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Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:03 PM

 

Regarding MSNBC

William Rivers Pitt | The United States of Aftermath
Truthout

21 February 2013

(snip)

Over the last few years, MSNBC refashioned itself as the progressive news alternative to networks like Fox and CNN by giving Keith Olbermann an opportunity to do actual journalism on television for a few years, and by putting people like Rachel Maddow and Ed Schultz front and center. Even Chris Matthews, the human weathervane, appears to have gotten the memo. But I remember a phone call I got from an MSNBC producer in February of 2003. Hans Blix and his weapons inspectors had not been in Iraq for 100 hours when this woman called me on my cell, told me she'd read my book, and asked me to appear on the network.

There was, however, one caveat: she told me I was expected to argue that Blix and the inspectors were doing a terrible job and should be ignored, which just happened to be the exact line being peddled at the time by the Bush administration. I told the producer that I did not agree, that the inspectors needed to be given time to do their jobs, and that undermining them might lead to a devastating war. The MSNBC producer chuffed a cigarette-roughened laugh into my phone and hung up on me.

That happened - I remember the details not only because of how gruesome the conversation was, but because when she hung up on me, I almost lost control of my car and nearly wound up in the Charles River - and the fact of it tells you everything you need to know about MSNBC and the rest of the alphabet-soup cohort that is America's "mainstream" news media. I did not do what that MSNBC producer asked me to, but you can bet all the money you have that she found someone who would a few phone calls later. You might have even seen it on TV.

The rest: http://truth-out.org/opinion/item/14688-the-united-states-of-aftermath

MSNBC was one of the biggest promoters of the Iraq invasion. I don't care how many "liberals" they festoon the halls with. That blood does not wash off. Having said that, it's nice on occasion to watch a channel that isn't all about IOKIYAR. I don't ever, ever, ever take it seriously. It's still fucking corporate television news.

Never forget that.

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Arrow 131 replies Author Time Post
Reply Regarding MSNBC (Original post)
WilliamPitt Dec 2013 OP
spanone Dec 2013 #1
Baitball Blogger Dec 2013 #4
spanone Dec 2013 #5
tblue Dec 2013 #45
merrily Dec 2013 #82
elleng Dec 2013 #2
LineLineReply ?
WilliamPitt Dec 2013 #6
elleng Dec 2013 #10
WilliamPitt Dec 2013 #12
PatSeg Dec 2013 #14
YOHABLO Dec 2013 #74
hatrack Dec 2013 #127
pacalo Dec 2013 #19
MADem Dec 2013 #56
WilliamPitt Dec 2013 #57
MADem Dec 2013 #60
go west young man Dec 2013 #93
maddiemom Dec 2013 #94
go west young man Dec 2013 #95
MADem Dec 2013 #96
rhett o rick Dec 2013 #119
MADem Dec 2013 #123
sheshe2 Dec 2013 #126
7962 Dec 2013 #103
stopbush Dec 2013 #105
Spitfire of ATJ Dec 2013 #75
zentrum Dec 2013 #35
Baitball Blogger Dec 2013 #3
mstinamotorcity2 Dec 2013 #7
bullwinkle428 Dec 2013 #8
hedda_foil Dec 2013 #23
bullwinkle428 Dec 2013 #73
BlueStreak Dec 2013 #9
pacalo Dec 2013 #25
progressoid Dec 2013 #29
BlueStreak Dec 2013 #32
progressoid Dec 2013 #42
BlueStreak Dec 2013 #52
stopbush Dec 2013 #106
pacalo Dec 2013 #33
Jamaal510 Dec 2013 #62
pacalo Dec 2013 #63
Jamaal510 Dec 2013 #70
MADem Dec 2013 #64
MindMover Dec 2013 #77
MADem Dec 2013 #79
jeff47 Dec 2013 #115
KoKo Dec 2013 #11
riverbendviewgal Dec 2013 #13
SoapBox Dec 2013 #21
KarenS Dec 2013 #86
mahannah Dec 2013 #15
BlancheSplanchnik Dec 2013 #16
Roland99 Dec 2013 #17
ginnyinWI Dec 2013 #18
pacalo Dec 2013 #27
Hulk Dec 2013 #112
ginnyinWI Dec 2013 #130
Hulk Dec 2013 #131
Demoiselle Dec 2013 #20
2banon Dec 2013 #113
JDPriestly Dec 2013 #22
Enthusiast Dec 2013 #24
Bohunk68 Dec 2013 #40
herding cats Dec 2013 #26
glowing Dec 2013 #28
Fla Dem Dec 2013 #39
glowing Dec 2013 #44
think Dec 2013 #30
bbgrunt Dec 2013 #31
The Wielding Truth Dec 2013 #51
juajen Dec 2013 #78
kentuck Dec 2013 #34
watoos Dec 2013 #47
Richard D Dec 2013 #36
Fla Dem Dec 2013 #37
WilliamPitt Dec 2013 #38
stopbush Dec 2013 #107
rhett o rick Dec 2013 #121
rosesaylavee Dec 2013 #41
wilsonbooks Dec 2013 #43
debunkthis Dec 2013 #46
tblue Dec 2013 #48
AceWheeler Dec 2013 #49
Cleita Dec 2013 #50
Mosaic Dec 2013 #53
Skittles Dec 2013 #54
MADem Dec 2013 #55
go west young man Dec 2013 #58
Mosaic Dec 2013 #61
go west young man Dec 2013 #91
Hekate Dec 2013 #59
JEFF9K Dec 2013 #65
Release The Hounds Dec 2013 #66
blkmusclmachine Dec 2013 #67
Hubert Flottz Dec 2013 #68
bloom Dec 2013 #69
WillyT Dec 2013 #71
calimary Dec 2013 #72
colsohlibgal Dec 2013 #76
silvershadow Dec 2013 #80
merrily Dec 2013 #81
merrily Dec 2013 #83
Sky Masterson Dec 2013 #84
watoos Dec 2013 #85
KoKo Dec 2013 #111
questionseverything Dec 2013 #120
H2O Man Dec 2013 #87
BrainDrain Dec 2013 #88
ctsnowman Dec 2013 #89
deutsey Dec 2013 #90
wyldwolf Dec 2013 #92
HomerRamone Dec 2013 #97
Liberal_Stalwart71 Dec 2013 #98
Moral Compass Dec 2013 #99
2banon Dec 2013 #117
Moral Compass Dec 2013 #122
2banon Dec 2013 #128
2banon Dec 2013 #129
JEB Dec 2013 #100
mike_c Dec 2013 #101
2banon Dec 2013 #114
JimboBillyBubbaBob Dec 2013 #102
D23MIURG23 Dec 2013 #104
malaise Dec 2013 #108
2banon Dec 2013 #109
valerief Dec 2013 #110
DaveT Dec 2013 #116
athenasatanjesus Dec 2013 #118
Proud Liberal Dem Dec 2013 #124
Uncle Joe Dec 2013 #125

Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:06 PM

1. as all television, the news departments are expected to make money, not just report news.

it's entertainment in a fish wrap

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Response to spanone (Reply #1)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:27 PM

4. And some would call it collusion.

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Response to Baitball Blogger (Reply #4)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:29 PM

5. the worse kind.

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Response to Baitball Blogger (Reply #4)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 08:01 PM

45. Free press is something you have to work to find

It's no longer readily available. Democracy Now is about as free as you're gonna get. Send them a few bucks when you have a chance.

