Dem 51
image description
GOP 49
image description

This Week in Freudenfreude: Drew Carey Is a Team Player

Perhaps this is ungenerous of us, but when we see a story about how celebrity X has donated $10,000 to hurricane relief, or $25,000 to fight homelessness, we're not quite sure that is as laudatory as the media makes it seem. Yes, $10,000 or $25,000 is a lot of money... to most people. But often, to the celebrity in question, it's effectively the equivalent of $50 or $100, compared to their total wealth. Plus, somehow, some way, the world became aware of their donation, which means they got some pretty good PR for their investment. We are sure the celebrity does not announce their donation 100% of the time, and that the information sometimes leaks out other ways. But we also are sure it's not 0% of the time, either.

In any event, this item is not about one of those occasions. Yes, the news leaked out, but it was sure to do so, as the beneficiaries included many, many members of the general public. And the giver, Drew Carey—comedian, actor, and current host of The Price is Right—definitely did not make a point of keeping his giving modest. The incident in question is the recent strike by the Writers Guild of America (WGA), which dragged on for 148 days. Carey wanted to make sure that the people walking the picket lines had something to eat, so he arranged with two nearby restaurants to charge everyone's bills to him. This is actually the second time he's done this; he made the same arrangement during the previous strike, back in 2007. However, while that tab ended up being about $70,000, the more recent tab set Carey back a bit more—over $1 million.

Since Carey was regularly posting the invite to social media, his generosity was not going to remain unknown. But the only reason the final tally became public, and that the story is in the news right now, is that the WGA recognized him with an award at their annual ceremony on Sunday night. And he told the crowd: "You writers—well not all of you, the Drew Carey Show writers—made me a fu**ing millionaire. Everybody in this room made some actor a millionaire. And you deserve all the money you get."

So, how is this a political story? Well, you might assume that as a Hollywood type who just gave $1 million to striking workers, he's a liberal and a Democrat. But no, he's actually a pretty staunch conservative-leaning Libertarian. And so we pass the story along to note that being wealthy and/or conservative does not necessarily mean being anti-labor. (Z)

This item appeared on Read it Monday through Friday for political and election news, Saturday for answers to reader's questions, and Sunday for letters from readers.                     State polls                     All Senate candidates