Along with the familiar refrains about Russia and Donald Trump’s rhetoric, the liberal media this month were preoccupied with rescuing ObamaCare. When one of the media’s favorite Republicans, Senator John McCain, cast a vote that kept Barack Obama’s signature legislation alive MSNBC’s Brian Williams hailed it as a “moment of moral courage.”
Meanwhile, his MSNBC colleague Chris Matthews was so obsessed with pushing the Trump-Russia narrative, he actually worried about some newspapers not giving it enough coverage, as he fretted how print readers were “going to keep up with Russia?” And speaking of questionable scandals, CNN’s Brian Stelter actually cited the “president’s rhetoric” when White House counselor Kellyanne Conway asked him to name one.
Members of the also media found time to celebrate some of their heroes, both old (Al Gore) and new (Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau). Reviewing Gore’s box office bomb of a movie “An Inconvenient Sequel,” the New York Times called the former Vice President a “Shakespearean figure” and Entertainment Weekly praised his “tirelessly speaking truth to power on behalf of our ailing planet.” Rolling Stone magazine discovered a new liberal icon as they plaintively pleaded on their cover “Justin Trudeau: Why Can’t He Be Our President?”
And lefty filmmaker Michael Moore popped up on the CBS Late Show with Stephen Colbert to issue a stirring call to arms to his fellow comedians as he tried to recruit “an army of satire” to take down Trump.
The following is a collection of worst media and celebrity outbursts from the past few weeks:
Matthews Whines About Lack of Trump-Russia Coverage?
“I think part of that is the loss of newspapers in many parts of the country. I was out – no, I was just out in the west with my wife. We were driving around, you know, in Colorado and Utah and Wyoming. There’s no local big serious newspaper in the – the Denver papers, they’re – you don’t pick it up in the morning when you go down the driveway or whatever, the mailbox – there’s not a newspaper that tells you what’s going to nationally. There are local newspapers that are okay but the days where people had a pretty good newspaper to read. So, how are you going to keep up with Russia? Even if you’re slightly interested it there’s no story to read. That’s a fact.”
— Host Chris Matthews on MSNBC’s Hardball, August 3.
McCain’s “Moral Courage” Moment of Maintaining ObamaCare
“In the well of the Senate, it came down to one very dramatic moment. Senator John McCain walks in, asks to be recognized, raises that right arm broken three different places in North Vietnam, a quick indicator with a thumbs down....Seven years of talk about repeal and replace done in one hand gesture....Charlie, much was made of that moment, a moment of moral courage, a man staring down his own mortality yet again, not the first time in his life.”
— Host Brian Williams on MSNBC’s The 11th Hour, July 28.
“We’ll leave this hour quoting Senator Chris Murphy, Democrat of Connecticut, saying ‘I ran into John McCain as walked underground to the Senate for the final vote. Someday, I’ll get to tell my grandkids what he said to me.’ The words of John McCain, who was indeed a profile in courage tonight, along with two women in the Republican caucus.”
— Host Brian Williams at 1:59am ET during MSNBC’s live coverage of Senate healthcare vote, July 28.
Does Tom Think U.S. Concentration Camps Still Exist “During These Days?”
“There’s an amazing new book out called Just Americans about the 442nd, that was [former Senator] Danny Inouye’s outfit, the most heavily decorated one in Europe, while their relatives were in concentration camps effectively...You know, and so many Americans were really unaware later, our generation, and younger generations like yours, were completely unaware of what had happened there and we do need to be reminded, especially during these days.”
— Former Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw on NBC’s Today, August 1.
Hillary Fangirl Outraged by “Lock Her Up” Chant
“I really appreciated that [Republican Senator] Jeff Flake said the ‘lock her up,’ those cries at the Republican convention by Michael Flynn no less, the call and response was really a nadir of the Republi – what I view as the Republican Party.”
— Correspondent Andrea Mitchell on NBC’s Meet the Press, August 6.