Maybe Al Jazeera (I have no idea. I will never be surprised to find that network has been corrupted.) or LinkTV to some degree. Other than that, it's just corporate propaganda on the TV. A waste of your time.

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Response to tblue (Reply #45)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 06:44 AM

82. The USG did have a mole in Al Jazeera at one point. Allegedly.

He was fired.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:12 PM

2. 'a phone call I got from an MSNBC producer in February of 2003'

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Response to elleng (Reply #2)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:31 PM

6. ?

 

Yes?

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Response to WilliamPitt (Reply #6)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:36 PM

10. Was a while ago. Wondering

about usefulness for analogy today.

Be well, Will.

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Response to elleng (Reply #10)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:38 PM

12. A network is a network is a network.

 

The idea that an hour of Rachel Maddow five days a week equals a whole new way of doing billion-dollar business doesn't strike me as particularly realistic.

And this may be just my own ego, but THAT FUCKING HAPPENED. That producer is probably still working there.

It's TELEVISION. Period. Never trust it. Ever.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Reply #12)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:45 PM

14. I remember those days very well

MSNBC was the least awful of the networks, but they were peddling most of the right-wing talking points every day. The conservative guests far outnumbered the moderate and liberal ones. It wasn't until Keith started to question election results in Ohio in 2004, that MSNBC started to move slowly to the left. He evidently was the only journalist that the bosses couldn't control.

I remember Chris Matthews refusing to do a show because a super right-wing radio host was the guest against his wishes (Melanie something from San Francisco).

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Response to PatSeg (Reply #14)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 01:23 AM

74. It's a known fact that Matthews wouldn't go on unless Donahue was released .. guess what.

 

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Response to PatSeg (Reply #14)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 09:30 PM

127. "Least awful" still qualifies as "awful"

And it's just another business, it's about making money, and about advertising rates, when push comes to shove.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Reply #12)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:04 PM

19. I was going to ask if that producer is still there.

That may have been elleng's thinking, too. I appreciate your pointing out the incident.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Reply #12)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 09:25 PM

56. They've had three changes of owners in the last ten years. But whatever.

Throw out the TV, rely on word of mouth...?

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Response to MADem (Reply #56)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 09:36 PM

57. Yeah, that's the point.

 



Too much ownership of media is too much: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NBCUniversal#Subsidiaries

MADem: against anyone who is against the "mainstream."

Lather, rinse, repeat.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Reply #57)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 09:55 PM

60. Oh please, ease back on the drama. I like the Rachel Maddow MSNBC better than the

Ann Coulter-Laura Ingraham-Michael Savage-Don Imus MSNBC.

If you want to insist, con brio, as always, that there's no difference between then and now, be my guest. Just don't expect me or anyone else with eyes and reasoning ability to swallow that nonsense. I refuse to throw an imperfect baby out with the bathwater. That's your stock in trade. You throw "straw man" at me (inaccurately and out-of-context, too), I'll retort with "Hair on fire, as usual."

Maybe you should just try to learn to approach things with a jaundiced eye, instead of getting all hot-breathed "good and evil" about things? Nuance is a skill that most people appreciate more as they age, and you, like the rest of us, aren't getting any younger. That "to the barricades" schtick is getting shopworn.

Lather, rinse, repeat INDEED. Go ahead and get all your news from the Boston Phoenix, then...oh wait, they went out of business. Unsustainable business model...ain't that a bummer.

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Response to MADem (Reply #60)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 10:27 AM

93. Take it easy... Hillary.

 

Still reeling over your lack of love around here?

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Response to go west young man (Reply #93)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 10:44 AM

94. Speaking of Hillary...

I'm still aggrieved over why there was "Whitewater" all those years later, while Cheney waltzed happily back and forth with Halliburton and KBR made a fortune from Iraq.

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Response to maddiemom (Reply #94)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 11:09 AM

95. The righties "nothing there" scandals

 

always reach the top of the news cycle (that awful liberal media ya know? ) Whereas serious scandals are buried as quickly as possible by the corporate controlled media. (of which MadDem here seems quite content with). By their logic GE, the Rockefellers, and MSNBC have changed their ways because they hired 5 separate managers. So we should never pigeon hole them and give them credit for being the best liberal mainstream outlet....even with their crap airtime wasted on prison shows with no social benefit. But lets not throw the baby out with the bathwater they say. The baby is clean 5 days a week but on the weekend the baby is bathing in shit.

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Response to go west young man (Reply #95)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 11:28 AM

96. Way to completely miss the point I was advancing.

But hey, I see the only way you can communicate is through snark and insults.

Your words say more about you than I ever could.

For-profit corporations are going to make money any way they can. MSNBC makes money--with almost NO expenditure--on those shows.

Here's an idea--maybe you could try it, if you're so frantically aggrieved--don't watch. Pick up your remote, push the button with finger pudgy or lean, and watch something else.



And if you think calling a Democrat "Hillary" is an insult, you're gonna really have something to cry about in a couple of years....

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Response to MADem (Reply #96)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 04:25 PM

119. And you think you'll have the last laugh as Wall Street reigns supreme and the

 

middle class continues to crumble under our feet.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #119)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 08:19 PM

123. From what nether orifice you pulled that complete invention, I've no idea. It's not true.

In fact, you are rudely insulting me, and I don't appreciate it.

I guess I want the middle class to "crumple" so badly that I support a raise in the minimum wage to a range from a floor of fifteen dollars to a ceiling of twenty-two dollars. I've said this time and time again on this board, but apparently, to you, that's wanting the middle class to crumple--ummmm hmmmm.

You don't get to tell untruths about me without me pointing it out--and you just laid a doozie with that nasty remark.

I think I will have the last laugh, as I call attention to your bullshit comments about me. Shame on you, saying shit like that just because you are ANGRY that Senator Warren isn't running, and shame on you for taking your childish frustrations out on me-- ha ha ha. How very immature of you to transfer your rage over a decision made by a politician to a poster on a message board--hee hee hee. But I guess resorting to confabulation is the only available refuge when you've got nothing substantive to say.

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Response to MADem (Reply #96)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 09:19 PM

126. Kick for you MADem!

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Response to MADem (Reply #60)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 01:17 PM

103. Careful, you're making too much sense!

 

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Response to MADem (Reply #60)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 01:59 PM

105. Agreed.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Reply #12)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 01:24 AM

75. They bought the whole, "This is a center-right country" lie....

 

Then they stupidly saw FOX "News" as a "success" based on their ratings.

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Response to elleng (Reply #10)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:53 PM

35. You're kidding.

You think showing how they wanted to drive the country into war in 2003 is not still relevant to who they are?

Have you seen any major mea culpa's or exposes on MSNBC about the utter corruption and evil of that on-going war-profiteering racket otherwise known as the Iraq War 2?

Our attention span should be at least as long as the crime itself.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:27 PM

3. Tim Russert had a direct line to the White House.

'nuff said.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:31 PM

7. Thank you

know I won't. We have caught them all including cnn and cbs of mis-handling the truth. LYING.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:32 PM

8. K&R. You forgot to mention their termination of Phil Donahue in the Iraq

lead-up, when he hosted their highest-rated show.

