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I had fun guest-hosting "FOX & Friends" in New York City on Thursday. Their show is very different from ours and thus a challenge for me. I really had fun with Gretchen and Steve and can understand the popularity of the show. The staff made it very easy for me to slip in and guest host.
If you watched, you know it was Steve Doocy's birthday yesterday. I took some pics of the birthday celebration… including the big surprise: Mr. T brought him a birthday cake on the set. Of course the pics are posted today. I have also included some behind the scenes pictures of what happens during segment breaks on "FOX & Friends": Steve has his breakfast (I think he thought we were in a restaurant and not on a TV, but he did offer oatmeal to Gretchen and me.)
There is a second group of pics posted today — taken by my colleague Shayla Bezdrob. Shayla works in our New York bureau, but I have been on many remote locations with her and inspired her to get a point and shoot camera like one I had at the time. From time to time she sends me pics to post and since she did so last night, I have posted them for you to see. They include pics of Mr. T in the green room in our New York Bureau.
A few quick notes: I ran into MSNBC's Chris Matthews when I arrived back in D.C. from my 24 hour trip to New York City. Both MSNBC and FNC are housed in the same building, so it is not unusual to see him. Chris was getting out of a car with his bags as I was approaching from the train station across the street. Chris was returning from a trip with his wife. For a short time we stood outside and talked with my husband — and then my husband left. Chris and I both headed into our building to go to work.
As Chris and I walked, we continued to talk and we both dragged our rolling suitcases behind us into the building and up the elevator. At one point I realized how it might look to others seeing us. I laughed and told Chris that people spotting us probably think we were away together for the night….
Now on a serious note: I received many e-mails from viewers answering my question about voting. While our inbox is not a scientific poll, it seems like all our viewers are going to vote. I did not read one — but I am still making my way through the inbox — which said the e-mailer voted in 2004, but will not vote this time.
If you watched last night, you know that the FBI is having a big battle with Joseph Duncan. Duncan pleaded guilty in Idaho to triple murder and was sentenced to life in state prison without parole. The feds now want to prosecute him for federal crimes. When they arrested him, they seized his laptop. The FBI believes or thinks there is information on that laptop that could help solve other crimes.
Here is the problem: The feds can't get the info from that computer and Duncan will not tell them how to get it. The FBI is not capable of hacking into his computer. I had thought all computers could be hacked into and I had thought our FBI would have hackers that could do it — see E-mail No. 10 below: I am not sure if that e-mailer is right or not, but I would like more information on this. My husband — who only knows where the on/off switch is on the computer — says the FBI should go to a local high school and get one of the whiz kids to help. What are your thoughts?
Now for some e-mails:
E-mail No. 1
I voted by absentee ballot in 2004, Broward County, Florida. I received two ballots in my name by e-mail, two in someone else's name (Mr. Pigman, did you ever get one?) and a paper ballot by post. So much for organization in Florida. About two months after the election, I received a letter from the election board, with a bright red letterhead reading "Vote in Confidence", informing me that as my signature on the ballot was not perfectly identical to my signature on my voter's registration, my vote was considered invalid.
This year I'll try my luck in my new home in Sarasota County.
Did you know that in Australia, voting is mandatory? You can vote "blank," but you've got to vote. That way nobody can complain about low voter turnout or people being elected by less than half of the voting population. How about getting rid of the Electoral College and trying true democracy here in the USA?
E-mail No. 2
Yes, I voted in 2004 and yes, I will be voting in 19 days. I am a frustrated Republican but contrary to so-called polls, I will NOT be changing my entire belief systems, values and ideology to vote democratic. Change for the sake of change is NEVER good. One better know what one is getting with the change! The ongoings in the nation and the world are far too serious to just "roll the dice" and say "What the hell, give the other party a chance." A chance to make it worse? I fear the majority of the country gets their education from celebrities, singers, talk shows and slanted reporting rather than really trying to pay attention to what is going on, the history of it and where "their" leaders have consistently stood on issues/principle if they had at all! There are some who wish to lead and some who lust for the power and will say/do anything to get it. I have really made an effort to listen to both parties thanks to FOX News making that possible. I can not figure out what the Democratic Party stands for on a consistent basis. I have seriously tried! HONEST! The Bush bashing is too much... the Dems lose their credibility with this! After awhile one comes to realize that if Bush says white, they say black; Bush says up, they say down; and on and on. Can we someday have an HONEST, EARNEST, INTEGRITY BASED, dialogue about the issues. PLEASE! Do we have to accept that it is just politics and may the best spin/commercial when?
E-mail No. 3
I think you are fabulous, however, "FOX & Friends" is not your schtick. You were seated with arms folded over your chest as though you were bored; which you probably were. That venue is not for you. You are must better at the facilitating of intelligent dialogue.
I only watched you when the Florida man was stung by the sting ray and I may be shorting you on the review. For that I apologize.
P.S. I hate mornings but get up for "F&F." I even set the alarm to see you on "F&F" — you were the only reason I bounded out of bed early today. Nothing or no one makes me jump out of bed early, but I wanted to see you on the show. Sorry I missed some to be fair, at least!
Best regards, a loyal Greta/FOX Fan.
Englewood Cliffs, NJ
ANSWER: Funny you should ask about the arms folded… my arms were folded because I was absolutely FREEZING in the "FOX & Friends" studio and I was trying to stay warm! One of my seniors e-mailed me early in the first hour and told me it looked horrible, so I stopped doing it. I endured the cold studio. It is their studio and they like it cold (but not as cold as Shep's studio! It snows in his!) I was certainly not bored — I actually had fun doing the show. I like good light humor and I get a bit overloaded with bad news all the time, so I welcomed the chance to do it. I particularly liked doing the sports and weather… so I have offered to do it again if they will have me.