Acosta Lectures About White House’s “Unhealthy Fixation”
“Well, Wolf, I think, at times, this White House has an unhealthy fixation on what I call the three M’s, the Mexicans, the Muslims, and the media. Their politics tend to be crafted around bashing one of those three groups, and we just see it time and time again. And today on immigration, what the White House is essentially saying with a wink and a dog whistle to these battle states that they won is that immigrants coming in from Latin American are taking your jobs. Wolf, immigration is not the reason why the factory closed in Pittsburgh or the coal mine was shut down in West Virginia....It was just a poor argument and whenever they’re bashing the media, Wolf, my sense always is — is that they’re always losing the argument and I think you saw that today.”
— Reporter Jim Acosta on CNN’s Situation Room, August 2.
Don’t Remember Them Asking This Question About Obama or Clinton
Co-host Hoda Kotb: “Do you feel that he’s [Donald Trump] damaged the Office of the President, just the credibility of the office, over the last six months?”...
Co-host Matt Lauer: “With all due respect, though, you didn’t quite answer her question. Do you think to date, in the last six months, he has damaged the credibility of the Office of the Presidency?”
— Questions to Sen. Lindsey Graham on NBC’s Today, August 1.
Fake Journalist Brian Williams Hates Use of “Fake News”
Host Brian Williams: “We have the President’s lawyers tonight using that insidious label fake news.”...
Former Senator Bob Kerrey: “To describe the news as fake encourages people not to believe anything.”
Williams: “Yeah, that’s pernicious.”
— MSNBC’s The 11th Hour with Brian Williams, July 31.
Really Reaching for a Scandal
Host Brian Stelter: “But journalists also recognized there are big scandals going on.”
White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway: “What scandals going on? Name them. I want to hear about. No, you can’t get away with that. What are the, quote, big scandals going on? Please, name them for me.”
Stelter: “When you look at this president’s rhetoric, his demagogic behavior when it comes to the media – ”
Conway: “His rhetoric is scandal?”
Stelter: “Yes....you don’t think that his words against the media are poisoned, Kellyanne, actually hurting the country on a daily basis?”
— CNN’s Reliable Sources, July 23.
Trump “Voter Suppression Commission” Is “Threat to Democracy”
“This is such a threat to democracy, this commission, this voter suppression commission, which is what it should be called – properly called – because every step they are taking in the queries that they’re making to state governments and local governments is all intended to hold down votes – Democratic votes that they are trying to keep – people that they’re trying to keep from coming to the polls. The people he’s collected in this commission, they all have long histories of voter suppression that go back 20 years. So that’s anti-democratic.”
— Daily Beast columnist and MSNBC analyst Jonathan Alter on MSNBC’s Meet the Press Daily, July 19.
The Putin Party
“Why is the Republican Party going along with Trump on the Russians? Is the GOP becoming the Putin party? I love saying that, by the way, the Putin party. That’s the question. And it’s raising concerns that this President and his party are putting their interests ahead of the country’s.”
— Host Chris Matthews on MSNBC’s Hardball, July 17.
Rave Reviews for Media Hero Al Gore’s “Truth to Power”
“Now gray-haired and at times sounding angrier in his speeches, Mr. Gore, in ‘Sequel,’ takes on the air of a Shakespearean figure, a man long cast out of power by what he casually refers to as ‘the Supreme Court decision’ (meaning Bush v. Gore) but still making the same arguments that have been hallmarks of his career.”
— New York Times film critic Ben Kenigsberg in July 27 review of Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Sequel.
“Al Gore’s ‘An Inconvenient Sequel’ is packed with scary climate change evidence. Good luck with the deniers, dude!”
— July 29 tweet from Newsweek’s official Twitter account about Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Sequel.
“Gore is a little grayer and a little thicker around the midsection, but he’s still tirelessly speaking truth to power on behalf of our ailing planet in his folksy Tennessee twang.”
— Entertainment Weekly film critic Chris Nashawaty in July 28 review of Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Sequel.
