The Meek Spineless National Broadcasting Company (MSNBC)

“Anyone who makes a living in broadcasting should be afraid. If the holy hypocrites are successful and the mumbling malcontent is axed — who will they target next?”
Joe Leonardi

‘ It is our feeling that this is only the beginning. We must have a broad discussion on what is permitted and not permitted in terms of the airwaves ‘.
The Reverend Al Sharpton

The Meek Spineless National Broadcasting Company (MSNBC)
By: Joe Leonardi

On Softball last night lightweight David Gregory, subbing for Hardball heavyweight Chris Mathews, interviewed NBC news President Steve Capus. I was aghast watching Mr. Capus sheepishly look down after almost every question was posed. I was wondering, is he too ashamed to look into the camera or was the entire interview scripted? I don’t know and I don’t care. Mr. Capus is a mealy mouth marshmallow who hid behind shameful excuses defending the Network’s decision to drop the Imus simulcast.

According to Mr. Capus, it had nothing to do with the growing list of large companies canceling sponsorship, i.e., money! Who is he trying to fool? It just so happens as the list gets larger and larger MSNBC pulls the cable; this had nothing to do with the decision? Please!

Mr. Capus awkwardly ducked, hid and spun stating it was the concerns expressed by employees of NBC that finalized the decision. He verbally expressed that NBC was more concerned with its reputation than money. Does anyone remember the fireworks, literally, on Dateline? Advertisers came back and Dateline is one of NBC’s most profitable shows. So, please Mr. Capus stop treating people like they are stupid. Of course Gregory really didn’t press him and later on Countdown MSNBC’s Mr. Liberal Keith Olbermann bowed-down just as quickly. When your network is the story how objectively can you cover it? Obviously, not at all. It was — pitiful. Even Mr. Integrity Olbermann admitted to not taking the network to task, in “reverence” to his bosses. Please Keith if this were FOX News, O’Reilly or anyone else with a conservative slant, you would have berated that individual into admitting that it was “about the money.” Heck Keith, you kept you mouth shut because of who pays you. Here are my suggestions for “worst person in the world”: Steve Capus, David Gregory and Keith Olbermann.

MSNBC needs to develop a backbone and admit that this was an economic decision. Anyone who has ever worked in either radio or television learns within a day — it is all about the money. In this case, I would prefer it to be about the money. If this decision was made in deference to the protesters, I am deeply disturbed. MSNBC reports the Imus situation in front of a large image of the Constitution, perhaps they should read it.

I wonder who is going to go next. What will we do if someone determines speech we agree with is inappropriate? If freedom of speech only applies to pleasant, agreeable and acceptable words, which type of speech will next be oppressed? Will Al Sharpton decide? Will David Duke? Last night, in comparison to Imus, Olbermann basically asked why is Rush Limbaugh or Michael Savage still on the air? Will Keith now become the arbiter of what goes out over the airwaves?

!?Dammit — Where is the ACLU?!

We really need to get over being offended by words. Should I be offended every time the Soprano’s stereotype those of Italian descent? Should I be offended every time someone says, Chiropractors are quacks? American’s get offended way too easily. Sometimes it isn’t the words, it the response to the words that demonstrate character.

I don’t like Don Imus, he’s a jerk and I am glad he was taken off MSNBC. I am ecstatic that the market took care of itself. If Don Imus wasn’t taken off MSNBC I would have done what I have always done when it comes to old marble mouth, I simply wouldn’t watch.

However, I am distraught that the powers at NBC news have no courage. In an effort to boost their own image they used their employees to hide the fact that they are what they rail against; Capitalists.

Joe Leonardi



Filed under ACLU, Al Sharpton, CBS, Conservative, Don Imus, I-man, Jesse Jackson, Liberal, Michael Savage, MSNBC, NBC, Radio, Rush Limbaugh

14 responses to “The Meek Spineless National Broadcasting Company (MSNBC)

  1. Eric

    Joe you didn’t even talk about my favorite part.

    When Robert Johnson, founder of BET and current owner of the Charlotte Hornets and said authoritatively–and incorrectly–that “we all know that if Don Imus had ever said such things” about jews he’d be off the air. And “we all know that”…why? Because “we all know that” the jews control the media, perhaps?

    Anti-semitic much Mr. Johnson?

