Short Memories

I’m noting a lot of surprise in the comments here and elsewhere online about Erick Erickson becoming a permanent addition to the CNN stable. I honestly can’t understand why anyone would be remotely surprised by this. If nothing else, the “Dept. of Jihad” antics should give you an idea of the kind of institutional standards the place has, and beyond that, you have to recognize that they regularly feature folks like the Weekly Standard’s Stephen Hayes, Alex Castellanos, and a bevy of other sordid types, and who could forget the run that the execrable Lou Dobbs had for years. The simple fact is that CNN supplies more wingnut welfare than Reason magazine or the Heritage Foundation.

And in case you really still aren’t getting it, let me remind you where Glenn Beck was fully employed for quite some time before being hired away by Roger Ailes at Fox. Erick will give them everything they need- he’s a new face who can come in and chuck grenades and say “edgy” and outrageous things that can grab eyeballs and headlines, and then when he finally over-reaches and goes too far, they’ll dump him and pretend they are above it all, all while their editors seek out the next new Coulter/Malkin/Beck/Erickson.

The only way to do something about it is to not watch. And really, John King is such an asshole, it will be interesting watching people try to one-up him.

BTW- I hope you all don’t get so worked up about this that you lose sight of who the real enemies are out there- Rahm Emanuel and Lynn Woolsey.






64 replies
  1. 1
    Felonious Wench says:

    “Staple” or “Stable?”

    Methings your Freudian slip may be showing. Or else mine is.

    Not surprised. CNN has been off my list of things to read/watch for a year now. Can’t take the propaganda.

  2. 2
    El Cid says:

    Hey, now, Alex Castellanos is a respectable media figure and analyst, and certainly someone had to ask following Obama’s win of the NC primary whether or not he would appoint Bill Ayers and Reverend Jeremiah Wright to Cabinet positions. Amurka had to know.

  3. 3

    They also employed the much more offensive Michael Savage.

    But I do love it that the chief blogger for Red State is now a contributor for the Communist News Network. I know I’m repeating myself but I am greatly amused by this.

    Wolfie! Wolfie! Is that you darling?

  4. 4
    Lev says:

    This is newsworthy? CNN is the last place cable news network now. I guess Fox News lite doesn’t really sell that well.

  5. 5
    Punchy says:

    Let’s not forget the lovely but tragically mis-named Nancy Grace on their CNN sister station…

  6. 6
    Mike in NC says:

    Despite everything that’s happened over at CNN in the past decade, don’t wingnuts still refer to it as the “Clinton News Network”?

  7. 7
    John S. says:

    The only thing that surprises me is that CNN really thinks they can outfox FOX News. You’d think by now, they would have realized that Republicans always prefer the real thing over Republican-lite.

  8. 8
    aimai says:

    This makes me wonder, though, who is left who watches this stuff? I mean, I know I’m not the target market–I know because I don’t watch any broadcast TV or cable stuff at all. They know their market and what it likes. But the question is: is it a growing section of the population? I mean, CNN and Fox can make a good living grabbing the eyeballs, and tugging at the fear response, of the teabaggers but isn’t that market essentially saturated with these feel good purveyers of right wing nonsense? In the long run: two to ten years say are Fox and CNN going to be able to attract and hold a significant number of younger/new viewers and voters with old fat white dudes like Erick Erickson? To riff off the ” reminds everyone of their first wife” kind of sexist cracks Erick Erickson absolutely reminds everyone of the first frat guy they ever saw barfing on his date at a college social event.

    aimai

  9. 9

    OT: GOP now wants an up or down vote on health care bill.

  10. 10

    The sad thing is that it would be nice to have a no-bias news source. Which is what CNN used to promise to be. But no more.

    I quit watching them when I realized that their view of reality was significantly different from my own.

  11. 11
    Bob says:

    What’s CNN?

  12. 12
    Quaker in a Basement says:

    That’s right, cons. Bring your crazy uncle down from the attic and set him right out on the front lawn to harangue passersby.

    No one will point and laugh. Really.

  13. 13
    Bill says:

    That he’s on CNN is not surprising.The problem, as usual, is that he will be “balanced” by David Broder or some other beltway fungi.Which is why it was such a shock when someone effective like Rachel Maddow began appearing on MSNBC.

