3/21/09 11:50 PM

Tuesday Links & Open Thread

Latest cable news links [7:30 pm]:

Layfield blasts Olbermann.

NYT out to get FNC?

Larry King stays.

Monday's numbers. Weekend numbers. Ranker.

Wearing CNN headlines? Try these.

Papal thoughts.

Senator Chris Matthews?

Q&A: Hemmer; Megyn [audio].

Primary coverage. H&C: 10:00 pm; Greta: 11:00-1:00. Exclusive streaming. Schneider blogging.

Green machine.

Snow: keeps Radio Factor, faces partisanship. Flashback. Hospitalized!

Hotline quotes.

Room for Ailes.

Abrams v Rove continues.

NewsCorp's anti-synergy.

CNN's "primetime problem"? Pixel-plug.

The "smoking gun".

Today's deep thought.

Use our valuable bandwidth to post your cable news comments in today's open thread.

Mike Chimeri
Re: Tony Snow still at "Radio Factor": Thankfully, my prediction yesterday (Monday) evening was wrong.
April 22, 2008, 12:24:57 AM EDT – Like – Reply

It was a smart move for CNN to get Tony Snow.
It`s about business and rating after all it`s a show for all.
It will be a win situation for all
April 22, 2008, 6:30:17 AM EDT – Like – Reply

Fox Fan
I wonder if the leftist blogs will continue to call for Snow's suffering and death now that he's moved to the communist news network.
April 22, 2008, 7:05:40 AM EDT – Like – Reply

On The Mark
The links this morning, to the time of posting, at least, reveal an interesting dynamic in cable news. MSNBC is much in the news with the MySpace streaming video of MSNBC news, the Gregory simulcast on Air America and, although much discussed last night but not so far today, Olbermann's interview of Clinton.
CNN is also in the news, but in a mixed bag sort of way. The growing Dobbs problem, contrasted with the Snow hiring and the (John) King technology, which is truly amazing. Of course, (Larry) King also had Clinton last night.
FNC made the news only in conjunction with the other cable news networks.
I don't suggest, in any measure, that this means one network is waxing and the other waning. What I do suggest is that one network, MSNBC, perhaps out of pure necessity, is a source of innovation and creativity at the moment, forward looking, cutting edge.
We then have CNN, a bridge of sort, about which more later.
Lastly, we have FNC which seems to be holding its own, to be sure, but "holding" implies flat. And, I think that is where FNC is now. There is creativity, there is at least an implication, a foreshadowing of change, perhaps illustrated most clearly by the flux at F&F, but there is also a static component, a sense of looking back upon a period which is rapidly ending. On the part of the Bush apologists at FNC, Hume, Hannity, North, Barnes, Kristol and, to a lesser extent, Krauthammer, there is a tinge of sadness. For O'Reilly, who is less overtly partisan (his ego not allowing an outreach of any sort), there is some sense of being reduced to shock jock status merely to maintain ratings. But, shock jocks inevitably fail to shock at some point and fail.
As I said earlier, I am not forecasting a FNC fall. On the contrary, if FNC is the network I think it is, it will tinker, adjust, overthrow, but I suspect profound changes are near. Changes which will result in a vastly different product, but I suspect a much improved one, a stronger one, a product with a broader consumer base. I can see several beneficiaries of this, including most noticeably Smith, but I also suspect that by the time of the inauguration, we may be looking at a dynamic new hire.
CNN may be slightly ahead of the competition in its change dynamic, cedeing in some measure the young and the more progressive to MSNBC and the far right to FNC and going squarely for an amorphous middle. In this move, it will be fascinating to watch what will happen with Dobbs. CNN assuredly has a Dobbs problem. Dobbs is CNN's shock jock, but I'm not sure CNN , as it reforms itself, has any place for a shock jock. CNN, I suspect, is most at risk, for its product may end up being a generic, reduced fat vanilla ice cream.
April 22, 2008, 8:07:46 AM EDT – Like – Reply

Vince P
If FNC "declines" because the other networks (well CNN, not MSNBC) responded to the audience defections that led to FNC's rise in the first place, then one can say that FNC has had a positive influence on the rest of the media by breaking lock the Left has had in news media until the arrival of FNC.
I only see this as a good thing. Competition is good.
April 22, 2008, 8:19:46 AM EDT – Like – Reply

I wish prople that throw the word FASCIAST around would learn what a faciast is, they would be suprised.
April 22, 2008, 8:24:02 AM EDT – Like – Reply

Vince P
A fascist is one who supports a collectivist authortarian state, usually headed by a dictator, which does not allow dissent.
April 22, 2008, 8:32:49 AM EDT – Like – Reply

