Warning! Children at play! Yesterday morning, we flipped over to Joy Reid's MSNBC show for only the briefest of seconds.
We flipped over during the 10 AM Eastern hour. Within a matter of moments, we were watching legal expert Midwin Charles saying this about the Democrats' need to impeach Donald J. Trump:
CHARLES (6/2/19): Listen, when you have the truth on your side, you might as well rock it, right? This report came out about, what, 4, 5 weeks ago? Democrats have been in the position to take the narrative, you know, take the bull by the horns, frame the issue and take that narrative, but you know—To watch the fuller exchange, click here, move to the 21-minute mark.
And I've been saying this on Twitter for the past week. I don't understand why the Dem—even before you get to impeachment, at least inform the American public of what is in that report and why it's so bad!
The fact that Mueller outlined ten different instances—not 2, not 4, not 8—ten different instances in which they believe that this president has obstructed justice is huge. And I think if the American public understood that—I don't understand why the Democrats aren't at the very least informing the public. Cut a one-minute video, put it on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, every single platform, Instagram, all the stuff that the kids are into these days. Put it on tee-shirts, like put it wherever it is that you have to do it so at least the American populace is informed.
That's what we saw yesterday! We chuckled, but we also told an array of young analysts this:
That's what propaganda looks like, ratings-based "cable news" style!
It may not be intentional propaganda, but consider what Charles had done. With great passion, she said the Democrats should at least inform the American public of what is in the Mueller report. She then proceeded to flatly misstate what's found in that report!
Or at least so it seemed! Clearly, Charles seemed to be saying that Mueller had outlined ten different instances in which "they"—presumably, Mueller and his team—believe that Donald J. Trump has obstructed justice.
That's what Charles clearly seemed to say—but that of course is not what Mueller says in his report. By way of contrast, it's the sort of thing we liberals now hear on MSNBC as we get ourselves propagandized and brainwashed, and generally dumbed way down.
In his eponymous report, Mueller explicitly says that he and his team didn't reach any such determination concerning obstruction of justice. "This report does not conclude that the President committed a crime," Mueller says, specifically concerning obstruction, in the Conclusion to Part II of his report. Also this, again concerning obstruction of justice:
"The evidence we obtained about the President’s actions and intent presents difficult issues that would need to be resolved if we were making a traditional prosecutorial judgment."
It isn't just that Mueller's team didn't reach the determination Charles described, with Reid voicing Standard Tribal Assent. They even said there were "difficult issues" which would have to have been resolved before they could have made such a claim!
That said, MSNBC is increasingly a break-away colonized version of Fox. This helps explain why the New York Times wouldn't let its finance editor, David Enrich, appear on Rachel Maddow's increasingly embarrassing program last week. It also explains the good solid fun the children had last Friday afternoon and evening.
Uh-oh! During the 4 PM hour, the fuller transcript of a previously disclosed voicemail was released. On Deadline: White House, Nicolle Wallace and her merry band began to crack the mandated Mafia jokes.
The voicemail in question had gone from one lawyer to another. It was hard to see how the children on Wallace's program could really assess its tone or its content, or the nature of the relationship which existed between the lawyers in question.
That said, tribal fun never sleeps! NBC's increasingly undisciplined Carol Lee said the (previously disclosed) voicemail was "so amateur" and "so blatant," then said it "reads sort of threatening."
"Very Goodfellas!" Wallace replied. The fun took off from there.
The voicemail was "straight out of a mob movie," Wallace said, saying the fact that she isn't a lawyer "gives me a simpler lens on this thing." Additional fun emerged from the rest of the Knothole Gang:
CHUCK ROSENBERG (5/31/19): You can almost see Ray Liotta and Robert de Niro sitting in the dining room talking about this.Later, Charlie Sykes took his turn with the fun:
SYKES: What's interesting is, you made reference as to what movie this is. Is this Goodfellas, is this the Sopranos?That's what was interesting, Sykes now said. Sykes himself was interesting and serious before he hooked up with this gang. Rosenberg has also begun to suffer from his term of cable confinement.
WALLACE: [Laughter] My Cousin Vinny?
