EMANATIONS FROM THE EDGE: Mika still isn't permitted to speak!

MONDAY, DECEMBER 21, 2020

Thirty days from the end: We probably won't ever be able to link you to any videotape. We probably won't ever be able to provide a full transcript.

Aping the culture of Fox News Channel, MSNBC eliminated transcripts a few months back. The channel also cut way back on the amount of videotape it posts. 

That said, the channel never did produce transcripts for Morning Joe, its most unusual program. 

Morning Joe has walked a long and winding road since 2015. Midway through that year, we began to watch its opening segment on a daily basis because of the way Mika and Joe seemed to be fawning over Candidate Trump, with whom it turned out they were friends. 

By our reckoning, they executed a full 180 with respect to Trump in early 2016, in reaction to the candidate's claim that he didn't know who David Duke was.  As of now, the program produces the most instructive discussions across the sweep of MSNBC—and so it was this very morning when, at 6:18 A.M. Eastern, Mika offered this:

[The mental or psychiatric state of the current commander-in-chief is] "not something I should say on television yet."

So said Mika Brzezinski, this very morning. Translating, she was telling us this:

In her opinion, Donald J. Trump, the commander-in-chief, seems to be mentally ill. But the corporate suits who are her owners still won't let her say so.

Along with the rest of the network's employees, Mika and Joe are paid millions of dollars per year to do what the corporate suits tell them. (You aren't allowed to know how many millions of dollars per year.)

People paid so many millions frequently do what they're told. This morning, those people were telling us, without actually telling us, that they think their former friend is dangerously mentally ill—and the key word there is "dangerous."

Two minutes after Mika spoke, so did Michael Schmidt, he of the New York Times. Schmidt said Trump is becoming "more convinced" that he really did win November's election.

"Early on, it was performative," the AP's Jonathan Lemire said, almost exactly one hour later, of such victory claims by Trump. As with Schmidt, so too here: 

Schmidt and Lemire seemed to be saying that Trump now actually believes that he won this year's election. They seemed to be saying that this growing conviction is fueling the growing lunacy of Trump's thinking and behavior.

We have no way to tell you if these assessments by Schmidt and Lemire are accurate.  Several weeks back, we noted that, at least by our lights, Trump increasingly seems to believe his various crazy claims. 

Is it possibly "dangerous" if Trump does believe his claims? Concerning that question, we transcribed a statement by Joe at roughly 7:20 A.M.:

"Without ay doubt, [it's] the most deeply disturbing political development of my lifetime. There's not even a close second."

So said Joe Scarborough, a thoroughly capable political observer, speaking of the situation which now obtains in the White House.

What were these people talking about on today's Morning Joe? They were talking about the recent reports about a White House meeting which reportedly happened last Friday.

On Saturday morning, the New York Times published its report about the meeting on page A28. The report was somewhat confusingly sourced to two or more people—apparently, more than two—who had been "briefed on the meeting." 

(There was no indication that the Times had spoken to anyone who actually attended the meeting.)

How accurate is the Times' account of the meeting? We weren't present there either! But as to the possibility that the commander's current state of mind is potentially dangerous, the most remarkable part of the Times report went exactly like this:

HABERMAN AND KANNO-YOUNGS (12/19/20): During an appearance on the conservative Newsmax channel this week, Mr. Flynn pushed for Mr. Trump to impose martial law and deploy the military to “rerun” the election. At one point in the meeting on Friday, Mr. Trump asked about that idea.

Flynn, who seems to be out of his mind, had suggested imposing martial law for the purpose of staging a new election. According to the Times report, Trump "asked about that idea" during the tumultuous meeting.

Did Trump actually "ask about that idea?" Has he actually considered the possibility of imposing martial law for whatever reason?

We have no way of knowing! After the New York Times report appeared, Politico filed its own report about the tumultuous meeting. We note that Politico didn't report that Trump had said anything about Flynn's earlier public statement, or about martial law in general.

Is it possible that Donald J. Trump is mentally ill? Is it possible that he's dangerously afflicted? 

Stating the obvious, of course it's possible! This morning, Morning Joe rocked and rolled with concerns about what may be happening. Quickly, we'll offer these points:

Three years ago, Dr. Bandy X. Lee put the word "dangerous" into the title of the best-selling book she edited, The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump. Speaking as a medical expert, she explicitly said that Trump's condition would only get worse as his term of office continued. 

