Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Schumer asserts Reaganism is dead

Chuck Schumer told the Daily News that Reaganism is dead as a political philosophy and that the GOP doesn't realize it:
"The old Reagan theory which dominated -- which is, 'Government is bad, it's out of touch, chop off its hands as soon as it moves.' -- is over."

As I noted here before, Americans still want limited government and the GOP lost its way by failing to act on that vision and instead opting to outspend the Democrats. Of course, if Chuck's fellow Dems truly agree with his statements, then we are going to have quite a show when the new Congress convenes in January. There probably is no better way for Dems to return to minority status than by acting like this is true...


S&S to offer religious books for kids

I just came across another news item suggesting that conglomerate publishers are starting to embrace religion. PW reports that Simon & Schuster is creating a new imprint to publish religious children's books. The article says that the Little Simon Inspirations will debut in 2008. It also notes that this venture debuts at a time when Thomas Nelson is eliminating its distinctive imprints (including its kid's imprint, Tommy Nelson) in favor of organizing around strategic divisions. This doesn't mean that Nelson is pulling out of the kid's faith market -- they're just bringing all of their offerings under a single imprint. But clearly S&S sees the market opportunity as quite large, even with a leader like Nelson already in that space.


Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Muslim scholar calls for airline boycott

The Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune reports:
One of the Muslim scholars removed from a US Airways flight on Monday today called for imams around the country to boycott the airline after employees refused to sell him new tickets for his flight home.

But, as one of World Ahead's employees just asked me, why limit the boycott to imams?

Monday, November 20, 2006

Murdoch pulls plug on O.J. book -- fallout for Regan?

Rupert Murdoch came to his senses and ended Judith Regan's ill-conceived plans for publishing an O.J. Simpson book and broadcasting an interview on the Fox network:

"I and senior management agree with the American public that this was an ill-considered project," said Rupert Murdoch, News Corp. chairman. "We are sorry for any pain that this has caused the families of Ron Goldman and Nicole Brown Simpson."

ReganBooks is owned by HarperCollins, a subsidiary of Murdoch's News Corp.

This project was beyond tasteless. I'm glad to hear that many of Fox's affiliates and some of its on-air personalities like Bill O'Reilly and Geraldo Rivera resisted going along. (You know you've crossed the line when even Geraldo finds it objectionable.)

I wonder what this will mean for Regan. She's been pushing the envelope in publishing for a long time, but this time she clearly went too far. Her statement this weekend likening Simpson's book to a confession and calling him "the murderer" now looks a lot like spin control anticipating Murdoch's veto. She's going to be made into the scapegoat over this, both in the eyes of the public and (I suspect) within News Corp.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006

OJ Simpson book deal true after all

It turns out that the earlier rumors about an O.J. Simpson book deal that I posted on this blog (here and here) were true. The AP just confirmed that O.J. has a deal with Judith Regan and will interviewed by the publisher on Fox at the end of this month. The book will be titled If I Did It, and it will contain a "hypothetical" description of how O.J. would've killed his ex-wife Nicole and friend Ron Goldman.

While I can't deny that Regan is good at what she does, this decision is in such poor taste that it simply cannot be defended. And News Corp's decision to air a two-part interview on Fox is just as bad. One "media" outlet that ironically looks good in all of this is the National Enquirer, which first broke the story almost a month ago.

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Thursday, November 09, 2006

GOP election disaster good for conservative publishers?

The AP has a story speculating that the Democratic takeover of the House and Senate (Sen. George Allen just conceded) might be a good thing for conservative publishers.

The opposition has certainly suited liberal authors and publishers -- complaining is easier than espousing a vision, and when your supporters are angry, it's a good market opportunity. But while criticism of liberals is certainly a valid subject for books, I think conservative readers are going to want "that vision thing," too.


Monday, November 06, 2006

What would you do with Osama bin Laden?

While Saddam will soon get fitted for a hangman's noose, we think that OBL deserves something a little more creative when we eventually locate his rat hole.

Paul Bedard at US News & World Report has a post on his blog today -- entitled "When Capture and Trial Aren't Enough" -- about our open call to submit entries for our forthcoming humor book, 101 Uses for Osama bin Laden.

Crash test dummy? 72nd virgin? Used camel salesman? Whitney Houston look-alike content? Go to and tell us what you think. We'll publish the best ones in the book.