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Response to bullwinkle428 (Reply #8)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:12 PM

23. Did . you read Will's whole piece at the link? Because the Phil Donahue firing is included.

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Response to hedda_foil (Reply #23)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 12:40 AM

73. I apologize - I clicked on the link and skimmed the full piece,

but I obviously didn't check it closely enough. Sorry for the oversight.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:34 PM

9. Their "liberalism" is simply market segmentation

 

They let Rev Al go off about race relations because they figure nobody is listening. Tweety isn't a liberal at all. He and Laurence are there mostly because they enjoy the sounds of their own voices so much. Ed is a bit of fun. They aren't sure what to do with him. Carnacki, Harris-Perry, and Hedges are all wonks. The network figures they can't hurt anybody too much. Rachael is the only one that could be called an influential liberal on the network, and I'm sure they works with strict boundaries as well.

MSNBC doesn't even make more than a half-assed effort to produce anything. They run the same talking heads out there night after night -- sometimes the same one covering 3 or 4 of the shows. And they run mostly the same stories on all the programs. It is as if they figure they are the only progressive option, so it doesn't matter what they do. The audience will be the same size anyway.

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Response to BlueStreak (Reply #9)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:13 PM

25. The 3-day weekend airing of the prison programs is a slap in the face to their viewers.

Rachel Maddow, who has hinted that she feels the same, mentioned recently that the ratings for the prison programs are high. Makes me wonder if the rating numbers can be trusted.

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Response to pacalo (Reply #25)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:40 PM

29. Money. That's the bottom line.

Those prison shows are easy money.

When they find somebody that makes more money for them than Rachel, it's the door for her.

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Response to progressoid (Reply #29)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:45 PM

32. The problem is that liberals generally don't sit around needing to be spoonfed propaganda 24x7

 

We might take a small dose of that MSNBC serves, but liberals are fundamentally different personalities than the people that watch either Faux or CNN. If they thought they could make money by running a reality teevee show with Rachael and Tweety over the weekend, they would do so.

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Response to BlueStreak (Reply #32)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 07:37 PM

42. True.

I can't stand that constant barrage of blather. Make the point and move on.

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Response to progressoid (Reply #42)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 08:47 PM

52. If they did that, they could just run from 6:30 - 6:40 each night

 

and be done with it. This is the problem with Cable. 10 minutes of real news to squeeze into 1440 minutes each day.

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Response to BlueStreak (Reply #52)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 02:02 PM

106. Ha! Good point - and funny.

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Response to progressoid (Reply #29)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:46 PM

33. Perhaps Rachel was thinking the same thing.

I know she must cringe each Friday when she has to segue into the sideshow that has nothing to do with a news network.

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Response to pacalo (Reply #25)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 10:01 PM

62. I admit I watch LockUp

when I have nothing else to do or no other shows to watch on weekends. It's not something I'm crazy about, but it does at least help motivate a person to keep their own life on track, seeing how awful life is behind bars.

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Response to Jamaal510 (Reply #62)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 10:12 PM

63. I have my own guilty pleasure...

I like to watch the true murder mysteries on Discovery-ID.

My issue with "Lock-Up" is that it's being aired on a news network. It takes up slots that could be used for other progressive news programs. My husband said that those programs that air before 6 p.m., which currently air only once per day, should be shown in rotation like the evening shows are.

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Response to pacalo (Reply #63)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 11:55 PM

70. I like that idea,

and I don't know why MSNBC doesn't do that for shows like PoliticsNation and others that only air once. Maybe it costs them more to do that.

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Response to pacalo (Reply #25)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 10:28 PM

64. It's cheap to do it that way. I guess liberals do shit on weekends, and conservatives sit

on their couches when they aren't in church.

Running taped programming requires one guy in a booth pushing buttons. There are no studio cameramen, no lighting people, no makeup and wardrobe people, no directors, no producers, no "talent," no fact checkers, no nobody. The lights are off. A guy sits in a booth, he punches buttons and he makes sure the signal is going out. What could be easier, and cheaper? Dozens of salaries, or one?

Also, the Prison Shows grab a lot of right wing viewers--along with viewers in (irony alert) minimum security prisons!!! People like it because if they can't find anything to watch, they flip over to "LOCKUP" and pat themselves on the back that they aren't doing time in the Big House, or something.

It helps their ratings bottom line, AND it's cheap to run--it generates profit for them so they can afford to pay Maddow, Ed, et. al.

Here is an article that explains why they have kept it on after all these years--it is a "ratings juggernaut:"

http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/msnbcs-lockup-documentary-or-reality-tv/2011/06/03/gIQAQ8853H_story.html

“ ‘Lockup’ just doesn’t need help,” says MSNBC’s long-form vice president, Scott Hooker. “It has proven it’s something that can succeed on its own. People know it is there.”

On the noisy MSNBC/Fox News/CNN battlefield, MSNBC wins on this one front. The show has become such a phenomenon that its schedulers can’t help running it hour upon hour upon hour.

For the year to date, in the valued 25-to-54 age group, “Lockup” averages 263,000 viewers, compared with, for example, 189,000 for MSNBC’s “The Chris Matthews Show.”

In Washington, repeats of “Lockup” draw more 25-to-54-year-olds than live newscasts on the other cable channels. In the MSNBC fly zone, where cuss words from Mark Halperin create dust storms, the profane aggression of “Lockup” provides a reliable ratings uplift. And “Lockup” has morphed into next-generation iterations: “Lockup: Raw” (a making-of series), “Lockup: World Tour” (foreign jails) and “Life After Lockup” (post-release)......The “Lockup” Facebook page lit up on Saturday, May 7, when the series was bumped for Osama bin Laden coverage.

“The idiot is dead,” fumed one fan, “put my show on.”.......On the other hand, when Cairo erupted one day this winter, Fox News and CNN continued their live coverage through the following Saturday night. MSNBC flipped to “Lockup”— and attracted twice the viewers.

Caught in the middle is MSNBC’s Hooker. He wants to deliver the show to the fans he knows are expecting it while deferring to news decisions. “There are difficult calls to be made,” he says. “Sometimes we feel great. Other times, not so great. It can be tricky.”

The phenomenon defies MSNBC’s business model: a line-extension amortizing the expense of its NBC parent. NBC doesn’t even generate “Lockup.” Los Angeles-based 44 Blue Productions handles all filming and post-editing. (44 Blue was in town this year for its reality pilot “Potomac Fever.”) MSNBC’s reliance on 44 Blue represents the greatest amount of outsourcing by a news channel in TV today, possibly ever.

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Response to MADem (Reply #64)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 02:12 AM

77. I think the "lick the anus of Comcast/GE crowd" ....

Last edited Fri Dec 6, 2013, 03:27 AM - Edit history (3)

over at MSNBC have been told to keep the masses slothering at the human pit of depravity, {oh yea, George, I said depravity} ....

so they spew this ridiculous "it could be worse" lockup reality crapola at the liberalies ....

so to make sure we understand that if we get tooooo far outahand that ===

look, see them lockup fellers, well they are really screwed up and we do not wanna be one of them suckers ....

These corporate 1% got to keep them liberalies down on the farm, washing those pigs and feedin them chickens,,,,,,

and slavin away for those paycheck to paycheck starvation wages ./..

and ya betta consider youself lucke to stay outa those lookup reels ...

so hoist another jack and wish yo momma knew madiba

cause won day they could come for u

to put yu in them lookup to lockup reelies ...

ya stinkin "want everythin for nothin" liberalie .....


===================================================================================

On a serious note ... one out of every 15 people in the USA will be incarcerated and one out of every 3 African Americans will be incarcerated ... enough with the police state already ... does anyone else agree with Carlin, that if Americans could watch executions on there tellie, that it would have the highest rating of any show ........


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Response to MindMover (Reply #77)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 04:09 AM

79. Honestly? I think if they could make "LOCKUP" money with live shows, they'd do it.

It never hurts to have a deep bench, and the junior varsity gets their training on weekends in most outlets.

