We hate to start things off on a down note, but in case you hadn’t heard, we’ll let Jeremy C. Owens break it to you: “Horrible news, everyone: @washingtonpost is ending its annual Peeps diorama contest.” As the editor’s note from The Washington Post Magazine Deputy Editor David Rowell explains, fewer submissions and a decline in readership signalled the death knell. “DIORAMAS DIE IN DARKNESS,” Dara Lind tweets. Or maybe it’s “Peepocracy Dies In Darkness,” as Charles Bergquist tweets. Jack Shafer, though, says, “When they came for the Peeps, I said nothing.” Amy Brittain points out, “This means that the Donald Trump-inspired Peeps 2016 champ will stand as the final winner of the WaPo Peeps contest.” Says Amy Fiscus: The Post is killing its annual Peeps contest. Make a diorama of your sadness.”
They report. He tweets.
Anyway. There’s still plenty of news being reported at The Washington Post, including, for example, “That time the president live-tweeted Fox and Friends,” as Chris Cillizza puts it. He’s talking about Jenna Johnson’s piece, which Paul Singer calls a “Pretty remarkable recap of @POTUS two-hour live-tweet this morning of @FoxandFriends.” Eric M. Garcia refers to it as “a work of art,” Margo Goodhand says it’s an “Amazing piece” and Michelle Ye Hee Lee calls it a “Must-read by @wpjenna. Trump's split screen: A 2-hr virtual conversation between the president and 'Fox & Friends.’” In the piece, we learn, as Mark Berman notes, that “Six times today, the president of the United States was just tweeting responses to what he saw on TV.” Adds Trip Gabriel, “Play-by-play shows 'Fox and Friends' controlling the conversation with a viewer who is most powerful man in world.” Michael Barbaro offers a new slogan: “They Report. He Tweets.” Says Asawin Suebsaeng, “I've entered a fresh circle of hell and you are all here w/ me for the ride.”
TMZ went into the Oval Office.
And then there’s this: “Trump met with TMZ founder Harvey Levin in the Oval last week for an hour (!)” Jennifer Epstein links to the piece by Michael M. Grynbaum in The New York Times, which reveals, “Since Inauguration Day, President Trump has spent his time meeting with heads of state, titans of industry, economic advisers and public health specialists. And the founder of TMZ.” Yes, “TMZ went into the Oval Office,” as Hunter Walker tweets. “Seems about par for this course,” says Alexander Nazaryan.
But what about the pizza rat coverage?
POLITICO’s Joe Pompeo brings us the scoop that Joe Ricketts, local news publisher and Trump backer, acquires Gothamist websites. Stefan Becket simplifies it to, “DNAinfo is buying Gothamist.” Pompeo tweets, “No word on how much Ricketts paid for Gothamist, but I’m told believed to be in the low 7 figures, which seems right.” While Barry Petchesky worries, “I hope I’m wrong, but I don’t see this ending happily for a very good website," Ivan Lajara shares his concerns: “Here's hope pizza rat coverage will remain unflinchingly aggressive.”
More scoop from the POLITICO team, this time from Josh Meyer and Kenneth Vogel, who report that the Trump campaign approved adviser's trip to Moscow. As Vogel tweets, “Corey Lewandowski cleared Carter Page's 2016 trip to Russia, during which Page ripped the U.S. & its allies.” As Matthew Yglesias says, “Another story that doesn't prove anything but raises the question of how folks got so forgetful.” Or, as Jonathan Capehart puts it, “!!!”
Clear as day.
Meanwhile, Jonathan Weisman advises, “If you want to understand why older voters are freaking out about ACA replacement, read @abbygoodnough. Clear as day.” Abby Goodnough and Reed Abelson report in The New York Times that Millions Risk Losing Health Insurance in Republican Plan, Analysts Say (18,000+ shares). Kyle Griffin tweets, “The American Medical Association officially comes out against the Republican health plan,” linking to its statement, AMA says American Health Care Act is critically flawed. Says Carrie Levine, “This from @AmerMedicalAssn is as brutal a statement on legislation as I have ever seen a lobbying entity issue.”
Today is International Women’s Day, and many women are taking the day off as part of #DayWithoutAWoman. For a moment, it seemed as though a very visible woman was kicking things off in dramatic fashion. As Blayne Alexander tweeted, “ICYMI: Lady Liberty went dark Tuesday PM. Power outage. But for a while, some wondered if it was intentional.”
Valentina Zarya provides A Brief But Fascinating History of International Women’s Day in Fortune, tweeting this tidbit: “March 8: The day the women of Petrograd, Russia started the Russian Revolution of 1917 (!!!)” To keep track of what’s happening in 2017, follow Claire Phipps at The Guardian, who’s live-blogging International Women’s Day protests, activism and strikes from around the world.
No regrets. No defense.
“Say what you will about Sean Spicer, but he has the hardest job in Washington,” Gary Miles tweets. As Glenn Thrush reports in The New York Times, Trump Is Said to Stand by Unfounded Wiretap Claim (11,000+ shares). “If you're gonna do crazy, you have to be committed,” Rani Molla explains. “Whatta lede: ‘President Trump has no regrets. His staff has no defense,’" says Erica Orden. Tweets Mary Beth Schneider, “A must-read about a president who has greatest intel resources but asked about getting a private eye.”
Wait. I beg your pardon?
Erika Kinetz reports in Business Insider that China has granted preliminary approval for 38 new Trump trademarks, including “trademarks for massage parlors and escort services in China, among other businesses,” notes Michael S. Derby. To which Becket Adams tweets, “Wait. I beg your pardon?”