The Pardu

The Pardu
Watchful eyes and ears feed the brain, thus nourishing the brain cells.

Friday, January 3, 2014

MSNBC's Melissa Harris-Perry Mis-steps! The Right Clamors Without Use of Mirrors

CNN has validated our longstanding opinion it has embarked on a concerted and focused strategy to compete for conservative viewers (who probably spend hours watching Fox (Hate) News).

As MSNBC's Melissa Harris-Perry forayed into a (humor) segment of her three hours show, she and her on-air production team made an egregious mistake.  Perry and her panel chose to delve into  the reality of an adoption of a mixed race child via one of the Romney offspring.  The segment was actually a pre-New Years "look back at 2013" (replete with a panel of admitted comedians) that was not (in the overall scheme of things ) funny and the focus of the production took a wrong turn. Perry moved her panel to the following 2013 photo for obvious political and social statement about diversity in the GOP (and conservative America). The image is posted below followed by the ill-fated MHP segment (1:00) embed. (Linked page, URL video link..not viewable) 

The link includes  a set of Twitter threads of apologies from member of the MHP Panel.  

As you can imagine, or observed if your viewing preference is for conservative media like Fox News and CNN, both CNN and Fox delved into the inappropriateness of the segment with tsunami like inertia. CNN was particularly focused in their segment and that focus clearly revealed both CNN management zeal for conservatism and it showed a lack of current event recall.

You will notice in the following CNN segment the segment producer quoted the short-term interim Senator from Massachusetts: Scott Brown. Let's view the CNN segment and delve a bit into the issue on the other end of the segment. We chose a YouTube video segment and an associated screed from a poster called Country News. The cogent remarks following the video are not easily matched as the writer covers the issue very thoroughly.

CountryNews CountryNews·

Published on Jan 2, 2014
We are now into Day Four of Kierangate, the slow-news-fueled controversy surrounding an at-best tone deaf MSNBC segment that used a photo of Mitt Romney grandchild Kieran Romney as a vehicle to attack Republicans' lack of racial diversity, and CNN has upped the ante by reporting that "some" are "demanding" that host Melissa Harris-Perry be fired. If you stay through the tease and the entire report, though, you might find the evidence of an angry, firing-demanding mob somewhat lacking. 
What began as online criticism of a ham-handed cable news segment has now morphed into a full-blown public cable news flogging of Dean Obeidallah, Pia Glenn, and MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry, who participated in said segment on Sunday's episode of Harris-Perry's show. MSNBC competitors Fox News and CNN each filled the desolate holiday weekend with multiple segments attacking the segment, while Harris-Perry and her panelists offered a round of apologies on Twitter, and elsewhere. 
On Wednesday morning, CNN anchor Fredricka Whitfield teased a report on the uproar by telling viewers "Some people demanding MSNBC fire one host after she mocked Mitt Romney's black grandson," (Harris-Perry's comment on the photo had to do with imagining a Mitt Romney/Kanye West-sponsored wedding in the future) and introduced the report, by Lisa Desjardins, by repeating that claim, and grouping Harris-Perry with recently-ousted MSNBC hosts Alec Baldwin and Martin Bashir. 
Desjardin's report, however, presents little evidence of such a groundswell. giving just one example of a person on Twitter who wants Harris-Perry fired. Even with more examples, a raft of tweets is an awfully low bar for a national news network to claim as a newsworthy movement to have someone fired. To this point, Harris-Perry's critics from competing cable news outlets have not suggested she be fired, nor has anyone else in Desjardin's report. 
A hard news report like this, though, could certainly help start such a movement. This is exactly the fuel that a mob of people who already didn't like Harris-Perry needs to light their torches. "CNN reports pressure to fire Melissa Harris-Perry" is a fine tune for conservative media outlets to echo, and legitimate enough to appear on other cable networks. 
"Reporting" on your direct competitors in the news media shouldn't be off-limits, but the inherent conflict of interest means that there ought to be a much higher bar for accuracy and fairness, neither of which CNN met in this case. Harris-Perry's show has ranked number one in the younger 18-34 year-old demo for two years, which gives her competitors an incentive to see her ousted. Stretching some tweets into a newsworthy movement only serves to highlight that incentive.
As you can imagine the Right and Right media have attacked like a school of hungry Piranha. A number of the links found in our Google search link back to a piece from a webpage called The Right Scoop.

It’s funny because Romney is white and his grandson isn’t, which is obviously hilarious. Because as everyone knows, the races should not mix. 
But it’s even better than just hilarious, it also makes you think! Because, as the final comment from the panel tells us, this pic is a microcosm of the GOP. “It sums up the diversity of the Republican party and the RNC, where they have the whole convention and they find the one black person.” Ah the never tired accusation, borrowed from every single left wing blog and talking head during every gathering of two or more (or fewer) Republicans: He’s not a child adopted by loving parents prepared to provide him with a better life in keeping with the family’s values. Nope. He’s just a token. A punchline, not a person. But it’s funny, because Republicans are racist, see? So it’s all fine!
The Right Scoop typically depicted the segment from the standpoint of right-wing propaganda and political expedience. 