That said, they can't make that kind of cash for doing so little with actual people and news! And the market share they get from Fauxsnooze-flippers isn't a small one, either.

Your comment about executions is salient--I think Carlin was on the mark, there. And I do think there is a "Lucky me" element to some of the viewers of the show. Others look at it and say "I could handle that, it ain't so bad," and still others wonder why they've cut out so much of the violence....?

It's a mixed bag watching that show--a lot of people watch it on weekends and don't go near the channel on weekdays--it's kinda like Nickelodeon by day, Adult Swim by night....never the twain shall meet!

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Response to pacalo (Reply #25)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 03:20 PM

115. They can't

The only cable network that consistently gets ratings above Nielsen's margin of error is ESPN.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:38 PM

11. Many of us Old Timers here remember that. Thanks for reposting. eom

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:42 PM

13. I rarely watch MSNBC now

There is now a fakeness showing up...Sorry, my gut feeling is they are toeing , not the Obama line but the corporation line

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Response to riverbendviewgal (Reply #13)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:09 PM

21. Ditto

And my blood pressure is better for turning them off.

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Response to riverbendviewgal (Reply #13)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 07:58 AM

86. Yep, us too,,,, we just slowly stopped.

There IS a fakeness showing up.

And I agree that it's the corporate line they're toeing.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:48 PM

15. Question everything. I know, I know "the choir".

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:51 PM

16. wow. if something like that happened to me,

I'd nearly drive into the ditch too.


Wow. They're disgusting. I don't watch teevee so I forget how horrible and fake and vapid and dishonest and poisonous it is.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 05:52 PM

17. Look at how Phil Donahue and Ashleigh Banfield were gone from the MSNBC landscape

in the blink of an eye.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:00 PM

18. Well here's what I think

Couple of years ago we gave up cable and went to free TV with a Tivo, so the only news I get is network and PBS with its BBC World News. I'm given straight news for the most part (especially from BBC). I'm not watching anything with a strong spin in either direction. I have been watching NBC's half hour plus BBC's live late-night news at 10 p.m. Central. I get a quick overview of what happened that day, and if I want more I can find it in other media. TV should never be the sole source of information.

The result is that I feel I have a more balanced life. Life is real, not divided into "us" v.s. "them" all the time. People are just people and some are bad, some good. The intense partisanship I used to feel is gone and that feels good.

I still have my opinions but without being cattle-prodded nightly by MSNBC or anyone, I feel balanced and okay--not filled with outrage or frustration. Leaves more room for other things. I'm actually a lot more active doing things that might actually make the world a better place instead of just being a spectator (volunteering at a local no-kill animal shelter). Feeling powerless is really immobilizing. The cables exaggerate everything, especially the negative stuff! Keeps the eyeballs glued in a tough market.

My dad poisoned himself in his old age with daily doses of FOX news network outrage. It made him a depressed and bitter old man until he died three years ago. He actually said, at 82, that he was glad he wasn't going to live much longer because the world was so bad! I would really hate to ever become a liberal version of that.

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Response to ginnyinWI (Reply #18)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:22 PM

27. I don't watch tv news, either, & I can relate to the benefits you described.

The result is that I feel I have a more balanced life. Life is real, not divided into "us" v.s. "them" all the time. People are just people and some are bad, some good. The intense partisanship I used to feel is gone and that feels good.

I still have my opinions but without being cattle-prodded nightly by MSNBC or anyone, I feel balanced and okay--not filled with outrage or frustration. Leaves more room for other things.


I get all of my news on DU. I dvr all the evening MSNBC shows, including (until last week) Martin Bashir, but the truth is I don't have time to watch all of them. I record them in case something interesting is mentioned on DU.

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Response to ginnyinWI (Reply #18)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 02:41 PM

112. I appreciate the post.

This is where I'm at. I pretty much gave up on MSNBC. I scan through fox-nonsense just for my curiosity to see how absolute bat-shit crazy the Obama-haters can be. It doesn't take much to wear me out. Maybe two minutes of vannity, about three of bor, and there really isn't much of value to tune into after that. The positive side is that I KNOW what the loonies are spewing, so I can better understand my friends on the right that hate Obama with such passion.

I've really made an attempt to watch NPR and Al Jazeera as my main sources of actual news and keeping up on what is happening in the world. I realize the koch brothers are major contributors to NPR, so I even have to take that with a grain of salt, or figure I am getting "selective news" at best. The news commentators are pretty decent folks there though.

Isn't it a shame, our country has sunk to this? I remember my dad responding to me when I was a young man, that the poor Russians were kept so uninformed of what is really going on with their government and being fed propaganda so that they are in the dark to the evils that exist in their government, and my dad responded quite simply with, "Don't fool yourself. THIS COUNTRY has the best propaganda machine in the world, and don't ever forget it." That was probably back in late 50's or early 60's, and he was right then. It's ten-fold worse today than it was then, or maybe I just realize it more clearly today, as it's so blatant.

!984 is here and then some.

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Response to Hulk (Reply #112)

Sat Dec 7, 2013, 01:42 AM

130. Yes. We are only told what they think we should hear.

But the internet has broken that down to a large degree, if you know where to look. For example, there is Fukushima. Hardly a word about it in any of the media. I get Enenews on my Facebook page and read the most frightening stuff. There is hardly anything even on DU about it.

So why pay for channels that you aren't getting real information from? Oh and in the 43 months we've been off the cable, we have saved at least $2,365, and that is assuming that the price has not increased in the last almost four years--and that wouldn't happen.

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Response to ginnyinWI (Reply #130)

Sat Dec 7, 2013, 01:36 PM

131. Love the savings!

I agree that it would be great to just drop cable. It pretty much is a waste. Any movies I want to watch I can grab out of my Roku box or subscribe to Netflix...or just forget the tube altogether.

Unfortunately my wife can't live without it. She is from Mexico, and she enjoys the "tele-novelas" so much (Spanish soaps). I'd LOVE to cut it out. I remember traveling to Germany back in the late 60's and hearing that they had to pay a "tax" for radio and TV, and I thought "how terrible". Look at me now!

Someday...someday we'll do without. Wasting money, and we are living in central Mexico now for the next few months, and cable/internet costs us around $350 pesos a month...about $28-9. We are getting so ripped off in the States..but we just lap it up and go on our merry way.

So much of what we think we can't live without, we grew up WITHOUT, and certainly can live without.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:06 PM

20. I'm with you, Will.

If I want to see a balancing act, I'll go to the circus.

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Response to Demoiselle (Reply #20)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 02:45 PM

113. such a great line, gonna try and remember it.. ;) eom

 

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:10 PM

22. Why hasn't the press or at least members of the press apologized loud and clear for the

misinformation and propaganda they fed the American people before the Iraq War.

To the extent that a sensible old lady like me is a rebel -- a strong supporter (verbally at least) of Snowden and Occupy Wall Street and Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders and not of Hillary and the status quo politicians on both sides of the aisle, it is BECAUSE I WAS LIED TO IN THE RUN-UP TO THE IRAQ WAR.

I was lied to many times before that, but the lies prior to the Iraq War were colossal. And they came at a time when I was working long, long hours and unable to spend time researching the facts for myself. So when you read here that I am exploring conspiracy theories about our government's activities and seeing the negative side of a lot of the developments in our country, you will understand what nefarious conduct, what trauma aroused my super sensitive suspicions.

