Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Most Ridiculous Moment – January 3, 2016


It was an exciting day on the Sunday 
talk shows, with an election year officially 
under way, and the first votes to be cast 
in only four weeks.

Donald Trump was on, of course, on 
CBS' Face The Nation, where he blamed Hillary Clinton for the invasion of Iraq 
and the Syrian civil war.

Jon Kasich was Meet The Press, saying
“I don't know” and “I can't explain it to you,” on why Chris Christie is doing better than he is, when Kasich is very popular in Ohio and everyone in New Jersey hates Christie. On Tamir Rice, he said proudly, “we have no violence in Cleveland,” – except of course, 
for the police shootings.

Rand Paul came to explain his foreign policy is very different from Barack Obama's, saying “while Obama gets blamed for not intervening enough, he's actually intervened quite a bit in the Middle East,” and “the Grahams and the McCains have been on the same side as Obama. They just want more of what 
Obama's been doing.”

The Lieutenant Governor of Texas, Dan Patrick, conducted a slightly unhinged interview with Chuck Todd, calling concerns about open carrying of guns “propaganda by those who either don't like guns, or who are afraid of guns,” and saying “don't stop us, who love guns, who love the Second Amendment, from being able to protect ourselves, our family, our businesses, 
and our friends.”

One the one hand he defended requiring a background check for 'open carry', saying 
it's an “evolving” process, but also insisted “you're never going to stop bad guys from getting guns with background checks at gun shows. Let America have their guns, let them 
defend themselves, and America will be a safer place.”

Ben Carson was on ABC, when he answered 
a question about the Saudi execution of a prominent Shiite cleric by blaming the President for dealing with Iran, saying, 
“I’m just saying we need to stop doing silly things that promote these kinds of activities.” 

He also argued political correctness will help terrorists accomplish their jihad, and on terrorism in general observed, “A lot of oil there, strategic location, you go across the water, northern and you’re into Southern Europe. South Sudan, Chad, you know, Niger, you know, a tremendous opportunity for them. We need to be undermining their possibilities of establishing a caliphate 
there right now.”

In the panel discussion, Van Jones called 
Ben Carson narcissistic, but Alex Castellanos disagreed, saying the doctor is not a narcissist, “he got in because he thinks America needs a moral renewal. And it's almost a spiritual cause.”

On NBC, Chuck Todd announced poll results showing that the angriest people in America are white women. Conservative writer Jennifer Rubin explained white women are angry because “we've had a disastrous foreign policy for at least seven years, if you want to go back, probably more than that,” and “we have a President who seems to be kind of almost indifferent to attacks on American soil, when he seems to be 
ridiculing the American people for being concerned and says it's cable tv. People 
do get angry about that.”

Republican operative Sarah Fagen agreed, saying “You have a President who hasn't been strong in attacking jihadism.”

Bernie Sanders was on ABC, where Martha Raddatz accused him of being too much of a Washington D.C. insider, and confronted him with the fact that he has been consistent for 25 years. Most of her questions about were about process and the horse race, although she did ask the Senator quote “Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus think Bill Clinton’s sexual history is fair game. Do you?”

The most absurd moments came in discussion of the 2016 campaign and Hillary Clinton. As Chuck Todd put it, “Bill Clinton remains the most popular political figure in America. It's still not clear whether he's an asset or a liability for his wife's campaign,” and “Donald Trump is making it clear nothing is off limits, including the Clinton marriage,” and “Trump is trying to do to Hillary what no Republican has successfully done. Make 
Bill Clinton's personal problem a political liability for her,” and “while it's always benefited Hillary Clinton whenever there's conversation about Bill Clinton's past, 
she hates talking about it.”

ABC spent even more time on the same subject, with a field reporter noting “ugly attacks from a former friend,” and “Now aiming his attacks not only at his potential rival, but taking shots at Hillary's husband as well,” and with one guest saying “no on in American politics better personifies a war on women than Mrs. Clinton’s husband,” and calling him “a serial philanderer.”

Panelist Matt Bai actually called questioned addressing the issue, saying voters don't really care, and “I don't think this is a big issue,” and “if this is truly dominating the Democratic race as we go into 2016, as you said, Martha, shame on us,” and noting “Donald Trump is the best manipulator of media and conversation since P.T. Barnum.” Bai added, “He knows we do this every week. We do this,” and “He finds some outrageous thing to say, somebody new to pick on,” when host Martha Raddatz jumped in saying 
“And we all talk about it.”

So, the Sunday talk shows know they are being manipulated by a P.T. Barnum-like showman who exploits their shallowness and childish need for sensational and titillating news, but they go right ahead and cheapen their brand to give him exactly what he wants.

And that's the most ridiculous thing that happened this Sunday.

No comments: