Take a beta blocker, then read this

Muck Rack Daily

Take a beta blocker, then read this
January 4th, 2018
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Muck Rack Daily
Hello from Muck Rack, where you can get a snapshot of what journalists around the world are reading, thinking and commenting on right now.

CES is right around the corner! To prepare for the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, which begins on January 9th, PR professionals need to know how to target their pitches to get the most hits and coverage. To make things easier for PR pros and journalists alike, we’ve put together a list of journalists who have tweeted that they will not be attending CES. Save yourself the trouble of an unsuccessful pitch and spare many journalist inboxes, too. Check out Muck Rack’s list of journalists not going to CES 2018.

This is...quite a read

Ready for the Fire and Fury? Well, “take a beta blocker, then read this,” tweets Kaitlin Jessing-Butz. The excerpt of Michael Wolff’s new book in New York Magazine is entitled Donald Trump Didn’t Want to Win, and “This is...quite a read,” says Rishi Iyengar. Kadhim Shubber tweets, “This was a thoroughly exhausting read and I mean that in a good way.” For example, “I've read this passage of how Ivanka describes her father's hair at least ten times,” says Kyle Griffin. Tweets Scott Wampler, “Read this. There's a jaw-dropping quote or factoid every 4 sentences or so.” As Duncan Robinson says, “what a time to be alive.”

But wait. There’s more. “You Can’t Make This S--- Up”: My Year Inside Trump's Insane White House is Wolff’s “extracted column about his time in the White House based on the reporting included in Fire and Fury,” now up at The Hollywood Reporter. Noah Rothman highlights this: “‘Militantly idiotic’ is a phrase used here to describe how colleagues viewed Conway’s early media hits.”

Ben Simmoneau suggests, “After you read that @NYMag piece, this is worth a look, too.” Aaron Blake of The Washington Post offers his take with Michael Wolff’s unbelievable - sometimes literally - tell-all about the Trump administration. In a nutshell, “When a political book reinforces just what you expect to hear, break out the salt shaker,” tweets Brian Switek.

However, at Axios, Mike Allen has the Scoop: Wolff taped interviews with Bannon, top officials. Or as David Larter puts it, “SCOOP: Journalist used tape recorder.”

And “Buzzfeed continues to mine the Milo email cache,” tweets Will Sommer, who links to Steve Bannon Privately Called Trump A “Narcissist” Before Taking Over His Campaign, by BuzzFeed’s Joseph Bernstein.

And here we go...

For his part, Trump Says Bannon Has ‘Lost His Mind’ After Bannon Insults Donald Trump Jr. That’s the report from Eileen Sullivan and Peter Baker of The New York Times. “And here we go…” tweets Catherine Philp.

Josh Dawsey and Ashley Parker cover the story for The Washington Post, Trump slams Bannon: ‘When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind.’ “Pivot to cannibalism #2018,” says Noga Tarnopolsky. Tweets Parker, “The White House was caught off-guard by the explosive claims in Michael Wolff's book. By late afternoon, they were still scrambling to find a copy.”

And Bloomberg’s Jennifer Jacobs tweets, “Bannon's access to Trump has ended, I'm told,” linking to her story with Alex Wayne, Trump Says Bannon ‘Lost His Mind’ After Leaving White House. Tweets Wayne, “It's never boring.”

Indeed. In ‘Bannon was shot on the South Lawn and run over by a tank,’ Eliana Johnson of POLITICO takes a look at how the Bannon-Trump alliance collapsed. The latest from ABC News’s John Santucci is Trump attorney sends Bannon cease and desist letter over ‘disparaging’ comments. And BBC News is now reporting Trump lawyers seek to halt book's release. “And the point of that would be what? #closedoorafterhorsebolted,” notes Marianne Bevis.

This really is serious

Meanwhile, “Eggheads ask, Is Trump nutz?” tweets Jack Shafer. POLITICO’s Annie Karni reports on Washington’s growing obsession: The 25th Amendment. She tweets, “Yale psychiatry prof spent two days last month briefing lawmakers on Capitol Hill about Trump’s mental state. She says: ‘Their level of concern about the president’s dangerousness was surprisingly high.’”

And “This, from @EliotACohen, is the most quietly terrifying thing I’ve read in some time,” tweets Yoni Appelbaum, of Eliot A. Cohen’s piece in The Atlantic, Waiting for the Bomb to Drop. Tweets Cohen, “Yes, this really is serious.”

Does the base smoke weed?

So the timing couldn’t be worse for this: Sadie Gurman of AP News reports that AG Jeff Sessions is rescinding the Obama-era policy that had paved the way for legalized marijuana to flourish in states across the countryCharlie Savage and Jack Healy cover the story for The New York TimesTrump Administration to Move to Weaken Marijuana Legalization Movement, prompting Timothy Noah to ask, “Does the base smoke weed? I’m genuinely uncertain about the answer. Calling @RonBrownstein!”  

