Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Will progressives flee to web TV?

Who cares what a bunch of dead white men thought?
Will progressives flee to web TV if MSNBC bails on them?

Personally, I think it’s too early to start shopping for headstones for MSNBC’s liberal opinion lineup, but there’s no doubt that there are big changes going on at the network. Morning Joe seems in no danger of going away and Rachel Maddow is hanging on to the 9 pm time slot like grim death, but many of their other shows are either gone, moved to the low rent district or being looked at by
But while we’re on the topic, if you’re advertising the wonders of Al Jazeera America and Russia Today as “more or less progressive TV news” then it might be time to take a fresh look at exactly which team you’re playing for.
executives with axes in their hands. Ronan Farrow, Joy Reid, The Cycle and Ed Schultz have effectively vanished. Alex Wagner moved to the weekends and Al Sharpton (who the executives are terrified of firing entirely for fear of lawsuits and protest marches) has been shuttled off to an hour on Sunday mornings when nobody is watching. Despite persistent rumors of his impending doom, Chris Hayes is still doing an evening show but that seems to be a week by week decision.

But if progressives are the “mainstream” of the new generation as they always claim, and MSNBC is really the only bastion for them in terms of finding consistently liberal programming, what went so wrong? Leslie Savan, writing at The Nation, seems despondent over the changes but hazards a guess at one reason why things didn’t work out. The content was just boring pablum.


 over the last several years, a whole world of more or less progressive TV news has emerged—streaming, on demand, on mobile, and, increasingly, on cable TV itself. Vice News, Fusion, and Free Speech TV are available on cable and satellite, as are Al Jazeera America and Russia Today.

As for web TV, HuffPost Live now streams eight hours of original programming a day.


Web TV sounds an awful lot like Air America, the shady "progressive"  answer to Rush Limbaugh.  That used the specter of the Fairness Doctrine, where broadcast licenses hinged on broadcasters presenting both sides of controversial issues.  As much as we laugh at the antics of MSNBC, which is a national joke, there is a larger threat.  Social media have already facilitated  an  insular herd mentality, where exchange of ideas are .... nil.  How can you debate when one side is  from another planet; with their own history books, newspapers and classroom instruction?  How many of you have presented an argument only to  have it rebutted with some MSNBC or Daily Show "truth?"  Gird your loins people, conflict is inevitable.


Anonymous said...

Several generations have been taught that all opinions are equal. Disagreement is hate. They start from an emotional position and you cant counter emotion with logic. Every married man knows that!

toadold said...

"Why are leftists such idiots?"
"These days you have to be an idiot to be a leftist."

Anonymous said...

MSNBC goes down the path of Air America.

Stupid people (following toadold) are the vast majority of leftists. They don't watch MSNBC; they watch reality TV and dancing with the stars (and getting high).

Smart leftists (admittedly a very tiny minority) sometimes watch MSNBC to have their prejudices confirmed, but the profound stupidity of the hosts ("resist we much" and tampon earrings) and their arguments must get extremely tiresome after a while. Cognitive dissonance becomes a problem after a while. "If my political opinions are so smart, why are my favorite MSNBC hosts so effing stupid?"

Steve in Greensboro

Anonymous said...

I've actually started watching Morning Joe recently, to my own surprise. They seem to have taken an anti-Hillary stance; maybe to incur better ratings, but I think maybe to embrace a multi political viewpoint of the 2016 election. Joe seems to be be least objectionable I've seen him in recent times. Not sure if it's me or him that has moderated their views, which I realize is eye-opening.

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