We often write about the diminution of US new media. Early today, the perfect example of our point broadcast on MSNBC. Weekend host Alex Witt interview noted Trump talking head shill Omarosa in the common TV news split screen remotely panelist format.
The nascent minister, post The Apprentice reality TV show actor, is a known "Trump can do as he pleases" stooge. It appeared last night as CNN producers via Lemon was set to pull the plug on Trumps number two (black) talking head. Within mere seconds of the start of the interview, Lemon was issuing on-camera non-verbals to his broadcast booth to cut Omarosa's mic.
The interchange was yet another indictment of 234/7 cable news ratings based programming. As talking head surrogates go (DEM or Republicans) They have one message and they go about delivering that message in the very same manner no matter the network, the question or the network host. Omarosa's message was coming out as the canned Trump approve message which of his more visible talking heads deliver.
While I have through the years also reaped considerable criticism on the ratings seeking Don Lemon, I was forced to tip my hat regarding the segment.
Now, for the point of this piece. I have posted a segment from MSNBC's Weekends With Alex Witt. Witt interviews the talking head Omarosa.Excerpt
Now, a Donald Trump supporter, one Omarosa Manigault, has added her name to the growing list of devotees inspired by Ms. Carey. Today on MSNBC, the following exchange took place:
ALEX WITT: I’m curious about your reaction to your candidate’s attacks on Heidi Cruz. Is he going too far?
MANIGAULT: Well, I don’t remember Donald Trump at all attacking Heidi Cruz… I do recognize this week there was a back-and-forth where Donald Trump was forced to, of course, defend his wife against some really ugly ads that were created by a superPAC that supports and endorses Ted Cruz.
Yes. Just as Carey absolutely, unquestionably knew who Lopez was, Manigault absolutely, unquestionably knows about Trump attacking Heidi Cruz. Her avoidance of the topic got her a little bit further with Witt than it did with Don Lemon last night on CNN. When she tried to dodge the big Heidi question then, Lemon just stopped the interview.MSNBC Offers Trump Talking Head A Platform
Witt allowed Manigault to go on to share her position that Trump was merely defending wife Melania Trump from a mean-spirited ad. She suggested that any man who wouldn’t do whatever necessary to defend his wife would also not do whatever necessary to defend his country as its president.
MSNBC management really should offer less obvious viewerratings cheese. Most Americans realize that Donald Trump is a celebrity phony who commands attention primarily due to his money. The former somewhat credible news source has joined CNN in broadcasting segments that facilitate ratings at the expense of segments which pretend to be news. Witt's interview with the Trump talking head was an unquestionable infomercial. It was either intended to appeal to MSNBC's growing conservative audience, or the segment was offered without any challenge due to Witt's inability to pose probing questions. Questions which are absolutely critical when Trump has paid shills (eg., Omarosa, Katrina Pierson, Jeffrey Lord) delivering pre-agreed upon messages in response to his guttural acts, comments and overall behavior.
Media has given Trump a pass via allowing telephone interviews since he first announced his in June of 2015. CNN has become a veritable Trump broadcast network as it doesn't seem to be able to broadcast thirty minutes of airtime without a Trump segment. It is sad to see any host on MSNBC (beyond the expected schmoozing from Joe Scarborough), offer a platform to a presidential candidate who shouldn't be allowed near the US Presidency. Even a host who seems more a new reader than an electronic journalist should have been allowed or advised to push-back just a bit on Omarosa's diatribe.