Friday, November 12, 2010

When Will The Thrashing Stop?

The Morning Joe Rebuttal for November 12th, 2010


1) Dylan Ratigan is a Mona Lisa of unexplained complexity. His efforts on the show today dragged the conversation up the food chain from the superficial to the, well, less superficial. Dylan explained to America that you can cut all you want but that austerity is not an equation for recapitalization. Wait, I did that in 14 words, it took Dylan 5400 and his message was diluted for its lack of cohesion.

Fresh off of his voter suppression efforts, Joe Scarborough was all to happy to edit out the progressive message that dubbed the deficit commission the “cat food commission”. That is suppression of another kind, but Joe’s greater argument that the extremes on both sides unduly control the debate allows this kind of editing. He has a point, a point I wish I could recall him enforcing in August of 2009 at the heat of the death panel scare.

So it was a great relief that Dylan couldn’t control the conversation and that Joe could just mock his inability to boil a matter down. It was a great relief because it would show that had Dylan not been there and Joe would have interviewed David Walker by himself, they would have never brought up revenue. That conversation, which happens way too often on Morning Joe, the one void of depth and in shallow pursuit of a key operating objective, exposes the show to its chief criticism that it only finds depth accidentally but left to its own devices is a magnet for superficiality.

Bravo for the show’s self awareness, for it’s relentless pursuit of depth, for knowing that if it was just Joe and Mika talking they would aggregate to less than Bill Karin’s segment.

Now if only Dylan could take an extension class on clarity, or at least the transfer of clarity from one’s mind to one’s rocket ship.

2) Not since the southeastern gas crisis in 2008 have we seen such an effort to blackout the media. I am of course talking about the rocket launch that occurred Monday off of the coast of California and has been dismissed with the most juvenile assertions from the government, its as if they are begging the country to dig deeper.

I can’t in good faith go into the story, as it would just lump me in with the Mel Gibson ‘Conspiracy Theory’ crowd, but I often look at the Morning Joe show as a bellwether for this blackout lever. Why? Because Joe Scarborough is at once very close to the intelligence community of Washington, DC, and a terrible, terrible liar. He is so bad at acting that when the obligatory brush off move comes up like it did 2 days ago on the air live, you can actually learn quite a bit about ‘the fix’ by watching his mannerisms.

I know, I know, that show “Lie To Me” is one of my wife’s favorite shows, and this is me telephoning some misperception of that process. I get it that it’s easy to criticize.

But what I saw stuck with me the same way James Woods still sticks with his story about seeing the dry run for 9/11. It was as if a really scared guy at the NSA was on the earpiece that Chris Licht normally operates whispering “look down, kill the story, move on quick, OK, we may have gotten away with it”. That same guy probably went to a meeting later and described Joe Scarborough’s inability to have a poker face in these situations a tragedy heretofore known as “the Scarborough situation”

What is the CIA going to do about “the Scarborough situation”

3) In other self serving suppression news, Morning Joe ran with a Politico based repeal health care story today without referencing the new uninsured figure of 59 million Americans. The election last week proves beyond a doubt that left to it’s own devices, the Americans who retain health care or financial wherewithal will act like chapter 7 of ‘Lord Of The Flies” all the way down the decline of our civilization.

The point is best represented by expatriates. I know someone who recently moved to Australia, and Morning Joe had an opportunity to run this Politico story while Chrystia Freeland was on the set. These people know that US healthcare is a giant Ponzi scheme at this point, and that other governments have systems in place that allow them to better compete in the global marketplace via a healthier population.

These expatriates look at what’s going on here and tell you the truth in the first ten minutes of the conversation. But left to our own devices, all of the central points of the Moynihan segment, Joe’s own don’t subscribe to political parties segments, the Jon Stewart segment about where the real conversation should be, are all lost in the wave of Morning Joe’s magic wand. Why say you hate the extremist controlling the argument, when on the same show on the same day, you reinstall the semantic system of demonizing solutions for the good of political control?

It was the same show, it wasn’t some amalgam of some month’s work, it was just today’s show. We are losing ground on health care every day and need a solution. And just like austerity is not a solution, but a dimension to an overall economic plan, you cannot just stick steely knives into solutions to a health care crisis for political gain.

Here is the right way forward. Listen close. Repeal will be a political loser. Get those things you wanted included last time, and make them phase 2 of the big fix. Be a solution seller. Get the state lines situation fixed, the anti trust exemption fixed, and fix the microeconomic incentive in a way that allows the customer to choose services and participate in the cost curve. Trade the mandate for that. Make your free market improvements alongside what Obama got done. But if you’re on the repeal team because ‘elections have consequences’, you’ve got 40, maybe just 20, months to live.

Keep calm and carry on, despite the missiles overhead

That’s all for today, see you tomorrow.

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