6
   

MSNBC Numskull Suits at it AGAIN!

 
 
Reply Thu 30 Jun, 2011 05:35 pm
By Greg Sargent

Quote:
MSNBC just announced that it has “indefinitely” suspended Mark Halperin for claiming that Obama was “kind of a dick” at his presser yesterday. Here’s MSNBC’s statement:

Mark Halperin’s comments this morning were completely inappropriate and unacceptable. We apologize to the President, The White House and all of our viewers. We strive for a high level of discourse and comments like these have no place on our air. Therefore, Mark will be suspended indefinitely from his role as an analyst.
I’m sorry, but this is crazy. Halperin’s crack was crude and dumb, but it doesn’t deserve indefinite suspension. Halperin’s use of an expletive is trival when compared with the degradation of our political discourse we witness on a regular basis from Halperin and many others — degradation that is seen as perfectly acceptable because no curse words are employed. Suspending Halperin only reinforces a phony definition of “civility” in our discourse, in which it’s unacceptable to use foul language and be “uncivil,” but it’s perfectly acceptable for reporters and commentators to allow outright falsehoods to pass unrebutted; to traffic endlessly in false equivalences in the name of some bogus notion of objectivity; and to make confident assertions about public opinion without referring to polls which show them to be completely wrong.

I care less about Halperin’s use of the word “dick” than I do about the argument he and Joe Scarborough were making — that Obama somehow stepped over some kind of line in aggressively calling out the GOP for refusing to allow any revenues in a debt ceiling deal. This notion that Obama’s tone was somehow over the top — when politics is supposed to be a rough clash of visions — is rooted in a deeply ingrained set of unwritten rules about what does and doesn’t constitute acceptable political discourse that really deserve more scrutiny. This set of rules has it that it should be treated as a matter of polite, legitimate disagreement when Michele Bachmann says deeply insane things about us not needing to raise the debt limit, but it should be seen as an enormously newsworthy gaffe when she commits a relatively minor error about regional trivia. This set of rules has it that it should be treated as a matter of polite, legitimate disagreement when Republicans continually claim that Dems cut $500 billion in Medicare in a way that will directly impact seniors, even though fact checkers have pronounced it misleading, but it should be seen as “demagoguery” when Dems argue that the Paul Ryan plan would end Medicare as we know it.

Halperin has certainly done his part to encourage these unwritten rules, and so maybe there’s a certain poetic justice in the fact that he’s now been suspended indefinitely for violating them, but still, this is over the top. I care that Halperin uncritically claims that Drudge rules the media world, and acts accordingly. I care that Halperin published a book that accused public officials of using explosive, racially charged quotes that were paraphrased, without guaranteeing their accuracy, in order to gin up media controversy. I care that Halperin does dumb things like parroting GOP predictions of a big victory when all available evidence is pointing the other way, as he famously did in the runup to the 2006 elections. I don’t care as much that he used the word “dick.” Suspending Halperin indefinitely for this only reinforces the bogus idea that a crass and dumb slip into foul language is worse than all this other stuff we see on a regular basis.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/post/msnbcs-suspension-of-mark-halperin-is-way-over-the-top/2011/03/03/AGjCnAsH_blog.html?hpid=z3

Leave it to MSNBC to conform to the most nutty strain of the "zero tolerance" movement just as Americans by and large are coming to feel huge reservations towards it....nothing like being out of step with the times to drive down the value of a media company...
  • Topic Stats
  • Top Replies
  • Link to this Topic
Type: Discussion • Score: 6 • Views: 1,785 • Replies: 19
No top replies

 
djjd62
 
  0  
Reply Thu 30 Jun, 2011 06:48 pm
thank god i have no idea what an msnbc, a mark halperin or a joe scarborough* are

but i agree that obama (and every president before and yet to come) is a dick


*i do know what ms works, ian halperin and glenn yarbourough are however
0 Replies
 
revelette
 
  2  
Reply Fri 1 Jul, 2011 08:13 am
I didn't see the show but I did just read an article about where the author pretty much agrees with yours.

Quote:
Here's why Mark Halperin is a disgrace. It's not because he used a mild obscenity to describe our president on Morning Joe, disrespectful as that was. Rather, it was the circumstances of the slur. Right now, the Republican Party is threatening to blow up the world economy unless Democrats agree to savage cuts in spending while refusing any of the revenue increases that all serious economists say are necessary to actually address the national debt. Obama, whose greatest fault in office has been a misplaced faith in the GOP's capacity for reasonableness, went on television and chided the party for this stance. Apparently, this struck Halperin as unreasonable. His response embodies all that's rotten and shallow about D.C.'s pundit class, which fetishizes bipartisanship even as it only demands it of one political party.


More at the


source.