According to leading anthropologists reporting to us from the future, this is where we humans ended up when no dissent, disagreement or alternate outlook was ever allowed on a TV "discussion" program. According to these future experts, over the course of the months and the years, humans placed in such situations were very strongly inclined to brainwash and propagandize themselves!
The foolishness continued that night. Chris Hayes embarrassed himself with his treatment of this general topic, though he managed to avoid the mandated Mafia reference. On the aforementioned Maddow Show, the host was of course less restrained.
She spent her standard twenty-plus opening minutes offering her own uninformed assessments of the various legal aspects of what had transpired that day. When she got to the voicemail excitement, she offered a fond remembrance:
MADDOW (5/31/19): The pieces of that transcript in the Mueller report read, and I remember reporting this at the time, right after the report came out, that voicemail read like a kind of Mafia-esque threat to Michael Flynn through his attorney, saying, "Hey, we know that you're cooperating. We want to know what you're going to give them on the president."The "or else" was implied, like so many other things this cable star hears inside her head. Meanwhile, no one but the Mafia has ever said "in starker terms!" Maddow was quick to see this!
I mean, the "or else" was silent, but it was implied. I say that this is sort of a Mafia-esque thing, as it appears in the Mueller report, because it literally starts with the president's lawyer saying, "Let me see if I can't state it in starker terms."
As noted above, this bullshit helps explain why the New York Times now seems to be boycotting Maddow's program. She proceeded to offer one of her long dramatic readings of what she thought the voicemail in question actually said, reading between several lines and wandering across several others.
Maddow topped the Wallace gang, expressly saying that she's been saying "Mafia" all along. Later that night, Brian Williams also took an entertaining turn with the script.
Elliott Williams was guesting again. Brian began to entertain and dumbnify the troops:
ELLIOTT WILLIAMS (5/31/19): Even the information today—you know, so getting back to this John Dowd voicemail—Brian proceeded to offer his own dramatic reading of the text of the voicemail. Like several others this day, he seemed to draw significance from the fact that the voicemail ended with the troubling words, "Thanks, pal."
BRIAN WILLIAMS: Yes. Can I interrupt you with a dramatic reading especially for those who grew up in the New York area listening to Gambino recordings—
ELLIOTT WILLIAMS: Yes.
BRIAN WILLIAMS: —in the Ravenite Social Club, the Bergen Hunt and Fish Club? People perhaps should listen to this this way. This is a voice mail left by John Dowd, and you`ll forgive me because there's stuttering written in as part of this...
This is the way this battleship of fools got Bush and Trump elected. After Brian finished his dramatic reading, his sidekick extended the fun:
BRIAN WILLIAMS: Elliot, what did we just hear? What does all that mean?Don't fool yourself into thinking that this is bracing social commentary or hard-hitting legal analysis. These are corporate children at play, children who are brainwashing themselves as per the current corporate agenda.
ELLIOTT WILLIAMS: Oh, my goodness. That was a beautiful reading, by the way, Brian.
BRIAN WILLIAMS: Thank you very much. I worked on it most of the day.
ELLIOTT WILLIAMS: You do Mafioso very well.
BRIAN WILLIAMS: Thanks.
(When past agendas targeted Candidate Gore and Hillary Clinton, Brian spent years sliming them. Why did Gore's suit jackets have three buttons instead of two? Brian angrily asked again and again! This was before he got himself bumped off the air for inventing hero tales about his own Mitty-esque self. These are the people the suits employ to keep us rubes tuning in.)
No cable channel has ever produced so many "segregated" TV programs as MSNBC now does. On shows run by people like Wallace, you will literally never hear a single word from a single person who isn't simply advancing the tribal company line.
No word of caution, no alternate viewpoint, will ever be offered. You'll be told, for more than a year, that Mueller the God is going to frog-march everyone out of the White House. When nothing resembling that actually happens, people like Charles will start improving the facts and every bomb will be thrown.
These are not hard-hitting analysts. As a general matter, these are corporate entertainers, overpaid tribal clowns.
They've done tremendous damage this way over the course of the past thirty years. Anthropologists tell us that, due to our limited human wiring, this is all our species ever had—all we ever were.
Tomorrow: Too confusing for mainstream journalists! Mueller the God falls to earth!