E-mail No. 4
I have voted in every election since I reached age 21 (many, many moons ago) and have no plans to change. When I was in Vietnam I worked with a lot of Vietnamese and they had no concept of free elections — their entire life they had lived under governments imposed on them and had no expectations of anything else — that taught me a lesson I'll never ignore. If you go to Vietnam you'll find the regular (non government) people to be simply wonderful people to be around. My experience was the war was ugly but the people were the best. Good luck on your guest host stint.
E-mail No. 5
Yes, I voted in 2004 and just filled out an absentee ballot for this upcoming election (my husband and I will be away). Voting is too important to leave to the amateurs!
Love your show.
E-mail No. 6
Yes, I voted in 2004.
Yes, I voted in the 2006 primary.
Yes, I will vote in November.
For the first time in my life, I will be voting straight party: DEMOCRAT! I want accountability in my government and for Congress to perform their CONSTITUTIONAL responsibility of checks and balance of the executive branch and therefore, oversight of the Bush administration, as well as, defend the Constitution.
Hopefully, a Democratic victory will send a message to the government AND FOX News that our nation is headed in the WRONG direction under the neo-con/conservative/religious right leadership.
E-mail No. 7
Yes, I voted in 2004; even though I'd rather "sit it out" I am going to vote in this year's election.
E-mail No. 8
Please allow me to put my two cents worth in on this issue. My daughter is a single mother with three children under the age of 4. She works full time and she does the very best she can raising those children. She gets help from me and the other grandmother but it's still very difficult. One night, last year, my 2-year-old granddaughter woke up vomiting and with a high fever. My daughter called me and asked me to meet her at the emergency room. I dressed in my sweats and a t-shirt and arrived very quickly thereafter. My daughter was already there with Hannah wrapped in a blanket. Hannah had pajamas on but no socks or shoes. Her feet were not cold... she was wrapped in a blanket. The doctor and nurses were more concerned with the fact that my daughter neglected to put shoes and socks on her than anything else. They looked me up and down and my daughter up and down and decided on the spot that this child was being neglected. Now mind you, it was 3 in the morning.
We did not "dress to impress" the doctor and/or nurses. Hannah was fine and continues to be fine. However... my daughter was visited by a social worker the next day due to a call from the hospital citing "neglect." Because of this extremely upsetting experience, I have my suspicions about this case in Kentucky too. The first thing I thought when I read the couple had just been informed their child was going to be put up for adoption was how angry, hurt and frustrated they must have been. Murder is not the right answer for sure but there is more to this story than just that these parents murdered the social worker. I think an investigation into the social services in that state needs to be done as well. Sorry this is so long. I just felt I had to speak up. Social services in some areas are to be feared as much as the IRS.
They have been given far too much power. And if they're SO good... how is it we have these children who slip through the cracks when they're genuinely being abused and tormented and killed?
E-mail No. 9
Dear Greta, you're on FOX Channel, of course you're that bad!
E-mail No. 10
I hope FOX follows up on the story of the FBI's inability to "hack" into a citizen's computer without the owner's password. There is a complete "series" here!
The correct name of the program used is "PGP: Pretty Good Privacy" and is not new (dates from the early 1990s). O'Reilly(!) and Associates, Inc. published a book by Simson Garfinkel in January of 1995, (ISBN: 1-56592-098-9), a 400 (or so) page document, which introduced the concept and program to the public. If you want to interview an "expert", one who the public will certainly recognize, get a hold of Phil Zimmermann, one of the early contributors. You know, the guy who got caught in North Carolina by the FBI for telephone fraud, or something. (Ahh, the good old days of "phone phreaking")!
The importance of this program in this age of terrorism, etc., is that it is being used daily to encrypt e-mail in the public arena, not just computer files.
Another good interview might be with Senator Joseph Biden who was involved with legislation, (Anti-Crime Bill S. 266 ), which was to give law enforcement "back doors" to all encryption programs and cellular communications, etc. Effectively fought by the "Electronic Freedom Foundation" for a while. (Another good interview).
Point is, PGP is available to the public, has been illegally exported I'm sure, and is probably being used by any foreign organization worth it's merit, terrorist or not. Add to that the ability to insert messages into seemingly benign picture scans, ("Steganography" — ever see an electronic picture with an "interference line" or two? Could be an encrypted message). The "War on Terrorism" is not as simple as the public seems to be aware).
Expect the NSA to be contacted by the FBI if the latter really wants into the laptop. Even then it's anyone's guess whether or not entry can be gained. "Password"?! Instead of "administrator", try the 23rd Psalm for a password!!! Easy enough to remember. Or anything similar. (Know the Gettysburg Address by heart? That's another good one. Personally I liked "Starkle, starkle, little twink, what the hell you are, I think. Shining up above so bright, like a godamn electric light", a nursery rhyme taught me as a youngster. Even my great-grandchildren know my password. Well, the one it USED to be. Didn't need anything too exotic)!
This e-mail address will soon be deleted due to sale of service supplier's business, ("Cox.net" to "Suddenlink.net"), so I may not be able to be contacted electronically in the near future. If a "name" is desired for your broadcast, simply say "A computer nut in North Carolina", although you should not need to even mention where the information came from. My real name need NOT be released if at all possible. (I don't need the publicity). Rest assured, I expect law enforcement is already aware. Local Police are, anyway. And with "fed" in my mail forwarding server addresses, I suspect it may not really be for "fedora"!
Need another "fill-in" piece? Ask the "computer guru" who maintains your servers how many times a day break-ins are attempted, and from what countries. That's a real eye-opener. (The record on my own "personal" server is over 3000 from either Korea, China, or Taiwan. Ahhh, I'm getting too old for these youngsters!)
Wishing you well
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