NBC host Chuck Todd may have accidentally revealed on Sunday why he — and other mainstream media personalities — often let their guests off the hook instead of conducting a hard-hitting interview.
During a panel discussion with about the popularity of political satire, Todd asserted that comedians may be guilty of fueling the public’s cynicism.
But comedian W. Kamau Bell argued that programs like The Daily Show gave viewers hope.
“You feel like I can laugh my way through this,” he pointed out. “I think that whenever they watch Jon Stewart or John Oliver, they feel like they are at least getting that person’s perspective. I don’t think people believe with the news, you know, you feel like you’re getting a corporation’s perspective.”
The Daily Show‘s Lewis Black said that it was unfair to blame comedy for cynicism when many Americans were even more angry than comedians.
“I have watched you and everybody else,” he told Todd, “where somebody comes on, and I don’t know how you do it because I’d be barking at them.”
“We all sit there because we know the first time we bark is the last time we do the show,” Todd explained. “There’s something where all of the sudden nobody will come on your show.”
Bell added that Fox News “gets to bark,” while the mainstream media often played clips of comedians because they were “afraid of barking.”
“They will play a clip of The Daily Show or they will play a clip of John Oliver, and go, ‘Look at this guy barking. Anyway, back to a reasonable discussion. Even though I know that’s what I want you to believe, let me have the reasonable discussion,'” Bell noted.
After admitting that he wasn’t able to “bark” at guests,” Todd went on to ask the panel if politicians were ducking “real interviews” by appearing on comedy shows.
“Which is obviously my point of view,” the NBC host quipped.
“I think that sometimes Jon Stewart has done more hard-hitting interviews with John McCain than some journalists I’ve seen,” Bell remarked. “So I think sometimes comedians can — because we’re barking as we said earlier — we can get away with barking.”
Egberto Willies, who first wrote about the clip, observed that Todd had spoken “a truth that Americans must understand when watching the news.”
“In other words, if you are touting the narrative of the plutocracy, rules do not apply to you,” Willies observed. “It is imperative that Americans understand how to process our so called news in the context of what the talking heads are allowed to say. We will make better electoral decisions then.”
Watch the video below from NBC’s Meet the Press, broadcast Dec. 28, 2014.
Bill Barr finally revealed the real reason he’s such an aggressive Trump defender
Attorney General Bill Barr has become a lightning rod of sorts in administration, standing out front and taking public hits as he does President Donald Trump’s dirty work at the Justice Department.
Far from being the institutionalist even many critics of Trump hoped Barr would be, the attorney general showed his true colors when he spun Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report on the conclusions of the Russia investigation. Mueller and his team so objected to that presentation that they sent Barr a letter arguing that the report had been distorted to the public. Barr later said that the letter was “snitty.” Since the end of the Mueller investigation, Barr has repeatedly and consistently proven himself to be a fierce defender of the president’s interests, regardless of the consequence of U.S. institutions.
‘She’s fire’: Soccer superstar Megan Rapinoe explains her endorsement of Elizabeth Warren
Soccer star Megan Rapinoe explained her endorsement of Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) for president during a Friday evening interview with CNN's Don Lemon.
"Elizabeth Warren picking up a big endorsement today from Megan Rapinoe, the soccer star and social activist who was named Sports Illustrated's 2019 'Person of the Year' earlier this week," Lemon reported.
Lemon played a clip of Rapinoe talking to Warren that was posted earlier in the day on Twitter.
I truly believe the best things in life are a result of being bold and being real. I’m proud to endorse Elizabeth Warren today, for being bold, for being real, for listening to ALL of us, and for being prepared to navigate the unique challenges we face today as a country @ewarren pic.twitter.com/9hX3gQYjvo
Why Rudy Giuliani has always been — and will always be — ‘a small man in search of a balcony’
Pulitzer Prize-winning former New York Times journalist Clyde Haberman explained on Friday why the antics of former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani are part of a pattern that has defined his career during an interview with MSNBC's Ari Melber on "The Last Word."
Haberman wrote a twice-a-week column about New York City for The Times during the majority of Giuliani's time as mayor.
Melber asked him about a new piece Haberman wrote for BuzzFeed News titled, "Ask Any New Yorker: Rudy Giuliani Was Always This Bad."