Those lies were crimes. They were crimes against the innocent Iraqis who died thanks to our weapons. They were crimes against the brave American soldiers who died and were injured in that needless war. They were crimes against me. And they were crimes against our democracy and all of the American people who are paying for that war and the burden and bad karma of the immorality of fighting a vanity war for no good reason.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:12 PM

24. There is no remaining unbiased media, period.

It sucks.

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Response to Enthusiast (Reply #24)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 07:16 PM

40. I don't think there ever was.

I do watch Al Jazeera for in-depth stuff. I get more news from LinkTV.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:17 PM

26. I guess the lesson here is to always be critical of what you're hearing.

I read your article, it was like a walk down memory lane. Even if in this case the memories weren't pleasant ones. In the case of the selling of the Iraq war, all the cable networks carried water for the administration as I recall. It wasn't the 'in' thing to question why, or even if for that matter, what was being presented was factual. It was all about meeting the agenda and bringing your viewers to heel. That was when I mostly stopped getting my news from places like MSNBC and CNN and instead turned to the internet.

I, personally, believe cable news-like networks are a form of entertainment, not unlike reality television in some respects. They both sensationalize and "sexy" up what they have to work with in order to catch the eyes of their desired demographic. Which isn't to say that some of what they're saying isn't based on fact, because some of it is. The problem is a person has to have the ability to weed the sensationalism from the rest to come up with those nuggets of news. I just don't have as much time, or interest, to spend doing that these days.

Thanks for sharing, I enjoyed the read.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:24 PM

28. Well, at the end of the day, GE owns them and war is good for the pockets of GE.

 

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Response to glowing (Reply #28)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 07:02 PM

39. Ao of March 19, 2013, GE no longer held any interst in NBC Universal.

"General Electric is out of the NBCUniversal business. Comcast today closed its $16.7B deal to buy the 49% of the entertainment company that GE continued to own after the companies formed a joint venture in January 2011."


http://www.deadline.com/2013/03/comcast-completes-acquisition-nbcuniversal/

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Response to Fla Dem (Reply #39)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 07:52 PM

44. Comcast is a rightwing toolbagging co.

 

But back in the ramp up for war, he did own them. NBC was the one caught with old retire higher ups working as media consultants and for war contractors.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:43 PM

30. It's all an illusion...

 

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:43 PM

31. I quit their station and pretty much all tv news after

Olbermann left. I still admire Cenk for turning them down. Your experience sounds similar. I liked Rachel when she started but then began noticing her limited coverage. Truth is, it is all corporate propaganda. Good on ya.

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Response to bbgrunt (Reply #31)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 08:40 PM

51. Gees.Trayvon's defense, K streets exposure,the pullout of troops from Iraq-live, election coverage

that is factual. I get that from MSNBC and much more. Michigan's fight and the exposure of Detroit's take over, who else gives that side?
Every station and every soul I talked to, except here, was pro Iraq invasion. I remember and I am thankful for the bits that reach me through MSNBC. PBS was selling the war hard and bowed to GW's cowboy swagger. I remember and I hope to see the line up of this side of news until other news programs start opening their greedy minds to the responsibilities of educated journalism.Who else focuses on voter denial and works to bring the story behind the new attacks of the corporates and the right wing?

They have Morning Joe and his swill, but that runs 24/7 on FOX the rest of them only dip in their toes to debunk Limbaugh/corp or Tea-party/frightened preppers. Just like Obama, he is not Gandhi so we slam him for not being the liberal who changes the world.I really like MSNBC and I really think they are doing a great job considering the fascist hold that is on our country.

It wasn't long ago when many of us shied from speaking out against the right. If we bite at MSNBC without support of it's many good points, we may break the thread that keeps it going. I don't want that.There are few voices who have breached the Clear channel/Koch Bros./Murdock wall that covers media. I support them all and hope that they stay where I and many others can draw some clarity from them.

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Response to The Wielding Truth (Reply #51)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 02:19 AM

78. I totally agree. I feel safer watching MSNBC than any other news channel.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:53 PM

34. I will take MSNBC seriously when...

they fire Joe Scarborough and replace him with a liberal host.

As it is, they know there is money to be made with a liberal audience. That is why they have liberals on air in the evenings. They do not believe they have as much influence as most DUers believe.

After all, we are talking about GE and Comcast....

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Response to kentuck (Reply #34)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 08:02 PM

47. It does not matter if they do,

 

The producers and management control the narrative. People like Rachel and ED merely put a liberal slant to the narrative they are permitted to talk about.
Ed Schultz better be careful talking about the TPP.
MSNBC, if truly liberal, would be pushing income inequality every day. Especially since the pope has their back.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:55 PM

36. Thank you, William

A great piece of writing and truth. Will do my best to spread this around.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 06:57 PM

37. Appreciate your opinion. But I for one am glad there is SOME progressive voices heard on the MSM

Yes they are corporate media, yes they may have to toe the line on some occasions, yes I was upset with their promotion of the Iraqi war, the firing of Phil Donahue and Keith. But bottom line they're all we have getting the progressive messaging out. And frankly I'll hold up any progressive to Rachel, Chris Hayes, Rev Al, Lawrence O'Donnell and a few others. Are they perfect, no. Do they check off "yes" on every single box on the ARE YOU A BLEEDING HEART LEFTY survey? Probably no. But they are the best we are going to get on a MSM channel, and they are pretty damn good and I'm glad they're on our side.

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Response to Fla Dem (Reply #37)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 07:00 PM

38. "and I'm glad they're on our side"

 

That network, its owners and advertisers, are not on our side.

Never forget that...is all I'm trying to say.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Reply #38)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 02:07 PM

107. But they're not on the side of conservatives, either.

They're on THEIR side, politics be damned. They're running a biz and making $. That's the only "side" that matters.

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Response to stopbush (Reply #107)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 04:32 PM

121. Balderdash! Making money had nothing to do with their decision to fire Donahue.

 

They let a couple of liberals on their network provided they dont get too uppity. If they do speak out, bingo-bango they are gone, like KO, Donahue, Bashir, and Cenk. I love Ms. Maddow but she walks a tight line.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 07:25 PM

41. I see four lights.

The more you write Will, the more I appreciate you being in the world at this time. Thank you for keeping the flame of truth regarding what's happened in the past 14 years lit and held high.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 07:46 PM

43. the corporate media played cheerleaders for the war.

I also remember that certain dems went along for the ride and I will never forget who they are.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 08:02 PM

46. Seems that most if not all

 

of the main stream media in our country is nothing but propaganda these days.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 08:02 PM

48. I could just



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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 08:08 PM

49. The issue is NOT the media. It's to consumer

Simple fact is, you can yell and scream, moan and groan, weep and wail all you want about the "Realities" that adhere to any corporate news media, all of which are for profit businesses, but if you do, you do so at the risk belaboring the obvious while ignoring the consumer of what's provided by this news media.

Those who seek news and information from ANY source range along a continuum between the rather gullible and those who can and do apply critical thinking skills. In my opinion, Fox news tends to play to the former, while MSNBC plays to the latter.

Whatever the case may be, some may well simply accept the information and "misinformation" disseminated by the various news media, while others will apply critical thinking. And that's what matters.

So I will continue to periodically watch MSNBC and avoid Fox, while sometimes sampling CNN. I know how to think and question. I am not gullible. I am not into confirmation bias. And last, but not least, I am a pragmatist who has moral values, the latter does not dominate the former.

