Tag Archives: MSNBC

Chuck Todd, Joe Manchin, Adrienne Elrod and the Corporate Media

chuck todd

The past week has convinced me once again that the corporate media is worse than useless.  The only reason for watching CNN and MSNBC is to collect examples of outrageous normalizing and insider smugness, examples of how the corporate media has sold us out, is selling us out and will get Trump re-elected.

The Joe Scarborough and dreadful Mika lecture about booing Donald Trump just did it for me.  I cannot watch anymore, not even to record the media’s subversive ushering-in of the take over of democracy by authoritarianism.

But, like a partner in a bad relationship, I thought I’d listen to Ari Melber, for a minute, while I looked for my copy of Elmer Gantry.  I was so wrong to do this.

When my television records a program, it starts early, so I must watch at least a few minutes of the amazingly obnoxious, arrogant and over-rated Chuck Todd.

There he was with one of my least favorite people in the world, Adrienne Elrod, one of the Clinton entitled jerk women (like Neera Tandem).  These women helped lose the 2016 election for the Democrats but will never, never forgive Bernie Sanders for exercising his political right to run for election.  They are bitter, nasty and never pass up an opportunity to trash Sanders.

The panel was talking about Joe Manchin’s decision to give an interview to Fox News in which he announced that if Bernie Sanders was the Democratic candidate, he would vote for Trump.  This video clip just made me sick and enraged me.  Joe Manchin is such a disgrace to the Democratic party.  Why they support him I don’t know.  He votes with the Republicans but still the leadership protects him.  Why would we want this jerk?

I phoned Manchin’s office earlier in the day to express my outrage that he had made such an announcement.  The staffer who took my call, said with obvious contemptuous disdain at the end of the call: “Have a nice day.”  “Oh you too.”  I answered back.  “You should be ashamed to work for this man.”

Elrod, however, predictably pronounced that Manchin’s statement that he would VOTE FOR A REPUBLICAN CRIMINAL AND MADMAN over Bernie Sanders wasn’t a problem at all.  If anyone in the party had said that they would vote for Trump over Clinton, people like the dreadful Adrienne Elrod would have been all over television talking party treason and accusing them of sexism. Why these programs continue to have her on just escapes me.  They do a story about Bernie Sanders and then have ADRIENNE ELROD on to comment on it, or Neera F…ing Tandem.  Jesus.

Then, after Elrod was finished saying that Manchin’s statement really wasn’t a problem, this other guest – a smirking, arrogant somebody  said that “everyone in Washington” understood Manchin as a Democrat from West Virginia and that only Bernie would have called Manchin on his statement.  The panel nodded their heads.

It is the contempt, the insider smirk, the “real players understand that you always sell your soul for political advantage” people that just make me sick.  I hate their satisfaction, their smug confidence that the real players all understand that this is just a game for power and they laugh at the rest of us who take it seriously, have to take it seriously because it means our lives.

I don’t know who this guy is.  But, after he said that Bernie was the only rube who would be so unsophisticated not to know that real cool people sell their souls every day, he said that Bernie should have just been quiet for the “good of the party.”

What?  What?

Joe F…ing Manchin should be quiet for the good of the party and not make a public statement (on Fox News) that he will VOTE FOR A REPUBLICAN MEMBER OF AN INTERNATIONAL CRIME SYNDICATE rather than vote for Bernie Sanders, the Democratic nominee.

Joe Manchin makes a cynical, self-interested statement that he would rather support a man who doesn’t believe in democracy rather than his party’s supposed candidate and they are blaming Bernie?  Bernie should just be quiet?

