Media Notes: Pigs (Three Different Ones) & The End of Portfolio

Obvious? Yeah.

Obvious? Yeah.

An early update of media news from around the Internets:

Pigs on the WingHoward Kurtz on the fierce outbreak of swine flu coverage. The media, overreact? Maybe. If we’re all dead by next week? Maybe not!

Which of the Buggers to BlameIs Matt Drudge a hero? How Drudge drove (prefigured?) the media’s wild coverage of the swine flu.

You’ve Got to Be Crazy – Snoutbreak! The Daily Show mocks pig coverage.

Full of ValorThat’d be Max Brantley.

Giving Up – People continue to explore a “nonprofit” option for newspapers.

Closing Portfolio – If Conde Nast can’t launch a major glossy magazine these days, who among us can? New York Times on how the recession ended the magazine, and BusinessWeek weighs in here.

In the Tank – Is anyone really surprised by this?

Star Power – 40 journalists who took buyouts from the New Jersey Star-Ledger have banded together to start

Safe Bet? – Meanwhile, investors are betting that small market newspapers are where it’s at. Meanwhile, Warren Buffet knew it was over for major media waaay back in 1992, according to Slate.

A Commercial Appeal – The Memphis newspaper is tops among the latest circulation gainers. The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette on local circ numbers here.

Depressing Media Quote of the Week (And It’s Only Tuesday!)From an editor at the San Francisco Chronicle.


States to Watch on Election Night

I did a quick segment on KTHV’s “THV This Morning” on states to watch on Tuesday night. This was a broad overview, of course. But it sets the scene relatively well as to what will be the focus of news coverage for the first couple of hours after polls close. I’ll post a link to video soon, but after the jump, you can read the script I wrote for the segment.

But for a more in-depth look at the states in play, how much they’re worth and which way they’re leaning, check out Blake Rutherford’s final edition of this regular Electoral Update over at Blake’s Think Tank.

Interesting to note a change since I prepared for my THV segment on Sunday. Since then, Pennsylvania, which I noted leans Obama, has tightened, according to Rutherford. McCain has managed to make it a race there:

  • The biggest news of the day is the tightening numbers in Pennsylvania.  Previously, I argued that McCain stood a better chance of picking off Minnesota.  A new poll shows Obama leading by only 3 points there.  McCain’s road to 270 is still very difficult.  Not only does it have to run through an Obama state (PA and MN seem like the only likely options at this point), but he has to hold almost all of the toss-ups.
  • Obama’s road to 270 is still fairly wide open.  If PA, VA, FL, NC or OH break for him it’s likely to be a very early night tomorrow.

Beyond that, nothing much has changed. The race looks pretty solid for Obama.

All this conjecture, of course, is predicated on dozens of polls in every state. If you check Matt Drudge each day, there’s question that the polls are accurate. But can that many polls be so wrong? There’s only one way to know for sure.

After the jump, my morning segment on States to Watch.

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Drudge Asks the Question

Always the contrarian

Always the contrarian

Well, can they? Do the polls have it wrong?

Also: I’ll be on “Today’s THV at Noon” today to talk about the final week of the election. Send you questions and comments to, or leave them in comments below. Hopefully, we can read them on the air.

Watch us live at at noon. We hope to point you to some last-minute online election resources, too.

As Debt Mounts, Regulators Close ANB Financial

Well, it finally happened.

Regulators late Friday closed ANB Financial of Bentonville. The Northwest Arkansas Business Journal had been tracking for months the company’s slow march toward the inevitable in its pages and on You can see Worth Sparkman’s story on Friday’s action, including links to previous coverage, here.

This is obviously big news in Arkansas. And given the national mortgage and credit crisis, Matt Drudge thinks it’s big national story as well, linking to Associated Press coverage of the story today, just above his main splash image.