  14. 14
    mantis says:

    I assume most of you are political junkies like myself, so I have to ask, who the hell watches cable news? I watched a tiny bit during the 2008 election, after having sworn those channels off as irredeemably stupid years ago, and I couldn’t take it for long. Who can stand to watch or listen to those people for more than five minutes? I know the village revolves around cable news, but for those of us not retarded enough (sorry Sarah!) to decide to join the cocktail fucksquad, why do they matter at all? CNN can hire Alex Jones, Orly Taitz, and Charles Manson as contributors for all I care. I didn’t watch before, and I’m not going to start, because I know how to read.

  15. 15
    mantis says:

    Oh, of course, aimai got there first.

  16. 16
    MattF says:

    It’s all about working the margin. CNN has its fans, Fox has its fans, and the fight is over the ones in-between. I’m mildly surprised that CNN chose someone quite so… unbalanced, but the powers-that-be probably felt that they could just suck it up and deal with it.

  17. 17
    Kryptik says:

    @Bill:

    Broder? Hell, knowing the way the insipid media works, he’ll be balanced by David Brooks or Douchehat.

    @MattF:

    But don’t you know? All they’re doing is corrective balance to stop that damn liberal media bias. Because god knows America has had too much of those damn hippies Crowley, King, and Blitzer.

  18. 18
    El Cid says:

    Weighing in as the wide eyed radical leftist liberal on MSNBC, we have Chris Matthews.

    11 Out of 12 Pundits Agree: Obama Must Move to the Right
    ___
    03/16/2010 by Peter Hart | FAIR
    ___

    On his weekend NBC show, Chris Matthews regularly posts a question to 12 regular pundit/journalists–what he calls “The Matthews Meter.” This Sunday (3/14/10), the question was: “Should Obama Move to the Center Instead of the Left as a Reelection Strategy?”

    Matthews explained it on the show:

    ___Let’s go to the bottom line. We took it to The Matthews Meter, 12 of our regulars. What’s the smartest political route for Obama right now, play to the center or to the left? Well, no contest here. Eleven say play to the center; just one says go left.
    ___
    That’s about as clear a statement of the political bias of the corporate press corps as you’re likely to see. The advice for Democrats is always the same–move to the right.
    ___
    The discussion of why this would be a good strategy was about as convincing as the advice itself; one highlight was Matthews asking of Obama: “Do you think he’s as good at faking it as Bill Clinton was? Can he pretend to be a centrist?”

    Eat it, libs! The wealthy pundit class America says Obama must embraces more Republitard policies & rhetoric if he is to survive.

  19. 19
    Kryptik says:

    @El Cid:

    Well, yeah, everyone knows that Obama’s problem was just that damn partisan streak of his. Mitch McConnell told me so!

  20. 20
    demo woman says:

    For the last five months, I have been using an antenna. It’s easier than I thought and it’s free. CSPAN streams on the net and with a Roku I can watch movies instantly online.
    The one thing I don’t miss is CNN.

  21. 21
    Apprentice to Darth Holden says:

    My mom absolutely adores Rachel Maddow.

    OTOH, her disdain for Limbaugh could not be greater.

  22. 22
    LuciaMia says:

    Don’t forget charming mr. bowtie, Tucker Carlson.

  23. 23
    FormerSwingVoter says:

    I’m not surprised that CNN hired another right-winger, just that its someone as clearly unhinged as Erick Erickson.

    Erick Erickson is a cancerous, malformed tumor, dangling grotesquely from the scrotum of human civilization.

  24. 24
    spocko says:

    Actually their IS something more you can do that ‘not watch’

    As Media Matters gathers some of his more horrible audio clips we can alert the advertisers that this is the new face of CNN.

    This action is NOT a boycott. It is convincing the advertisers that they do not want to associate their brand with these horrific comments.

    Lou Dobbs didn’t just “go away”, he was driven out by groups like Presente.org and their partners at BastaDobbs.com.

    This kind of action and the action of Color of Change on Glenn Beck has an economic impact that is very powerful during a time when ad revenues are slumping.
    Glenn Beck has lost 81 advertisers. He is costing them money. This is their famous “free market at work” and he is failing.

    Last month the second of two talk radio hosts I focused on at K S F O since 2006 was fired for financial reasons. It takes time, but right wingers without wingnut welfare are vulnerable. Consumer advertisers are much more sensitive than people think. And what is fine for some random blogger to say on his blog is not fine for someone on TV.

    Say for example Eric starts repeating on CNN his views on Abortion using the same words he used on his website.
    http://www.redstate.com/erick/.....ion-lives/

    This is the kind of ‘edgy’ comments that can be sent to the advertisers with a question. “Do you really want your soap brand to run after this guys’ comments?”