But, the arrogant F… and Chuck Todd bent over laughing at the idiocy of Sanders calling Manchin out.  To them it is laughable idiocy to believe in integrity, in morals.  They are what we need to get rid of – people who think selling their souls is such an ever day occurrence that they think the rest of us are stupid for objecting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“I trust him.” Famous last words about Durham and Barr

barr

  • The Bill Barr’s DOJ has initiated a criminal investigation into its own Russia investigation, clearly sending a message that there is reason to believe crimes were committed when the original investigation of the Russia connection was started.
  • This is exactly what Trump promised Hillary Clinton he would do, i.e., start criminal investigation and prosecution of his political enemies.
  • But, the usual corporate news media “our institutions will hold” chorus shrugs it off.
  • Barbara McCabe said it’s a “distraction” from the impeachment inquiry, a stunt.
  • Several commentators (including Sean Patrick Maloney, D-NY) dismissed the inquiry in interviews by saying who cares, there’s nothing to find. Chuck Rosenberg, interviewed on Rachael Maddow, said: “I have a feeling that this is going nowhere.”
  • In taking this position, these pundits ignore (n tot for the first time) the clear fact that this is a serious step towards authoritarianism.
  • The chorus of “our institutions will save us” commentators, including chief normalizer Chuck Rosenberg, are praising John Durham, Barr’s co-conspirator who is traveling the world trying not to “find evidence” as corporate media pundits describe it, but to find people who will manufacture evidence to fit their investigation.
  • In an interview Thursday night on Rachael Maddow, Rosenberg said of Durham: “I know, I like, and I admire John Durham. I trust him.”
  • You will remember that Rosenberg (whose podcast MSNBC advertises) also said that William Barr was an institutionalist, implying that Barr would never allow partisan politics to enter the hallowed halls of the Justice Department.
  • He was outrageously wrong then and he is wrong now.
  • Rosenberg pointed out that perhaps there were “discordant” notes sounded by the initiation of a criminal investigation. Dear, dear, discordant notes.
  • Rosenberg continued that if we want John Durham to “get to the bottom of this” we should welcome a grand jury. So, according to the “institutionalist chorus” we should just shrug our shoulders and wait and see.  Just like they advised us to do with Barr.
  • “John,” Rosenberg stressed to reassure, “needs some factual basis in order to open a grand jury.” When Maddow pointed out that Bill Barr was the official deciding what “factual basis” met the threshold, Rosenberg had no answer.  But, his faith in the integrity of the Justice Department was still there.
  • Mine is not.
  • In a ridiculously contradictory set of statements, Rosenberg pointed out that he worried about the “chilling effect” that the initiation of such an investigation would have. But, Durham, he said, was “a credible prosecutor.”
  • Interestingly, Rosenberg noted that Durham “has been asked to do things like this before and…has closed…investigations after several years without bringing charges.”
  • That makes Durham the perfect stooge to investigate, feed into the Republican narrative that it was the Trump Campaign that was wronged in the 2016 election, and then after two years of harassment, quietly drop the investigation.
  • Later in Thursday night’s Rachael Maddow show, David Lohfman, former head of the counterintelligence section inside the Justice Department said, “I have high regard for John Durham.” He is “a distinguished prosecutor.”  “It’s hard for me to imagine that John Durham would associate himself with the frivolous initiation of a criminal investigation.”
  • But, then a few seconds later, Lohfman noted that the people in the Justice department would have been “derelict if we had not pursued that line of investigation.” They would have been derelict not to pursue it, therefore there was no question in his mind that the investigation was appropriate.  But, the “distinguished prosecutor” is perfectly reasonable to lend his credibility to the initiation of an investigation that clearly targets those who started the initial investigation.  There are no people of courage any more.
  • Lohfman ended the interview by saying: “I have every confidence that John Durham will withstand any pressures that may buffet him to go down a road that he thinks is not supported by the facts and law.” But, he has just done that by joining this new criminal investigation.
  • If the investigation is unwarranted, and also will contribute to chilling future investigations, why didn’t Durham if he is such a hero, refuse to take part in it.
  • The job of a prosecutor is not to expend taxpayer money and harass people pursuing frivolous investigations when s/he thinks there’s nothing there. That is an abuse of office.
  • But none of the “our institutions will save us” chorus will say that. No, they just assure us that Bill Barr or Durham are great people of integrity.
  • Let’s not take too seriously the initiation of a criminal investigation into Donald Trump’s political opponents. The institutions will save us.
  • I agree with people who have argued that Bill Barr is the most dangerous bull in the heard. He must be impeached, now.