We take exception to first sentence on the Right Scoop piece as it is an ill-advised moment of facetious: "Because as everyone knows, the races should not mix.

Our perspective? 

 I do not see anything in the MHP segment that addresses "the races should not mix" (hereafter referred to as"racial mixing.") In fact, the very nature of the Right Scoop efforts at facetious fails miserably and is indicative of people who truly know nothing, nor care nothing, about diversity and its tendency to neutralize issues of race (over the long-term). First, "....the races should not mix" while obviously aimed at poking fun, is anti-bellum southern vernacular appreciated only by people who subscribe to American conservatism and only then those who are bigoted enough to appreciate the effort at humor ("races should not mix"). 

Second, the MHP segment dealt less with miscegenation or amalgamation than a poke at the GOP. As matter of fact and common knowledge among MHP viewers Ms. Harris-Perry's mother is white and Harris-Perry does not hesitate to inform of such. We existentially assert the Scoop used the phraseology as a double entendre [ˈdə-bəl-än-ˈtänd(-rə)].

"Racial mixing" would without doubt reach the psyches of those on the Right who relish regression such as that formerly practiced at Bob Jones University (no racial dating, and frowned upon public interaction among the races). Ronald Reagan simply loved and fully supported Bob Jones University through-out most of his two terms in the Oval Office. He was the Father of Modern conservatism. And, we do "Honor they Father."
The Right Scoop possibly leveraged conservative contempt for growing racial integration to the level of men/women interaction that reaches the apex of intimacy. If you recall the 2013 Cherrios commercial that drew significant attention from people who hold "racial mixing" in the highest order of contempt (and hatred). No, the commercial did not draw proposed legislation from the GOP House, nor did it garner public protestation from GOP uber wealthy money-brokers. The 30 second spot certainly received racist commencement enough to draw response from a General Mills vice president. General Mills refused to pull the commercial. 

A subset focus of the Scoop's "racial mixing" was the prospect of backdoor poking at liberal acceptance of racial interaction, miscegenation and family relationships. In more simple terms, you liberals believe in open relations among all people, yet you pike fun at Mitt Romney's family members adoption choice.  (The TPI will add a noble choice at that by a Romney family member).

As linked above via the UPI link, Harris-Perry and her guest have issued extensive and heartfelt apologies. Despite our contempt for the need for apology (meaning... always work to manage oneself to mitigate the need for apology), we feel the political message from the MHP is irrefutable.  

The GOP is consciously 92% white. The party is reflective of a predominate racial mindset and manifest such in a few ways that are hard to ignore. We are aware and accept deeply ingrained GOP racism from most who claim the tea party and white supremacist (according to David duke). It is impossible to avoid recognition of pervasive bigotry and intolerance across the party. At another level,  the party clearly uses race as fodder and feed for segments of the population (especially geographically) that deliver consistent election votes. They deliver votes when evidence exists of GOP disregard for the human needs of constitutes in the deep South and the Plains States. Before we leave this point, how effective do you feel the Scoop's 'racial mixing' remarks set in the just mentioned constituencies? 

We offer the following, related the matter of Mitt Romney as a victim of ill-advised charges associated with race.


Romney chief campaign adviser goes 'racial code baiting".  
The one thing President Obama is not is "lazy."

It is also important to recall that an unnamed Romney campaign adviser did this....

......advisers told The Daily Telegraph that he would abandon Mr Obama’s “Left-wing” coolness towards London. 
In remarks that may prompt accusations of racial insensitivity, one suggested that Mr Romney was better placed to understand the depth of ties between the two countries than Mr Obama, whose father was from Africa. 
“We are part of an Anglo-Saxon heritage, and he feels that the special relationship is special,” the adviser said of Mr Romney, adding: “The White House didn’t fully appreciate the shared history we have”.

If Mitt Romney employed one close minority campaign adviser their person was closeted and never to be seen by the public.  

We assert that Harris-Perry's segment should not have gone to ridicule involving the adopted child.  On the other hand, we do appreciate the extent to which GOP and conservative America deserves such ridicule and could benefit from ridicule that could possibly open their eyes to the fallacy of 92% party of  conferred privilege.
Since, we opened with the inappropriateness and ridiculousness of a CNN segment the matter (with the word 'firing), we should close similarly. We cannot recall CNN broadcast deep analysis of the many Fox News broadcast segments that delivered inappropriate messages. You might think, well CNN got after Megyn Kelly and Fox for the "white Santa" and "white Jesus" remarks. I suggest you review those segments and compare the level and scope of CNN commentary. You will find far less attention to terminating a host and we assert Kelly's remarks were universally racist and vile. CNN did not and will take offend viewers who could with the flick of a remote button forsake viewing their Right-wing news cast for the more zany broadcast over at Fox. It simply will not happen. And, there-in lies the fallacy of CNN's efforts to appeal to the Right while forsaking journalistic integrity. 

