That the media of old is dead comes as a surprise to no one. All pretense of objectivity is gone. When a media orgy breaks out over a progressive activist blogger with no journalistic background leaving the once-credible Washington Post to start a “news organization” that seeks resumes of like-minded progressives who “share our passion for fixing the news,” we can say without reservation that the media shark has been jumped.
Oddly enough, I agree with the idea of “fixing the news,” though I suspect I disagree with progressives on how to do that. I’d re-impose standards and require objectivity. How they would fix it was on display this week in all its hateful, racist glory.
On Wednesday, the official Twitter account for MSNBC decided it was lagging in the office pool for throwing out the most ridiculous, unsubstantiated charges of racism for the month of January and tried to catch up. It tweeted, “Maybe the rightwing will hate it, but everyone else will go awww: the adorable new #Cheerios ad w/ biracial family.” It provided a link to the Super Bowl ad for Cheerios (I won’t link to it here because I haven’t seen Cheerios comment on, let alone condemn, it).
It would be disgusting enough to read that coming from a person, but a supposed news organization? It’s just one of a long list of reasons NBC News is now the least trusted name in news, coming in at 6 percent, according to the progressive polling firm Public Policy Polling. For reference, a dirty drifter at the end of a local bar claiming to know the names of the shooters on the grassy knoll pulls in 7 percent.
To say the least, NBC News has lost its credibility thanks to its being the same news organization as MSNBC.
Three hours after the tweet was sent, it was deleted, and a so-called apology was issued, both from the MSNBC account and the account of Richard Wolffe, MSNBC.com’s executive editor. “The Cheerios tweet from @msnbc was dumb, offensive and we’ve taken it down,” Wolffe wrote. “That’s not who we are at msnbc.” First, the attack wasn’t on Cheerios. Second, what he didn’t say was that it was racist and a lie, most likely because…well, we all know “who they are” at MSNBC.
And, as an interesting aside, even Time magazine came to the defense of conservatives by applying that first pillar in the progressive’s religion – science. It wrote, “Not only aren’t there stats to back up MSNBC’s assertion, but the stats that do exist suggest, if anything, there may be a slight bias in favor of same-race households on the other side of the aisle, among Democrats.”
The next day, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus banned all RNC employees from appearing on MSBNC until its president, Phil Griffin, apologized. He did…sort of.
Griffin wrote, “The tweet last night was outrageous and unacceptable. We immediately (as in three hours later) acknowledged it was offensive and wrong, apologized and deleted it. We have dismissed the person responsible for the tweet. I personally apologize to Mr. Priebus and to everyone offended. At MSNBC, we believe in passionate, strong debate about the issues, and we invite voices from all sides to participate. That will never change.”
Let’s take that frog of a statement to biology class for a minute.
So, Griffin is sorry people are offended, not that the statement was made. And who was the person responsible? Is “dismissed” the same as fired? Why not name the person who humiliated the company? Actually, NBC News has some history here. It still hasn’t named the person who dishonestly edited the 911 call of George Zimmerman to make him sound like he, rather than the 911 operator, brought up race. And who are these “voices from all sides” Griffin is talking about?
The closest thing to dissent on MSNBC is Joe Scarborough, who is somewhat conservative on some issues. To his credit, he at least stands up to the cheerleaders from time to time and criticizes his network occasionally. But the only other person who cashes an MSNBC check with regularity and calls themselves a Republican is Abby Huntsman. Huntsman, daughter of failed presidential candidate Jon Huntsman, is Megan McCain without the deep-rooted understanding and commitment to conservative principles.
Beyond that, who?
Mr. Griffin, I realize a dissenting voice is someone who knows the name of the doorman at your Manhattan cocktail parties, but one and a half people occasionally disagreeing with a bunch of nodding bobblehead hosts and guests does not equal “voices from all sides.”
MSNBC’s “talent” is as challenging to progressive orthodoxy as a two-piece Lego set is for a MENSA member. Bigotry and racism isn’t what they do so much as who they are. They all agree on everything – even on the shows hosted by supposed journalists from the NBC News mother ship.
Journalism is dead at NBC News, and aside from random accidents and pockets here and there, it’s not coming back anytime soon. As some scramble to “fix the news,” a tiny portion of the public will live in a constant state of misinformation, lies and ignorance for the foreseeable future thanks to the failure of the plucked peacock network and other likeminded, self-appointed arbiters of morality and truth in the “fourth estate.”
I, for one, long for the day the mainstream media returns to some degree of honesty and objectivity, and the portion of Americans interested in learning what their government is doing to them will find that information presented in an unspun way. But, with NBC News as the tip of the spear, the fourth estate has become a fifth column; an appendage of the state. The network occasionally will be shamed into a moment of humility but will quickly recoil to its natural state faster than a hand touching a hot stove. Hatred is not an emotion progressives reserve for those who disagree with them. It’s who they are.
MSNBC exists on the reputation of NBC News and the anger of people who’ve been told they’ve been wronged. There will never be a shortage of the latter, but the former is wearing thinner by the day. The self-help seminar for those with rage issues runs 24 hours a day, taking breaks only on weekends for prison documentaries. But it’s usually a laughable hatred restricted to the small number of people who spend their lives raging at “The Man” after discovering too late in life that their degree in 1940 bisexual polar bear studies isn’t all that marketable in a tight economy.
The reality of the failures of progressive policies is smacking the American public across the face in poll after poll. As the numbers continue to drop, the lashing out from MSNBC will only grow worse – on the air and 140 characters at a time – as November draws nearer. That whoever sent that tweet was “dismissed” for expressing views the network’s hosts and contributors share more crudely every day for millions of dollars per year hardly seems, to borrow a favorite word of theirs, “fair.”
But life isn’t fair. If it were, they people responsible for that tweet would be sent to a place where they could say anything they want, in the most crude terms imaginable, but no one would ever hear them. They’d be given a show on MSNBC.
Derek Hunter is Washington, DC based writer, radio host and political strategist. You can also stalk his thoughts 140 characters at a time on Twitter.