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Do You Watch MSNBC?
What do you think of its new line-up of personalities and time slots?
I usually have MSNBC on in the background for an hour or two a day-- as I get ready for work or make dinner or when interesting breaking news is taking place. Over the past two weeks I've been watching more and checking out the new look and people the station has been putting in place.
The new ad campaign
There is no doubt that MSNBC is adopting a more youth-oriented approach, with younger faces, slogans like Lean Forward and Change Begins With You, and an increased emphasis on social media and networking. Internet rumors abound that Rachel Maddow (who denies it all) is steering the network's editorial direction and mentoring its newer wonky, policy-driven young contributers, with President Phil Griffin purportedly hailing her as "the quarterback." Alex Baldwin even took some pointed jabs at Maddow in his GBCW essay:
Baldwin reserves much of his venom for the left-leaning cable news network, which he says was not a good fit for his talk show ambitions. Joe Scarborough, he says, is “neither eloquent nor funny,” while Mika Brezezinski, the “Morning Joe” co-host, is the “Margaret Dumont of cable news.” Rachel Maddow, the network’s star, is “a phony who doesn't have the same passion for the truth off-camera that she seems to have on the air.” He also says MSNBC chief Phil Griffin “couldn’t give a flying fuck about content.”(I have to add my opinion here that Baldwin's show was pretentious and snooze-worthy, but that's just me).
9:00 am PDT: Andrea Mitchell Reports
Judgement: Mostly meh, causing occasional spasms of biliousness.
10:00 am PDT: Ronan Farrow Daily
Judgement: Neutral, but intrigued and still watching, in no small part because this is the hour I'm most likely to have MSNBC on for a bit.
I had an initially negative knee-jerk response to the very concept of untried 26 year old Farrow, fearing the promotion of another Little Luke Russert, the most annoying and talent-less hack nepotism ever coughed up into the national spotlight. Instead, Farrow has a blandly smooth, polished and somewhat detached delivery that reveals little of the personality beneath save for a few leaks of dry humor, as when he introduced a segment with "Tea party darling Rand Paul, not actually related to Ru Paul." To his credit, he doesn't seem overly impressed with Ronan Farrow, which makes him easier to watch.
Farrow has an impressive bibliography: Son of Mia Farrow and either Woody Allen or Frank Sinatra, he graduated college at age 11, Yale law school at age 18, after which he became liaison to NGOs for Richard Holbrooke in Afghanistan and Pakistan then special adviser to Hillary Rodham Clinton when she was secretary of state and then, like Bill Clinton, became a Rhodes Scholar. His best recurring segment so far is his Call to Action, where he solicits and gathers information via Twitter. Last week he asked viewers to tweet pictures of themselves holding a sign indicating how much student loan debt they carry. This week, he solicited tweets highlighting the difficulties people have had voting for any reason, expanding one compelling story into an interview with an Hispanic Texas woman who changed her name due to marriage, dryly concluding the segment with the observation that, let's face it, women don't carry their marriage certificates around with them, or their divorce decrees.
11:00 am PDT: The Reid Report with Joy Reid.
Judgement: 4 stars; I could listen to her for hours.
Joy Reid, a long-term favorite of mine from the Grio, seems by comparison as open and unpretentious as a summer sky, and her new show started the same week as Farrow's. I broke out cheering when I heard her abortion conversation with Gloria Steinam where she expanded the topic by flatly stating, "If women aren't in control of their reproduction they're not in control of their economic lives." Thank you!
Noon PDT, The Cycle.
Judgement: Somewhere between mild revulsion and overt hostility.
I have yet to get through this smarmy little gathering of the young and the tasteless. While some of the rotating cast of individuals have their merits, the group effect is annoying in the extreme (and includes nearly anything said by Krystal Ball). he only thing worse than the regular Cycle is when their little chum Luke Russert is brought on.
1:00 pm PDT, Now With Alex Wagner.
Alex, who has taken Bashir's old time slot, is one sharp lady and has a way of smiling while zinging right to the heart of issues. She is much tougher than she appears.
5:00 pm - 7:00 pm PDT: The Prime-Time Line-Up:
Judgement: Depends on mood, storyline, or level of news burn-out.
I tend to not see the midafternoon/early evening shows but was pleasantly surprised on Wednesday to hear Ed Schultz reverse himself on Keystone XL. I record the evening triumverate of Chris Hayes, Maddow, and Lawrence O'Donnell, choosing one to watch on any given day according to mood. You can't beat Chris Hayes for energy, enthusiasm, and sheer policy wonkiness, nor that gleam in his eye when his interviewee says something blatantly false and right before he pounces with facts. You can't beat Rachel Maddow for her obsession with Christie the Hutt. And you can't beat O'Donnell for ham-handed Hollywood histrionics.
Whomever you're watching is better than this.
