3/21/09 11:50 PM

Thursday Links & Open Thread

Latest cable news links [6:33 pm]:

Wednesday's numbers.

FBN: a "leap of faith".

Saturday special: Jihad, USA. Video preview.

Hillary Clinton: bad lighting.

"Pimping" again?

Jim Cramer's track record (via TVN).

Gail Shister promotes Keith Olbermann. Olby's ageism? Is he in a in a rut?

CJR knocks Joe.

The Beltway Boys plan a road trip.

Hotline quotes.

John Kasich career move.

Today's firing demand.

Heidi Collins's second son.

MSNBC.com's special Brew.

News websites attract youth.

Who's more partisan: FNC or MSNBC?

Typical white pundits.

Use our valuable bandwidth to post your comments on any and all cable news topics in today's open thread. Standard rules apply.

On The Mark
Earlier in the week, you provided a link to an analysis of the small audiences cable news networks have relative to the broadcast networks. That is an important point we should all remember.  
Today, we have a link to the "Right Minds" article which suggests that the lens for viewing FNC is O'Reilly and Hannity. That, too, is a good point. The firebrands, the rabid partisans/philosophical zealots do, unfortunately, seem to be the standard by which all of FNC seems to be judged. It is hard to make a credible argument that these two partisans represent anything but a far right perspective. To my mind, they are both ridiculous fools who pander, as most media personalities do, for ratings. Content has more to do with building and holding onto ratings than it does fairness and balance. The consequence is, I think, that the solid journalists at FNC who do make a legitimate stab at fairness and balance, the Humes, Smiths and Wallaces, get tarred with a very broad bush, dipped in the muck and mire of O'Reilly and Hannity. That is most unfortunate.
By contrast, Olbermann at MSNBC, is as unfair and unbalanced as O'Reilly and Hannity. I despise him as much as I do O'Reilly and Hannity. The entire network seems to get less characterized by his attitudes and demeanor, however. Perhaps, historically, his ratings did not create the same vacuum as we have seen at FNC. Perhaps, there is another dynamic. Maybe MSNBC viewers are more willing to "fess up" to his foibles than FNC viewers are for O'Reilly and Hannity. A bit less defensiveness? I don't know.
So, for the over-arching question, is FNC inaccurately characterized as unfair and unbalanced, the answer is yes. But, the reason for this has as much to do with the internal FNC dynamic, FNC's willingness to let the network be defined by O'Reilly and Hannity, than by the external projection by the despised liberals.
Hume, Smith and Wallace, Barnes, Kondrake and others, suffer for this, and, in the end, there seems to be a persistent stigmata about FNC. Decidedly unfair. Unless and until O'Reilly and Hannity cease to be the standard, I am not sure FNC will have the universal respect it so craves. Again, decidedly unfair.
The swipe, if you will, at Greta is so true. A most competent legal journalist now wallowing in muck and rubbish. Maybe she enjoys it. Can't be very demanding, relatively stress-free.
The Scarborough segment was good. Even as Scarborough was transitioning into "Morning Joe," I was delighted. A fresh and dynamic show. If Scarborough doesn't learn to shut up at times and stop playing the bully, he is going to ruin it all.
March 27, 2008, 7:52:40 AM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
News websites *do* attract youth. I'm living proof.
The Business Journalism and "typical white pundits" links won't work.
Even without BOR, "The Factor" still kicked Keith's rear in the demo and total viewers. Good.
March 27, 2008, 6:17:09 PM EDT – Like – Reply

johnny dollar
Good catch on the typical white pundits link. You know what happened? The blogger deleted the original incendiary headline and took out the word "white". Then reposted it with a different headline, so the URL changed. I will have a fixed one up in minutes.
I just checked the FBN link and it worked for me.
March 27, 2008, 6:31:00 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
Okay, now they're working for me. Still no FBN on Cablevision, though. I'm sure they won't even add ESPNEWS HD when it launches on Sunday.
I'll be watching "Jihad, USA" Saturday night. I hope I like it.
The white pundits link was awful.
March 27, 2008, 7:01:00 PM EDT – Like – Reply

johnny dollar
I was suprised to see Kasich in instead of Laura tonight, but I really liked the show, one of the best in a while. Too bad Kasich couldn't make a go of his weekend show; apparently he's going back to politics anyhow.
March 27, 2008, 9:04:43 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
I was surprised, too, but happy. Too much of one fill-in isn't good. It's nice to mix it up. Plus, Laura can be irritating and too partisan. But I didn't watch until 8:40 anyway. I don't make an effort to watch if BOR isn't hosting.
I e-mailed Robert Cox about becoming a registered commenter at OlbyWatch, but I had to do it from a long forgotten ISP e-mail.
March 27, 2008, 9:50:09 PM EDT – Like – Reply

david smawley
Too Partisan, are you kidding with the likes of Keith on the other side spouting his venom nightly. Laura is a conservative commentator and males no bones about it. Unlike many "journalists" who lie about being impartial.
it's good that Kasich is back running for office because he's a nice guy and we need more conservative office holders in Ohio. But on TV, no thanks.
March 28, 2008, 5:40:13 AM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
I was too tough on Laura last night. I'm sorry. Anybody looks partisan in the place of independent BOR.
March 28, 2008, 8:14:23 AM EDT – Like – Reply

david smawley
Well, she can be very funny as well as conservative. On Wed. I had a LOL moment when she had that guy from SF on who talked about how men are victimized by females. The clip is still up on The Factor web page.
March 28, 2008, 9:03:33 AM EDT – Like – Reply