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Barbara Walters Bans Elisabeth Hasselbeck's T-shirt

James Hirsen By Tuesday, 28 October 2008 02:23 PM EDT Current | Bio | Archive

Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):
1. Barbara Walters Bans Elisabeth Hasselbeck’s T-shirt
2. Virginia Madsen Teams Up With Botox for Democracy’s Sake
3. Disney Actress’ Broadway Puppet Sex
4. Study: Celebrities Influence the Young People Vote
5. Bailout Gives Hollywood Tax Breaks


1. Barbara Walters Bans Elisabeth Hasselbeck’s T-shirt

Elisabeth Hasselbeck wore a “Great American Hero” T-shirt a couple of times on ABC’s “The View.”

Host Barbara Walters didn’t like it one bit. That’s because the shirt was fashioned by Hasselbeck and donated to the McCain campaign to help raise funds.

“Well, here’s the thing,” Hasselbeck said on the show. “I actually designed the shirt. I actually sketched it out on a piece of paper and sent it to the campaign, something that came from my heart and my creativity.

"There’s nothing negative about the shirt. It just says ‘Great American Hero,’ whether you’re voting for him or not, that’s what he is. I’m not making any money on it.”

Walters responded, “I think the feeling was that perhaps it was one thing to wear it on [the Hot Topics segment] . . . but the other point of view was that it was an advertisement that you were wearing throughout the program.”

Apparently, just in case she forgot, Walters wanted Hasselbeck to remember who’s the boss. According to a statement issued by ABC, Hasselbeck and the other hosts were informed of a new politically correct dress code.

ABC’s statement read as follows: “Barbara Walters and Bill Geddie, executive producers of ‘The View,’ don’t think it’s appropriate to wear T-shirts endorsing either candidate but would never forbid any of the co-hosts from expressing themselves.”

2. Virginia Madsen Teams Up With Botox for Democracy’s Sake

Best known for her role in the movie “Sideways,” actress Virginia Madsen has teamed up with the League Of Women Voters and Botox Cosmetic in what many consider an appealing election effort.

According to a press release, the mission of the public service campaign is “to encourage women to make smart choices in politics and beauty by expressing themselves at the polls and the doctor's office.”

“Educating and expressing yourself are essential in the voting booth and the doctor's office,” dermatologist Jody Comstock explained.

The doctor urges her patients “to explore their options and get information about treatments like Botox, which temporarily eliminates the appearance of stubborn frown lines between the eyebrows in people ages 18-65.”

Democratic veep candidate Joe Biden is not officially part of the Botox campaign, but appears to have done a great job in eliminating any stubborn frown lines of his own.

News surrounding the votox-Botox campaign does not seem to be raising any eyebrows.

3. Disney Actress’ Broadway Puppet Sex

Christy Carlson Romano is best known for her Disney Channel roles as Shia LaBeouf’s older sister on “Even Stevens” and the voice of the animated “Kim Possible.”

Now the 24-year-old is gaining fame for her “Kate Monster” and “Lucy the Slut” parts in “Avenue Q,” a Broadway play that involves puppets in compromising positions.

“Avenue Q” is Romano’s first Broadway role since starring four years ago in “Beauty and the Beast.”

“I was like, ‘That’s it. I never want to do that again. I feel so dirty’ . . . And I would watch it every night and I’d go, ‘I can’t do that. I can’t do that.’ And then, basically, you just start laughing . . . You just get sucked into the world that is ‘Avenue Q,”’ the actress told The Associated Press.

About the requirement that she use puppets to express herself, Romano said, “Once you actually feel yourself integrated with the puppet’s movements, it’s like, ‘Omigod, that’s what that’s about? I can do that again.’ And then you continue to do it and then it’s like you don’t even think about it.”

4. Study: Celebrities Influence the Young People Vote

This campaign season we’ve seen a spate of celebrities endorsing candidates including Obama stumpers Oprah Winfrey and Barbra Streisand and McCain backers Sylvester Stallone and Elisabeth Hasselbeck.

People generally don’t like to admit that a celebrity endorsement might sway them.

Previous polls taken by CBS News, Pew, and Gallup suggest that people don’t take cues from stars’ recommendations regardless of whether the celebrity sales pitch is for a product or it’s political.

However, a recent Washington State University (WSU) study, which was published in the Mass Communication and Society journal, indicates otherwise. Celebrity endorsements evidently motivate young people to get involved in the political process in a significant way.

Findings, based on a survey of 305 WSU students the week prior to the 2004 general election, showed that celebrity get-out-the-vote campaigns in the 2004 election cycle resulted in an 11 percent greater voter turnout for 18 to 24 year olds, as compared to the 2000 election.

“It suggests that we can make use of celebrity culture to get students engaged,” Erica Austin, co-author of the study and dean of the school, told The Associated Press. “They want to be like celebrities.”

The study’s findings mirror similar studies at Saint Joseph's University in Philadelphia, and Bowling Green State University in Ohio.

Celebrities do have influence, but why folks won’t admit it needs research of a different kind.

5. Bailout Gives Hollywood Tax Breaks

The public was told that to get the needed votes for the rescue bill, pork had to be attached.

But did folks really know it included ham for Hollywood?

Buried deep in the pages of the $700 billion package are some gift-wrapped goodies for the entertainment industry.

The legislation eliminates a budget cap on the existing tax deduction, which had been limited to flicks costing less than $15 million. Big studio movies that have budgets exceeding $100 million now qualify.

In addition, films shot in the U.S. now qualify for a tax deduction that was given to domestic manufacturers in 2004, which capped the top tax rate at 32 percent instead of 35 percent.

For Hollywood’s portion of the bailout, according to a report published by the Joint Committee on Taxation, taxpayers will be footing the bill for $358 million in 2009 and $470 million by 2018.

In this "Toon Town" nightmare we’re suffering through, let’s hope and pray “that’s all folks.”

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Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):1. Barbara Walters Bans Elisabeth Hasselbeck’s T-shirt2. Virginia Madsen Teams Up With Botox for Democracy’s Sake3. Disney Actress’ Broadway Puppet Sex4. Study: Celebrities Influence the Young People Vote5. Bailout Gives...
Tuesday, 28 October 2008 02:23 PM
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