August 12, 2014

"If I had my druthers, Meet the Press would revert to the pre-Tim Russert formula of a panel of journalists interviewing newsmakers."

"I am at a loss as to why the show couldn’t revert to that (albeit with a roundtable discussion at the end). It would instantly win viewers from the right if that panel had right-of-center journalists in on the questioning (I have no doubt that one of the main reasons Gregory’s ratings have slumped is that he has zero credibility with right-of-center viewers."

Says Jonah Goldberg, and I guess I might agree but only because I miss Tim so damned much and I don't believe anyone can replace him. But David Gregory is sitting in Tim's seat without seriously trying to do what he did. Gregory is insipidly into his niceness. He doesn't belong there. It's painful. Can Chuck Todd get closer to the Russert ideal? Who knows?

I still think Chuck Todd looks like Murray on "Flight of the Conchords":

49 comments:

cubanbob said...

I am at a loss as to why the show couldn’t revert to that (albeit with a roundtable discussion at the end). It would instantly win viewers from the right if that panel had right-of-center journalists in on the questioning (I have no doubt that one of the main reasons Gregory’s ratings have slumped is that he has zero credibility with right-of-center viewers."

Unless the show moves to Fox that wouldn't happen. NBC couldn't find a an actual journalist as opposed to a Journolist if it's life depended on it.

The Crack Emcee said...

"Can Chuck Todd get closer to the Russert ideal?"

How about the Crack ideal?

Let me or Ta-Nahisi Coates ask the guest questions, assisted only by a panel of brothers carrying baseball bats,...

Brando said...

"Flight of the Conchords" is absolute comedy brilliance. Murray is hilarioius enough to carry his own show.

I agree with Goldberg--a panel with journalists across the spectrum (which could rotate each week as they try out various members) would make the show unique and would really make it the gauntlet that it should be. As it is now, it's really no different from any other news channel one-on-one session.

"Crossfire" and "Hannity and Colmes" tried to do that, with two interviewers, but to really work I think a larger panel with rotating members would ensure that each guest would face tough questioning.

Brando said...

The "Crack Ideal" sounds more like the Jerry Springer Show.

The Crack Emcee said...

I must've missed something:

Since when did Chuck Todd become insightful?

Since when did Chuck Todd break a huge story?

Since when did Chuck Todd show an interest in anything worthy of attention?

Chuck Todd at MTP makes no sense:

I've met him already,...



St. George said...

If I had my druthers...

"This is an American phrase and not used widely elsewhere. People elsewhere in the world might want to know what druthers are, as the phrase conveys otherwise. Druthers is a shortening of 'would rathers'. The phrase originated in the late 19th century and is first cited in the January 1870 edition of Overland monthly and Out West magazine, in a story called Centrepole Bill, by George F. Emery:

"If I was a youngster, I 'drather set up in any perfession but a circus-driver, but a man can't always have his 'drathers."

Druthers, as opposed to its earlier variant drathers, is traced back to 1876 in Dialect Notes:

"Bein's I caint have my druthers an' set still, I calculate [calculate] I'd better pearten up [get lively] an' go 'long."

The Crack Emcee said...

Brando,

The "Crack Ideal" sounds more like the Jerry Springer Show.

No, that would be what we have now, where whites can ignore what they want, and say what they want, and do what they want, and the rest of us just have to live with it.

Just like watching TV.

The baseball bats would change all that:

STAY ON TOPIC,...

The Drill SGT said...

Who needs MTP on NBC.

Megyn Marie Kelly does a better job on Fox

Failing that, they could get Jake Tapper for MTP

AJ Lynch said...

Todd is a dyed in the wool lib so no he can't.

harrogate said...

Odd that people take Gregory for some obvious flaming liberal. One example: looks to me like Gregory just lets McCain and Graham spout the same tired line every time they go on that show, without ever holding them accountable.

John Lynch said...

Just what we need- more talking heads telling us what to think.

I'm all for making our governing personalities squirm under the questions of a free press- but I'm bored to tears by "discussion" that is simply a delivery device for partisan talking points.

Bob Ellison said...

Chuck Todd? Gotta go with The Crack Emcee here. Todd seems like another empty suit like Dick Gregory.

CBS must think outside the box. Russert got them into this box with his brilliant preparation.

They won't get any guests with someone like Ta-Nahisi Coates, Crack. Everyone will just say "no".

A real panel with different political biases might work. TNC could be a member of that.

I must sheepishly admit that if I were the show producer, I'd create a FaceBook/Twitter forum for people everywhere to submit questions, hire interns to sift through the garbage, and deploy a few big minds to put forth the questions, with follow-ups. Maybe three such big minds.

The Professor would be a good pick for the latter group.

Brando said...

"No, that would be what we have now, where whites can ignore what they want, and say what they want, and do what they want, and the rest of us just have to live with it."

This is very true. Just yesterday, I saw a white guy walking by doing exactly what he wanted to, and I had to just live with it. Problem was I didn't have a bat handy.

Hagar said...

Don't qute understand that. I have always considereed Chuck Todd to be a Democratic Party operative with a byline.