Now that you've seen just how opinionated and judgmental I'm cheerfully capable of being, please feel free to jump in with your own observations, sneers, back-pats and virtual hugs.
What do you like about MSNBC?
What do you hate?
Or is it all one big Meh to you?
Latest Updates on Kossack Regional Meet-Up News Can Be Found Below the Orange Group Hug.
Let's Build Communities!
Our team is here to provide support and guidance to new and existing volunteer leaders of each regional and state group, helping them with recruiting, organizing and executing social and action events.
We invite you to join in this effort to build our community. There are many ways to pitch in.
If there isn't a group to join near you, please start one.
Instructions on HOW TO FORM A NEW DAILY KOS GROUP
List of All Existing Meatspace Groups
THINK GLOBALLY, ACT LOCALLY
wink from Netrootsradio.com by KosMail to schedule airtime with them to live broadcast your Event. Wink & Justice will then promote it on The After Show radio program!
Saturday, March 8th
Three Star Kossacks and Nashville KosKats Meet-up With State Senate Candidate Mary Mancini
TIME: 5:00 PM
LOCATION: The Pour House
730 8th Avenue South • Nashville
ORGANIZER: Send marykk a kosmail to attend.
Latest diary: Connect! Three Star Kossacks and Nashville KosKats to Convene!
2. Land of Enchantment
4. Sandy on Signal
5. Mr. Sandy on Signal
6. Mr. marykk
8. Mr. Sow Hat
9. Mrs. Sow Hat
Patrick is Lucky
Saturday, March 15th
LAKossacks Roll Out the Red Carpet for shanikka!
[Address] • [City]
ORGANIZER: Send Dave in Northridge a kosmail to attend.
Latest diary: [Waiting for linked diary]
1. Dave in Northridge
2. shanikka (Guest of Honor)
4. Gay CA Democrat
Saturday, March 15th
Sacramento/Central Valley Kossacks, Silicon Valley Kossacks and the SFKossacks Demonstrate at "Don't Frack California"
TIME: 1:00 PM
LOCATION: California State Capitol lawn
1315 10th St. • Sacramento
We'll be gathering near the Idle No More banners. See this diary for photos of banner. There will be a Daily Kos 7 ft. banner also.
We'll also be heading over to a local watering hole after the protest ends. Meet us at KBar at 1000 K Street, a couple of short blocks north of the Capitol building.
The Don't Frack California website has also arranged for buses from all over California. Places as far away as San Diego and Los Angeles. Check out their ride board and buy a ticket STAT.
Latest diary: The California Frack Wars: Episode 3 Revenge Of The Greed
1. Anthony Page aka SecondComing
3. Dan Bacher
7. Meteor Blades
11. Glen the Plumber
Sunday, March 16th
NYC Kossacks Meet-up
LOCATION: Spitzer's Corner
101 Rivington Street (Ludlow) • NYC
ORGANIZER: Send sidnora a kosmail to RSVP
Latest diary: NYC Meetup, Sunday, March 16: Good times ahead, now with special guest!
4. belinda ridgewood
8. No Exit
9. Its the Supreme Court Stupid
10. Denise Oliver Velez
Saturday, March 29th
Houston Kossacks Meet-up
TIME: 1:00 PM
LOCATION: Fadi's Mediterranean Grill
4738 Beechnut Street • Houston
ORGANIZER: Send Chrislove a kosmail to attend.
Latest diary: Houston Area Kossacks: Meet-Up Scheduled for Saturday, March 29 (plus a note on future meet-ups)
3. Libby Shaw
5. Bree Davis
7. Mary (Honorary Kossack)
8. Alan (Honorary Kossack)
Mr. Libby Shaw
Saturday, April 5th
Seattle & Puget Sound Kossacks Meet-up
TIME: Noon - 3:00 PM
LOCATION: Pyramid Alehouse, Brewery & Restaurant
1201 First Avenue South • Seattle
ORGANIZER: Send EagleOfFreedom a kosmail to attend.
Latest diary: Seattle & Puget Sound Kossacks Arrive
Saturday, May 3rd
DKos Asheville Kossacks Meet-up
TIME: 1:00 PM
LOCATION: The Bywater
796 Riverside Dr. • Asheville
ORGANIZER: Send randallt a kosmail to attend.
Latest diary: [Waiting for linked diary]
7. GulfGal 98
8. Otteray Scribe
10. people power granny
Tuesday, May 13th
SFKossacks Roll Out the Red Carpet for LeftOfYou & Expat Okie
TIME: 11:00 AM, Early lunch!
LOCATION: Yank Sing
Rincon Center, 101 Spear St. • San Francisco
ORGANIZER: Send navajo a kosmail to attend.
3. Expat Okie
4. side pocket
5. Justice Putnam
about your event or if you have changes or additions.
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share your show and tell, vent, whatever you want.
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