  25. 25
    Kryptik says:

    @FormerSwingVoter:

    So in other words, not a long stretch from their previous hires.

  26. 26
    Gus says:

    The only way to do something about it is to not watch

    Done.

  27. 27
    DFS says:

    @mantis: If they put on a show with Alex Jones, Orly Taitz, and Charles Manson, I would watch every goddamn day.

  28. 28
    licensed to kill time says:

    Cable news is just a business now. They care about ratings, P.E.R.I.O.D. Hence, the hiring of people like Erickson, Beck et al. We all know this and get our real news elsewhere ’cause we’re mad as hell and we’re not going to take it anymore!

  29. 29
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    Isn’t Mary “Bellatrix Lestrange” Matalin–the Cheneyite Death Eater who promotes torture, lies about Saddam and al Qaeda and claims Bush ‘inherited’ 9/11–still part of CNN’s regular rotation? I can’t remember the last time I had CNN on for more than two minutes, except maybe when Rick Sanchez has some spectacularly weird moment that goes viral.

  30. 30
  31. 31
    aimai says:

    Other people for whom numbers are not anathema may be able to help me out here but this little piece about ratings seems to indicate that on their best days channels like CNN and Fox are only reaching about half a million viewers. That’s pretty derisory for a country of 300 million–where are the rest of us getting our news? I get mine from the ambient air, like a sloth, but what about the other voters?

    aimai

  32. 32
    aimai says:

    whoops! in moderation for using a word that looks like it might be a medicine:

    Other people for whom numbers are not anathema may be able to help me out here but this little piece about ratings seems to indicate that on their best days channels like CNN and Fox are only reaching about half a million viewers. That’s pretty derisory for a country of 300 million—where are the rest of us getting our news? I get mine from the amb ***nt air, like a sloth, but what about the other voters?
    aimai

  33. 33
    Tim I says:

    John,

    Thank you for keeping us focused on the true enemies of reform. Rahm and Woolsey have persistently spurned Republican efforts at bi-partisanship and bonhomie.

    That said, I think you should keep a close eye on DougJ. He seems to have a crush on this Hamsher chick. I wouldn’t want to see him get hurt.

  34. 34
    Tim I says:

    John,

    Thank you for keeping us focused on the true enemies of reform. Rahm and Woolsey have persistently spurned Republican efforts at bi-partisanship and bonhomie.

    That said, I think you should keep a close eye on DougJ. He seems to have a crush on this Hamsher chick. I wouldn’t want to see him get hurt. Just a word to the wise.

  35. 35
    Redshirt says:

    We can all pretend things like this don’t matter. But each and every day, the actual truth gets further away, replaced by RNC propaganda, deliberately intended to shape the debate, and not just today, but as with the Texas School Book debate, forever. These folks are in a war, and they’ve already taken over all the main media outlets, all the while still condemning them as the “Liberal Media” – neat trick, by the by.

    So, yeah, sure, it doesn’t matter, since we’re already doomed. But trust that Erick Son of Erick will move that friendly Overton Window just a bit more to the insane right.

  36. 36
    kindness says:

    I wonder if ted Turner still has CNN stock. It might be nice if someone could politely ask him to vote against the current board in the next stockholders meeting.

    Just sayin’ his shares might be worth more if CNN actuall wasn’t trying so hard to be Phaux Pnews lite.

  37. 37
    MattF says:

    @aimai

    Hmm. I’ve been getting my news from you.

  38. 38
    srv says:

    While y’all are on hold with your Representative, let CNN know how you feel:

    http://www.cnn.com/feedback/fo.....d.off.html

  39. 39
    adolphus says:

    As others have noted, not watching is not an option because most people here already do not watch. In fact, few Americans watch cable news as it is. I don’t have the numbers directly at hand, but last I heard less than 5% of Americans watch cable news. The recent Time magazine hagiography of Glenn Beck noted he has less viewers than David Brenner’s old late night show that lasted, what? 10 shows?

    The point isn’t the immediate viewer numbers it is who those viewers are and how anything said on cable news gets echoed and talked about ad nauseaum and effects real debate. Just think how often some mindless journalist has started off a column, article, or editorial with “people are saying type crap.” Now Erickson’s inclusion in the “people” who’s “saying something” can start another round of factless race-horse articles or actual “debate” in either house of congress.

    That makes me sad and more convinced of America’s impending doom.

  40. 40
    Seanly says:

    @FormerSwingVoter:

    You win the thread. I almost snarfed up my diet coke on my keyboard at work.

    I barely watch any CNN anymore. Wolf Blitzen is the worst of the bunch. His high-pitched braying and assinine pondering.