So, William, given I am a critical thinker, I can apply that to what you wrote here and tell you that your message about corporate television news may seem important to you, but stating the obvious has little impact on me.

I'm left to conclude that you assume watchers of MSNBC can be, or are foolish, but I would imagine that, for the most part, they are not.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 08:35 PM

50. "It's still fucking corporate television news."

I never have forgotten. As long as faux pundits and journalists like Michael Steele, Joe Scarborough and Andrea Mitchell are still there, I will not trust them an iota.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 09:01 PM

53. The way they always defend the establishment

Is the main clue. They always, always defend the two party dictatorship. A third party is never talked about, another clue. And it's all about tradition if you watch closely, with the white's in the lead as usual, example Chris Matthews is their godfather.

They are the most fair and truthful of the big 3, so I'll give them that but they have their feet firmly planted inside the DC beltway, and that sucks.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 09:19 PM

54. THANK YOU

I'm sick of the illusion conservatives - and PLENTY of liberals have that MSNBC is progressive - they toss us a bone occasionally but they're corporate assholes

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 09:24 PM

55. GE owned most of that joint in 2003. They weren't at all "liberal."

That fat guy who got thin on the air, his name escapes me, and who eventually died of cancer, was running programming. That was a full decade ago. Ancient history. The guy fired Phil Donohue, as I recall and took over his show slot for a brief period of time. Before that, when MSNBC was first starting up in the mid nineties, they had Ann Coulter on their payroll. How anyone could mistake them for liberal in the early years is beyond me.

That "Jack Welch" seeded MSNBC back in those earlier years also hired Don Imus and Michael Savage.

Tim Russert had yet to take the BUSH button off the back lapel of the tux he wore to the Al Smith Dinner.

Many markets didn't even CARRY MSNBC--it didn't have anywhere near the reach that Fauxsnooze had.

Once upon a time, CBS was a champion of Truth, Justice and the American way. Then they fired Dan Rather. Then they didn't fire Lara Logan when she cobbled together a bullshit story out of bubble gum, baling wire and spurious sources.

When there is a change in management, there's often a change in philosophy.

The MSNBC of the Jack Welch era would never have hired Rachel Maddow, or Keith Olbermann. All of those changes happened after that asshole retired.

And MSNBC does now serve as the liberal answer to Fox. The numbers don't lie:



http://www.journalism.org/2012/11/16/final-weeks-mainstream-press/

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 09:49 PM

58. Mark Zucker and Olbermann made MSNBC profitable once again.

 

They were the model. Everyone else came after that. Phil Griffin was brought in to keep all the left leaners in check. Hence the reason people like Keith, or David Schuster and now Martin Bashir are gone. A minor step out of bounds is always turned into a reason for dismissal by Griffin. He's listening to his corporate masters. Keith and David were loose cannons that "they" couldn't control. So they had to go. Martin spoke too much direct truth the other day. To understand the logic at MSNBC is near impossible. Just look at the ridiculous non stop prison crap. Griffin is obviously just fucking lazy and content with not upsetting the apple cart driven by his masters. If he had half a real spine he would fill that air space with meaningful content. Instead he chooses to wallow in shit.

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Response to go west young man (Reply #58)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 09:57 PM

61. Understanding their logic

My theory about the prison shit is they want their viewers to maintain low self esteem. Or they think so lowly of liberal Americans, that they put that crap on to scare the living shit out of their viewers. More of that corporate, traditional, religious rigidity that the elites use to keep the 99% in strict obedience, fear, poverty, and contrary to their script, in misery. How else to control the masses than spread misery? Fuck them, read news that is objective while still liberal. What a concept!

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Response to Mosaic (Reply #61)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 10:23 AM

91. Interesting theory.

 

I hadn't thought of that but these days it wouldn't surprise me in the least.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 09:52 PM

59. "Never forget that." ~~ I never do. Going "progressive" was a corporate decision...

I don't know why they did it, but they must have sensed a niche market. Got that Dems and Progressives? We're a niche market.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 10:38 PM

65. Follow the money. Corporate broadcasting gets its money from conservative advertisers.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 10:43 PM

66. Was the show going to be live?

You should have agreed with the producer and then told the truth once on the air.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 10:53 PM

67. MSNBC was one of the biggest promoters of the Iraq invasion.

 

So was the "Democratic Party," and HRC.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 11:22 PM

68. MSNBC has several right wingers to every left winger on their daily lineup.

Joe, Chuck, Andrea and several more right wingers, posing as honest, neutral, "presenters of the facts."

The "Fourth Branch of our American Government"the Free Press) is all about PR and very little about the facts anymore.

Selling wars and dirty corporate owned politicians, instead of truthfully informing the people in this country, like the founders intended.

Chuck even said, it's not his job to tell the truth. So I wonder, exactly what Chuck's job really is? The Daily Run Down's job seems to be, to run down every democrat in Washington including Mr. Obama.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 11:54 PM

69. I'm always surprised when people suggest that MSNBC is left-wing.

As if every one of their shows is. As if it is somehow a balance to FOX.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Dec 5, 2013, 11:56 PM

71. HUGE K & R !!! - Thank You !!!

 


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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 12:10 AM

72. I'll never forget that lovely Chris Matthews abomination - "we're all neocons now."

After the White House squatter pranced around with his stuffed flight suit and his "Mission Accomplished" banner. Revolting!!! And I remember you could almost feel the hard-on Matthews had stuffed in HIS pants that night. I remember him yammering on about "that's a GUY! We've got a GUY for President. America likes a GUY for President!" What a ridiculous, embarrassing man-crush he yammered on about. Just disgusting and repulsive! You just can't get up off your knees to this pompous lying cheating chickenhawk poseur, Matthews - so what does that make YOU, then?

I'm STILL angry about it. And I still take everything Chris Matthews says with a grain of salt the size of the Matterhorn. What a disgrace. He was bush's Monica for sure. Sure had his Presidential Kneepads at the ready.

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Response to calimary (Reply #72)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 01:26 AM

76. OMG, I Won't Forget Tweety Drooling Over Dubya Either

He went beyond a blushing schoolgirl, I remember watching it with disgust and amazement.

MSNBC all but had the pom poms out for the Iraq run up. I remember Donahue saying he was told he had to have 2 conservatives on for every liberal, and that was counting him. Then when they fired him they had the nerve to replace him with a lunatic loudmouth fascist like Michael Wiener/Savage. The cheerleading for the Iraq war all around is a shameful period in our history, corporate media goes to bat for Halliburton making millions. Nobody was asking hard questions, Edward R was spinning in his grave.

I've heard Cenk say he turned down a lot of money from them because he refused to stay within the boundaries they wanted for him. Now they have turned on and turned out Martin Bashir. And they still have good old Morning Joe on.

God I miss Current TV, shame on you Al Gore.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 06:00 AM

80. They got rid of Phil Donahue. That pretty much sums it up. But yeah, they have moved

 

toward the progressives for a few years. For whatever their contributions might be worth.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 06:22 AM

81. Correct. MSNBC began switching when Bush's poll numbers tanked.

I guess they got that they were not going to outFox Fox and should give up trying to compete with Fox and try being the only blue station on the dial (outside the Comedy Channel).

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Response to merrily (Reply #81)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 07:13 AM

83. I should add: most of the msm has that same blood on its hands.

Remember that, the next time all of them seem to be beating the drum for the same thing.

It's no accident.

