Water Cooler — Ringing in the New Year Edition

Welcome to CNH’s Water Cooler, where fellow Hubsters commiserate and comment on current events, or whatever you like, while our boys Jon and Stephen are away.

Champagne GlassHello Hubsters! On behalf of all of us here at the Hub, Happy New Year to you! Undoubtedly we all look forward to TCR coming back full force next week, and seeing what Stephen and co. have in store for us. Needless to say, the headlines have been nonstop since the show went on break; there was no holiday lull this year. Grab a paper cup and let’s chat.

Just as we were savoring the last wonderful episode of TCR in 2012, with Mavis Staples, Sean Lennon, Jeff Tweedy, and The Harlem Gospel choir singing a beautiful rendition of “Happy Christmas (War is Over)”, only hours later and in rather dissonant fashion, we were faced with yet another violent, terrible tragedy in Newtown, CT. Suddenly, the issue of gun control brought itself once again to the national conversation, punctuated by yet another tragedy on Christmas Eve when two responding firefighters in New York were senselessly gunned down – by a convicted felon who had illegally begotten his firearms.

Someone said to me that they were grateful that Stephen and Jon were on break and subsequently didn’t have to try and address these events, as they were, and I suppose that’s a blessing. However, I am hopeful that in the ensuing months with the “task force” that VP Joe Biden has been entrusted with will come up with something to keep our children and our streets safer. Renewing the “Assaults Weapons Ban” that Biden sponsored in 1994 has been bandied about as a strong possibility, for example. I hope to see Jon and Stephen tackle the topic of gun control in the coming months- perhaps we will be seeing more of Sweetness as a result?

***

And of course, the next big story: say it all together now, The Fiscal Cliff! Despite knowing about the pending expiration of the Bush-era tax cuts forever, Congress decided to wait until the last minute (and then a few minutes after the last minute) to tackle some fundamental aspects regarding the Cliff- finally, permitting those making $450,000 or less to keep their tax cuts. After receviving the dubious honor of being the least productive Congress since the 1940s, the paralysis in Washington is so advanced, it is unfortunate that our government seems little poised to do much else than small band aid reforms, and only under the most intense, do-or-die sense of urgency. Let’s hope the 113th Congress fares better – hopefully, we’ll get some of the incoming frosh Congressmen to appear on BKAD. Wishful thinking?

Nevertheless, we do welcome in a new year, a new beginning, new resolutions. Here at the Hub we will be bringing you new contributors and much more in anticipation of what is sure to be another year of continued Stephen goodness.

Certainly there have been many more lighter topics in the news lately, particularly with a new Kardashian scion on the horizon. Kimye! So now we turn it over you to let us know what’s on your mind….

What stories do you think Stephen and/or Jon would cover right now? Was there anything that happened this week which prompted you think, “Stephen would have totally talked about that”?

Feel free also just to chat around the CNH office’s Water Cooler. Fandom is also friend-dom.

  • llama

    they will definitely be commenting on all the different media pieces about gun control. They will obviously address the fiscal cliff issues. I was thinking of something that Jon could use for the moment of zen. I remember a couple years back he had something from the Rose Parade and I was watching it today. They had a float from some Christian organization, wasn’t really paying attention to it until I saw this guy dressed up like Jesus and waving to the crowds. Thought that was really tacky and odd. Also, maybe the lack of an end of the world on the 21st, piece?
    I don’t know anything else off hand, that they might comment about because when they’re on break I don’t really know what’s going on in the news. I am one of those people who gets all my news from Stephen and Jon. I wonder how many different funny and stupid moments on Fox News, I have missed due to the boys’ break?

  • lockhart43

    When something like Newtown happens, and Jon and Stephen are on break, I am selfishly grateful, because it means they don’t have to spend the whole day looking over the tragedy to cover it. But if anything, I would have liked it if they were to cover the ridiculousness of the media after it happened. I mean, they just wouldn’t leave those poor people alone. Jon and Stephen are always good at rightfully and poignantly telling the media to shove it, so to speak, in a situation like that. I am glad that we are now starting a conversation about gun violence in this country (though a conversation about how poorly we treat those with mental illness is a conversation that hasn’t quite gotten off the ground, and should). It’s just an awful, awful shame that Newtown had to happen before that conversation would start.

    Anyway. Happy New Year to all! The second half of 2012 I could take or leave, if I’m being honest. It was a whole lotta letdowns and setbacks and stress that I would not have gotten through if I didn’t have Jon and Stephen to make me laugh every night. So here’s to 2013 and our boys coming back from break well-rested!

  • lockhart43

    I missed my window to edit, but that first sentence should read “When something like Newtown happens, I am selfishly grateful that Jon and Stephen are on break and don’t have to spend the whole day looking over the tragedy to cover it.” Otherwise it sounds like my gratefulness is tied to what happened in Newtown, and it is a gross understatement to say that that is not true.

    Carry on. :)

  • CN Helper

    @lockhart43 Happy New Year lockhart43! I think Stephen and Jon would have had much to say about the relentless media attention in Newtown. It did gratuitous after awhile. The post master is now asking people to stop sending gifts and well wishes because their post office can’t handle the volume. I am just hopeful that the media attention did something to effect change – we desperately need it as a country.

