Wednesday, November 3, 2010

MSNBC's Election Coverage Was Juvenile

While I’m happy the election season is finally (almost) over, I’m also a bit afraid of what is ahead. Will the parties actually try to work together, or will we have more of the same gridlock? Will Congress actually pay attention to what the people want, or simply do what they think is correct? Can anyone in the federal government get a rein on spending? Will we actually get that transparency folks have been talking about? At any rate, I don’t feel that the ass whooping the Democrats got was the result of a massive conversion to conservatism as much as a message to the President and the rest of the government that people are generally unhappy and ready for a change.

Yeah, hope and change. But this season, it could’ve been the GOP’s slogan. It was truly shocking to watch the lower ticker on the news web sites that showed how many incumbents lost this election. Good. People shouldn’t be in the House of Representatives or the Senate for terms on end. You can’t represent the people when you are removed from “the people” for such a long period of time.

Last night I watched Fox’s coverage for awhile, but then I remembered that I should try to get another viewpoint, so I switched over to MSNBC. While Fox at least presented the illusion of neutrality by having liberal and conservative talking heads discussing the results, MSNBC’s hosts were Chris Matthews, Keith Olbermann, and Rachel Maddow. I mean, you couldn’t ask for a more Democratic panel. (Can you imagine if Fox’s panel had Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Glenn Beck commentating?) While I understand the difference between a commentator and a journalist, it was baffling to me that a major news network like MSNBC would only have liberal commentators discussing the results of election night.

I have to admit that after watching Keith Olbermann giggle at and insult the Republican candidates who lost, I’m oddly intrigued. Is his show that juvenile? Rachel Maddow at least seems fairly intelligent (despite that she is too blind to see that MSNBC is in the tank for Obama), but Matthews and Olbermann were like a couple of playground bullies. (Isn't it the new in thing to be against bullying?  Didn't Olbermann and Matthews get the memo?)  While Paladino may be kind of a crazy, and his thing with the orange baseball bat was a little questionable, I didn’t expect to see the lead commentators of a major news organization’s election night coverage openly mocking him. (They cut out of his concession speech to interview someone, I don’t remember who, then Olbermann gave some snide remark and played the end of the concession speech.) And then there was Matthews’ discussion with Michelle Bachmann, where he couldn’t simply congratulate her, but had to throw out rude remarks, with Olbermann giggling like a little girl in the background.  While it was fairly amusing to watch the sheer bitterness exuding from the three, at times it was almost like watching the Three Stooges.  MSNBC should be really ashamed. Eventually I had to turn back to Fox.  Who would’ve thought that Fox’s coverage would actually be the most professional? No wonder MSNBC got trounced by Fox in the ratings.

God, I miss Tim Russert.


  1. Yes, Olbermann's show IS that juvenile. I really really loved Maddow when her show started and felt she was logical and refreshing but she's starting to get a little long-winded these days.

    I miss Russert too. When did it turn into this?

  2. I was really stunned when I tune in, because I used to always watch MSNBC on election night back when Tim Russert was around. I keep meaning to watching Maddow's show, but I always forget. I actually used to watch Hardball all the time, but then Chris Matthews got kind of crazy, so I stopped. Like I said, though, I am intrigued enough to tune in to Olbermann's show, and I find it really amusing that he just got suspended for contributing to the Dems without telling anyone like he was supposed to. Guess I'll have to wait!