David Gregory is just an adolescent male with grey hair.

cubanbob said...

harrogate said...
Odd that people take Gregory for some obvious flaming liberal. One example: looks to me like Gregory just lets McCain and Graham spout the same tired line every time they go on that show, without ever holding them accountable.

8/12/14, 8:24 AM

Nothing odd about it. Those two are part of the officially approved minority-opposition party.

T Rellis said...

Gregory should be in jail. Gunrunning into DC. Firing is too good for this man. Firing squad maybe. Bringing an automatic thirty round armor piercing magazine clip into DC is a heinous crime.

Bob Ellison said...

Tough audience, though. I think that journalists who get TV time tend to be smarter than they appear on TV. There are exceptions; some appear smarter than they are.

But Gregory and Todd come across as clueless. They might be Einstein and Churchill combined inside, but they don't come across that way in video.

The Drill SGT mentioned Megyn Kelly. That'd be the right pick for a Russert-like position. She's very pretty, she's young, and she has real credentials as an intellectual lawyer, and she's whip-smart on video.

Not gonna happen, of course.

CatherineM said...

"New Zealand: It Rocks!"

"New Zealand: Take your Mum."

Some of the great tourist posters behind Murray.

http://www.anorak.co.uk/336316/tv/all-of-murrays-new-zealand-tourism-posters-from-flight-of-the-conchords.html/

Brando said...

"I must sheepishly admit that if I were the show producer, I'd create a FaceBook/Twitter forum for people everywhere to submit questions, hire interns to sift through the garbage, and deploy a few big minds to put forth the questions, with follow-ups. Maybe three such big minds."

That would help--mainly the goal would be to ensure that appearing on the show would be like going through the wringer--no softball questions or easy layups to set up your talking points. Instead, good tough questioning.

A key part of that though is a solid moderator who will hit you with followups and corral you back in when you try weaseling out of an uncomfortable question. In other words, exactly what they don't do during presidential debates.

In fact, the problem with presidential debates (as well as with David Gregory) is that they care more about access than they do about the integrity of putting public officials through the rigorous questioning we'd want from the Fourth Estate. But if the show gained enough credibility, it would actually become a sign of weakness for an administration (or any public official) to avoid the show. It could become an unofficial rite of passage.

Brando said...

Murray when cautioning against rock bands with love triangles:

"Look what it did to Fleetwood Mac! Although they did make some of their best music during that era."

"Rumours."

"No, all true!"

Fen said...

I deleted NBC, ABC, etc from my remote more than 10 years ago and never looked back.

So my advice is that Russert rearrange some deck chairs, and all will be well again.

Fen said...

oh, Russert Gregory Chelsea, whoever is standing in for Winston Smith these days.

Mingus Jerry said...

While roundtable of hard-hitting questioners might be what a viewer wants, I'm not sure the politicians appearing would like that. Result: they appear on other shows and MTP has trouble lining up guests.

I think the media market generally has been going that way. Hard hitting pieces means that journalist isn't going to get access or leaks from the inside.

Hit them hard on MTP and access to guests or info for other journalists at your network dries up.

Bob Ellison said...

Brando said, "...if the show gained enough credibility, it would actually become a sign of weakness for an administration (or any public official) to avoid the show. It could become an unofficial rite of passage."

That's the way these shows used to work, decades ago. The big three networks invested their awful Sunday time-slot into the notion of seducing, and then forcing, public officials onto the shows.

Ah, those were the days.

Big Mike said...

Gregory is insipidly into his niceness.

Really? Who knew?

LarsPorsena said...

Blogger cubanbob said...
harrogate said...
Odd that people take Gregory for some obvious flaming liberal. One example: looks to me like Gregory just lets McCain and Graham spout the same tired line every time they go on that show, without ever holding them accountable.

8/12/14, 8:24 AM
--------------------------------

Very true he lets them ramble on but is so abrupt to Schumer and Durbin.

The Crack Emcee said...

Brando,

"This is very true. Just yesterday, I saw a white guy walking by doing exactly what he wanted to, and I had to just live with it. Problem was I didn't have a bat handy."

Interesting - and I'm not making this up:

Yesterday, I was walking by a shopping center, just taking in the scene, and saw one other black guy - emaciated, dirty, almost keeled over like he was going to die - amongst a sea of white folks, getting some sun, shopping, eating in outdoor restaurants, having a fine ol' time. Every one of them clean as a whistle.

That, to them, was "normal".

To me? Just slavery's remnants, with whites hoping it passes soon, without causing them too much discomfort as they spend his family's money.

Just like you,...

The Crack Emcee said...

Bob Ellison,

"The Drill SGT mentioned Megyn Kelly. That'd be the right pick for a Russert-like position. She's very pretty, she's young, and she has real credentials as an intellectual lawyer, and she's whip-smart on video.

Not gonna happen, of course."

Yeah - one mention that "Jesus was white" seems to erase all credibility for some odd reason,...

The Crack Emcee said...

Fen,

"I deleted NBC, ABC, etc from my remote more than 10 years ago and never looked back. "

I knew you were an idiot but - WOW.

