About 50 years ago CBS ruled the roost with a series of shows that appealed to rural audiences such as Petticoat Junction, ,Beverly Hillbillies, Mayberry R.F.D., and Hogan’s Heroes. Around 1971 these shows were canceled in what was called the Rural purge. They were all still popular, all still successful but generally paned by urban critics.

These shows continue to make money in syndication.

Fast forward to 2009 and it looks like comedy central has decided CBS had a point:

Achmed the Dead Terrorist has been all but buried on Comedy Central. Press representatives for the network said on Tuesday that its hit series featuring that contentious puppet — not to mention Jeff Dunham, the man with a hand up his back — will not be picked up for a second season, confirming a report that appeared in The Hollywood Reporter.

Well it isn’t like the old days with only three networks, a specialty network like comedy central has to cater to the shows that bring in the absolute highest ratings not just red state stuff…oh wait:

The decision comes as a bit of a surprise given that “Jeff Dunham’s Very Special Christmas Special,” a performance shown on Comedy Central in 2008, is that channel’s most-viewed broadcast ever, drawing 6.6 million viewers, and the premiere of “The Jeff Dunham Show” was watched by 5.3 million viewers.

Well ok it had millions of viewers a whole lot more than the entire MSNBC lineup, but it’s not as if it was in response to the decisions of urban critics…oh wait again:

A widely read post on the Web site videogum.com declared, “‘The Jeff Dunham Show’ Is the Worst Thing in the Entire World.” In The New York Times, Neil Genzlinger wrote, “Offensiveness is a mutable thing, especially on television, where everything is interchangeable: a Lewis Black joke could be a Jay Leno joke could be a Jeff Dunham joke.”

So bottom line a niche network chooses to cancel a show that still brought in millions of viewers after critics pan it.

I guess comedy central isn’t immune to PC.

Update: Welcome Salon readers, I haven’t quite figured out what this post has to do with the article that linked me but welcome just the same. Feel free to check out my weekend Amazon Reviews. Read a Massachusetts Republican’s take on the Brown Coakley race. Check out my Dr. Who End of Time rant and read my poetic answer to Al Gore.

Was feeling a bit better today so we went off for a few frames of candlepin bowling. After some decidedly average bowling I dropped off the shoes and my wife went up to pay while I went to get the youngest at the pinball machine.

When the clerk took the sheet the first words out of his mouth to my wife were to inquire if I was a senior citizen and entitled to the discount. I’m 14 years away from that privilege.

Maybe that’s why I can’t find work, everyone thinks I’m ready to retire.

…when you get news like this:

This is the first time a conference for all of Israel’s Heads of Missions has been held. The idea is to facilitate direct dialogue with the country’s leaders, mutual updates on major diplomatic issues, and a discussion of action plans to deal with the challenges awaiting the State of Israel in the international arena in the coming year, including the Iranian threat.

Robert Stacy is pretty sure it’s on:

That which is unprecedented is never routine and seldom insignificant. If the current unrest in Iran doesn’t overthrow the Ahmadinejad regime . . . Well, put it this way: If you’re the night watchman at an Iranian nuclear facility, make sure you don’t miss a payment on your insurance premiums.

I can’t find a peep about it on Israellycool, I would have thought this would be of interest there.

Meanwhile Meryl Yourish thinks differently:

My take: It is to unify the message that Israel wants out there. Benjamin Netanyahu is the most PR-savvy Prime Minister Israel has had since Golda Meir.

Watch for the ambassadors to come back with a unified message on Israeli issues.

As for an attack on Iran: Seriously? Do you really think that Israel would recall all of her ambassadors on the eve of an attack on Iran and tell them it was going to happen? Because, gee, that’s the first thing I’d do if I were going to launch a surprise attack—tell a whole lot more people about it so they can leak it to the press.

I think it’s a win win no matter what. What we as bloggers think doesn’t matter, it’s what Iran the US and Europe will think. It could be more of a feint. Either way this is designed to provoke a reaction.

Various nations will almost certainly read things into this and make moves based upon it, these moves may aid Israel’s intelligence.

If Iran sees this as a prelude to an attack how will they respond? Will they redeploy security that is now being used to stop the growing protests? Will they attempt to move scientists and materials vital to their program? If so will they be exposed to attack or perhaps will they become detected due to movement?

Even if Israel was not planning an immediate strike a general time frame can be disseminated from such a meeting. No matter the strike is dated, this meeting will allow a coordinated message to be sent out by the various ambassadors when the time comes, if there is any kind of time frame for an attack key info can be disseminated in person, no diplomatic pouch, no electronic message to intercept etc.

No matter what, I have no doubt that Israel will act. The Jewish state is not going to allow another Shoah in the hopes that the rest of the world will like them better. Since there is no chance that America is going to act and since Europe has no power TO act even if it wants to it falls to Israel.

Logically the outcome is not in doubt, Israel has the best security force, the most efficient military for it’s size, superior intelligence and only American troops have better technology, and more direct experience in combat.

Historically the outcome is even less in doubt as the history of the Jewish state is the history of continued success.

From a Biblical viewpoint of course the outcome has no doubt provided Moses terms from the closing chapters of Deuteronomy have been met.

The real wildcard are the protests. Iran’s as a nation’s best bet to prevent an attack by Israel is the success of the protest movement. Ideally this is the best result for the entire world and would be in the best long term interests for Israel. In fact If I’m Israel I’m putting more effort into aiding the success of these protests than planning for air strikes. Such a success would break the back of Iranian puppets in Syria, Lebanon and in Hamas.

Could that be the “strike” that Israel is planning?

It’s open house -4 days which means it’s going to be relatively calm around here, but that is soon going to change.

We have picked up the various foodstuffs (except the braciole meat which I’ll grab on Friday), we are ready for Lasagna, Ham, Chicken Wings, Sauce and braciole (sometimes misspelled as brigole). We have a few rooms that need cleaning (Particularly Danny’s room) but the basic stuff is pretty close.

However dear as my wife is once we get to within 72 hours to the open house event panic starts to settle in. It might not even wait till tomorrow, but very soon we will have to be ready for some extreme cleaning and some serious pressue (and believe me even if we are done we won’t be). It’s not quite Captain Sobel from Band of Brothers but it will be close.

So as the antibiotics go over the hump I’m going to do my best to recuperate because after today it is crunch time.
Other than deep cleaning and my son’s