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“As the lead in to this video said ABC News, was a small player if not joke in the network news business in the 1970s. Th…”

Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

As the lead in to this video said ABC News, was a small player if not joke in the network news business in the 1970s. They basically remained that way until the Iran Hostage Crisis in 1979-80 that launched Nightline with Ted Koppel and their nightly newscast World News Tonight started drawing real ratings then, This Week With David Brinkley emerged in 1981, 20/20 became a hit when Barbara Walters and Hugh Downs, became the anchors of it. ABC Sports with their NFL coverage with Monday Night Football and their MLB coverage with Monday Night Baseball and their college football coverage and a handful of entertainment shows that they had especially in daytime, were really the only hits that the ABC network had. Back then America had two great broadcast networks in CBS and NBC, as far as entertainment, sports and news. With ABC giving you same type of programming, but without the hits and affiliates that the big two had in the 1970s. And being a distant third to CBS and NBC when it came to news, but entertainment as well.

I sort of look at ABC in the 1970s the way I look at Fox today, but with ABC putting a lot more emphasis on news. Fox still doesn’t have much if any impact on network news other than their Sunday morning talk show. ABC was trying to be CBS and NBC at least as far as influence and in size, but until Roone Arledge took over ABC Sports in the 1970s and then later ABC News in the 1980s, they were a distant third. Rooney Arledge with Monday Night Football and then Monday Night Baseball and ABC Sports college football, 20/20 World News Tonight, Nightline, This Week With David Brinkley, is responsible for making ABC the powerhouse it is today. With the ability to compete with CBS and NBC, when it comes to entertainment, news and sports. And have the affiliates to be able to do that. Whatever you think of this version of 20/20 and I’ll get to that later, this was the start of ABC becoming a force in network news.

It’s a damn good thing that Barbara Walters and Hugh Downs, became the anchors of 20/20. Even for 1978 the layout of this first show with two no-name anchors and one of them not even being an American and the other making his living as a writer and not a broadcast journalist and the cheesy music (even for 1978) and covering stories like how greyhounds are treated, just showed you that ABC News wasn’t quite ready for prime-time. CBS’s 60 Minutes even though they had already been around for ten years at this point, looked so much better and more professional. It looked like a network news magazine show. And not some weekend morning show that mixes in soft stories with a few real news stories and interviews, to make the show look serious. But they were trying and got much better again when Hugh Downs and Barbara Walters, took over the show in 1979-80. And were together for twenty years and made 20/20 the hit that it still is today.

 

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Baby Jackie

Baby Jackie

Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

I probably think of Jaclyn Smith as an actress last, because of outside of Charlie’s Angels and a few guest TV appearances in the 1970s and even in the last few years if you’re a fan of CSI which I am, her acting career I don’t believe has been a big focus of her professional life. She’s a goddess who has used that to promote her business career. And I’m not talking about sleeping her way to the top or anything like that. But she’s this gorgeous if not hot baby-faced adorable Texas sweetheart and has made a great career for herself in fashion and showing women how they can look great as well. And whatever you think of the Charlie’s Angels series and I would be one of the first to tell you it wasn’t a great show, she is by far the most successful of the Angels.

Jackie is my favorite of the Charlie’s Angels. Farah Fawcett is overrated and became a star mostly because of her gorgeous adorable looks who perhaps didn’t grow up and burned out real fast and died early in life. Kate Jackson, is a very good actress and funny and also very pretty and very cute. With Cheryl Ladd and Shelly Hack I think they were looking for the next Farah Fawcett and I don’t know what they brought to that show. But Jackie was a true Angel a Goddess who could also act and has a good sense of humor. Who almost forty-years later is still very active and still doing very well. I don’t think you can say the same about any other actress on that show.

Charlie’s Angeles was a hit for ABC because of the three girls on the show. Women love seeing strong women on TV and women who are in charge and don’t get pushed around. Guys love seeing beautiful sexy women kick ass. Today shows that feature beautiful sexy female cops, or law enforcement officers, or private detectives, who kick ass are very common. CSI, Law & Order SVU, are just a couple of examples of that. But in the late 1970s and early 1980s that wasn’t very common. Charlie’s Angels was truly groundbreaking TV for how they featured strong independent women. So in that sense it was a great show and historic. And Jackie Smith was a big part of that and I believe the star of that show.
Valen: Jaclyn Smith Biography

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Bob Hope
Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat Plus

Bob Hope deciding to leave England at four years old because he didn’t think he would ever be King. I find that interesting that a little boy could make a decision like that so early on life. Talk about your boy genius’, perhaps he graduated high school when he was ten years old and even order his families plane tickets from lets say London to Cleveland or wherever the Hope Family decided to settle down in America. The problem that Bob has now, is that not only he would’ve never been King of England, but he’ll never be President of America, since he wasn’t born inside of the United States. And didn’t have at least one parent born inside of the United States either. So he was sort of out of luck as far ruling one country or the other.

I think it would be tough to be a comedian back in the thirties and forties, pre-TV for the most part and with the censorship era. Where entertainment and media executives were a lot more, lets say conservative, perhaps authoritarian, if that offends any Conservatives who might be reading this, but they were a lot more restrictive back then as far as what they would allow performers comedians or otherwise say and express on the air. Something the late great comedian Lenny Bruce found out the real hard way, the first comedian perhaps who used swearing in his routine. And he started doing that in the 1950s. The gee, that’s swell era of American culture.
Cavett Biter: Bob Hope Talks About Stage Shows, Radio & Censorship

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

As far as aging, again just a number and I know that sounds as clever as the glass is only half-empty or something, but that’s exactly what it is, a number. So do with those numbers and you get a new one once a year anyway, the best that you can, if you want to live a long time and you’ll have a very good if not great life. Just look at Bob Hope who was, what seventy-years old at this point in 1972. And he lived an additional thirty-years and worked for most of that time as well. If you think of yourself as old, that is exactly what you’ll be, because that is how you’ll treat yourself. But if you want to stay young and at least energetic, strong and healthy, you’ll do what you need to make those things happen for yourself.

