MSNBC announced that it is replacing Keith Olbermann and Chris Matthews as co-anchors of political night coverage with David Gregory, and will use the two newsmen as commentators.
I expect the change was made to satisfy the purportedly "impartial news gatherers" at NBC News.
Gregory, the veteran Washington hand, will anchor MSNBC's coverage of the presidential and vice presidential debates and election night.
Apparently, the issue was "front and center" during the Republican convention when Olbermann, after the network aired a September 11th themed video prepared by the Republicans, said that MSNBC should not have shown a September 11th themed video prepared by the Republicans.
Why shouldn't he have said it?
Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin talked about the "Washington Elite" not accepting her qualifications for the job. Why in hell shouldn't the "Washington Elite" say whatever the "Washington Elite" wants to say?
Governor Palin, please check the first amendment that perhaps you didn't use or recognize in Alaska. Nixon said the same type of thing when he didn't like what the media was saying.
About three months ago I wrote an article that is even more relevant today than it was in June.
Journalism My Ass #3
We need now more then ever to pay homage to the First Amendment to our Constitution. Free speech needs no approval by anyone, yet there are certain aspects of the content carried primarily by cable news networks that do not please me at all. Too bad for me.
Unbeknownst to many Television Broadcasters, "news" is supposed to be: information about recent events, or a presentation of this information. Not particularly complicated, but its use is screwed up by our contemporary "purported" cable networks and journalists.
When CBS presented the views and opinions of Eric Sevareid as part of their Network News Broadcasts, it was clearly noted as "commentary." Sevareid is no longer with us and the process of labeling stuff as commentary is for the most part long gone as well.
What the broadcasters and cablecasters do today carries the same Constitutional protection as it always has, yet the "guardians" of our "airwaves" glory in what they present as "news." For the most part they are presenting extensive commentaries, or just plain programming dressed up and sold as "news."
I just loved it when Steve Carpus, wearing his "I am the President of NBC News" hat fired the "entertainer" and host of an entertainment program Don Imus, and claimed that it was to protect the long standing integrity of NBC News. Sadly he undoubtedly meant what he was saying. This was a gigantic "GOOD GRIEF" for me. The Imus program that I loved was certainly many things to many people yet it certainly was not a news program.
Under the Carpus "stewardship" MSNBC presents those very responsible "news shows" of Hardball and Countdown, among many others. Fox and CNN do the same, and I believe that it all is under the direction of their "news" people. They are all "guilty" of the same travesty by referring in any way to what they do as "news."
I have sold television content for almost 50 years. A friend of mine once asked me how I could possibly in good conscience provide the violent and trite content to television stations and consumers, and I would cop out by saying, "That's my job. I sell the stuff, not judge the stuff."
I think that Cable Television has taken the reporting of news and replaced it with hour upon hour of "biased and essentially unedited" commentary and diatribe by "the left, the right and the center" of opinions that are designed to attract both an audience and the attention of advertisers, and sadly the stuff that they "editorialize" about, is taken seriously as the gospel by a good deal of America. This stuff may be interesting, it may be informative, and it may sell to advertisers, but it is certainly not news.
People and organizations do not attract an audience by reporting only the "facts" whatever they are but by shouting "fire" wherever and whenever they choose, and this includes Olbermann whom I like, and O'Reilly whom I detest.
These cable news network people "interview" one another all the time and each person appearing is thrilled to give their opinion about anything.
If a candidate "slips up" by saying something that can be misconstrued it becomes the "mothers milk" of programming for these self satisfied presenters of commentary who dress it up as news. Say about it whatever you choose to say about it but PLEASE do not call it news.
Sad, Sad, very Sad.
Speaking as a former network and studio executive where the size of ones "EGO" (not the word I wanted to use) is determined to a certain extent by "what and who reports to you" why do so many of these "programs" report to the News Presidents?
Purveyor of "chewing gum for the mind."
Boy do I wish I had originated that.
As well as the biggest user of "quotation marks" in America.
What the hell is Broadcast News today anyway? It is my not so very humble opinion that in some discernable way those pillars of journalistic integrity NBC/Universal/General Electric, CBS/Viacom, and the ABC/Walt Disney, are scared shitless of the new generation of right wing feds that could very well control the FCC for four more years.
ABC News, CBS News, NBC News, STOP PRETENDING that Edward R Murrow lives in your hearts and minds and organizations and ADMIT that what is presented on the so called cable news networks is PROGRAMMING, not real news content as it could have been decades ago.
Steve Capus, you must be very proud of yourself.
Perhaps I should move back to the Bronx, buy a candy store, and make Egg Creams.
Big Fan of Keith Olbermann