Lawrence O'Donnell has fooled me for a couple years now. He comes on MSNBC each weekday evening right after Rachel Maddow. They both are known as enlightened stalwarts of liberal and progressive political perspectives. Not like those conservative talking heads on Fox who exaggerate and polarize and even press false information on their fan boys. Not like the Fox guys who bully their guests.
Well, this evening, O'Donnell inadvertantly showed he is no better than the Fox folks. He had on a highly qualified liberal reporter he expected would support his view that Putin orchestrated the Snowden debacle and Putin is causing the problems. Setting that up, he posed his question to her and asked her to explain it for viewers.
Julia Ioffe disagreed with O'Donnell and said Putin did not control the situation and had no option but to give Snowden asylum. O'Donnell did not want to hear that and, in effect, came back with, no, no, no, - that is not true. He chastised her and told her what she really should admit. She stood her ground. He came back with a condescending rant - and went after her in absolutes, getting angry in the process. She stood her ground. He bullyed her. And then he refused to proceed with the interview - switching to another guest. Eventually, he came back to her for a comment on something else before the commercial break.
O'Donnell showed his true colors. He was pushing the old Cold War rhetoric that he lived with as a Senate aid and staff member. He treated Julia Ioffe like a traitor or an idiot.
So, I won't be watching O'Donnell any more. He could not bear being contradicted by a qualified guest. I see now that his show is propaganda by a narrow-minded old Cold War-rior, not the enlightened explorations of the day's political news by an intelligent and experienced progressive. And I wil be looking for Julia Ioffe and checking her website. She stood up to him, risking not being invited back to his show and maybe to any show on MSNBC. She has courage and integrity.
You know, I haven't posted in a while. I have two articles in process, one on our city park's department that I hope to post tomorrow. And this website tries to deal with local issues, not national. But as this 4 minute interview concluded this evening, it was something I just had to comment on. We liberals must be ready to criticize those on the left who act badly. Just as we expect our conservative friends to police their own ranks. Loyalty heavies will think of this as 'eating our own,' but the truth is that sort of thinking is what has caused our country to be so divided of late. Lawrence O'Donnell should be sharply taken to task by Rachel Maddow and others for this evening's program. I doubt it will happen.
Here is the final irony. O'Donnell is taking his talking points from the Obama administration - a pundit of his stature has regular input from Obama's aides - and O'Donnell is following it - while he condemns such by the Russian media. Just like during the Cold War. Actually, all the talking heads tonight suggested that Russia is restarting the Cold War - which is absurd. But they are all taking their cues from Obama on Jay Leno last night. They are doing what they accuse the Russian media of doing. We Americans would do well to be aware of that.
Well, just before posting this, I did a final web search - and here loffe has posted what she wanted to say on O'Donnell. A good read.