Normalizing Genocide: The Corporate Media

Afternoon Notes: The Media

  • I still can’t believe that we have allowed a moron to displace 100,000 people and provoke what Richard Engels calls “ethnic cleansing” and corporate news commentators continue to laugh and joke and normalize the political situation.
  • I like Chris Hayes. I was delighted to see him come from the Nation Magazine to host a major MSNBC news program.  I cheered for him on his first night when he was so uncomfortable and anxious, he could barely stay in his seat. But, I am now ashamed of him and for him. The nightly news is not a game show.  It is not a celebrity event.  This is true any time, but especially at the moment when democracy hangs in the balance in this country.
  • This is not a game. There’s nothing funny about a president who provokes genocide and an “opposition party” that is too cowardly to respond.
  • Chris Hayes running onto the set like a stand-up comic, to wild applause is undignified, inappropriate and offensive.
  • hayes studio

FIRE CHRIS MATTHEWS

After MSNBC fired Keith Olberman, I stopped watching the news for a few years.  I was just so disgusted.  Olberman was brilliant and I don’t care how difficult he was to work with, he was a brilliant mind, a great artistic talent and a dynamite political commentator.  I am sure that people like Chris Matthews and Joe Scarborough are also a pain in the ass to get along with and they don’t have a hundredth of the talent of a Keith Olberman.  In fact, a few years ago when I was watching hours of news every night, I couldn’t figure out why MSNBC didn’t get rid of Chris Matthews.

This year’s election has drawn me back into the news junkie world and I am even more astounded that people like Chris Matthws, Scarborough and Mika are still around, taking up valuable ideological real estate.

MSNBC announced last year, I think, that they were moving away from their supposed left wing format.  This has included getting rid of Ed Schultz in the nightly lineup, but the terrible three are still there.

Tonight is just one example of why I detest Chris Matthews.  He found it necessary, after inviting Bernie Sanders’ campaign manager, Jeff Weaver, on his program, to take the opportunity to be outrageously rude to him.  In a really offensive little rant, Matthews acted condescending and dismissive of Weaver’s point that Sanders had been involved in the struggle for racial justice.   Obviously I have not heard everything Chris Matthews has ever said but I have watched a lot of hours of Hardball and I don’t remember him ever talking this disrespectfully to a representative of one of the other campaigns.  A fawning sycophant, Matthews has never challenged Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton (or anyone else for that matter)  in such a nasty way.  “You’ve been great to come on the show a number of times.”  He started out with Weaver and then, Matthews became extremely agitated for some reason, and started attacking Weaver for saying that Sanders was in the front lines of the fight for economic justice.  Weaver had said that some of the policies of the Clinton administration worked against the interests of African Americans.

“In political terms, you’ve said that the president and his wife “trimmed” – (said Matthews)  “…they were really not helping black people, but pretending to.  That’s pretty strong charge against the guy.”    “Where was Bernie Sanders?  He wasn’t on the front lines?  What do you mean the front lines?  Bernie Sanders is probably a very good guy….but he wasn’t on the front lines.  Look him up on the…(and then facetiously) O.K. he was on the front lines.”

Matthews then cut to Rep. James Clyburn (who has just endorsed Clinton) and fed him the Clinton attack line: “Was Bernie Sanders on the front lines of issues involving race in this country?”  He asked Rep. Clyburn, clearly trying to provide him with one of the playbook Clinton attack narratives.

Matthews is clearly dismissive of Sanders.  He previously lectured some guest, saying with contempt that a Revolution just wasn’t going to happen.

I suppose nobody can afford to take Matthews on and tell him to fuck himself.  I wish somebody would.  These are the times when I would love to see Christopher Hichens back on television.

Why doesn’t MSNBC fire Chris Matthews?  What has he added to the political debate in ten years?

He invites guests on and then can barely stop talking long enough for them to comment.  He bullies young women, as he did when he had on a reporter from the National Review.  He’s a bully and a narcissist and has nothing new or interesting to say.   Why not fire him?