    I love how their idea of a balanced group of commentators is a former Bush speechwriter, the world’s only black female tea-bagger, the mustachioed Alex guy who was an advisor to teh Robot Mitt, that krinkely faced Republican advisor woman and one or two from a rotation of Republican polster dipshits.

    Headline News is unwatchable except for the cutie-pie Robin in the morning.

    Also, in regards to Texas schoolbooks, we’ve always been at war with Thomas Jefferson.

  41. 41
    Lawnguylander says:

    John King’s gobsmacked reaction when CNN’s post-debate viewer polls showed that a large majority thought Obama had whipped McCain’s ass, contrary to his confident assertion minutes before of a McCain victory, remains one of my favorite TV moments ever. Leave him alone.

  42. 42
    R. Porrofatto says:

    I’m not surprised that CNN would select any right-wing loon, but a full-bore consummate shithead like Erickson? Boy, the power of the Internets to aggrandize the deservedly obscure is truly awesome. What next, Don Surber as a Fox anchormoron?

  43. 43
    Silver Owl says:

    Actually I’m not surprised and that is frustrating. Executives should be doing their best to deliver a quality product/service. Time and time again they down right refuse to deliver quality and offer up crap.

  44. 44
    trollhattan says:

    This strategy is working so well for WaPo and Fred Hiatt, how can CNN possibly go wrong? Bowties for everybody!

    BTW, can we look forward to more of this from Herrickson?

    http://tbogg.firedoglake.com/2.....u-can-use/

  45. 45
    Xecky Gilchrist says:

    In the long run: two to ten years say are Fox and CNN going to be able to attract and hold a significant number of younger/new viewers

    Oh, they’ve already figured out how to do that.

  46. 46
    Tsulagi says:

    honestly can’t understand why anyone would be remotely surprised by this.

    Definitely. Works for CNN, or at least simple math tells them it will. Teabagging sells; See Bible Spice and Beck’s Tears. E2 is kind of a generic everyRman’s bagger. But if it’s really going to work for CNN and EE, meaning ratings and bucks, he’s going to have to manufacture his own shtick. Beck has his tears and loonyboard, Palin has her winks and slut librarian look.

    But given EE’s thinkering power, guessing he might shamelessly steal a little from both. Maybe winks and tears to tap a huge R-bagger demo. GayPatriot posts of “You got the sense he was winking right at you, you sat up a little straighter gayer…” That’s a huge market.

  47. 47
    Brian J says:

    If Rahm Emmanuel and Lynn Woosley had a baby, would it be worse than (a) Hitler, (b) Stalin, or (c) Mao Zedung? Seriously, which one?

    Anyway, I am not worked up by Erickson being hired. I don’t watch a lot of cable news to begin with, and when I do, it’s usually Olbermann’s show. I can’t remember the last time I watched CNN or Fox for more than thirty seconds while flipping by. I just think it’s amusing that, despite the numerous conservatives who are, as you note, gainfully employed by outlets other than Fox, the insists the media leans to the extreme left. No matter what happens, nothing changes their minds. Surprising, no, but amusing, yes.

  48. 48
    Mnemosyne says:

    @aimai:

    In the long run: two to ten years say are Fox and CNN going to be able to attract and hold a significant number of younger/new viewers and voters with old fat white dudes like Erick Erickson?

    That’s part of the problem: companies don’t care about the long run anymore. All they care about is the next quarter. As long as they can keep going for just one more quarter, it doesn’t matter how destructive their policies are and since it hasn’t blown up in their face yet, it must be a perfectly cromulent strategy.

    If you tell them that this strategy is going to hurt them two years from now, they’ll just laugh at you. Why should they care about what’s going to happen two years from now as long as they can report a profit two months from now?

  49. 49
    daryljfontaine says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Why should they care about what’s going to happen two years from now as long as they can report a profit two months from now collect a fat executive paycheck and a severance bonus that kicks in regardless of performance?

    Fix’d.

    D

  50. 50
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    I remember, at one of those ridiculous proms they throw themselves seemingly once a month, Bill Clinton made fun of John King’s oh-so-soigné hair. I’d be willing to be John King remembers that, too. It was the same bit when BC made a reference to “rearranging the deck chairs on ‘This Week, with Sam and Cokie’.”

  51. 51
    Michael D. says:

    Out of the dozens of comments at CNN, there are exactly TWO in favor of the decision.

