I really think Rachel Maddow is a wonderful person, and so do many people around here. Her four year show has followed in the footsteps of Countdown to become MSNBC's #1 reliable show, regardes of how you feel about the network in general still having its limitations.
But as most have documented how awful Ezra Klein was in many diaries down low in his talk about the fiscal curve (because we know that's the accurate title instead of fear-mongering intentional crap from Beltway centrist and nutty elites), what happened Friday evening on Rachel's show is something that should be on standard, poor news shows like standard "both sides do something" anchor Chris Jansing and not Maddow's.
The fact that Peter Orszag, one of Klein's apparently comfortable sources to talk to regularly in the last four years, was not even challenged last night for basically advocating for austerity with Social Security and Medicare raised really was galling to any rational person in America watching.
"I think we come back to the entitlement question. The Democrats should actually be in favor of certain kinds of progressive entitlement reform, it's not actually that big of a give..... One of the big concerns is doing too much fiscal austerity too soon in 2013. The more that you did in the form of, say, social security, one of the things with Social Security, which can be phrased in gradually over time, the lighter the load imposed in 2013." - Peter OrszagIt's one thing from a renowned and notorious party hack like Jonathan Chait to agree with raising the Medicare age, as he is the same loon that advocated for Iraq and many centrist Democratic, nutty things that have turned out to be a representation of why many Americans (and abroad) view both sides as untrustworthy and American politics as a whole as the reason why our democracy is really awful.
But it's even worse when this advocating against pure Democratic values transpired on a usually progressive and rational show like Rachel Maddow. Now I believe Rachel would not have allowed Orszag's advocating to go unchallenged if she was doing the questioning, but it was so troubling to see that happening on her show regardless of who was hosting.
Between that and his constant adherence to just being a "rational centrist" instead of willingly having the courage to "keep it real" like Pual Krugman, Klein is just not an effective host for Rachel's show since he's not progressive.
I don't mind if he hosts Lawrence O'Donnell's show, because O'Donnell is not progressive either really. But it does a disservice to Rachel's show and her solid progressive image (at least on domestic issues) when Klein does a poor job in not even having a problem with his centrist viewpoint, but exposing solutions like austerity that are completely wrong.
Chris (Hayes) wasn't able to host last night because of his show this morning, and though I've had it out with Melissa (Harris-Perry) on Twitter in the past many times, I even think she would have challenged Mr. eight-figure Citigroup plutocrat with a nice face Orszag on his elitist "entitlement" piece of crap comment.
Personally, I like Erza Klein, especially after meeting him once in person. He's genuinely a nice guy overall for sure, and we know how intelligent he is from exploding onto the scene with consistent diligence on budgets at The American Prospect.
But after last night, along with many other occasions, I really wish that was the last time Ezra Klein filled in and hosted Rachel Maddow's show. It brings the overall quality of her show down to a ridiculous, centrist level that it never wants to be or should be in.
And we really need less centrist, middle of the road people like Klein and actual journalists/wonks with knowledge and conviction to take rational correct positions for America instead of centrist nonsense.
(From TWD, enjoy your Saturday evening.......And Te'o should win the Heisman).