Here at this site, we've been suggesting for several years that danger lurks in Trump's possible reaction to an impending election defeat, to to an actual loss. In fairness, we based our assessments on the extensive reporting we've received from major future anthropologists, who report to us from the years which follow the global conflagration they refer to, despondently, only as Mister Trump's War.

Mister Trump still holds the nuclear codes. He'll do so for (at least) the next thirty days, depending on whatever Vladimir has recently done inside our cyber systems. 

As a matter of full disclosure, we don't exactly know what it means when people say that Donald J. Trump "holds the nuclear codes." 

Explanation of such matters plays little role in our highly primitive culture. But several years back, during a brief burst of explanatory reporting, major new orgs reported that there is no "fail-safe" protection against a sitting president's decision to stage a nuclear strike.

Could Donald J. Trump possibly be that crazy? We have no way of knowing. As Mika made clear today, major journalist are still being told that they can't even suggest such possibilities, let alone interview someone who might bring professional expertise to bear on such a discussion.

These latter days are producing troubling glimpses of who we actually are.  We human beings are deeply flawed, even over here in Our Town. 

We war-inclined humans are deeply flawed. More on this basic biological problem tomorrow.

Tomorrow: Hoarding the world's vaccines


32 comments:

  1. "Aping the culture of Fox News Channel, MSNBC eliminated transcripts a few months back. The channel also cut way back on the amount of videotape it posts."

    Perhaps MSNBC is not "aping" Fox at all. This may reflect personnel shortages due to covid. People have been laid off and non-essential services have been cut in many places, both to save money and to protect employees from unnecessary social contact.

    It never occurs to Somerby, apparently, that this made be a covid side effect. Of maybe he just automatically goes to the darkest explanation when he dislikes someone.

    ReplyDelete
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  2. "By our reckoning, they executed a full 180 with respect to Trump in early 2016, in reaction to the candidate's claim that he didn't know who David Duke was."

    Trump used to associate with the Clintons too, and reportedly crashed Chelsea's wedding. Maureen Dowd knew Trump. Many people had no idea how cray-cray he would become given free rein. The Republicans who initially disliked Trump made a 180 to support him and the Democrats who initially liked him (or tolerated him) made a similar 180 to oppose him. Mike and Joe weren't alone in this at all.

    In case anyone here doesn't already know it, Mika is on Somerby naughty list and won't be receiving any Christmas gifts from Santa this year.

    ReplyDelete
  3. "[The mental or psychiatric state of the current commander-in-chief is] "not something I should say on television yet."

    Somerby interprets this to mean that the corporate suits are preventing her from telling the truth. Of course, it could also mean that she doesn't want to get sued. Or maybe she is exercising journalistic judgment on her own, which dictates that you don't go around ascribing psychiatric conditions to people you dislike.

    Somerby doesn't know what was in her head when she said that, but it doesn't stop him from attributing his preferred belief, that there is someone at the corporate level who censors Mika.

    ReplyDelete
  4. "(You aren't allowed to know how many millions of dollars per year.)"

    The only people whose salaries are public knowledge are paid government staff. As an employee of a public university, anyone could look up my salary on a state website. This is because we ostensibly work for the people because their taxes pay our salaries.

    For people who work for private corporations and small businesses, salaries are never made public. In fact, such companies discourage employees from discussing their salaries with each other. Unions combat this, because it is in worker interests to know whether they are being paid fairly compared to others who do the same work, but people generally prefer to maintain their privacy.

    For some reason, Somerby thinks privacy doesn't apply to Mika and Joe and other broadcast personalities. He also seems to consider their pay to be some kind of payoff, not a reflection of the advertising dollars they bring in by attracting a large audience (one that includes himself). He never acknowledges that entertainment talent is generally rewarded and not some shameful evidence of being bought off by those corporate suits.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "The only people whose salaries are public knowledge are paid government staff."

      Nonsense. Virtually everyone who is on TV or in the media salary and net worth is instantly available on the internet.

      Mika Brzezinski net worth and salary: Mika Brzezinski is an American television host and journalist who has a net worth of $20 million dollars.
      Salary: $8 Million Per Year
      Net Worth: $20 Million
      Profession: Journalist
      Date of Birth: May 2, 1967 (53 years old)

      Delete
    2. How do you know that info is correct?

      Delete
    3. Joe Scarborough
      Net Worth: $25 Million
      Salary: $8 Million Per Year
      Date of Birth: Apr 9, 1963 (57 years old)
      Gender: Male
      Height: 6 ft 3 in (1.93 m)
      Profession: Presenter, Lawyer, Commentator, Politician
      Nationality: United States of America

      Delete
  5. "Trump increasingly seems to believe his various crazy claims."

