Longtime NPR Fresh Air host Terry Gross is completely In The Tank for Al Franken. Back in the Dubya years, we contrasted her giggly, tickly Franken interview with a very hostile Bill O'Reilly interview, where he actually stormed out of the studio. Gross is also a big fan of New Yorker writer Jane Mayer, so it's completely predictable that she awarded 43 and a half minutes of national taxpayer-funded radio time to Jane Mayer, who is now insisting Al Franken never should have left the Senate for apparently harmless sexual harassment.
The only subject where Andrew McCabe drew tough questions on his puffball book tour over the last week came from the left -- complaints that he and Jim Comey ruined Hillary Clinton's campaign with announcements about her email probe. See NPR's Fresh Air on Tuesday, where Terry Gross complained "a lot of people" [translation: NPR's liberal base] were upset at the negative attention.
On NPR Monday, Fresh Air host Terry Gross spent 35 minutes with Washington Post reporter Greg Miller, promoting his book The Apprentice: Trump, Russia And The Subversion Of American Democracy. She wanted to know if they could accuse Sen. Mitch McConnell with treason for going soft on Russian meddling in the election. This is weird, since Gross has gone all soft on Pentagon bomber Bill Ayers and Pentagon Papers leaker Daniel Ellsberg.
On Wednesday, NPR's Fresh Air devoted more than 36 minutes to promoting transgender Democratic activist Sarah McBride and her new book Tomorrow Will Be Different. It turned harsh on the Republicans near the end: "We went from a presidency of progress to a presidency of prejudice...This has truly become in the last year the most explicitly anti-LGBTQ adminstration we've seen in history."
On Tuesday's Fresh Air on NPR, host Terry Gross and her guest, liberal author Joshua Green, discussed how Trump and Trump-affiliated Republicans somehow created an "epidemic" of sexual assault. Green wrote a book on Trump adviser Steve Bannon unsubtly titled Devil's Bargain. Gross briefly mentioned NPR has its own sexual harassment problem ("epidemic"?).
In the midst of all the sexual harassment shockers emerging from the media, Hollywood, and politics, the Left is still hailing Anita Hill as the patron saint of sexual harassment. An especially egregious case unfolded on Thursday afternoon, as the NPR show Fresh Air with Terry Gross spent a half-hour re-litigating Clarence Thomas as a harasser with his old journalistic nemesis Jane Mayer (now with The New Yorker) and feminist author Rebecca Traister.The online summary was headlined “For Years, Anita Hill Was A 'Canary In The Coal Mine' For Women Speaking Out.” Only after they’d exhausted two-thirds of the hour on Hill-Thomas, did they turn to the harassment controversies that are not 26 years old.
Perhaps it was an apology for giving Hillary Clinton a tough interview last week, but NPR decided to make it up to her this week, with a long-winded gushy, self-flagellating interview by Fresh Air’s Terry Gross, that let Clinton lay all the blame for losing the election on every one of her dozens of excuses, including the media.
MSNBC host Katy Tur is granting interviews to promote her book Unbelievable on being a political correspondent on the Trump campaign, and that included an hour-long softball session on NPR's Fresh Air with Terry Gross. Tur claimed she doesn't vote because "I don't have a horse in the race." Earth to Miss Tur: When you host a daily program on MSNBC and received adulatory hour-long interviews on NPR, the public can guess which side you're on.
Geoffrey Dickens noted Charlie Rose interviewed Al Franken for most of his hour on Wednesday and never brought up Kathy Griffin. The same thing happened on the PBS NewsHour. And a search of National Public Radio transcripts comes up empty for Kathy Griffin stories. So much for public broadcasting standing against the coarsening of public discourse. (UPDATED: NPR media correspondent tweeted that he did a one-minute report in hourly newscasts.)
Monday’s lead New York Times story by the paper’s Andes bureau chief Nicholas Casey was a grim report on the ongoing societal collapse of Venezuela: “Pillaging by Venezuelans Reveals Depth of Hunger.” But in typical media fashion, Casey managed to avoid the S-word -- socialism -- for almost all his report, and in an interview for NPR's Fresh Air actually blamed “consumerism” for the country’s woes, while labeling the late socialist dictator Hugo Chavez as "very much a democrat in a lot of ways."
Ultraliberal former Congressman Barney Frank promoted his book Frank on National Public Radio on Monday on the badly named Fresh Air show with Terry Gross. Only one point of view is normally allowed on that stale show.
Early in the 38-minute softball session, Gross really loaded a question about Christian-right “homophobia” in the Reagan years, proclaiming you would have to be avoid saying “overtly racist things,” but you could be overtly bigoted on the gay agenda. She laughed as Frank suggested spcial conservatives should be institutionalized.
The liberal myth surrounding the hypercompetent Barack Obama faded long ago, but the liberal myth of “cultural icon” Jon Stewart is only getting stronger. Stewart’s tour of interviews for the new movie he directed, “Rosewater,” has created a parade of flatterers, sycophants, and every other synonym in the thesaurus for “obsequious.”
Roy Sekoff at The Huffington Post stands out by insisting the movie only polishes this walking statue: “In finding this format, in this form, you have become obviously a cultural icon, maybe one of the dominant figures in the political discourse.”