Personally I think it was disgraceful enough to be suspended over regardless of the issues. However, I agree with the rest of the paragraph above totally.
0 Replies
 
failures art
 
  2  
Reply Fri 1 Jul, 2011 08:19 am
I must be a johnny come lately. Since when has calling a person a "dick" been professional journalism? Ed Schultz was suspended without pay for calling Laura Ingram a "slut." Seems like MSNBC's only fault is trying to hold it's contributors/employees to a standard of conduct.

A
R
T
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Fri 1 Jul, 2011 08:41 am
@failures art,
That was my exact same thought. This wasn't an unintentional slip, it was a deliberate move that resulted in a vulgarity being broadcast. I'm sure MSNBC has a code of conduct that discusses how you dress on air, what you are allowed to say, etc. and this guy pretty clearly crossed it. If MSNBC doesn't hold the line here, where is the next line? Do you get suspended for calling Michelle Bachman a ****? (Wouldn't that be gender equivilent?) You don't see other news outlets allowing that conduct so I don't know why anyone would be surprised by MSNBC enforcing their rules, especially when those rules are pretty standard.
0 Replies
 
Fido
 
  1  
Reply Fri 1 Jul, 2011 09:56 am
@hawkeye10,
I missed the whole segment...In what sense did he say it??? I mean, where is the attorney not also a dick??? But; he is our dick, or at least our example of a dick which being a democratic dick is usually flacid... In any event, he has tried to lead from the middle and should know there is damned little middle ground that is not a killing zone... Better to keep the friends you have than to try to make friends you will never, ever have... If his trying to be president of all the people is what he was called a dick for then I agree... If you have not got the courage to call a spade a spade, if you do not have the knowledge and intelligence to state the problem clearly and in bold colors then you are a damned dispicable dick just marking time and gaining us nothing... America needs to fall, or it need some one with the courage to lead us to a better place... I know Mr. Obama is not that guy... He has already given too much to the rich, and the rich will take our public money and try to buy him out of office with it... That makes him a retarded dick..
engineer
 
  0  
Reply Fri 1 Jul, 2011 06:56 pm
@Fido,
Here is the link. The question is not whether Halperin was right that Obama was acting like a dick, the question is whether he violated his employer's on air standards and I think it is pretty clear he did and did it on purpose. If he wanted to call out the President or any other politician, there are plenty of perfectly acceptable words he could have used.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Fri 1 Jul, 2011 07:34 pm
@engineer,
engineer wrote:

If he wanted to call out the President or any other politician, there are plenty of perfectly acceptable words he could have used.
For instance?.....the suits would have only been happy i a word was used that did not imply a character fault with the President, which would have completely altered the intended meaning. The corporate bosses demand that conversation stay within the lanes that they prescribe, this is not about word choice, this is about what ideas can be spoken on their media and what ideas can not. We have gone back to the bad old days of Hearst and McCormick et al, where if you want to work for them you say what you are told to say.
djjd62
 
  1  
Reply Fri 1 Jul, 2011 07:43 pm
@engineer,
engineer wrote:
If he wanted to call out the President or any other politician, there are plenty of perfectly acceptable words he could have used.


i find scumbag piece of **** works best
0 Replies
 
failures art
 
  1  
Reply Fri 1 Jul, 2011 08:48 pm
@hawkeye10,
He could have said he thought the President was being "arrogant." Would that not work? That's a specific criticism, that avoids vulgarity. Saying someone is "acting like a dick" isn't really a coherent criticism.

Tell me in your own words, what "acting like a dick" is defined by, and why other words would fail to convey the intended meaning.
A
R
This is very much about word choice.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Fri 1 Jul, 2011 08:55 pm
@failures art,
Arrogant means as if the subject thinks he is better than others, normally in situations where this is either not true or not established. To act like a dick is to **** around with people for sport....not even close to being the same thing.
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Fri 1 Jul, 2011 09:54 pm
@hawkeye10,
hawkeye10 wrote:

engineer wrote:

If he wanted to call out the President or any other politician, there are plenty of perfectly acceptable words he could have used.
For instance?.....the suits would have only been happy i a word was used that did not imply a character fault with the President, which would have completely altered the intended meaning.

Hardly. Liberals go after the President all the time. While I am not exactly sure what set off this guy, he could have said the President was petty or childish or obnoxious (or all three). All of those would have resulted in nothing more than leaving the hosts salivating for more. He could have used any word that Rush routinely uses on his show and been fine. Rush doesn't call anyone a dick. Neither does Beck or Maddow. This really isn't all that hard. If you want to use MSNBC resources to make your living, you follow their rules and they are reasonable rules since MSNBC will lose viewers if they become known for vulgarity. If you don't like them, start a blog where you can post what you want.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Fri 1 Jul, 2011 11:41 pm
@engineer,
Quote:
If you don't like them, start a blog where you can post what you want.
I would expect talent to shy away from getting wrapped up in MSNBC's anal and childish rule making apparatus and please keep in mind that while I have said that MSNBC is wrong I have not said that they dont have the right to make their rules and demand that they be followed. Viewers likewise have the right to put our eyeballs where we please. Judging by the latest ratings it does not appear that the prissy channel is doing very well:
http://www.mediabistro.com/tvnewser/top-cable-news-programs-may-2011_b69235

I dont think that zero tolerance for the help using outlawed words is going to help MSNBC much, but whatever.
failures art
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Jul, 2011 06:10 am
@hawkeye10,
hawkeye10 wrote:

Arrogant means as if the subject thinks he is better than others, normally in situations where this is either not true or not established. To act like a dick is to **** around with people for sport....not even close to being the same thing.

