Time for a little reminder after Martin Bashir’s firing from a post I wrote not too long ago.
We can be angry. We can be saddened. But what we mustn’t be is surprised.
One can argue that there never was a “liberal media”. But it’s safe to say that there used to be a more balanced media, one in which factual reporting and accurate analysis were the linchpins of the industry. If the reporting on Vietnam was rosy at first, by the end of the war its full horrors were being reported on honestly.
But that was also in an era when media ownership was far more diffuse. NBC and MSNBC are owned by Comcast, one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world. ABC is owned by Disney Corporation. Fox News is owned by News Corporation. CNN is owned by Time Warner. CBS has remained “independent”; but it too is a large multinational.
Corporations may be many things. They may be the most efficient means to organize economic activity. They may give their employees a somewhat remunerative working environment. But one thing for which they can never be mistaken are altruistic institutions acting for the public good.
Chat away and keep on fighting. It’s the only way anything has ever changed.
The previous President, after the attacks of 9/11, engineered a war with a state which, though abysmal to its own people, had had no direct or indirect link with any terror attack on the United States. It was, if anything, a mortal enemy of the group which carried out the attacks, as that group saw the ruling regime as corrupt and un-Islamic. As the history of that war is being written, the regime sought to stave off war, willing to give the previous President anything he wanted, save for the regime’s destruction. Of course, the regime as it existed stood in the way of the grand plan to remake the Middle East; its destruction, not its containment, was the goal. Anything short of political—and literal—suicide would not suit the ultimate purpose. So the country and the world were lied into a war, which cost nearly 5,000 American lives, and hundreds of thousands of Iraqi deaths; a war which was supposed to last a few weeks and pay for itself instead dragged on for nearly a decade, costing over $1 trillion. And the Middle East, far from being remade into a collection of benevolent American satrapies, teetered on the edge of all-out war for the eight years of the George W. Bush administration.
That President, however, was never asked to apologize for the disaster he had wrought. And if ever he had been asked to apologize in a face-to-face interview, he never offered one: no apology for the countless dead, for the treasure wasted, for the lives destroyed. It’s just not the done thing.
All times Eastern (click ‘Inauguration Schedule’ second from top on the right sidebar for, well, the Inauguration (weekend) Schedule).
Coverage kicks off on Sunday with a special report on the president’s oath of office at 11:55 am, followed by continuous coverage on Monday from 9:30 am – 5 pm, anchored by Dan Harris along with Olivier Knox. Evening coverage continues with a live feed from both inaugural balls, and ABC News and Yahoo! will stream a post-inaugural show called After: The 2nd Inauguration of President Barack Obama, on Tuesday at 10 am …
BET & CENTRIC
Ed Gordon and Cynne Simpson will anchor coverage of the inauguration and celebrate the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday from the roof of the Newseum in Washington, D.C., airing live at 11 am Jan. 21. Live coverage of the parade will be featured on the networks starting at 3 pm ….
Scott Pelley will lead CBS News’ live coverage of the inauguration, including the official swearing in at the White House on Sunday, Jan. 20 …
The network’s Inauguration Day coverage on Monday begins with a three-hour CBS This Morning at 7am co-hosted by Charlie Rose, Gayle King and Norah O’Donnell from the National Mall. Immediately following this, Pelley will begin anchoring CBS News’ daylong inauguration broadcast (10 am – 4pm)….
CNN’s coverage will begin with the private ceremony on Sunday, Jan. 20 …. starting at 10 am and leading up to a primetime special at 8 pm. Inauguration eve special editions of Piers Morgan Tonight and Anderson Cooper 360 will follow.
On Jan. 21, Early Start With John Berman and Zoraida Sambolin and Starting Point With Soledad O’Brien begin CNN’s coverage at 5 am. At 9 am, Wolf Blitzer will be joined by John Berman, Kate Bolduan, Soledad O’Brien and Jessica Yellin, live from the U.S. Capitol West Front, while Anderson Cooper will be on the National Mall with Gloria Borger, David Gergen, John King, Brooke Baldwin and Don Lemon….
On Monday, Candy Crowley will report from the inauguration ceremony platform…..
C-SPAN‘s coverage of begins with a look back at his first. On Sunday, Jan. 20, at 10:30 am, the network will look back at his 2009 inaugural address. This is followed by a discussion with former presidential speechwriters about this year’s address and how past inaugural addresses have been crafted. Then, there will be live coverage of the president’s official swearing in by Chief Justice John Roberts at 11:55 am.
On Jan. 21, C-SPAN’s live coverage of the inauguration begins at 7 am….
On Sunday, Jan. 20, Up With Chris Hayes (8 am) and Melissa Harris-Perry (10 am) will start from Washington, D.C. Then, Chuck Todd will anchor live coverage of the private swearing-in ceremony beginning at 11:50 am.
On Monday, Jan. 21, Way too Early and an extended Morning Joe will be live from The Dubliner from 5:30 – 10 am, with Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski and Willie Geist. Guests will include Colin Powell, Sen. Tim Kaine, David Axelrod, Maureen Dowd – – Mike Barnicle, Michael Steele and Alex Wagner.
MSNBC’s coverage of the inauguration then continues live from 10 am – 4 pm, hosted by Rachel Maddow and Chris Matthews, with Lawrence O’Donnell, Ed Schultz and Rev. Al Sharpton….
MSNBC’s regularly scheduled programming picks up at 4 pm with Martin Bashir and continues through primetime, with hosts live in Washington.