Golf if one of things that I may still never do, even if there’s nothing else to do. “Golf or staring at the wall all day? Hum, looks like this wall has been painted recently. What kind of paint did you use? Did it take a lot of time to paint this wall?” Of course I would choose staring at a wall over golf! Because that would be about just as exciting for me as playing golf. Me on a golf course would like, “come one take your shot already, I’m tired of just standing here. It is hot and I’m sweating my balls off. Its my turn to swing and miss at the ball, or hit it to another golf course”.

As far as president’s playing golf, no wonder nothing gets done in Congress. They are all at the golf course including Senators and Representatives and a lot of times together. To take President Obama’s and Speaker Boehner’s example. Because when the President is not playing golf, he’s doing boring things like managing the latest crisis in the Middle East, or negotiating for the release for some American hostage. And when members of Congress aren’t playing golf, they’re raising money, or trying to convince their lobbyists, that nothing will get done in this Congress. Or banging their mistress. Come to think of it, maybe golf would be a good game for me.
Bob Hope

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

I have no problem with people making a lot of money, especially if they’ve earned all of it. Being successful and wealthy is a big part of the liberal democratic American dream of individualism and success. And in Bob Hope’s case, he is one of the most successful comedians of all-time and also one of the most popular. And as a result has made a lot of money. Just as long as they pay their taxes, the cost of living in America and taking advantages off all the advantages of living in great huge developed free country.

I’m not a huge Bob Hope fan, perhaps that is just the fact is he’s way before my time. I mean the man is older than all four of my grandparents. And my parents had kids real late, so by the time I started watching and following any comedy in the mid-1980s or so, Bob Hope was in his eighties and at the end of his career and even life. Thanks to information technology and the social network revolution and the fact I love all sorts of history, including entertainment, I’m able to follow his career a little bit.

I could see why I guy named Leslie, especially in America would want to change their first name. But why Bob, why don’t you go for something a lot more common, like Ahmad, or Antonio, or DeAndre. You know, so you’re not simply known for your first name. I’m kidding of course, but if you’re looking for a boring American first name, you can’t do much better than Bob. “Back to you Bob, good job Bob.” Also a very easy name to make fun of, sort of like Dick.
Bob Hope

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

Speaking as a non-drinker, meaning someone who doesn’t drink at all, otherwise I wouldn’t be a non-drinker, strike that. I drink water, milk, soda, coffee from time to time, ice tea, but I don’t drink alcohol, but you get the idea. If your head is not spinning from reading that, mine is from just writing it. But as a non-drinker, non-alcoholic drinker that is, this might sound shocking, but I don’t know what it is like to be drunk. So I can’t relate to someone who has been drunk just a few times in their lives like Jack Benny, who occasionally drinks alcohol.

Now I know what it is like to be around drunks and I’ve seen drunks. And I gotta tell you, they are very lucky I didn’t have a camcorder on me or record them or record them with my cell phone. Because they are in a completely different world, perhaps their real one and the way they are sober, is just a cover for how they are in real life. People who are really down to earth and stiff as a mummy personally when sober, become comedians when they are drunk. Intentionally and unintentionally.

I like Jack Benny’s joke about sex and an apple, because it reminded me of hysterical scene from the first American Pie movie from 1998 or 99, with the male high school senior is still a virgin. And he and his buddies are always talking about sex, because they have girlfriends or at least possibilities. And their prom is coming up and they are talking about different ways of having sex. And I masturbation comes up at some point and someone mentions deserts or something. And one of them sees an apple pie in the kitchen, that I guess his mother just made. And he goes to work, lets say and father walks in and catches him. Perhaps you know the rest yourself.

Bill Cosby was his usual crazy and hysterical self, but he didn’t give me any material that I could work with this time. Other than maybe big guys who are still scared of their mothers. I’m a foot taller than my own mother now and probably outweigh her my seventy pounds or more now. But she is still one of the last people who I want to piss off. I would still piss her off before my father, but the mother is still pretty high up there. They have a way of scaring the hell out of their kids without much effort and show their displeasure of you.
Bill Cosby

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

I can speak freely about Jack Benny’s famous “I’m always 39″ joke, because I’m actually 39 right now. I have a birth certificate to prove it, that says I was actually born in 1975. Exactly when in 1975, I was born, you have to know me well enough and I have to trust you in order for you to find out. But I would hate to be 39 the rest of my life. Why, because that would mean I would die sometime between now and I next birthday. Imagine having less than a year to live, with still so much you want to do and simply not enough time to accomplish those things before you die.

And as far as aging and this might sound corny. (Gee I hope not) But age is really just a number, seriously, it really is. We now have Americans who are healthy and working and their seventies and eighties. And not all of them are still working because they forgot to save for their retirement, (Gee, it just slipped my mind) or their 401K’s were flushed down the toilet, hopefully accidentally, but because they don’t want to play golf everyday. And even though they love their grandkids, they are glad their kids are already grown up and have moved out. Ao they don’t have to spend so much time with their kids.

We have older Americans in age, who still want to work and are still damn good at their jobs and still very productive. And why are they, because they bothered to take the time to take care of the one person they have the most control over, which is themselves. If you live well, you’ll live well, because you take care of yourself, which allows for you to enjoy life for a very long time. And it gives you a lot more choices as far as what you can do in your senior years. Just relax and enjoy yourself, or do those things as well, but do something else you also enjoy which is working and producing.
Jack Benny

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