  2. Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD

    The fact remains that there is no virtue in any kind of derogating a fellow human by another. Used to be the F word was never heard in public. Now, as my kids explain, “It’s only a word, Dad.” I would probably attack someone if he referred to my daughter as Imus called, collectively, the Rutgers team; I bet you would, too. If he’s not sexist, why didn’t he say something to the effect, “What an impressive bunch of young athletes! Rutgers must be proud?” Womens’ successes strike at the very core of insecure mens’ masculinity and Black womens’ successes are like an atom bomb to those men, thus the sentiment and thoughtless, unkind words. The empty justification in blogs and media re: Free Speech, entertainment, personna, is just that. Time for change. Time for civility.

  3. Hi DocDoc,

    I can’t agree with you that Free Speech is an empty justifications. While Imus’s words have no justification, protecting his right to say them are very important. By moving this a step at a time what is next — political speech? What if someone in the 60’s felt, and I’m sure that some did, Martin Luther King was not civil, not virtuous? Would it have been appropriate to stop him? MLK was a once in a generation person. His words reach in the future many years after his death.

    I’m not comparing King to Imus, King was a great man and Imus is a great jerk. But we have to be careful where we start limiting speech — because we won’t see where it ends.

    I can’t imagine a physical confrontation over words, I haven’t done that since I was 16. I ran for Congress, you develop a thick skin and come to the realization that getting upset over an insult isn’t worth the grief or the effort.

    The young women are commendable athletes and they have handled this horrible situation with poise.

    With all that said his firing was an economic decision, the only problem is that CBS and NBC are trying to wrap themselves in the blanket of sensitivity. They are the entities giving the impression that this is about speech.

    I would be more comfortable if they would just admit it is about the money. If they said that, all free speech arguments go out the window.

    Thanks for the Comment
    Keep up the Dialogue


  4. Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD

    O.K., excercise “free speech” and say what you want, but be prepared for whatever consequences your freely spoken words might produce. This is a rights-conscious society. You have the right to say what you want and I have the right to bristle and even seek an apology from you–and damages if the law allows. There really isn’t “free” speech. Wouldn’t surprise me if there’s talk about the merits of a lawsuit against the offenders going on right now. All this notwithstanding that talking like that has no place in a civilized society.

  5. Hi DocDoc

    I never said it shouldn’t have consequences. I am no fan of Imus, never have been. But just because I don’t like nor agree with someone’s words doesn’t mean they should not have the right to speak.

    I don’t understand how people would like to toss the bill of rights in the trash when it protects something they don’t agree with.

    I am a Conservative, Don Imus is not a friend of the conservative movement, but I respect his right to speak. And I agree with NBC and CBS’s right to suspend or fire him.

    Again, this really should NOT be a free speech issue. Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson along with NBC and CBS through spin are giving the free speech debate fuel.

    Keep up the Dialogue

  6. Jonathan Robson

    Well these decisions are nearly always money related, and the corporations never seem to give that as the reason. There doesn’t seem to be any new news here.

    As for the MLK discussion, MLK did not have a syndicated radio show to begin with, and even if he had and had lost it, the movement he represented was so powerful that his words would have continued to be heard. Imus has not lost any right of free speech here. He can still say whatever he wants. He just doesn’t have a radio show any more. An idiot has been marginalized and rightly so.

  7. Hi Jonathan,

    Well said.

    Thanks for the Comment
    Keep up the Dialogue


  8. Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD

    Jonathan & Joe, my point, exactly. Imus’s “free speech” cost him plenty because sponsors were afraid of public opinion affecting their bottom line had they acquiesced. As for MLK, his stand against oppression of a race was a moral absolute and no one could have rightfully disagreed with him. That’s what gives it its substance. Trouble was, convention, especially in the south, caused people to make immoral decisions about race and slavery. He educated us. I think verbally derogating the dignity, hair style/color, gender and occupation of another person is equally morally wrong, whether it’s done over the airwaves or to the person’s face, in jest or seriousness, and no amount of rationalizing will make it morally right. It serves no useful or virtueous purpose in a civilized society and should be stopped.

