Thursday, May 18, 2017

Will MSNBC Implode Before The 2018 Midterms? I Bet The GOP Would Love That!


My go-to place for TV news and political commentary is Chris Hayes' MSNBC show. He's smart, insightful and careful to present a news show well beyond the standards of today's garbage cable news programming. Out here in L.A., we watch Hayes' show at 5 PM. I often keep the TV on for Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O'Donnell afterwards. They're not as good but better than what you will find on CNN or anyone else pretending to offer mainstream news. But MSNBC has been scaring me off lately by bringing on a lot of right-wing hosts and contributors. As if Chris Matthews and Joe Scarborough weren't hideous enough, they now have Greta Van Sustreren, Nicole Wallace, Megan Kelly, Hugh Hewitt and a growing list of regular paid Republican contributors, some of whom are pretty good and some of whom are utterly worthless. But it's not exactly a liberal bastion on an otherwise right-of-center TV wasteland.

And now the rumors are flying that Lawrence O'Donnell is being given the heave ho, complements of Señor Trumpanzee. An enetretainment industry blogger, Roger Friedman claims to have the inside scoop, a scoop I've heard from other sources even before Friedman wrote it up.
I can confirm that MSNBC is ending the top rated The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell, the popular show that follows Rachel Maddow at 10pm. O’Donnell’s contract is up shortly, and the network has not made any overtures about keeping him on.

There is a fear that despite Maddow’s dogged liberalism, MSNBC is taking a turn to the right. O’Donnell would not fit into that model. But they’ve installed Fox News’s Greta van Susteren at 6pm, and more changes are coming. (This follows the disaster with Tamron Hall and the coming of Megyn Kelly from Fox News, too.)

It seems just like MSNBC to abruptly kill their own success. They’re finally beating CNN and Fox, so why not reverse course? Crazy. O’Donnell’s ratings have never been higher.

The Last Word has been on since 2011, and O’Donnell has been with MSNBC since it began. If CNN were smart, they’d pick him up right away. He’s one of the smartest guys in the room, and a pleasure to watch. Among his credits are writing for and consulting on The West Wing.


My NBC sources say that O’Donnell’s tireless criticism of Donald Trump is the cause of the trouble. O’Donnell calls Trump a liar on TV almost ever night. Says my observer: "Phil Griffin fought back Trump’s demands to Comcast chief Steve Burke that O’Donnell get fired for years. But now he’s president and now it’s Andy Lack’s decision and Andy has never run a single promo for O’Donnell and he wants access to Trump for Lester Holt interview and more."

Morale at NBC News has been low for some time. My source says: "This version of NBC news would have handed the Pentagon papers back to the Pentagon. The New York Times and Washington Post remain our best hope."
He sure didn't dwell on Comcast, but that's probably an important consideration by dealing with someone as thuggish, vindictive and primitive as Trump. And as far as Phil Griffin fighting for Lawrence... that sure isn't what I've been hearing.

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At 4:44 PM, Blogger DH said...

If Lawrence O'Donnell goes so do I...
What are you doing to your newscast, trying to become another Fox News?

At 5:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I left MSDNC long ago (got the accurate call letters here... thanks anon).

Of all the DNC shills on the network, LOD is the closest to a true liberal. But still too little criticism of the Ds and WAAAAY too much worship of obamanation and the Clintons.

If the network died, I would not lament.

At 7:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

MSDNC imploded long before Comcast decided to convert it into FAUX-lite. I stopped watching when they pushed Olbermann out, and my decision was reinforced each time another progressive was sent packing.

At 8:08 AM, Blogger Jill said...

At this point, they might as well just bring back those golden halcyon days of "Savage Nation" and "Alan Keyes is Making Sense." Because that worked so well for them last time. ***Headdesk***


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