Lawrence O’Donnell absolutely DESTROYS prevaricating GoOPer Representative John Culberson (R-Dumbass) while guest-hosting the vacationing Chris Matthews’ “Hardball.”
I’d embed this video, but WordPress no like anything ‘cept teh YouTube. So clicky the above link, and settle in for some lessons in how it’s done. Yes, O’Donnell was argumentative. When did that become a bad thing in a reporter – provided his or her source/interviewee was either lying outright or simply not being consistent – and trying to avoid having to face that fact? Joseph Pulitzer himself once said that a newspaper should have no friends, and if it was true for newspapers back in Pulitzer’s day, it’s perhaps- if anything – even more true in today’s world of instantly-televised, 24-hour media coverage of news events. It’s sometimes difficult for reporters and anchors to be able to marshall the facts or the reasoning at a moment’s notice, live, which would be necessary to drill down on, or refute (if necessary) a prevaricating guest’s attempts at avoidance, distraction or simple lying. So, in an effort to avoid angering powerful politicians and risking “loss of access” to these same people by confronting them – and to avoid making a counter-argument they’ve not thought through completely in advance, many – if not most – modern “journalists” have simply fallen back on the pale shadow of real journalism which says that their job as reporters is not to question, fact-check or refute if necessary, but simply to report what “both sides” in any issue say, without much in the way of comment. Follow-up questions are tepid, non-controversial, and instinctively geared to ruffle no feathers, and the result, sadly, is that none of the viewership winds up being any better informed at the conclusion of the interview.
O’Donnell suffers from approximately NONE of those flaws and foibles in this interview. Sure, he’s a Democrat, and a liberal one at that. O’Donnell’s political leanings aren’t a secret. But that’s not – or should not be – a bar to being a journalist, either. Too often, what kills faith in journalism is not whether the host has particular political leanings, but when so-called journalists give “equal time” (and thereby, implicitly, equal legitimacy) to both sides of EVERY question, even when only one of the sides is quite clearly either factually wrong, or their case is much, much weaker than the other side – or even when one side is intentionally lying. Three freaking cheers for Lawrence O’Donnell!