This Is CNN: If It Denigrates The President, It’s News

Back from a working trip to Erie County, PA., where the lawyers are sharp, attentive, and know their legal ethics, newly awake and feeling like a zucchini after the five and a half hour drive back home followed by an annoying Boston Red Sox loss to the Yankees, I made the mistake of looking in on Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota, as the review’d the morning news on CNN. Apparently the news included the latest segment from “The Simpsons,” showing Donald Trump talking like an idiot while lounging in bed as the trained dog that serves as his hair periodically found a more comfy position. Then an aide delivers to him a thick new bill from Congress lowering taxes for Republicans. “You have to read it immediately,” he is told. “Can’t Fox News read it and I’ll watch what they say?” the President asks. “No, sir, you really have to read it,” replies the aide, as a tear trickled out of the President’s eye, and the dog’s tail wiped it from his cheek. Then the scene flipped to the Supreme Court, as Ivanka took Justice Ginsberg’s seat, and an announcer explained that the new SCOTUS Justice’s fashion robe, with gavel earrings, can be purchased “for only 100 rubles.”  The displaced Ginsberg was shown attacking the Secret Service agent dragging her out of her chair,garotting him with her pearlsas she shouted, “I thought you said I’d be replaced by Garland!”

We returned to the CNN team, cackling uncontrollably, as Cuomo observed, “When you’ve lost Homer Simpson…!”

I should note that the material was genuinely hilarious, and terrific satire. (I haven’t watched “The Simpsons” regularly for a long time, mainly because 20 years of anything gets tiresome after a while; I felt the same way about George Carlin. Maybe it’s time to go back.) Dan Camtallanata needs to work on his Trump voice, though; it sounds like Mayor Quimby, who sounds like JFK.

However, no Simpson sequences similarly mocking President Obama of Hillary Clinton were ever deemed newsworthy by CNN (Really now; how is this news? Is it news that “The Simpsons” is funny? That it is making fun of politicians? Are Trump hair jokes news? Does CNN regularly feature highlights from sitcoms on other networks?)and properly so, since a 28-year-old animated comedy isn’t news. Think about it: CNN intentionally plugged the programming of a bitter rival broadcast company. Why would it do that? There’s only one reason: this allows the network and its employees to ridicule and undermine the President of the United States while pretending that they’re not. It is as obvious as it is juvenile, biased and unprofessional.

This is CNN.

26 Comments

Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Ethics Train Wrecks, Government & Politics, Humor and Satire, Journalism & Media

26 responses to “This Is CNN: If It Denigrates The President, It’s News

  1. Other Bill

    Similarly, for a long time now, I’ve wondered why every news outlet “covers” whatever Saturday Night Live has done as if it’s news. Sheer laziness, for one thing. I’m old enough to remember when news outlets didn’t report on what movie made how much money over the weekend. Dumbing down the populace.

  2. deery

    I do remember CNN and other networks making much hay over Obama in “mom jeans”, in a similar, funny non-story. A quick scan of the Simpsons wiki confirms there really haven’t been many appearances of Obama, but the show was poking fun of Trump well before he became President.

    Similarly, for a long time now, I’ve wondered why every news outlet “covers” whatever Saturday Night Live has done as if it’s news. Sheer laziness, for one thing.

    Well, when you have the President angrily tweeting to the world about whatever SNL was about in an given week, I think the press should cover it. Obviously Trump feels it is important, for whatever reason.

    • Rationalization-fest of the month!

      • deery

        If the President is getting into Twitter fights with cast members and changing staff and policy based on whatever SNL is skewering him about this week, the press should just ignore it? Yet I’m the one rationalizing? Hmmm.

        • You do realize that what Trump does is news, but what The Simpsons chooses to mock is not? No, apparently you don’t.

          • Deery

            If you notice, I was referring to SNL, a response to OB’s musing about the media covering SNL. I think they are rightly covering SNL as news, since it apparently does shape Trump’s thinking to an extent.

            The Simpson’s story is dumb, I agree, but hardly unprecedented, as you claim. The media often chooses to cover dumb, unflattering stories about presidents that aren’t even close to being relevant, like the “mom jeans” thing with Obama.