I never imagined there's reasons for it,...

Anonymous said...

Make Murray the new host. Then he can invite Obama and ask him about all the times he voted "prisint".

The Crack Emcee said...

Mingus Jerry,

"While roundtable of hard-hitting questioners might be what a viewer wants, I'm not sure the politicians appearing would like that. Result: they appear on other shows and MTP has trouble lining up guests."

Not true - The Daily Show still gets them and folks have lost their jobs for being on there.

It's a matter of credibility - do a good job, even when hard-hitting, and folks will come. They'll have to, because it's the only place to gain the respect they need, to lead.

Then the other channels have to follow suit,...

Larry J said...

Politics ("many blood-sucking parasites") is not the be-all and end-all of my life. Watching any of those shows is a terrible way to waste a Sunday morning.

Skeptical Voter said...

When did Gregory ever have credibility? He's the very definition of an empty suit--good looking young guy with not much between the ears.

There are a lot of blowhards out there: Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity and Alan Colmes all come to mind. Juan Williams is no great shakes but I don't rate him a blowhard--simply because he lacks the lung power to blow hard. I'd rate Bill Moyers as a blow hard, but he's too old to blow hard. Chris Hayes, Rachel Maddow, Larry O'Donnell et al are simply in the buffoon category. And let's not forget "Tingles" Chris Matthews.

If you are looking for people with a sort of gentle probing intelligence, who will not swallow "BS" from an interviewee without challenging him or her, you might look to the likes of Megyn Kelly, Brit Hume, Chris Wallace or Mara Eliason. They're usually prepared and have done their homework. You can watch them without feeling that the experience has actually subtracted from your number of brain cells.

geokstr said...

How about Sharyl Atkisson? She's a real, actual investigative journalist that is not a leftist, intelligent, articulate and looks pretty good on TV too.

Hagar said...

Semicolon after "leftist."

donald said...

In the end, when it came time for Russett to clear the air re Scooter Libby, when it was time to show that integrity for all, humbly, professionally, morally, not to mention ethically, Tim Russert went 100% liberal hack.

Don't ever forget that.

Fred Drinkwater said...

I'll second Crack's implicit vote for Jon Stewart. The guy's an amazing interviewer when he gets serious. No idea how he'd do in a MTP format, but I'm sure he'd be an improvement over what they have now.

Shane said...

The panel would have to include gut fled for insightfullness and Rembert Browne for sheer wit and the youth appeal and George bill, kraut hammer and or pat caddell for minimal bullshit. otherwise, it would remain another reason to do pretty much anything else.

Shane said...

Sheryl Atkinson and or Mary Katherine ham. the show could get Colbert for Hillary exclusives. and Kirsten powers for fairness and a willingness to see that others have opinions too.

Michael K said...

"harrogate said...
Odd that people take Gregory for some obvious flaming liberal."

And over at HuffPo somebody said he has "Republican bias."

I got a nice laugh from that. The comment about Russert letting Scooter LIbby hand out in the wind is correct. I have wondered if that was Fitzgerald or Russert's fault. Libby got lynched.

harrogate said...

Michael K., the perspective about Iraq that you consistently share on this blog is a perspective to which we are treated unfiltered, regularly, on *Meet the Press.* They keep putting microphones in the faces of the people who see things as you do on that issue.

Laugh all you want and screech about "librul bias" but there it is.

exhelodrvr1 said...

Aren't Jews considered "white"?

lgv said...

Yes, I see the Murray resemblance. A great character in the show.

I saw him more as Stephen Root's character in "Office Space".

"Flight of the Conchords" was so good the first season and so bad the second.

The Crack Emcee said...

exhelodrvr1,

"Aren't Jews considered "white"?"

Race is a moving target in America. Jews weren't white, then they were, and now - thanks to events surrounding Israel - they seem to be moving back to being darkies again.

And, if you think that sounds weird, some white women after the Civil War thought doing their own housework was turning them black.

America's weirder than shit,...

lgv said...

I remember Gregory have some typical liberal breakdowns during the Bush years, blowing his unbiased persona.

I like the Sheryl Attkisson idea, or even the Mara Eliason angle. How about Jack Tapper. Not liberal, not afraid to attack the idiot conservative. The complement of Eliason.

Kirk Parker said...

The place where David Gregory belongs is called "prison", right?

Larry J said...

"Aren't Jews considered "white"?"

Like Moslems and Christians, Jews come in many different shades and skin colors. The Ashkenazi Jews from Europe are white while those Ethiopia (like Miss Israel of 2013) are black. The Sephardi or Mizrahi Jews are of Middle Eastern descent. There are even a small number of "Siouxish Native American Jews. Israel was settled by people from over 100 countries, not all of them white.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

I'm surprised no one's mentioned that Flight Of the Conchords is available on Amazon Prime Instant View - full Season 1 and 2!

ken in sc said...

McCain and Graham are pro-American and pro-military. That's not the same thing as being conservative or libertarian. IMO they are like Nixon. They are in favor of government controls as long as they are in charge.