You just made my point. A person says "acting like a dick" and:

I think acting arrogant.
You think intentionally **** with people.

So either (a) you psychically know the intent of Halperin, in which case you've demonstrated that you can clearly convey the criticism by saying "I believe Obama was intentionally messing with people for sport," or (b) your interpretation of what "being a dick" was supposed to mean is off, in which case the term failed to convey it's meaning coherently.

Either way, the word choice is neither the unnecessary or coherent. If the point is to accuse Obama of intentionally messing with people for sport, say so explicitly. Calling him "a dick" with the implicit hope that it might convey what you've deemed its definition fails to successfully communicate a specific criticism.

Meanwhile, MSNBC does have a specific interest in their reputation, and ethical standards for language on air. They have acted correctly on this matter. This very much is about word choice, not "numbskull suits" clamping down on a political narrative.

Please stop being a dick.

A
R
T
djjd62
 
  0  
Reply Sat 2 Jul, 2011 06:16 am
@failures art,
ah, but saying dick gets around all that bias that folks like to claim, now the news is up for interpretation

much better in my opinion
Fido
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Jul, 2011 08:00 am
@engineer,
engineer wrote:

Here is the link. The question is not whether Halperin was right that Obama was acting like a dick, the question is whether he violated his employer's on air standards and I think it is pretty clear he did and did it on purpose. If he wanted to call out the President or any other politician, there are plenty of perfectly acceptable words he could have used.
It is possible the man was talking and thought he was talking off the record, and if you want a good program which requires a free exchange of ideas, then at some point people should be free to express those ideas to each other to see how well they fly... Even a dick with wings couldn't fly; but the truth soars... Mr. Obama is the president, and we want his respect and should give what we expect.... Clearly, there is no middle ground not already taken by the parties... There is no common ground... You cannot give the wealth of the nation to the rich who have already run the nation into bankruptcy without hurting the ability of the country to defend itself and help those injured and dispossessed by the rich... Mr. Obama is a noble spirit from a by gone age raised to think capitalism will work if its rough edges are sewn over... Bull ****... Throwing money at the enemies of the people will not make him enough friends to get him re-elected -which will put us in worse straits than before... So the guy is right, even if at the wrong time, and the wrong place, and for the wrong reason... He may be a negro, but he is not our negro... Mr. Obama is one of them...
Fido
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Jul, 2011 08:02 am
@djjd62,
djjd62 wrote:

ah, but saying dick gets around all that bias that folks like to claim, now the news is up for interpretation

much better in my opinion
A name call is not a reason argument... It is much better to explain why the man is such a dink, and what leads you to believe he is such a dink...
djjd62
 
  0  
Reply Sat 2 Jul, 2011 08:43 am
@Fido,
no reason to be reasoned, in this instance you're dealing with a subhuman entity, a politician, you need no reason other than they are a politician to pass any kind of unsubstantiated judgement on them you care too
0 Replies
 
engineer
 
  2  
Reply Sat 2 Jul, 2011 09:16 am
@hawkeye10,
hawkeye10 wrote:

I would expect talent to shy away from getting wrapped up in MSNBC's anal and childish rule making apparatus ..

I dont think that zero tolerance for the help using outlawed words is going to help MSNBC much, but whatever.

It's not just MSNBC. All news networks have the same rules although they might not have the same integrity about enforcing them.
0 Replies
 
engineer
 
  2  
Reply Sat 2 Jul, 2011 09:18 am
@Fido,
Fido wrote:
It is possible the man was talking and thought he was talking off the record, and if you want a good program which requires a free exchange of ideas, then at some point people should be free to express those ideas to each other to see how well they fly...

If you watch the clip, it is clear he knows the show is live and he is counting on the producer to use the seven second delay to bleep out his comment. In short he is intentionally driving his car into a wall and counting on his airbag to save him. It failed to deploy.
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

T'Pring is Dead - Discussion by Brandon9000
Another Calif. shooting spree: 4 dead - Discussion by Lustig Andrei
Friends don't let friends fat-talk - Discussion by hawkeye10
Before you criticize the media - Discussion by Robert Gentel
Fatal Baloon Accident - Discussion by 33export
The Day Ferguson Cops Were Caught in a Bloody Lie - Discussion by bobsal u1553115
Robin Williams is dead - Discussion by Butrflynet
 
  1. Forums
  2. » MSNBC Numskull Suits at it AGAIN!
Copyright © 2020 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 08/15/2020 at 07:06:34