Monday, January 18, 2016


Professors should have taped both the Republican and Democratic debate to show in high schools and colleges, especially last night’s Democratic debate in Charleston, South Carolina. The three presidential candidates were Clinton, Sanders, O'Malley were on stage with NBC talking heads Lester Holt and Andrea Mitchell acting as monitors. It was a classic; under the guise of being fair. The two front-running candidates were given preference to the point of being ridiculous. Also, there were clearly four and not three parties in the fracas. I was delighted when Bernie Saunders masterful responded to Andrea Mitchell’s attempt to interject Bill Clinton’s sexual indiscretions into the debate. He told her in a very direct way, with the obvious agreement of Hillary that he was there to debate policy and not there to allow the media, the fourth party, to divert the discussion and drag him into their gutter. In those few words, he laid bare Andrea’s 35 years of experience in the media in doing just that. Of course, she is not alone; in fact, it seems to the standard in of questioning not just politicians but royalty, media stars, and famous people in general. People complain the do not know or understand the issues. People complain that the candidates do not discuss policy but seldom hear why that is the case. I love to listen to a political discussion but the standard NBC, ABC, and other prime time newscasts are empty rhetoric when it comes to policy discussions. My favorite programs are when there is a moderated panel of academics discussing health care, gun policy, voting rights, etc. If anyone knows of such a program, let me know. I am not talking about a bunch of reporters talking about what they are saying their newscast. Listen to the questions reporters ask candidates on news programs. They ask their interviewees questions aimed at making the news. On the other side of the coin listen to the responses by the candidates to these queries who, in the heat of campaigns often play the reporter’s game. The media attract attention to their stories by sensationalizing non-policy matters while politicians respond in a way not to offend the reporters. When Bernie told off Andrea Mitchell in my mind, he tremendously increased his standing as a human being. What he said was, “Want to get on the front page of the paper? I have to make some vicious attack. I won't do that. I’m running an issue-oriented campaign.” What should happen but won’t is the head of NBC call Andrea Mitchell into his or her office and tell her that her 35-year career has ended. The reason it will not happen is that he people who listen to her want to hear the garbage she digs up. It is like Fox News; they have generated a following of people who hate everything, even those things where they get their way. As I said yesterday, they are brain damaged. URL: Comments Invited and not moderated

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