  52. 52
    R. Porrofatto says:

    Speaking of short memories, it seems that in 2008 Erickson was calling for the guy who just hired him to be fired over the YouTube debate:

    Republican viewers should boycott CNN until they fire Sam Feist, their political director; and David Bohrman, Senior Vice President and Executive Producer of the debate.

  53. 53
    Darnell says:

    On CNN just now;

    “Only in Washington can you have a vote that’s not a vote!”
    — Ed Henry

    Followed by asking Gov. Tim Kaine what President Obama had for lunch…(seriously)

    — commercial break —

    Now we’re knuckle deep into the coverage and tracking of the Stimulus. You know, the tracking and accountability that has never been done to any government spending, ever, like in history!

    Maybe do the same thing with war profiteering that you’re doing with “The Stimulus”???…..Naaahhhhh……

  54. 54
    aimai says:

    I think my point is closer to Adolphus’s than Mnemosyne’s–I’m not worried that CNN is making a fatal demographic business decision. I hope they are. What I’m wondering is how long the echo chamber/drudge driving the discourse effect can last when CNN/Fox’s viewership actually dies off and isn’t replaced.

    I guess the question answers itself–as long as the other newsmakers watch each other and talk about each other’s concerns we are doomed to watch politicians and pundits endlessly recreating long dead zombie discussions *just as we do today* with Chris Matthews acting the part of the liberal democrat because a thousand years ago he had a passing aquaintance with Tip O’Neil who I’m pretty sure really is dead, and not just dead on TV.

    The question is how long can a show influence the voters when the voters aren’t watching it anymore? There’s no doubt it will continue to influence the politicians, like a david broder column preserved in amber, but in the long run will it move voters?

    aimai

  55. 55
    Michael D. says:

    Gawker:

    Dear CNN,

    You are never going to get people who watch Fox News to switch to you. They hate you. You could hire Dick Cheney as lead anchor and they would still scream about your liberal bias. All you are accomplishing by giving jobs to screeching rightwing lunatics like Erickson is alienating the only audience you have left and further diluting what constitutes “news” and “reporting” in this country.

    Regards,
    Everyone in the goddamned world.

  56. 56
    Nellcote says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    at one of those ridiculous proms they throw themselves seemingly once a month, Bill Clinton made fun

    Bill Clinton is headlining the Gridiron Dinner this year. I wonder who his backup dancers will be.

  57. 57
    Pasquinade says:

    If I had a FReeper account, I’d post this repeatedly:

    Erick Erickson of Red State sold out the birthers to get the CNN gig

    http://www.redstate.com/erick/.....therewith/

    :)

  58. 58
    Paris says:

    Who cares about small town America? Nobody lives there any more.

  59. 59
    Jay in Oregon says:

    @Pasquinade:

    Win!

  60. 60
    Joseph Nobles says:

    Oh, we can add Donna Edwards to the list of true enemies as well. All the money the Firebaggers raised for her wasn’t enough to innoculate her against the walking pnuRahmia.

  61. 61
    ricky says:

    I can no longer read this blog now that i have learned
    Obama is primarying women who are pro-choice and Jane Hamsher is defending herself against being falsely accused of saying that Unions are using thug tactics on HCR.

    Who cares who is on CNN. The world is ending at the Lake.
    By the way, who is Rahm and Cardinal Woolsey?

  62. 62
    Montana says:

    In my opinion this is what the small portions of the republican party of “birthers, baggers and blowhards” have brought you. They are good at “Follow the Leader” of their dullard leaders, they listen to Beck, Hedgecock, Hannity, O’Reilly, Rush and Savage and the rest of the Blowhards. Are you surprise at what they do when you know what they think? The world is complicated and most republicans (Hamiliton, Lincoln, Roosevelt) believe that we should use government a little to increase social mobility, now its about dancing around the claim of government is the problem. Although most republicans are trying to distant themselves from this fringe they have a long way to go.

  63. 63
    Nylund says:

    I don’t watch CNN. The few times I tried, it seemed like it was about 12 hours straight of something along the lines of a woman missing somewhere, interrupted once every two hours so that we could be reminded that Democrats are stupid, then, later, white men with white hair would yammer on about something or another.

    For the first time in my life, I thought that maybe those who spent their nights watching American Idol might just actually be our best and brightest.

  64. 64

    […] to get back at him has employed someone who would be more at home in the hate talk ghetto?”), here, here (for a reaction of ” shocked discuss”), and […]

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] to get back at him has employed someone who would be more at home in the hate talk ghetto?”), here, here (for a reaction of ” shocked discuss”), and […]

Comments are closed.