Tag Archives: Today

Donald Trump: man with all the wrong responses

Leave it to Donald John “Fake News Conspirator in Chief” Trump to say precisely the wrong thing in the wake of a growing scandal involving men who have been accused of mistreating women.

NBC News announced that “Today” co-host Matt Lauer got canned because of alleged “inappropriate sexual behavior” with female colleagues.

How does the president respond? With a tweet, of course: “Wow, Matt Lauer was just fired from NBC for ‘inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace,” he wrote on Twitter. “But when will the top executives at NBC & Comcast be fired for putting out so much Fake News. Check out Andy Lack’s past!”

Lack is the president of NBC News and the man who announced Lauer’s firing this morning prior to “Today” going on the air.

Trump’s obsession with what he calls “fake news” would be laughable, were it not that the president himself is the No. 1 purveyor of outright lies and phony conspiracies.

Of course, the president isn’t going to offer any kind of cogent comment on the issue that took Lauer down, given his own problems in that regard.

Thus, he is left to blather about something that has no connection to reality.


Mind-boggling series of events keeps head spinning

My mind is officially boggled.

I awoke this morning, looked at my social media news feed and saw that NBC fired “Today” co-host Matt Lauer for “inappropriate sexual conduct.” It didn’t end with that stunning announcement.

Later today, I saw that NPR icon Garrison Keillor also has been let go by the public radio network for, um, similar conduct.

This is getting even more stunning than it was before.

NBC went straight for the throat in canning Lauer. The network didn’t wait for any further substantiation of the allegation that came from a network colleague. At this moment, I don’t even know the particulars of what the woman accused Lauer of doing to her.

The network acted immediately on hearing what I am going to presume it believes was a credible accusation.

Network news icons are falling like tall timber. Bill O’Reilly, Charlie Rose, Matt Lauer, Garrison Keillor. Those are just the biggest of the big names. Then we have the likes of Mark Halperin and Glenn Thrush who have lost their jobs over accusations of misbehavior with women.

When is this going to end?

I haven’t even mentioned — until this very minute — the accusations that have sullied the reputations of political leaders. It’s a bipartisan affliction.

I’m beginning to think that employers will need to revamp the applications they ask prospective employees to fill out. Many businesses ask applicants if they’ve ever been convicted of a felony. That’s fine.

They will now likely have to ask: Have you ever committed an act that someone could construe to be sexual harassment … or worse?

This wave of dismissals amid accusations looks for all the world like a purging that needs to occur.

George W. Bush gets back into the game

Welcome back to the political arena, Mr. President … even if you remain on the edges of it.

George W. Bush, who maintained stone-cold silence during Barack Obama’s presidency, has now decided to weigh in on some of the issues dogging the current occupant of the White House.

He is being a gentleman about it, but one cannot help but believe that his genteel approach to criticism masks an attitude with a bit more bite.

NBC’s “Today” host Matt Lauer interviewed the 43rd president this morning. Bush made quite clear that he disagrees with Donald J. Trump’s view that the media are “the enemy of the people” and that the war against terrorists isn’t a war against Islam.

The former president had made a pact that he wouldn’t criticize President Obama. He said the job of being president is difficult enough without former presidents weighing in with their own view of how to run the country. If Obama wanted his help, Bush said he could pick up the phone, call and ask for it.

As National Public Radio reported: “Lauer noted that President Bush — who took the country to war in Iraq and who presided over an economic crisis — faced plenty of criticism from the media while in office. Lauer asked Bush, ‘Did you ever consider the media to be the enemy of the American people?’

“Bush chuckled and then answered: ‘I consider the media to be indispensable to democracy. We need an independent media to hold people like me to account. Power can be very addictive. And it can be corrosive. And it’s important for the media to call to account people who abuse their power, whether it be here or elsewhere.'”

As for Trump’s assertion that the enemy are “radical Islamic terrorists,” Bush said: “You see, I understood right off the bat, Matt, that this is an ideological conflict, and people who murder the innocent are not religious people. They want to advance an ideology, and we have faced those kinds of ideologues in the past.”

I cannot get past the personal aspect of what the former president might think of the current president. It was Trump, you’ll recall, who called the Iraq War a “disaster.” He also launched intensely personal insults at the ex-president’s brother, Jeb, who was one of 15 Republican Party primary opponents that Trump vanquished on his way to the GOP nomination.

Bush didn’t attend the GOP convention; neither did Jeb, nor did the men’s father, former President George H.W. Bush.

Blood, as they say, is thicker than, well, almost any other substance.

No one should expect George W. Bush to throttle up his return to politics into a full-time endeavor. Still, I happen to one who welcomes his world view while the current president struggles to get past serious questions about national security and whether the Russians helped him get elected.

Tragedy produces unintended benefit


Gosh, I hate to say this.

But here goes: Prince Rogers Nelson’s tragic death yesterday has brought welcome relief from the barrage of coverage to which we’ve been subjected about the interminable Republican and Democratic presidential primary contests.

Do not misunderstand me.

I am in shock over Prince’s death. I join my younger friends and family members who loved the man’s music. Hey, I loved it, too, man! The man was a virtuoso performer. How many instruments did this music icon play? Five, six, seven? A lot.

strib pic

The morning news/talk shows today led with continued coverage of Prince’s death, just as the evening news broadcasts led with it Thursday.

MSNBC broadcast a special one-hour segment during the evening with priceless video of Prince performing, with interviews of his former manager. My favorite segment was the video of Prince surprising Bryant Gumbel on the newscaster’s last day on “Today” in 1997.

All of this is to say that I do not miss the incessant coverage of the presidential campaign.

What does that say about the political process? Or … what does it say about the media that cover this process?

I believe it says that the process is too long and too overbearing.

It also says the media have done a lousy job of covering this process and delivering information to viewers and readers who want to know more about the candidates’ policy views and less about, oh, their assorted body parts.

All that said, I’m going to watch some more Prince videos.

And continue my mourning …