Trump Killing Martin Luther King’s Dream
“We saw when President Trump came into office, President Obama put the bust of Dr. King in the Oval Office. President Trump said, ‘I’m going to keep the bust, but I’m adding Winston Churchill.’ But did he put the dream out? Because in the dream of Dr. King, he talked about voting rights – which is now under siege – he talked about poverty....and he talked about criminal justice reform – he talked about the idea of health care. Dr. King said that, in a speech. All of this is in danger right now. So this thousand ministers march is to say, wait a minute, you can’t commemorate the dreamer and kill the dream.”
— Host Al Sharpton on MSNBC’s PoliticsNation, August 6.
Trump Just Built on “Vulgarity” of “Right Wing Talk Radio”
“If you’ve been listening to right wing talk radio over the last 20 something years, the same anger and rage and anger at the changes in the country, the same ethic, the same sort of, you know, sometime vulgarity existed. It’s just that elites in the Republican Party didn’t accept that as the way to market the party to the world. Donald Trump recognized better than they did....that he could simply identify with the text of what people were saying on talk radio or listening to when they heard Rush Limbaugh, the anger and rage they felt all the time.”
— AM Joy host Joy Reid appearing on MSNBC’s Meet the Press Daily, August 1.
The Network of Brian Williams Won’t Stand For All These Lies!
“If it’s Wednesday, we’ve come a long way from George Washington and that cherry tree. Tonight, the White House credibility crisis deepens....The line between truth and fiction continues to get blurry....Tonight’s lead is one that we as journalists don’t take pleasure in writing. Folks, it’s one thing to evade. That’s common in politics. But it’s another when you mislead and get caught. And it’s a whole another animal if you flat-out lie...I’ve had that conversation with folks and I’m like: ‘what, are you kidding me?’ I always want to say: ‘I would be fired for lying.’”
— Host Chuck Todd on MSNBC’s Meet the Press Daily, August 2.
How Dare Trump Use the “P” Word!
“President Trump’s Reference to ‘Paddy Wagon’ Insults Irish Americans Like Me”
— Headline to August 1 Washington Post article by James Mulvaney. Merriam Webster’s definition of the word: “An enclosed motortruck used by police to carry prisoners – called also Black Maria, patrol wagon.” Irish pubs/restaurants owned by Irish often used the term.
Rolling Stone’s Embarrassing Leader Envy
“It’s strange to witness: He [Canadian Prime Minister and Liberal Party member Justin Trudeau] speaks in a modulated, indoor voice. His dark hair is a color found in nature. At home, there is a glamorous wife and three photogenic children, still not old enough to warm his seat at next week’s G-20 summit or be involved in an espionage scandal....Trudeau reminds me of, well, Obama as he smiles and listens patiently to me droning on about my Canadian wife as if it is actually interesting. For Trudeau, listening is seducing....Trudeau heads back toward his three-car motorcade that stops at all red lights. In the hall, a couple hundred kids hold signs that say ‘Hope’ and ‘Respect.’ They grab his sleeve and then skitter away wearing giant smiles. It would have been corny if it had not been so goddamned beautiful.”
— Rolling Stone writer Stephen Rodrick in August 10 article “Justin Trudeau: Why Can’t He Be Our President?”
Joy’s Joyful Impeachment Chant
Rep. Maxine Waters: “I am not running for anything except the impeachment of Trump!”
Co-host Joy Behar: “Lock him up! Lock him up!”
— ABC’s The View, August 4.
Trump is Now Quaking in His Boots
“I refuse to live in a country where Donald Trump is president and I’m not leaving. So something’s got to change...We have to form an army of citizens and come at him like a swarm of bees where’s it’s just he’s getting hit one way, all the way....I suggested a few months ago that we have an army of satire, because I think the way to bring him down is with satire. His thin skin, as you’ve pointed out so well, is so thin, all we need is 1,000 or a million little comedy shivs. Just, you know, non-violent, don’t hurt him, but just under his skin because he can’t take being laughed at.”
— Film director Michael Moore on CBS’s Late Show with Stephen Colbert, July 26.