    How would Somerby or anyone else know?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Somerby’s entire theory hinges on the word “seems.” It’s his favorite word, and it enables all kinds of unproven assertions.

      Delete
  6. "Mr. Flynn pushed for Mr. Trump to impose martial law and deploy the military to “rerun” the election. At one point in the meeting on Friday, Mr. Trump asked about that idea."

    Trump has also "asked about" nuking hurricanes to break them up, and about putting his own face on Mt. Rushmore. How seriously were those questions taken?

    ReplyDelete
  7. "Here at this site, we've been suggesting for several years that danger lurks in Trump's possible reaction to an impending election defeat"

    Somerby has a convenient memory. He has actually been suggesting for several years that Trump would be reelected. Because liberals suck.

    ReplyDelete
  8. "who report to us from the years which follow the global conflagration they refer to, despondently, only as Mister Trump's War."

    Somerby isn't paying attention. The coming conflagration is more likely going to be referred to as "The Texas secession" or Obama's Civil War.

    Trump can't even get his name on an airport.

    ReplyDelete
  9. "Schmidt and Lemire seemed to be saying that Trump now actually believes that he won this year's election."

    But of course he does, dear Bob, just like most of everyone else, including you, probably.

    Surely one would have to be severely deluded to imagine that your cult's Rapist Mafioso candidate could get any noteworthy number of votes at all?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Better trolling please.

      Delete
    2. Shit. If a Republican takes off their shoes and socks, and uses their fingers and toes, they can count all the way up to seven.

      Delete
    3. Welcome back Mao

      Delete
    4. But of course he does, dear Bob, just like most of everyone else, including you, probably.
      Was there another national vote to see who believe Trump won the election? I missed that one. I guess that would put on an infinite recursion path...

      Delete
  10. "We war-inclined humans are deeply flawed."

    The only one mentioning war "over here" is Somerby.

    If Somerby were on the ball, he would have mentioned that the cyberattack by Russia is an act of war. He would have talked about the manner in which Trump has enabled Putin to wage war on the US by corruption from within. Somerby might have discussed why no one uses the T-word (TREASON) to describe Trump's actions in office. Who cares if Trump is mentally ill or not? He is not being held accountable for the acts that have violated his oath of office and he is actively abetting an enemy of our nation, Russia. That is the important issue that no one will discuss. Not even Somerby.

    This talk about Trump's mental illness is camouflage and distraction from Trump's real crimes. And Somerby is assisting in that distraction, a loyal soldier in Trump's cause. This is far worse than a conservative meme.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Haberman claims Trump did ask about martial law; Politico did not.

    So, according to these two pieces of information, we have the lack of an established fact. That can hardly be used as evidence of Trump’s mental state.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Why does Somerby think the discussion of imposing martial law by Flynn or Trump is a sign of derangement? It is almost assuredly not going to happen, so a discussion of it would seem pointless. But given the large amount of support for Trump and the fact that Republicans seem to get re-elected while being shameless monsters makes one wonder just how dangerously close we are as a nation to a sitting president being able to garner support for such a scheme. It begins to look more like a power play, a potential coup, rather than madness.

    If it were successfully carried out, how many Republicans would actually object? The fact that that is even a question is sobering.

    Another possibility of course is that Trump et al are continuing to posture for the base. Flinging poo is kind of a trademark of his.

    One should also remember that Republicans had a chance to remove this “dangerously mentally ill” man, and they punted. Why is the media responsible for doing the Republicans’ jobs for them?

    And one B Somerby strenuously opposed the impeachment himself, because it overturned the will of the voters.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Somerby apparently believes there was no fraud in the election. Most well-informed people think that. Maybe Trump really believes it, maybe not. He isn’t well-informed. He gets his information from right wing loons, some of whom probably know better. If one genuinely believes there was massive fraud aided by foreign entities, is a discussion of martial law and rerunning the election truly deranged?

    ReplyDelete
  14. “Joe Scarborough, a thoroughly capable political observer”

    This is the same Joe that Somerby once described this way:

    “criminal pundits like Morning Joe...He's too lazy to get clear on facts”

    ReplyDelete
  15. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  16. "Mister Trump still holds the nuclear codes."

    Maybe he'll ring in the New Year by launching nukes upon the homelands of the "Hamptons-Based Guild,” much to Somerby's relief.

    ReplyDelete
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