It's time to start naming names.
From Andrew Sullivan:
And [another characteristic of neocons is] never ever taking responsibility for the consequences of their actions. They are the post-modern nihilists they accuse the left of being. Only much more shameless. But it’s worth repeating that they only appear on cable news because the brain-dead producers and editors decide they will. The blame for treating these congenital fantasists, hysterics and war-mongers as experts lies in part with the sheer laziness and cynicism of cable news bookers.
Except that is not strictly true.
For example, "This Week..." is not a cable news show, and neither is "Meet the Press". They are among the dung-spattered crowned jewels of two of America's most powerful, network news organizations, and yet both of them have repeatedly invited the absolute dregs of the Neoconservative cult onto the public airwaves and them let them get away with murder. Hell, "This Week..." doesn't just let Neocon goof run nekkid through the studio: they went out of their way to put one of the ringleaders of the cabal on the fucking payroll a full-time employee.
The decision by ABC to hire Bill Kristol did not leap fully-formed from the lazy mind of a booker, and whether the Neocon goof in questions appears on basic cable chamber-pot filler like "Guess That Soup!" with Shuck Todd or served by a network news corporation's on the fine china like "Meet the Press", the frequency and aggressiveness with which members of this tiny cult of liars and war pimps is shoved in our faces -- and then allowed to shart their insane twaddle virtually unchecked -- far exceeds the limits of any theory that ascribes this activity to laziness and stupidity.
However, maybe I'm wrong.
Maybe it's all on autopilot.
Maybe everyone in teevee news' executive suites is dead, and in their last moments they programmed a clutch of little robots to make booking and hiring decisions for every teevee network in America by just clicking through the same 2002 Rolodex over and over and over again. But right or wrong, there is an easy way to test this theory because this is a question which is ultimately answerable.
All someone has to do is walk down the hall or drop by a cubicle or pick up the fucking phone and asking them!
Not me, sadly. No one returns the calls of trivial Liberals from flyover country. No one of any importance (and no one who interns for anyone of importance) answers our emails, responds to our tweets or pokes or pings. No one reacts to our posts. And when it comes to just getting our ideas in front of their audiences -- ideas that, time after time, have been revealed by brutal reality to have been absolutely correct -- remember that one of the final instructions to the Lonely Booking Robots from their human creators was obviously:
Select-GuestRead Next Record.
IF Condition = 'CONSERVATIVE', Then GOTO Book-GuestIF Condition = 'LIBERAL', Then GOTO Select-GuestIF Condition = "End of File" Then GOTO Book-John-McCain...
However, my fellow 2008 Weblog Award Winner, Mr. Andrew Sullivan has been on most of these shows. Repeatedly. He is a denizen of D.C. He gets invited to state dinners. He has publishers who will publish and promote his books whenever he chooses. He has bookers. He has Arianna Huffington on speed-dial. he has Bill Maher on speed-dial. He has Tina Brown on super-speed dial. He knows people on the inside of the media business who will take his call, and he has a media platform big enough to disseminate their answers widely, even if that answer is "No Comment".
Pinpointing the individuals who keep putting Neocon liars and lunatics and war criminals on television and sharing the names and phone numbers and thought-processes of those decision makers with the rest of us rubes is clearly something that makes even the most Liberal members of the Mainstream Media deeply uncomfortable.
Ergo it is also a subject which this trivial Liberal from flyover country will continue to find intensely interesting.