148. MSNBC: The “Shining Network on Air”

22 Feb

We have all heard about the “shining city on a hill,” which represents a noble goal. I see MSNBC as that kind of beacon of hope — sensibility in the bizarre and dangerous world of Trump.

I watch MSNBC almost every day, usually for several hours. I also read the internet NY Times, WashPost, other newspapers, tweets, TED, Daily Kos, and many other types of info, for enjoyment, curiosity, and to prepare my blogs and tweets. I sometimes watch good programs on CNN and see Fox at times to view the negatives.  But, the MSNBC commentators often are really enjoyable to listen to and many feel like genuine friends. In the spirit of rewarding people that do great work, I want to present my evaluations. I have listed the highly functioning MSNBC people and after much thought decided not to list and criticize those that disappoint me.

Outstanding and enjoyable are L. O’Donnell, Brian Williams, Kasie Hunt, and Katy Tur. Williams often avoids expressing controversial opinions, but his little side remarks and humor are fun. O’Donnell and Tur do their job very intelligently. Kasie Hunt does her job well, is a joy to watch, and brings real humanity to the programs she runs.

Quite competent are: Andrea Mitchell, Joy Reid, Mika Brzezinski, and Chris Hayes. Steve Kornacki presents statistics well and does a good job in other roles.

Michael Steele is notable in this list for being a Republican. He speaks well and makes good Repub arguments. Often he agrees with the Democrat positions. If all Repubs were like Steele, we would be living in a much better world.

Rachel Maddow often provides very valuable and exclusive info. I would listen to her more if her presentations were less dramatic and less “wordy.” Most of her hours could be condensed down to 15-min and would be more interesting for me.

Joe Scarborough is notable for his blatant honesty, which I really like. But sometimes, he does drift off topic a little. I often watch “Morning Joe” in the early hours.

Chris Mathews often has valuable info from real experiences. But he would do better by forgetting the “hardball” crap and listen more. Probably because he is older, he tends to drift off topic a little.

Chuck Todd does the current “Meet the Press.” He has a tough job and sometimes misses opportunities for better questioning.  He often appears uncertain and drops his voice level. He does a good job, but could improve. “Meet the Press” always seems a bit bland, as if someone ordered them to be neutral.

I want to emphasize one more point. Looking at all the experts, commentators, and anchors that have appeared on MSNBC, a small number stand out for their unrestrained honesty and bravery. These are: Lawrence O’Donnell, Joe Scarborough, Steve Schmidt, Robert Reich, and Bill Maher (and probably a few others that did not come to mind).

The above I consider the best and most interesting commentators.  A few not mentioned are competent, and a few other regulars are either less interesting, less effective, or awkward at times. Not mentioned are the many experts in different areas that make great contributions when called upon. This blog is about MSNBC, but in all fairness, CNN should be mentioned for its contributions, and I do like Fareed Zakaria.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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