Good MORNING, everyone!!!
(And good morning, little Louie..)
1. The state of American journalism, CNN’s Headline News quadrant: A recent poll claims that 50% of Republicans regard the news media as “enemies of the people.” Just because it is actively manipulating the news to try to topple the President of the United States? How unreasonable! No, I am beginning to believe that the 21st Century U.S. news media is really the Enemy of the Cerebral Cortex. On HLN this morning, James Comey’s disastrous interview on Fox News yesterday (among about 400 other stories of more relevance to Americans) was deemed newsworthy, but not one but two royal family stories were: the wedding dress for the American woman whose name I can’t remember who is going to marry the British prince who doesn’t matter on a date I don’t give a damn about, and, again, what the new royal great-grandchild’s name will be. The breathless reporting on these two world-altering events took over 10 out of the 40 minutes the network devotes to news rather than pharmaceutical commercials, a full 25%.
But that’s not all. HLN newsbabe Robin Meade emulated “Best in Show’s” Fred Willard’s cruelly hilarious send-up of Joe Garagiola’s embarrassingly lunk-headed turns as a “color man” at the Westminster Dog Show by asking the dumbest question, I think, I have ever heard on the air. If you haven’t seen “Best in Show” a) What’s the matter with you? and b) here are typical questions asked by Willard during the fictional dog show’s broadcast as “Buck Laughlin,” an ex-pro athlete, to his British dog expert (“Trevor Beckwith”) co-host and others:
“Now tell me, which one of these dogs would you want to have as your wide receiver on your football team?”
“Doctor, question that’s always bothered me and a lot of people: Mayflower, combined with Philadelphia – a no-brainer, right? Cause this is where the Mayflower landed. Not so. It turns out Columbus actually set foot somewhere down in the West Indies. Little known fact.”
“Now that looks like a fast dog. Is that faster than a greyhound? If you put them in a race, who would come in first? You know if you had a little jockey on them…”
Robin, however, against all odds, topped Buck, asking the British reporter, after learning that the new total would be named, “Louis,”
“Now in American, when we hear that name we immediately think, “Louie Louie, oh no, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, baby.” Is that the way it is in England too? “
2. #MeToo’s late hit on Tom Brokaw. An ex-NBC broadcast journalist decided to exploit the Cosby verdict to accuse the retired anchorman of a decades old (from 1993) incident of sexual harassment. Brokaw denies it all unequivocally. Placing Brokaw’s alleged attempts to kiss the woman in the context of Cosby’s rapes is unfair. Waiting so long to tell the story—if it is true—is unethical because it left Bad Brokaw free to harass other women. Waiting so long to tell the story—if it isn’t true–spectacularly unethical, since it harms Good Brokaw’s reputation and it is probably too late to determine what really happened. The uber-feminist, #MeToo, men-are-viruses-in-the-universe crowd will believe the accusation anyway, because “all victims should be believed”…and that’s unethical too. Meanwhile, Tom’s accuser will get interviews and may even get a gig or twelve out of it.
Going public with an accusation you can’t prove that will destroy someone’s reputation when you deliberately passed on the opportunity to make the accusation when it could be proved is a terrible thing to do to someone, absent other factors, as in the Cosby case. For example, if Brokaw calls his accuser a liar, and there are more women who he harassed, they would be ethically justified in coming forward, regardless of how long ago they were harassed.
3. Wait, what Comey interview? Former FBI Director James Comey was interviewed by Fox News’ Bret Baier yesterday. Baier asked Comey about his decision last year to give a memo detailing his conversations with President Trump to a friend, Columbia University Law School professor Daniel Richman.
“So what specifically did you leak to Mr. Richman?” Baier asked the fired FBI Director.
“I sent Mr. Richman a copy of a 2-page unclassified memo, and asked him to get the substance of it out to the media,” Comey replied. “I don’t consider what I did with Mr. Richman a leak,” Comey answered. “I told him about an unclassified conversation with the president.”
Yes, and Bill Clinton didn’t consider what he did with Monica “sex,” and Dick Cheney didn’t consider waterboarding “torture.” Leaks do not have to contain classified information to be leaks. If they contain classified information, its is a crime. A government official leaking of any information, without permission of the government, surreptitiously and anonymously to the press is unethical, and a firing offense.
4. The end of the Korean War? It is all moral luck, of course. President Trump’s aggressive and confrontational approach to North Korea could have resulted in a war or other disaster, but the fact is, it did not. If, as it seems, North and South Korea are about to finally end the Korean War officially and North Korea’s dictator deescalates tensions internationally, President Trump will deserve credit for a major foreign affairs triumph. That he may have blundered into it doesn’t matter. That his Teddy Roosevelt/John Wayne/cowboy diplomacy was arguably reckless doesn’t matter. He will deserve credit.
I guarantee that the mainstream news media, most pundits and Democrats, and of course “the resistance,” will refuse to admit it, just as many of them to this day refuse to credit Ronald Reagan’s policies with bringing down the Soviet Union. This is an integrity test, if in fact the two Koreas have an accord. Your friends, journalists and opinion commentators who don’t have the decency to say, “Well, I can’t stand the guy, but this is great, and he did it,” will be telling you something very useful about their character.
5. Of Kanye West and Donald Trump. The Left end of social media is freaking out over hip-Hop super-star Kanye West’s sudden conversion to Trump supporter. After his initial movements in Trump’s direction last week, he tweeted this week, “Obama was in office for eight years and nothing in Chicago changed” and “You don’t have to agree with trump but the mob can’t make me not love him. We are both dragon energy. He is my brother. I love everyone. I don’t agree with everything anyone does. That’s what makes us individuals. And we have the right to independent thought,” as well a photos of a MAGA hat signed by the President. Various users tweeted that his apparent conversion has cost him nearly 10 million followers in 20 minutes after posting the autographed “Make America Great Again” hat, but in fact West gained followers.
- West is like Trump in many ways, most of them not good. This development shouldn’t have surprised anyone. As with Trump, West is also prone to be mercurial, as in “if you don’t like what he says, wait a minute.”
Then there is this interpretation, from a commenter on “Instapundit”:
Kim: We haven’t been in the news for a while!
Kanye, sipping from his goblet: I’ll take care of it…
- Rolling Stone, while condemning West’s tweets as “aligning himself with a demagogue and racist movement” (There is no “racist movement” except perhaps against whites, and West is aligning himself with the President of the United States, like Americans are supposed to do…):
“Whether one likes it or not, and no matter if it’s right or wrong, Kanye West moves the culture. There is a reason I often jokingly refer to him as a “hip-hop David Koresh.” People worship this man and will follow him wherever he goes. The magnitude of his stardom cannot be overstated.”
That someone as unstable and narcissistic as Kanye West can “move the culture” is at least as disturbing as the fact that someone like Donald Trump can be elected President.