Monday, December 7, 2009

Sometimes It Takes A Monday

The Morning Joe Rebuttal For December 7th, 2009


1) Just like you can’t get completely back on track without some regenerating moment, it appears the weekend had its wondrous effect on our favorite morning team as they found dominant space once again for issues in their program. Unfortunately, when you lose as much ground as you did last Thursday and Friday, Monday’s show was more of a refresher on the issues at hand than a hit the ground running moment. Still, it is a step in the right direction, and I’ll take the awkward abbreviation of luminaries like Ed Rendell as a temporary phenomenon. When you are more on your game and up to speed, you won’t cut the most important spot on the show short to hide your lack of retort.

2) Kudos to Andrea Mitchell for standing up and saying what people like Matt Taibbi have said for some time now. Tom Friedman needs an analogies editor in the worst way, and it took hurting some people to bring that out. It also points to a strength in the show. Other programs would’ve missed this boat and been slammed for seemingly going the wrong way by accepting Friedman’s point blind to its collateral damage. This show had timeless experience whisper in it’s ear in time to avoid some long term embarrassment later, thanks to its longer list of experts than other less dimensional formats.

3) It’s getting to the point that we need a vigil. The vast cast of experts on Morning Joe just cannot find a collective wisdom on jobs. I won’t let a day pass without reminding Joe Scarborough that he has again commented on jobs from 30,000 feet and seems to have an anxiety attack when his G5 gets too close to the solutions and real life issues. Today, JS showed he has no ability to reconcile jobs and health care and is opening himself up to a critical flank attack by going party line with the 30k platform that it’s an “either or” issue. We already had 8 years of a President who played more checkers than chess, and if you think the American people didn’t learn a brutal lesson from what history will define as our Peter Sellers “Being There” period, then just go with that take and be prepared for some real “unable to lead” ammunition from your adversaries for showing a lack of depth here.

4) Copenhagen is a very interesting litmus on the govern-ability of the United States. Dating back to Kyoto, the United States is unable to keep up with other world governments in the “getting it done” department. Leaving climate change aside, it’s more important to look at states like California as leading indicators of hardships on the road ahead for the Federal government. All of the supreme issues of the day: health care, stimulus, banking reform, law and order, infrastructure, and many others find better planning efficiencies in other governments. No one is saying “I hate America” when they express envy that China out-stimulus-ed us by a landslide, that Europe out reformed it’s too big to fail banks by a landslide, that Ecuador is ahead of us in health care provision. We have to begin to apply an efficiency mandate to our government. I don’t envy freedoms lost to a state run economy or media or Internet, but if “we can’t afford it” is the Obama opposition mantra, it’s also a good rallying cry for reform of our broken political process.

5) The west is not kind to Morning Joe. As a fan of the show, I would really advise against any pronounced appearance of the show in the westernmost time zones. While Iowa forever gave the show a flair for being on the ground at the source of news, I’ve seen one too many redeye broadcasts from San Diego, Carlsbad, San Francisco and a “give up on live and tape it” Reagan Library episode to think that you can thrive out here. Remember: 3 hours. It’s not just a time change, not just a show length, it’s a movement from a part of the world that is adequately in motion to support the show to a place that should only be asked to help in an emergency. This is not Brokaw from Berlin. Its Chris Licht on hallucinogens. Don’t do it. Land the G5 at Burbank on Saturday, eat at the chef’s room at the Polo Lounge, catch a football game, and go back to work. Oh and there’s that other thing, no one in this time zone has a clue about the show except a few Orange County people and some Tivo-junkies, so it’s not like you’re abandoning us, it’s that majority of the population from Chicago to New York that gets shorted.

That’s all for today, see you tomorrow.

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