For 'congressional staffers, journalists, and other influential Washingtonians.'8:41 AM, Dec 22, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Having a problem with your Comcast cable? No problem--that is if you fall into the following categories: "congressional staffers, journalists, and other influential Washingtonians." Just talk to a Comcast lobbyist.
In a lengthy piece on how NBC's David Gregroy was fired, the Washingtonian reveals the cable company's way of "sucking up to Washington."
Comcast also had an even more personal way of sucking up to Washington. Its government-affairs team carried around “We’ll make it right” cards stamped with “priority assistance” codes for fast-tracking help and handed them out to congressional staffers, journalists, and other influential Washingtonians who complained about their service.
Comcast, however, maintains this VIP treatment is not exclusive to powerful people in Washington.
A Comcast spokeswoman says this practice isn’t exclusive to DC; every Comcast employee receives the cards, which they can distribute to any customer with cable or internet trouble. Nevertheless, efforts like this one have surely helped Comcast boost its standing inside the Beltway and improve its chances of winning regulatory approval for its next big conquest: merging with the second-largest cable provider in the country, Time Warner Cable.
12:28 PM, Dec 9, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
Can be seen in plain focus through the prism of the Washington Redskins and their miscalculations (some would say “delusions”) about quarterback Robert Griffin III. That, anyway, is the way Gabriel Baumgaertner writes it at Sports Illustrated:
3:22 PM, Nov 4, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
We have heard a lot about gridlock in Washington and the damage that it does. The public, we are told, wants the people they elect and send there to “get something done.” And we will, no doubt, be hearing a lot more of the same thing no matter how the elections today turn out. Big Republican win will yield lots of Obama vetoes. Teeth will be gnashed, garments rent, and tears shed over the pain of gridlock. Likewise if the Republicans should falter and things go on pretty much as they have been.
4:06 PM, Sep 15, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
Last night’s contest between the Chicago Bears and the San Francisco 49ers, in that team’s brand new stadium, was hijacked by the zebras. More penalties than plays, it sometimes seemed. And the ratings were off a little but still good enough to beat the Miss America contest. But if a ratings slide were the worst news possible for the NFL, then the league would happily take that.
11:49 AM, Sep 15, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
The Washington Post editorial board was in favor of decriminalizing pot. But it is not in favor of legalizing it.
1:08 PM, Sep 2, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The former constituents who returned Eric Cantor to the private sector have reason to think, He is who we thought he was. As Mario Trujillo of The Hill reports:
3:34 PM, Aug 6, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The big bill to reform Veterans Affairs will be signed tomorrow. With, no doubt, much ceremony and patting of backs. Washington has done it again. Rescued the rest of us from … Washington.
12:34 PM, Jul 16, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
We have been paying attention to other things so it probably slipped out minds. But as Bernie Becker of the The Hill reports, the defect hasn’t gone away (gone down, some, but not away) and:
2:31 PM, Jul 15, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The president gave a speech today. No surprise there. And in this speech, which was nominally devoted to infrastructure spending, he praised his administration’s economic record. No surprise there, either, though it does take some cheek to boast about an economy in which fewer people than ever are in the work force.
11:45 AM, Jul 15, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
There was a time when stock car racing was an outlaw sport. Some of the greatest of the early drivers learned their skills hauling moonshine. Most conspicuously, Junior Johnson who did a stretch in the federal crossbar hotel. But the days of Junior, Richard, Dale, and the rest of them are long past. NASCAR went corporate and like all “mature industries,” it learned how to play cozy with Washington.
Jun 30, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 40 • By THE SCRAPBOOK
One of the many things that The Scrapbook doesn’t like about life in modern Washington—aside from the politics, of course—is the extent to which the nation’s capital, especially its downtown core, has become a high-pitch security zone. Access to public spaces and buildings is severely restricted; there are several competing police jurisdictions, all eager to respond to perceived emergencies.