get close to the filing deadline.

2008 Congressional
Heather Ryan (Fired executive director of the Maiden Alley Cinema)

David Boswell (State Senator, former Agricultural commissioner)
Reid Haire (Daviess County Judge/Executive)

John Yarmuth (Incumbent)

Michael Kelley (Physician)

As of 2:50 on filing day, no Democrat has filed.

Ben Chander (Incumbent)

2008 US Senate
Andrew Horne (Iraq veteran)
Greg Fischer (CEO of Dant Clayton)
Bruce Lunsford (2003 and 2007 gubernatorial candidate, Brown Administration Commerce Cabinet secretary, Vencor co-founder, thoroughbred owner and film producer)
Michael Cassaro (Physician)
David L. Williams (Retiree & Frequent Candidate)
Kenneth Stepp (2006 KY5 candidate)
James E. Rice ( employee)
David Wylie (former U.S. Postal Service employee)

2010 US Senate
Ben Chandler

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

That's a wrap (the elections, that is)

In spring of 2004, I transferred closer to home because of the guilt that I had due to being away from Kentucky during a statewide election.

This year, I don't have the guilt that I did in 2004.

The era of Republican control, for the most part, in this state is over. The GOP is survived by Trey Grayson and Richie Farmer.

Next fall, Mitch McConnell goes down to an unnamed candidate as of the moment.

Greg Stumbo will make his decision known by the middle of December.

In the meanwhile, I offer my congratulations to Steve Beshear, Jack Conway, Crit Luallen, and Todd Hollenbach.

Monday, November 05, 2007

On Strike...

The Writers Guild of America has made their decision to go on strike. I fully support their decision to do so. Much of this has to do with the studios not caving in when it comes to DVD sales and revenue generated by new media.

The current residual rate is based off of VHS and DVD sales. Right now, 80 percent of sales go towards manufacturing and distribution. Of the remaining 20 percent, writers only get 1.2 percent or three cents for every $20 sold.

The WGA would like it to be 40% of the sale, rather than 20%.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

South Carolina bans Colbert from ballot

In a move detrimental to the state of the Democratic Party, the South Carolina Democratic Party's Executive Council voted 13-3 to make sure that Stephen Colbert will not be placed on the ballot.
Colbert, who poses as a conservative talk-show host on the Comedy Central cable network, filed to get on the ballot as a Democratic candidate in his native South Carolina. His campaign paid a $2,500 filing fee just before the noon deadline, said state Democratic Party Chairwoman Carol Fowler.

However, after about 40 minutes of discussion by top party officials, the executive council voted 13-3 to keep the host of "The Colbert Report" off the ballot.

"He's really trying to use South Carolina Democrats as suckers so he can further a comedy routine," said Waring Howe, a member of the executive council. And Colbert "serves to detract from the serious candidates on the ballot."

But state Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter told the committee Colbert could showcase the state "in a way that none of the other candidates on the ballot have been able to do."

"I think you're taking this a little too seriously," she said.

When Colbert announced his candidacy on his show last month, he said he would run only in this key primary state. He said then he planned to run as a Democrat and a Republican — so he could lose twice.
What a shame indeed.