On The Mark
To some extent, you are correct Vince. You are certainly correct about the value of competition.
I have never bought into the left lock theory to any appreciable degree. I think that may well be more of factor of people on the far, far right, straining their necks to look toward the middle. However, I don't consider FNC to be far, far right, simply right of center.
Significantly, the middle shifted, 10-15 years ago to the right, and now it is shifting to the left, perhaps a bit to the left of the earlier middle. It is a natural development in American politics.
If that is correct, it bodes well for MSNBC. That is the spot it has occupied for some time now.
It makes the job for FNC more difficult, to be sure, but it also makes the job for CNN more difficult. However, the difficulty does not arise from location on the political spectrum. As much as some of the talent, some of the driving force talent at FNC seems to be locked into the waning Bush reign, some of the talent, the driving force talent at CNN is locked into the Clinton era, envisioning an easy and natural return to its time of supremacy. There is no clearer example of that than Crowley, who reeks of Clintonism, and, to a lesser extent, the insufferable Blitzer. The Bush reign is ending, and, judging from the ever sinking approval numbers, it is not a kingdom we will soon revisit. The Clinton era is over, as well, however, despite the outcome of this year's election. FNC and CNN both have enormous challenges ahead of them, and, enormous opportunities.
By the way, I do realize that implicit in my analysis is the notion that FNC is right of center in its orientation. I do believe that to be the case, not as adamantly so as some nor to the degree of some, but "fair and balanced" is little more than an empty and worn out slogn, much like "compassionate conservatism". I also realize that the site owner and many of my fellow posters here take great exception to that view.
April 22, 2008, 8:47:53 AM EDT – Like – Reply

Vince P
Hi.. I never considered FNC to be far far right either. I think it's fairly in the middle. There's as many Leftists on there as there are conservatives, if not more.
But pre-FNC, the media is so Left-leaning. having a conservative commentator like Novak be on one show doesn't mullify that all the reporting all day long is dripping in bias.
That is the reason why America flooded over to Fox.. because they were sick of the one-sidedness.  
Other than perhaps Hannity (who I cant stand) i dont know anyone at Fox who i associate with Bush.
April 22, 2008, 9:06:01 AM EDT – Like – Reply

Vince P,  
Right on.the big word is collectivism, /collectivism/socilaism.
April 22, 2008, 9:17:24 AM EDT – Like – Reply

On The Mark
That is the reason why America flooded over to Fox ....
Assume I accept this argument. Is "flooded" an appropriate term? If we take the total number of POTENTIAL viewers, cable news, combined, rarely exceeds 2.5% and is often markedly lower. Broadcast news is around 7.25%, and the final "Seinfeld" audience garnered in the upper 40% range.  
I use potential viewers (number of television households times the average number of people per household), an admittedly questionable methodology. Whatever methodology one uses, however, the cable news audience is very small. So, I wouldn't use "flood".
However, I will concede that cable news's importance, its influence, outweighs its viewership.
April 22, 2008, 10:39:19 AM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
Brian Maloney is partially incorrect and Politico is partially correct. As I said yesterday, "The Radio Factor" is syndicated on Westwood One, but airs on FOX News Talk.
I can't stand Dan Abrams.
Why do I get the feeling the Hemmer Q&A will be an Olby blue blog source for WPITW?
April 22, 2008, 12:41:28 PM EDT – Like – Reply

I should have been more clear.
The set of people who "flooded" Fox are those people who had theretofor watched other cable news.
April 22, 2008, 12:46:00 PM EDT – Like – Reply

On The Mark
I don't want you to think I was criticizing your analysis, Vince. You spoke clearly, and I understood what you meant. I merely wanted to amplify that cable news is and remains a rarefied atmosphere. The audience is remarkably small for the influence it exerts. The fact is, however, there are millions and millions of Americans who don't have a clue who O'Reilly or Dobbs or Olbermann are.
April 22, 2008, 12:55:43 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
You're right, OTM. But they do know who the entertainment news show and reality show stars are. They know who actors and actresses are, especially on soaps. They're probably watching "All My Children" as I write this.
April 22, 2008, 1:16:45 PM EDT – Like – Reply

"I don't want you to think I was criticizing your analysis, Vince."
This is lol funny!
April 22, 2008, 1:44:58 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
This morning on "Fox and Friends First," the graphic describing FBN beating CNBC in the 25-54 demo for "The Dave Ramsey Show" read "FIXBIZ WIN!!" It was taken down after 15 seconds or so and corrected to read "FOXBIZ WIN!!," but too late for the blue blogs (if any of them caught it) and Oralmann; more WP material.
April 22, 2008, 1:48:51 PM EDT – Like – Reply

