What on earth is going on at MSNBC? Politico, Variety and The Wall Street Journal all have stories today about how personal friction between Keith Olbermann, Chris Matthews and Joe Scarborough has increasingly been spilling over onto the screen. "They have to just grow up," says Connie Chung. Or, you know, whip out a measuring tape and get it over with.Rumor-mongering idiot.
Everything on Fox is subordinate to this sensibility. If Bill O'Reilly were to go off the reservation, Roger Ailes would just dump him and make a new O'Reilly from scratch. At MSNBC, it's all different. There's no top-down governing sensibility; whatever sensibility there is has emerged willy-nilly. Because there's nothing bigger than the personalities, the personalities have expanded to fill the vacuum. Keith Olbermann knows he can't be easily replaced because what would you replace him with? He's an accident. There's no mold to refill. NBC hitched its wagon to his star, and now it's hostage to his whims. And if those whims include humiliating his co-anchors on-camera or refusing to share a stage with Tom Brokaw, what are you going to do?Damn right it's built around me. And what's the problem with that buddy? I've got them over a barrel and they know it. I own those bitches dammit.
When Rupert Murdoch decided to start a news network with a political slant, it was in the spirit of "If we build it, they will come." MSNBC's mantra, in contrast, has been "If they come, we'll build it." Politics aside, which is a better way to erect a lasting edifice?I'll show you a lasting edifice. By the time finished I'll be on the side of Mt. Rushmore.