CNN included comment from Scott Brown as art of their segment.  Scott Brown?
Brown vs Warren debate.  

(View the first 1:11 minutes as relevant to our point)

Visit for breaking newsworld news, and news about the economy

Scott Brown high level campaign staffers pull a John Sunnunu. Brown apologized for the exhibition and laid the malfeasance to low level staffers. His comment was false.

Huffing Post September 26, 2012

Brown, asked by reporters to respond to criticism of his senior staff at the rally, said that Warren committed the "real offense" for listing herself as Native American. "That's not something I condone. That's certainly something, if I am aware of it, I would tell that member not to do it again," he said. "I know everyone is in the throes of the political season. I ask everyone to show real class and decorum on both sides." 
At separate rally, however, a Brown supporter let out another "war whoop" and Brown didn't respond, though he didn't actively condone the act, either. The video was posted on a local GOP website and spotted by BlueMassGroup, which also found audio of Brown laughing at Native American jokes in reference to Warren. 
If CNN delivers attacks on another network, CNN management should seek viable and credible points of view. Points-of-view from people who are free of the very social maladies delineated via Harris-Perry and panel's one minute look back at 2013. Use of any segment with a focus on race and ethnicity is not best served with comment from Scott Brown. One final point. 

While Mitt Romney's youngest grandson, via adoption, has a rightful place for the photo shot left leg, it is important to recall another dynamic.

Think Progress November 14, 2012
Mitt Romney told his top donors Wednesday that his loss to President Obama was a disappointing result that neither he or his top aides had expected, but said he believed his team ran a “superb” campaign with “no drama,” and attributed his rival’s victory to “the gifts” the administration had given to blacks, Hispanics and young voters during Obama’s first term. 
Obama, Romney argued, had been “very generous” to blacks, Hispanics and young voters. He cited as motivating factors to young voters the administration’s plan for partial forgiveness of college loan interest and the extension of health coverage for students on their parents’ insurance plans well into their 20s. Free contraception coverage under Obama’s healthcare plan, he added, gave an extra incentive to college-aged women to back the president. [...] 
“The President’s campaign,” he said, “focused on giving targeted groups a big gift—so he made a big effort on small things. Those small things, by the way, add up to trillions of dollars.”

: The New York Times has more quotes: “Our campaign, in contrast, was talking about big issues for the whole country —military strategy, foreign policy, a strong economy, creating jobs and so forth,” he said. “And by the way, as you’ll hear from Neil, our strategy worked well with many people, but for those who were given a specific gift, if you will, our strategy did not work terribly well.”
We grant the MHP Team should have excluded the Romney family photo from its 2012 look-back. However, let's be perfectly clear. We are dealing with a former candidate who went here (Mother Jones)  Romney argued that 47 percent of Americans are “dependent upon government.”    
We would be seriously remiss if we did not also included Romney's running mate for the 2012 General Election. They seems to be people who will certainly chameleon themselves for sake of acceptability or to seek position.
Mother Jones...
In his first interview since losing the election, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) also wouldn’t admit that voters rejected the ticket’s economic vision and instead chalked up Obama’s victory to a large turnout of the “urban vote.
Ryan with wife and kids in tow performed as fake a exhibition of political phoniness I have ever witnessed.  In fact, the Ryan entourage raided the facility without pre-arranged permission from the pantry director.  They just showed up with cameras at the ready.  Mind you, this man used his wife and kids to pull -off a most sinister political ploy.
These men are not beyond exhibitions for impact.  We are not suggesting Mitt Romney staged the grand-kids shot for sake of political leverage. We are without equivocation suggests Romney and Ryan are men who will resort to any trick to portray a public image to mask themselves as GOP politicians imbued with all common shortcomings of men from the GOP.


All said Ms. Harris-Perry delivered a most convincing apology for her and her guests missteps. We actually hope the misstep generates other show reviews as we move into 2014. The one criticism we have of MSNBC is the network's serious lack of real news shows. The 18 hour doses of "opinion" news fits our political paradigm (with an exception for the evening coverage of the exact same stories that leads to redundant reporting and commentary), but fails when seeking entertainment to support "opinion news" vs. airing real news segments. We also have an aversion to the insertion of Hip-Hop segue into commercial breaks. While we suspect the MHP staff labors to find HIP-HOP segue that compliment just finished segments, we think the insertions fail all together. People who spend moderate amounts of time listening to HIP-HOP (Or RAP), are probably not people viewing MHP on Saturday and Sunday (early) mornings.
We also notice in the ill-fated segment, Harris-Perry reached for a connection to Kanye West and Kim Kardasian's kid. Well, for those of us who have aversion to celebrity worship and even greater contempt for most HIP-HOP these excursion should probably find its way out of a supposed serious news commentary show. 

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