In fact, pretty soon, we'll probably be hearing how great TPP is going to be.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 07:25 AM

84. They have the same blood on their hands.

Chris Matthews was(is) such a tool.
I still haven't forgiven Hillary Clinton for voting for the Iraq Res.
That period of time proved that nobody up there had a spine at all besides Paul Wellstone. Buddha rest his soul.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 07:43 AM

85. I see a lot of talk about Donahue and Olbermann

 

but Dylan Ratigan was exposing crony capitalism before he got canned.

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Response to watoos (Reply #85)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 02:40 PM

111. Yes he did. Thanks for reminding us. eom

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Response to watoos (Reply #85)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 04:28 PM

120. ratigan was great

but dont forget dan abrams being canned for questioning why rove was above a house subpoena

msnbc just plays the "good cop" in the theater that was once the news

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 08:15 AM

87. Thank you.

Recommended.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 09:03 AM

88. Agree..K&R....raised fist....

 

and a rousing cry of "Aux Barricades!!".

I still get that icky WTF feeling whenever I remember Tweety's "tingly leg" comment.

I liked Keith for his reporting, his devastatingly pointed snark, and his ability to accurately project the outrage we all felt.

Rachel I like ALL the time.

The others are kinda...meh...IMHO.

Nuance is a nice thing and can be used to make subtle points, but unfortunately subtle points are pretty much lost on Fox News and anyone who subsists on Fox News. So the "man the barricades" is usually the only thing that will work with them.

I have no doubt at all that if the financial gods will it, then MSNBC will gladly revert to safe, idiotic, false equivalency in the hopes of keeping up with whatever Jones's happen to be the corrupt norm of the moment. ANYTHING on network or cable "News" TV is there for two reasons and TWO reasons ONLY, ratings and revenue. Fail in either one and you will be gone. And THAT my friends is a solid, no bullshit FACT.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 09:33 AM

89. K & R

All of the MSM is in the tank for the corporatocracy to one degree or another.

Peace,

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 09:53 AM

90. I always felt MSNBC's "progressivism" was more about marketing than politics

There was (and still is) an underserved demographic that "leans forward" and hates FOX. The success of The Daily Show and Stephen Colbert, combined with the corporate insiders crunching all that data they compile on us suggested that MSNBC could tap that market by putting on some (more or less) center-left talk shows on weeknight evenings.

They hedged their bets, though, by making sure the allegedly balanced Morning Joke had the morning slot during the week and the popular prison shows, etc., were on during much of the weekend.

I think the moment this model stops generating revenue for them, MSNBC will pull the plug on it.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 10:24 AM

92. One thing you can say about MSNBC

They saw an excellent business opportunity with a growing progressive audience and took it.

I recall an article I read when I worked in radio regarding music formats. To potential owners of new stations, it advised not to come in to a city and do a format that is already being done and done well just because you think you can do it better or it's the format you personally prefer. Find a different under-served audience and establish your brand.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 11:30 AM

97. Stewart and Colbert keep you better informed. Seriously.

Add me to the "stopped watching MSNBC after they fired Olbermann" list...

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 12:06 PM

98. How can y'all forget about Tweety creaming his pants over Trent Lott after what he said about

 

Strom Thurmond?

Humpf! Liberal, my ass!!

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 12:29 PM

99. Bread and Circus

I've never forgotten. What so many fail to see is that MSNBC adroitly straddles the fence, but if you distill it all down they always adhere to the corporate/security state narrative. One has to travel out of the country and just pick up a few publications to realize that everything we hear and read has a slant. At that time, the slant was that we were going into Iraq because, by God!, we were going into Iraq. Hans Blix couldn't be given time to show the world that those chemical weapons (which even if Sadam had had he couldn't have delivered to the U.S.) didn't exist because we were going to go in.Period. End of sentence. The U.S. had decided to wage unprovoked war. Again. We were going to go in with all guns blazing because we were going to go in, dammit! It was an elegant tautology.

The MSM, as we now call them, willingly and enthusiastically beat the drums of war. MSNBC was no exception. Chris Matthews, a supposed liberal Democrat, was the loudest and the most enthusiastic proponent of the Iraq war. At times, he made Fox seem measured and moderate.

These are the United States we live in. The press is no longer the 4th Estate, but is part of the apparatus of the national security state. They know very well what side their bread is buttered on.

What doesn't fit the narrative of the moment is disappeared. Anyone that has done any writing and taken a basic writing class knows that the narrative is crafted as much by what is left out as by what is left in.

Martin Bashir had to go because he said something true (albeit very offensive) about someone the power elite finds very useful--Sarah Palin. She distracts with a potent concoction of nativist, populist nonsense.

The whole show--whether Fox, NBC, ABC, CNN, MSNBC...is to distract us from what is really going on. The U.S., at some point during the Cheney administration (I do not say that with tongue in cheek) became a rogue nation. The blatant, deliberate amorality of our national policy and the easily discerned continuity of our brutal realpolitik reveals that our votes ceased counting some time ago.

We, the masses, are to be entertained while we are being robbed of our rights, our wealth, and our souls. A few of us, impotent Cassandras, try to point out what seems to us so very, very obvious...to no avail.

The truth is that you and me and everyone that posts here and on any site has to continue to live and we cannot muck with the power any more than any mere laborer can afford to buck the master.

We should all go back and read the powerful writings of the late, and very lamented Joe Baegant who spoke eloquently about how we're all caught in the hologram and cannot escape. At the end of his days, I believe he had lost all hope because we are as a people glued to our electronic input devices like fetal marsupials riding in their mother's warm pouch with their mouths glued to her life giving teat.

The elite fear us because we so many, but as long they provide us with bread and circus and the illusion that there are two sides to every issue (when, in actuality, there is always only one consensus) then all remains the same. We are not privy to the workings of power. We are just to go to work and then go home and play with our phones, wield electronic weapons on electronic battlefields against electronic enemies, and watch whatever pap is spewing from our screens. As long as that continues we are safely inert.

Move along, move along...nothing to see here. As long as we are just subsisting we are their pawns and slaves. All the rest, on MSNBC or Fox, is just part of the show. Sit back and enjoy.

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Response to Moral Compass (Reply #99)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 03:27 PM

117. Your writing is wonderfully insightful, nails our collective situation on it's head.

 

are you published? I want to read more of your work.

I'm not familiar with who Joe Baegant was, but I'll wiki his name and get bio/publications info from there - thanks for your contribution and so coherently articulating exactly how I see it, and as you say the "impotent cassandras" have tried and keep trying to point out the obvious.

Even here, there are so many lamenting the loss of something they never had in the first place wrt to MSNBC (I'll add PBS/NPR for that matter).. the notion that if they write letters to petition their grievances that somehow that action will have the desired outcome or influence it significantly.

Another point you make that needs repeating and emphasising regarding the narrative "is crafted as much by what is left out as by what is left in, (emphasis yours). As can be likely inferred by my lack of writing skills (I've never taken a writing class) but just the same, because it is a primary principle in promoting any form of propaganda for all sorts of purposes, everything should be looked at through that lens. I think.

The bread and circus metaphor is perfect and the imagery of being caught in a hologram is scary as it is an interesting way of putting it....

again, thanks!

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Response to 2banon (Reply #117)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 07:03 PM

122. Thank you so much

No, I'm a wage slave like most others. But I take your praise to heart and I'm going to do my best to make that transition from amateur, unpaid blogger to professional.

What you read here today is due to an ice storm that rolled through North Texas last night and kept most of us at home. Time is the precious thing that I don't have and that is what is required to write and write well.

