ThinkFast: March 23, 2011

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"ThinkFast: March 23, 2011"

Nearly seven in ten Americans support air strikes against Libya, a new CBS News poll found. In a survey taken after the strikes began, 68 percent of Americans approved and only 26 disapproved. Fifty percent of American approved of President Obama’s handling of the crisis.

A Fox News correspondent who was singled out by CNN reporter Nic Robertson fired back yesterday, calling Robertson’s reporting “dull” and “bullshit.” “This guy has a screw loose,” Fox’s Steve Harrigan told the Huffington Post. A CNN spokesperson responded, by saying Fox lacks an “accurate and respectful grasp” of conditions on the ground for reporters.

During the rescue operation of an American pilot whose F-15 crashed over Libya, American special forces “unleashed a terrifying volley of gunfire,” scattering the rebels who were helping care for the American soldiers. “Several villagers were injured in the melee, including a man who was said to have lost a leg.”

There is speculation that Fox News host Glenn Beck may expand his internet news presence or even launch his own cable channel after his contract with his current network expires this year. Beck responded to the speculation with a statement that dodged the issue: “I have no intention whatsoever of doing the show I am doing now on Fox anywhere else.”

A “formidable set of opponents” to the proposed merger between T-Mobile and AT&T will try to block the two telecommunications giants from joining forces. A diverse group of industry and public interest figures plan to argue the deal damages competition for wireless services.

Yesterday, South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard (R) signed into law a requirement that a woman seeking an abortion first attend a consultation at anti-choice “pregnancy help centers” to learn how she can “keep and care for her child.” The first of its kind, the law also establishes “the nation’s longest waiting period — three days — after an initial visit with an abortion provider before the procedure can be done.”

Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) said yesterday that he “does not support a GOP proposal to slash funding for Planned Parenthood.” “I don’t believe any area of the budget is completely immune from cuts. However, the proposal to eliminate all funding for family planning goes too far,” he said.

In a report released today, the Japanese government estimated the damage from the earthquake and tsunami may reach $309 billion, “almost four times” the amount that Hurricane Katrina cost the U.S. While the destruction will push down the GDP by 2.75 trillion yen, wider implications on the economy, including how radiation will affect food and water supply, are not included in the estimate.

And finally: Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) doesn’t know how to use email. Speaking to state worker yesterday, he concluded, “If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to send me, I don’t have e-mail.” “I get embarrassed by it that way,” he added.

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