  9. Ted

    I am not certain where to begin my thought, or where it will end. This entire situation has once again shown the true color of some meak minded people whom can not think for themselves if they are led by the two unemployed, pot stirring, double standard living, flash of media attention grabbers known as Reverands. I must state Imus should have choosen other words, if he was even aware of what his words meant. He is a radical radio host who spouts off about everyone, not just the people of the planet whom are not white. Based on the fact he learned the err of his ways thanks to the press’s “as usual coverage overkill”, and the two reverands whom claim to be god fearing men.
    Have either Mr. Jackson, or Mr. Sharpton ever worked a day in their lives when they weren’t trying to capitalize on someones error in life? I seriously doubt it. They are the ones people should ask, what their true agenda is? Do they want the civil war that ended decades ago to carry on forever so they never need to go to work for real? The war is over gents!!!
    What ever happened to the part of the bible which reminds us to love thy neighbor, and forgiveness? Guess that is not in the book you preace from.
    Mr. Jackson and Mr. Sharpton, have either of you ever taken a moment to listen to the crap that comes out of the mouths of rappers? It is disgusting, and frightening what our children hear, yet you have nothing to say about it. Why is that? Why don’t you look at the future of our children and take up a cause to clean up their act. Maybe you could do a special on BET, since you have your own entertainment network. There are latin stations, hispanic stations, black entertainment networks, and even womens entertainment networks. What a double standard…. Where is the white entertainment network? I can tell you why there is not one of those. There is no need for it, yet if there were such a network, the media and the two reverands would have endless airtime.
    Thank god for the two reverands. Without them, Saturday Night Live would most likely find it more difficult to fill their evening of entertainmet. Mr. Jackson and Mr. Sharpton, all I can say is get a life, and get a job. I believe a few years ago Mr. Sharpton you were involved in something much more disgraceful than three unnecessary words. Care to bring that back to the publics attention like you continue to do when you have a person down on the ground, and the world is kicking him because you are all of a sudden a hero for the black community?
    Take a look at how the Amish people prayed for, and forgave the man who killed their children. They did the same for his family. Perhaps Mr. Jackson and Mr. Sharpton should pick up an Amish bible and learn how to truly get the country behind them in prayer from a real bible…not the good book which only brings them out when they see an opportunity for air time. Imus was wrong to say what he said, no question. He is now paying the big price. I wonder what the children of all the charities he works for will do without his ability to help them in the same capacity. Maybe the two reverands can step up and help someone besides themselves. Now wouldn’t that be something to air. When it comes to addressing MSNBC and CBS’s decision to cut the cord…. I see that as a spineless act which allows me the opprtunity to spend more time away from my television, as I am not in need of any portion of media you may call entertainment.

  10. Hi Ted,

    Great point about the Amish. Perhaps we all can learn something from their response.

    Thanks for the Comment
    Keep up the Dialogue

  11. Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD

    Ted, you say, “I must state Imus should have chosen other words…” I’m curious. What “other words” does one use to get across the message that the Rutgers team is, collectively, “nappy-headed hos?” If he didn’t believe that, why did he say it? If he’s doing his job as a shock jock, does “doing one’s job” excuse him from committing a moral wrong? As for your notion people should read one “good book” or another for guidance, such books have only been around for a couple thousand years and it’s a little self-righteous, it seems to me, for us 21st century humans to think that, before those books existed, there was no morality. This is not a religious issue; it’s a human one. As for the civil war being over, that may well be, but the movement for whites to end their oppression of blacks that reached its pinnacle in the 60’s is not yet over, as Imus has so “eloquently” shown, and Jackson and Sharpton, even with their personal flaws, are continuing the struggle. Whether or not either “worked a day in their life” has nothing to do with what they say and shouldn’t be used as a litmus test in determining the validity of their words.

  12. Lost in Transalation

    You refer to Imus’ firing as the “market taking care of itself.” I wonder if you realize just how skewed the media market has become as a direct result of de-regulation and FCC incompetence? As I listened to Michael Powell trying to explain how easing the restrictions on how many media entities a single corporation may own in a local market would have little or no impact on the quality or substance of local content, I couldn’t help be reminded of his father presenting this administration’s flimsy evidence for going to war with Iraq to the U.N. in 2003. Both were embarassing then and we are now witnessing the consequences of both those arguments.

    My point is that Imus was fired, not because his bosses lacked guts…they reacted exactly they way any giant corporation would be expected to when faced with commercial revenue withdrawals and economic threats from the general public. The got rid of the immediate problem. Never mind that some other jack-ass will be sitting in front of the microphone in a few weeks, or that Imus will be on the air somewhere else, the executives who made the decision got their company off the hook.
    Welcome to Regan’s New World Order.

  13. Hi Lost,

    I never said they fired him because they lacked guts. I said not telling the truth as to why they fired him was spineless.

    Thanks for the Comment
    Keep up the Dialogue


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