The good & the bad

“forward.movement,” tweets Regina R. Robertson, of the news that Time Inc. has sold ESSENCE magazine to an independent, African-American-owned company called Essence Ventures LLC. “Essence is 100 percent black owned again. This is so so so so so important,” tweets Taryn Finley. Charreah Jackson tweets, “Started in Black Media 15 yrs ago & joined Essence 10 yrs ago. historic day for @essence to be Black owned again.”

“On the NYT, its place in the national-political ecosystem, the good & the bad, from who knows, @sulliview,” tweets Jim Rutenberg, referring to Criticism of The New York Times has reached fever pitch. Here’s why, by Margaret Sullivan at The Washington Post. Tweets Axel Gerdau, “Happy Homecoming @sulliview: Former NYT public editor on @nytimes criticism, justified and not. Spot on!”

“An editor’s job is to make judgment calls. Here’s one I’d like to have back,” tweets Dallas Morning News editor Mike Wilson, who links to his new editorial, Editor Mike Wilson reflects on Richard Spencer controversy.

BuzzFeed’s Steven Perlberg reports that Peter Thiel Is Exploring The Creation Of A Conservative Cable News Network. Or as Katie Benner puts it, “Peter Thiel weighs becoming a member of the media elite.”

Brian Stelter of CNN reports on the firing of CBS News’s Steve Chaggaris, CBS News fires political director amid allegations of ‘inappropriate behavior.’ And “Some breaking news: IGN has fired editor-in-chief Steve Butts for workplace misconduct,” tweets Jason Schreier, who links to his coverage at Kotaku, IGN Fires Editor-In-Chief For ‘Alleged Misconduct.’

“So I found this memo from @TheAtlantic’s editors of 1973 about the stories they were sick of reading…” tweets Adrienne LaFrance. She links to her piece in The AtlanticArticles and Stories We Do Not Want to Read or Edit, which includes the 1973 memo that is, in many ways, still pretty relevant today. “‘NEXT STOP MARS’ was a played out story in 1973,” notes Tim Fernholz.

Fashion and trauma and believability

“This — on what women wear to be believed — is excellent,” tweets Ellen Cushing, of How I Learned to Look Believable, by Eva Hagberg Fisher for The New York Times Style section. Tweets Rachel Syme, “this story about fashion and trauma and believability is v good.” “This was fantastic - graphics, words, all of it,” says Hayley Krischer. “Read @evahagberg -- just go ahead and read it already,” tweets Ed Winstead.

Would watch the crap out of this

“Well this is quite a story,” tweets Sarah Weinman, of the piece by Nora Krug at The Washington Post, “When Breath Becomes Air” widow and “The Bright Hour” widower find love --- together. Tweets Karen Heller, “The most moving, romantic story you may read today. Thank you @NoraKrug.” Ron Charles admits, “This sweet story made me tear up a bit,” and Tess Malone “Would watch the crap out of this rom-com.”

Also, this is “Pretty cool,” as Daniel Steinberger tweets. At The Atlantic, Alexis Madrigal explains How to Take a Picture of a Stealth Bomber From Above.

As New York of a tale as there is

And finally today, “Here’s a guy who was a pure force for good,” tweets Sam Thielman. “As New York of a tale as there is,” tweets Ben Mayer. Fred Bass, Who Made Strand Bookstore a Mecca, Dies at 89. That’s The New York Times obituary by William Grimes, and Ed Nawotka has the obit for Publishers Weekly, Obituary: Fred Bass, 89.

At Tablet MagazineMarjorie Ingall writes, “The Strand means home, and books, and love, and those three things are hard to separate.” Read her piece: Farewell to the Scion of The Strand.

Question of the Day

Yesterday, we asked: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding day, May 19, already has historical significance for British royals. What happened on that date in 1536?

Answer: Anne Boleyn was beheaded.

Congrats to Dan Rosenbaum, first again to tweet the correct answer, juuuust edging out Amanda Shepherd and Lia Russell. Lorraine Berry points out, “Never mind Anne Boleyn’s execution. It’s the FA Cup Final, an absolutely stupid day to schedule a wedding on, and proof that the family is out of touch.”

Your question of the day for today is…In his book “Stand for Something: The Battle for America’s Soul,” Ohio governor John Kasich spends three pages describing his hatred for what film?

As always, click here to tweet your answer to @MuckRack.

Career Updates
Task & Purpose expands editorial staff

Military and veterans news site Task & Purpose is growing its editorial staff with two big-name hires. Pulitzer Prize-winning and widely recognized military reporter Thomas Ricks has joined the staff as senior columnist, and Jeff Schogol has been named senior Pentagon reporter. With these staff additions, Task & Purpose will launch new content and coverage, including a daily column from Ricks and a new Washington bureau. Starting on January 16, Ricks’s new column, “The Long March With Tom Ricks,” will cover news and analysis of military policy, strategy, culture and history.

Don’t forget - if you change your job in journalism or move to a different news organization, be sure to email us (hello [at] muckrack [dot] com) so we can reflect your new title. News job changes only, please! Thanks!
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