    Stephen had great commentary in the aftermath of the Giffords/Tuscon shooting – I think the best of everyone- but it’s getting ridiculous that these things are happening so frequently that they need to be addressed so much just generally speaking. Don’t mean to bring the thread down with all this discussion, it’s just been on my mind, as I enjoyed Christmas with MY first grader and preschooler ;) I want their world to be better than this.

    Hope your 2013 is a good one. I know that 2012 was hit or miss for a lot of people, myself included. Every day lived in good health is good, I suppose. I am looking forward to hubbing amongst you all, and seeing how Stephen will keep us all talking throughout the coming year. We have to go find Mr. Arkadin and see where he has been lately. The Hub isn’t the same without him!

  • Mr. Arkadin

    @CN Helper “We have to go find Mr. Arkadin and see where he has been lately. The Hub isn’t the same without him!” What a sweet thing to say, Lady Helper! Thanks!

    I’m disappointed (but not surprised) to see that Kathleen Bigelow chickened-out of her interview on Monday. I was curious how Stephen/”Stephen” would handle the whole “Dark Zero Thirty” torture issue and how Bigelow would hold up. Too bad.

  • http://www.PunditMaximus.com Franklin

    Sooner or later, Stephen covers important news about the Pope. While the show was on break, Pope Benedict delivered his traditional Urbi et Orbi address on Christmas Day, and harsh criticism of capitalism and inequality between rich and poor on New Years.

    P.S. How do I create or change my avatar? Thanks

    • CN Helper

      Hi Franklin! Welcome to the site. You can go the website en.gravatar.com. You should use the email address you use to register here to upload the image you want to use, i.e., Stephen in any number of his whimsical poses. ;) It takes a few minutes for your image to link up, but it will then appear with any of your comments to any of the posts on our site. Thank you!

  • CN Helper

    @Mr. Arkadin There you are! When you last commented you were talking about trying some new moves with the ladies, and then you were quiet, so I assumed that was going well ;) It is funny when guests chicken out, usually those of the more polemic variety. Particularly since Stephen is such a nice host to all of his guests, regardless of their political stripes. I hope the “chickening-out” doesn’t become a regular thing this year.

  • Anna Stearnes

    I really hope Stephen throws his super PAC at the gun-control issue. Someone needs to counter the NRA. What about our right to safety in this country?

  • CN Helper

    @Anna Stearnes As of November 2012, Stephen dissolved his SuperPAC and it is no more. He can do no more with it as a result. But like you I believe that gun control needs to be talked about everywhere, hopefully on TCR. He has talked a lot about our American love affair with guns over the years.

  • Mr. Arkadin

    @CN Helper Absolutely! I got all the women! Except for the ones who got the vapors and dismissed me as a “California dandy.”

    Did I really say I had “new moves to try on the ladies?” Wow. It’s good that I took a break from here before a complete crack up.

  • karenatasha

    @Mr. Arkadin
    MR. ARKADIN!!!! Please say you’re back. You were missed.

  • anais0509

    Let 2013 be filled with lots of Stephen-related goodness, wonderfulness and sharp wittiness…and let me be a better fangirl despite my reality-filled life. I miss being able to comment/TOTH any post and every post.

  • CN Helper

    @Mr. Arkadin It wasn’t that verbatim, but Stephen did something about attracting the female sex, and you made a comment about trying it out. I was going to tease you about it, but then you fell off the radar, so I had to wait for you come back and see it was all going.

  • lockhart43

    @Mr. Arkadin You’re alive!

    @anais0509 You’re alive too! No worries about real-life interfering, it’s bound to happen sooner or later. Just know that you were missed all the same :)

    Now where’s my BFF when we need her? Colbaby’s missing the reunion party!

  • Mr. Arkadin

    @lockhart43 “You’re alive!” Yep.

    “Now where’s my BFF when we need her? Colbaby’s missing the reunion party!”

    I think if you say her name five times while looking in a mirror, she appears!

  • Mr. Arkadin

    @CN Helper I vaguely remember that now. But I don’t know what show it was either.

  • colbaby

    @lockhart43 “Now where’s my BFF when we need her?”
    @Mr. Arkadin “I think if you say her name five times while looking in a mirror, she appears!”

    Now that’s just silly. All she has to do is rub her half of the amulet representing a Chinese coin with the character for friendship on it. And then my half starts to glow, and THEN I appear. Am I the only one who read Article 4 Section 8 of the BFF Code of Practice? C’mon!

  • lockhart43

    @colbaby First of all, you’re alive! Secondly, there may or may not have been a time when I lost the amulet in the couch cushions. I found it, thank God, and it is at the jewelers right now being cleaned because I mean, c’mon, who wants to rub their fingers on a tarnished amulet? So I figured if I just thought about our BFF-ness hard enough, you would Internets-appear. And here you are!

  • anais0509

    @lockhart43 “You’re alive too! No worries about real-life interfering, it’s bound to happen sooner or later. Just know that you were missed all the same”

    Aww! That’s so sweet! It makes me happy to know that I’m not forgotten! :) At least I’m making an effort to pop in once in a while, especially when I read of something exciting (like right now)!