  3. A) Im too lazy to look up whether CNN covered it or not, but the Simpsons recently had a bit where Mr. Burns was to donate to his alma mater, until he visited the campus and realized that everyone was a virtue-signaling SJW. It was a pretty brutal/funny 3 minute section of the show; I wonder what Cuomo’s reaction was when they aired it on CNN. After all, when you’ve lost Homer Simpson….

    B) ” because 20 years of anything gets tiresome after a while”

    I left after season 12 or 13, because it went on well past it’s prime. Plus, the new animation style was irritating.

    • Clearly you left after the show’s peak. Still, as the CNN clip proved, past-prime Simpsons is more clever and funnier than just about any other show, including the tasteless knock-off “The Family Guy.”

    • Unlike SNL, Colbert et al., The Simpsons is bi-partisan, if left-leaning, in its satire.

      • Junkmailfolder

        Simpsons is definitely better than most. Frankly, I don’t think you can beat Tina Fey in 30 Rock. The way she skewered both sides made you believe she actually thinks of both sides as humans, rather than one as evil idiots and the other as saints.

        I wish more people, including and especially comedians, could realize this.

        • Chris

          Yes. Jack Donaghy was often a caricature of a conservative supervillain, but he was first and foremost human. And Liz Lemon herself was a great example of a liberal know-it-all who was actually deeply uninformed.

          Fey’s show “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” is equally hilarious and human, and has skewered SJWs a few times.

          • Junkmailfolder

            Never seen it. Didn’t know it was Fey’s and never much liked Erin from The Office. Maybe I’ll try it out.

            • Chris

              Ellie Kemper’s character on UKS is somewhat like a better written version of Erin from The Office. Both somewhat ditzy but with a weirdly traumatic past. But Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt actually takes that trauma seriously. For a comedy, it is incredibly insightful, and even though it deals with dark material (the main character was kept in a bunker for 15 years) it has an infectious optimism.

    • Pure brilliance:

      The Simpsons has a history of getting it right though:

  4. Too bad CNN isn’t an American company. Maybe they can be allowed to move to China.

  5. “Can’t Fox News read it and I’ll watch what they say?”

    Wasn’t Pres. Obama the one who kept saying, “I heard about it the same time you did, on the news!”

  6. charlesgreen

    Am I right that The Simpsons is still BROADCASTED on Fox? Does that mean Fox is anti-President Trump?

    And if reporting this episode as news is anti-Presidential, what are we to making of this story from Fox Entertainment News?
    http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2017/04/27/simpsons-take-on-trumps-first-100-days.html

    • Huh? It’s entertainment. CNN is news. If CNN decided to devote an entire segment to a stand-up comic mocking Hillary Clinton’s legs, lies, and cross-eyed looks, would that be news, or denigration under the guise of news?

      We take Fox Entertainment News as entertainment news. This isn’t hard.

      • Addendum: It is such a transparent cheap device to allow entertainers be surrogates for “Journalists'” partisan sentiments—imagine Cronkite periodically calling Smothers Brothers or Laugh-In segments about “Tricky Dick” news, and we returned from the clips to see Walter laughing uncontrollably. Professional? Objective? Fair?

        Give me a break.

  7. You knew it was a snake when you picked it up… of course it bit you.

  8. Jeff

    If the segment really was funny, then that’s newsworthy, since The Simpsons hasn’t been funny since at least the turn of the millennium…

    It’s sad to see what once was an insightful, incisive pop culture juggernaut reduced to the flop-sweat-drenched, phoning-it-in embarrassment it has become in recent years. I still get great enjoyment from watching episodes from the first 7 or 8 seasons, but the new stuff? Yecch.

    • You gotta admit, casually quoting the price for Justice Ivanka’s fashion robe and earrings in rubles is funny.

      • Other Bill

        “The Simpsons” is super long in the tooth but the shows are still funny. Bart Simpson is probably the best character in American fiction since Bugs Bunny. And Lisa, Marge and Homie are right up there with Bart in terms of iconic-ness. My favorite joke of theirs was the shopping center lawyer’s office entitled “I Can’t Believe it’s a Law Firm!”

  9. E2 (nee Elizabeth I)

    This is beyond belief. “Law and Order” — also a show with longevity — covers real issues that are copied right out of the news. When has anyone seen a television outlet “report” on a segment from that show?

    Is comedy news and drama not?

    Neither. CNN is beyond my already firm disgust.

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