- The Washington Times - Friday, November 28, 2008

Sustainable energy

Negative press is beginning to surface. There’s caterwaul from assorted pundits and whining from some supporters. Still, the nation has high hopes for President-elect Barack Obama.

“Between 63 percent and 67 percent of Americans have said they are confident in Barack Obama’s ability to be a good president in the weeks since his election on Nov. 4, a sentiment that doesn’t yet appear to be have been affected, positively or negatively, by news coverage of the president-elect’s staff and Cabinet appointments, or by reports of his economic and other policy plans,” says Frank Newport, director of Gallup polls.

“Nothing Obama has done so far appears to have changed the basic — and generally positive — structure of American public opinion about his coming presidency,” Mr. Newport notes.

There is a huge partisan divide, however.

A separate Gallup survey Wednesday found that 28 percent of Republicans had confidence in Mr. Obama, compared with 89 percent of Democrats. The survey of 3,559 adults was conducted Nov. 17 to 23.

Great outdoors

Well, why not? Field & Stream has a pair of almost diametrically opposed politicians on their list of “People of the Year” to be released Friday.

The magazine distinguished Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as a heroine — “she not only endorsed the traditions of sportsmen while campaigning as a vice-presidential candidate, she is an active hunter and fisherman herself. Moreover, Amy Poehler rapped about her shooting a moose on ‘Saturday Night Live.’ What better way to inspire a new generation of hunters?” the publication asked.

The list also includes Sen. Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat.

“The senator’s selection came as a surprise to many gun owners because of his support for gun control over the years. He got the nod for backing a farm bill measure to give farmers grants for opening more land to hunters,” Field & Stream explained.

Setting the stage

“The Fairness Doctrine, which forced broadcasters to offer equal time to both sides of controversial issues, was abolished in 1987, paving the way for talk radio to take the opinionated - and popular - form it has today,” writes Paul Bond of the Hollywood Reporter.

“Now, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and such influential Democratic senators as Barbara Boxer and Chuck Schumer are pushing for its return, or something like it. Could the equal-time provisions pull a Don Imus and make a radio comeback?

“It could, industry insiders say. And the government-mandated programming restrictions that come with it could hobble an already struggling industry. Talk-radio hosts are unlikely to accept a new Fairness Doctrine without a fight, though. Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity are among those already railing against it daily.

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