Up with Chris Hayes on MSNBC is one of my favorite TV shows of late. Informative, rarely bombastic. There's always food for thought. New perspectives and context for stories of the day. Perhaps because of its more academic tone, I don't like The Melissa Harris-Perry Show quite so much, but it's still well worth watching. Now with Alex Wagner, weekdays? Great!! Weekends with Alex Witt? Not so much. I don't always turn her off the second she comes on, like the prison shows, but it usually doesn't take long.

I've been stewing for a few days about an interview Witt did with former New Mexico Governor and current Libertarian candidate for President last Saturday. Particularly this bit:

(Warning - there's an ad first. I've provided a transcript below the fold, but thought this was worth including for the freeze-frame my selected segment offered up.)

in a free market system for health care, i would not have insurance to cover myself for ongoing needs. i would pay as you go in a system that was really competitive, that had advertised spending. i would have insurance for catastrophic injury or illness. when you look forward at what can be done at this point, there are reforms to this legislation that could say -- mandate insurance, not what kind of insurance you have to have. and that would open this up, like i say, to me being able to have catastrophic injury and illness insurance as opposed to insurance that i haven't been to a doctor in five years, and yet i pay $600 a month for insurance.

>> well, let's hope that's because you're very healthy in terms of not going to a doctor.

>> it is. that's the reason.

>> very good. all right.

Very good?  All right?

Well, but this, from Oct 2005, 6 1/2 years ago. I guess we know why he doesn't boast of not going to the doctor for seven years:

Ex-Gov. Gary Johnson is recovering from another sports injury, this time from a gliding accident.  Johnson said Sunday he was paragliding from a ledge in Maui, Hawaii, when he misjudged the lift he needed for the flight. He snagged in a tree, which "slingslot" him to the ground Oct. 12.
The resultant injuries were a fractured vertebra, broken rib and knee damage which required surgery. Recovery was estimated to take 6 months, after 6 weeks of being confined to bed. I guess that's why he doesn't claim he's not been to the doctor for six years, just five. And consider this timeline of things he has been treated for:
  • 2005: cracked vertebra, broken rib & knee damage from paragliding
  • 2003: broken leg, skiing
  • 2003: frostbite while climbing Mt. Everest
  • 2001: bruising and minor injuries from a kayaking mishap
  • 2001: injured ribs from a motorcycle accident
  • 2001: two fractured vertbrae, slipping on ice while jogging
  • 1998: facial frostbite while skiing
  • 1996: broken knee, again while skiing
Gary Johnson complains about $600 premiums? Really? Boohoo for him!! With his long history of high-risk activites, he should be glad he could get a policy at all under pre-existing condition rules.

A quick calculation: At $600 a month, from when he left office until he's medicare eligible (2003-2018) totals up to $108,000. That's not enough to pay off the bills for the paragliding mishap alone, so he's getting subsidized by others. Mind you, some of the bill got footed by the taxpayers of New Mexico while he was governor. (I don't know what perqs are provided to ex-governors, so we the taxpayers might well be picking up that $600 tab he's complaining about anyhow.)

Back to Alex: Before you throw an interview question at someone about the recent Supreme Court decision on ACA, shouldn't someone do a little googling? Is it really too much to expect to have a cogent followup question or two on deck in such a circumstance? Is this really the best you can do, Alex?

And MSNBC: Is Alex Witt really the best YOU can do? She's better than the prison shows, sure. But that's merely damning with faint praise. What about Ezra Klein? Or anybody with actively firing synapses, rather than the animated mannequin otherwise known as Alex Witt? She leaves me with the impression that she gives more attention to getting her hair ready for her show than her interview questions. Nothing wrong with her lovely mane of hair, mind you. But news content deserves better than it's getting.

Originally posted to Land of Enchantment on Tue Jul 10, 2012 at 08:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by New Mexico Kossaks.

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