One would think abrams would be smart enough to know when he is way over his head and out of his league going afer Rove.
April 22, 2008, 1:57:00 PM EDT – Like – Reply

david smawley
The outcomes of elections don't necessarily mirror ratings on cable TV news any more than they affect talk radio ratings. In fact, there may be an opposite ratings outcome as viewers from each party make their viewing choices based on who best reflects their POV. The middle ground folks will watch the most appealing, entertaining and relevant programing without regard to political bias. In the end, the best 24/7 Cable TV News product will win the ratings wars and be the top dog. Right now, that top dog is FoxNews.
April 22, 2008, 3:31:33 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
...except on primary nights. Then, it's CNN...sadly.  
April 22, 2008, 4:09:51 PM EDT – Like – Reply

david smawley
that is coming to an end soon!
April 22, 2008, 5:16:33 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
OlbyFriend Chris Cilizza was on "F&F" this morning. I'm sorry it's taken me so long to point that out, but I'm just getting around to watching it on my DVR now. I went grocery shopping right after my comment about the graphics typo.
April 22, 2008, 5:31:14 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
Cillizza. I left out an L.
April 22, 2008, 5:33:14 PM EDT – Like – Reply

I'm sorry to hear that Snow has been hospitalized.  
Hope he's feeling stronger soon and on the way to enjoying his new job!
April 22, 2008, 7:19:12 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
To use a wrestling phrase, Layfield laid the smackdown on Keith. Good. I didn't know he still wrestled, though. It shows what I know, having not watched wrestling since the turn of the millennium.
April 22, 2008, 8:14:46 PM EDT – Like – Reply

johnny dollar
Looks like Fox was first to call it for Hillary. 8:45 pm. MSNBC just called it a few minutes ago.
April 22, 2008, 8:59:52 PM EDT – Like – Reply

That JBL article was fantastic. Great job!
April 22, 2008, 9:09:55 PM EDT – Like – Reply

On the Mark
I have a hard time deciding who is worst. Humes and his annoying dead pauses, broken by a stammering monologue or Scarborough with his high pitched whining and pouting, or Blitzer and his breathless drama. This is the best we can do in America? Give me Cronkite or give me Jennings!
April 22, 2008, 9:32:21 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
I've been watching FNC since 7:50 and have had the Strategy Room streaming video at FOXNews.com up since around 8:20. At 9:00, Major Garrett was reporting from Hillary HQ and he noted that another channel was on. Then, loud cheers erupted. I flipped to CNN and they projected she had won. Did MSNBC predict around the same time? I don't want to think they'd have MSNBC on at their HQ. Obama's maybe, but not Hillary's.
April 22, 2008, 9:32:51 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
I predict CNN will be the ratings winner tonight with MSNBC in second and FNC in third. I don't want to be right, but I know I will be.
April 22, 2008, 9:34:03 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
And it's Hume, not Humes.
April 22, 2008, 9:44:16 PM EDT – Like – Reply

On the Mark
Poor proofing, indeed. Started out with "Hume's annoying ...." and changed to make Hume the subject. How I hate to do that!
You're probably right about the ratings, Mike. I'm having a hard time making a choice. Actually, Blitzer makes CNN impossible for me. MSNBC has enough good analysts, Brokaw, Russert, Williams, that I seem to prefer it to FNC. Frankly, FNC is just so damn flat I am having trouble focusing. Garrett, however, is doing a great job.
April 22, 2008, 10:00:28 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Vince P
I cant stand Blitzer. Takes him 20 minute to spit out a question and it's usually stupid.
April 22, 2008, 10:42:52 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
10 minutes ago on the FOXNews.com stream, Shepard Smith just got an e-mail asking about what he really thinks of KO. He responded (and I'm paraphrasing): "That's your game, that's not our game. We miss him at 'SportsCenter' at ESPN. We just do the news. We don't care about what they do." And I'm sure plenty of people at FNC feel the same way. They brush off Oralmann and don't let him get to them.
April 22, 2008, 11:07:19 PM EDT – Like – Reply

It sure seems like Brit Hume had Megyn Kelly on his mind tonight. He acts like a teenage boy with a crush on her.
April 22, 2008, 11:12:24 PM EDT – Like – Reply

johnny dollar
Mike, I wish you had recorded that. It'd be a great clip for OlbyWatch! But I've never figured out how to record streaming video, though I suppose it can be done.
April 22, 2008, 11:17:11 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike Chimeri
I wish I'd recorded the audio, but I just didn't think of it. You never know when gems like that are going to pop up.
I think Brit and Megyn were just engaging in typical on-air banter. All news anchors and reporters do it.
April 22, 2008, 11:35:32 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike, in case you are still wondering, the second Hume called it for Hillary, I clicked over to A-Messnbc and Olbyonesidedkanoby was crying "it's waaaay too early to call, it's just waaaay too early to call!" I needed a good laugh and Olby came through for me. Great Thanks, Keefy!
April 23, 2008, 12:36:13 AM EDT – Like – Reply