Again, thanks. You made my day. Most of the regular crowd here at DU just ignore me. Found the site too late to be part of the original legacy and too busy making a living to post all that much. I find myself posting on Huffington Post a lot even though I'm less than thrilled with the site. Have some fans there that have offered praise and a desire to see more of my work. For that to happen, there needs to be more of it.

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Response to Moral Compass (Reply #122)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 11:02 PM

128. It takes time I think.. there are other decent writers here that would appreciate your insights

 

Do you use the same addy at HP? for the most part these days, I'm mostly resolved to avoid the site as much as possible.. on actual news reports they practice deceitfully spun headlines (as if the actual facts of a report weren't egregious enough) the rest of it seems to be nothing more than political hype, celebrity and media personality soap opera which they love to track but I find extremely annoying.


That said, I have to admit that I do like to indulge in Jason Linkin's Eat the Press on Sundays from time to time. I find his brand of humor refreshing and funny as he sums up the Sunday Morning bloviators and misrepresentations of everything under the sun including the color of the sky, so I don't have to!
It's good to have something to laugh at from time to time.

But if you have a blog there, I'd love to direct my attention to it.. post the link here, or pm me if you prefer!



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Response to Moral Compass (Reply #122)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 11:06 PM

129. I forgot to say hope you're staying warm and the power is still on!

 

I've heard about the front that is sweeping through your part of the country.. stay safe!

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 12:42 PM

100. Seems like everything on the TV is selling a fantasy.

 

How much Fukashima news is on the TV? Serious coverage of climate change? Oh yeah and Chris Matthews is a worthless turd.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 12:43 PM

101. corporate television is all about behavior control....

That is what it exists to do. Well, it exists to further enrich the 1%, but it does so by manipulating viewer perceptions, and creating the reality its owners and sponsors want. When they model that reality 24/7 for passive watchoids, it becomes the baseline culture. Consume and Obey, Citizens!

Turn that noise OFF. Permanently. The world looks very different after the plug-in drug wears off.

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Response to mike_c (Reply #101)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 02:50 PM

114. Precisely on point.. which is why it's important for everyone to turn it off. eom

 

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 12:55 PM

102. Indeed,

well said.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 01:37 PM

104. IMO it matters more who the content is coming from than what network it airs on.

I see your point, but I'm not going to dismiss Rachel Maddow or Lawrence O'Donnell as corporate shills just because they have a gig on a corporate network. I can take or leave the MSNBC name, but as long as they keep hosting content worth watching, I'll tune in - to that particular content*.


*Online though, I'm too disgusted with cable TV in general to start buying it as a package.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 02:11 PM

108. Well said

I never forget that GE loves war.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 02:33 PM

109. Exactly - That's essentially why I will never ever pay a dime to subscribe to Cable or Dish Sat

 

to continue to "watch" and pay for the paltry few carrots tossed out to progressives now and then, only to have it snatched away the moment it starts to get real.

A totally different paradigm shift in all aspects of our socio-economic and political culture is woefully needed, and it ain't gonna to happen by continuing to give support in any form to the Korporate media; and that by the way unfortunately includes PBS, News Hour, especially Charlie Rose & KOCH Brothers's NOVA . The once hoped for "counter" to Fox, is trying like hell to be like them, just like CNN.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 02:34 PM

110. It's the Dead Intern and Mrs. Greenspan channel. nt

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 03:25 PM

116. All cable "news" is a niche market

Will provides a good reminder with first hand information about how MSNBC is a corporate organ, and nothing you ever see on it will seriously challenge the interests of the Masters of the Universe who own and manage NBC-Universal. I do not read him as advising anybody to refuse to watch Rachel Maddow or even Joe Scarbrough -- he just urges you to remember who is in charge.

Several posters on this thread have speculated as to the corporate motivation for the programming strategy of MSNBC and the expression "niche market" came up more than once to describe the left leaning audience for Donohue, Olbermann, Maddow, Sharpton and Schultze. But nobody seems to recognize how tiny the market for all of cable news is. Here are the figures as of last month:


PRIMETIME 8-11PM/ET
FNC: 2,011,000 total viewers – down 21% (338,000 in 25-54 – down 41%)
CNN: 481,000 total viewers – down 54%; (153,000 in 25-54 – down 62%)
MSNBC: 645,000 total viewers – down 50%; (190,000 in 25-54 – down 57%)
HLN: 278,000 total viewers – down 2%; (90,000 in 25-54 – down 17%)


Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/november-cable-news-ratings-fox-news-msnbc-cnn-2013-11#ixzz2mirds2HQ

There are more than 316 million people residing in the USA. The prime time audience for all four news channels adds up to less than three and half million people, a little more than one percent of the population. Fox dominates the field with their perpetual propaganda, reaching about 6 tenths of one percent of America.

Note also the demographic splits. For each of the four networks, the 25-54 age group makes up less than a third of audience. Just as with the Republican Party base, we are looking at an aging population of politics junkies that will shrink inexorably over the next couple of decades.

I understand that Nielsen's techniques have some functional difficulty dealing with open ended programming like "news" and it is close to impossible to measure the real number of people who run the remote up and down the list, pausing for a few minutes at a time on a given channel. I would bet that Fox probably reaches a much higher number of individual human beings if you could calculate everybody who is tuned in for more than 60 seconds -- but you can't really call such viewers part of your audience.

When you look at MSNBC or Fox, it looks just like Cronkite and Howard K. Smith with a talking head sitting at a desk, and it gives you the feeling that we used to have when there were only three networks, and you were part of the mass audience of our national community. That feeling is wrong -- even as you watch the top rated shows on Fox, you are part of the micro-niche of political junkies.

That is the reason why an asshole corporate Leviathan like Comcast is willing to let Rachel Maddow push the envelop of "acceptable" commentary -- even during the election campaign when all the news outlets are reaching their largest audiences, only a tiny sliver of the population is watching. (And of course, not all of them understand what they are seeing). They do have limits, and when it comes to something as big as thumping the tub for a bogus war, you can bet that Comcast will play it out the same way that GE did. But if MSNBC started to pull in upwards of 10 million viewers, you would see a huge programming change, inspite of the amount of profit that could come from such a big audience.

For the same reason I doubt very seriously if there is any Machievellian logic behind those god-awful prison shows. As noted on this thread, they are hugely profitable due to their very low production costs -- and the niche market that is always ready to tune into human misery.


As a culture, we are still having a hard time digesting the new reality of the Information Age. The power of television will never again be what it was when there were only three networks.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 03:39 PM

118. MSNBC went to the left only to create a false equivalency

That way if anyone brings up Fox news MSNBC can be used as a counter to give off the illusion that the MSM isn't biased to wards conservatism,it just gives the people what they want regardless of politics.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 08:33 PM

124. I find it hilarious how some pundits lump MSNBC in with Fox (not-news)

and put out questionable statistic suggesting that most of its programming is more opinion than fact when Fox spews nothing but right wing/RNC talking points non-stop. MSNBC certainly has some more left-leaning major hosts/programming than, say, CNN, and definitely Fox (does Fox have ANY shows helmed by a Democrat or left-leaning pundit?) but MSNBC is anything but a 24-7-365 propaganda tool for left the same way that Fox is a 24-7-365 tool for the right. The false equivalency BS really gets on my nerves. I'd be ecstatic if we had a major news network like Fox (as long it was truthful, of course) but there's nothing like Fox for the left out there AFAIK.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Fri Dec 6, 2013, 09:04 PM

125. Kicked and recommended.

Thanks for the thread, WilliamPitt.

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