Category Archives: CNN

Can CNN Be Saved?

Oh, CNN. Whatever happened to our cable news pioneer? Now the once groundbreaking news channel has been relegated to trolling for page views with unbelievably offensive stories like this one:


Can the Klan rebrand? Seriously? This is a question you needed to ask marketing experts? Why? This takes CNN’s “both sides of the story” ruse to new heights.

I grabbed a screen shot because I felt sure the story would get pulled. From the link:

Ancona, who lives in Missouri, insists there’s a new Klan for modern times — a Klan that’s “about educating people to our ideas and getting people to see our point of view to … help change things.”

He said he and those like him can spread that message without violence — a sort of rebranding of the Klan.

The idea may sound absurd, but is it conceivable?

No, say top marketing experts, brand gurus and historians — and for many reasons.

The Klan could change its name, get a smooth-talking spokesperson, replace the robes with suits and take off those ridiculous hats, but underneath, people would recognize its message is the same.

Just, stop right there. I’m still trying to wrap my head around the idea that CNN’s reporters actually asked marketing experts whether a reviled hate group can rebrand — you know, way to legitimize the group’s existence in the first place, guys!

Why not just ask, is there a way to make anti-Semitism more palatable? Is there an upside to White power? Should we bring back town square lynchings? I mean, for crissakes. That’s what you idiots are really asking. There are not two sides to racism and bigotry!

Here’s a thought. Has CNN, recently mocked on SNL for its ridiculous missing airplane coverage, outlived its usefulness? Is there any point to its existence? Is it time to pull the plug?

Guys: this should be obvious, but you don’t rebrand a hate group. It’s sorta by definition un-rebrandable. Kinda surprised you asked the question in the first place.


Story was not pulled, but by Monday morning the headline had been tweaked:


The content of the story is the same, i.e., the question asked of marketing experts was not, can this Klan leader rebrand, but can the Klan itself rebrand.

Again: No.


{dusts off hands, removes CNN from channel list … }


Filed under CNN, media

Horrible Idea Du Jour

Today’s horrible idea comes courtesy of the floundering CNN, which hopes it can stage a ratings comeback by recycling a failed idea from the past. That’s right, CNN is supposedly bringing back the awful Crossfire this summer:

After the failed week long experiment of (Get To) The Point and the unsteady The Lead With Jake Tapper, Jeff Zucker is looking for a blast from the past to revive CNN. The ratings-struggling cable new network is bringing back Crossfire in June, network insiders tell me. No hosts have been chosen yet, the sources say. Nor is it clear if the show will definitely remain a half hour, as the original Crossfire was, or go longer. Right now it seems that Crossfire 2.0 is slated to have a variety of CNN personalities and contributors taking up the “left” and “right” roles on the new version of the political debate show. A CNN standard almost from the begining, Crossfire ran on the network in both daytime and primetime from 1982 until it was cancelled in 2005. Crossfire isn’t the first piece of CNN history Zucker has brought back since taking over in January. The former Today show producer reinstalled James Earl Jones’ traditional “This is CNN” promo voiceover in his first week in his new gig.

Oh, I know! Let’s get another one of those egofests where right and left shout talking points over one other, said nobody, ever. Jesus, but this is a terrible idea. Hey CNN, if you want to bring something back from the past, how about Style With Elsa Klensch? I adored that show, it was my Saturday morning staple. Elsa always asked the same three questions: “What colors are you using,” “What fabrics are you using,” and, “What about prints?” Really, if you’re doing fashion journalism, that’s all anyone needs to know.

Oh, CNN. Let’s go back to the day Jon Stewart stuck a pin in the Crossfire balloon and told Tucker Carlson and Paul Begala to stop hurting America. Neither Carlson nor Begala seemed to understand the different roles CNN and Comedy Central play; neither Crossfire host seemed to get that Stewart is an entertainer doing an entertainment show on an entertainment network, while they were supposed to be newsmen doing a news show on a news network. Stewart said the concept of Crossfire was a good one, but the execution was hurting American discourse. Crossfire got cancelled but CNN continued on its march toward absurd infotainment. I don’t harbor much hope that Crossfire 2.0 would be any better than it was the first time around.


Filed under CNN, Media

Most Trusted Name In News FAIL

I am super busy today but I did want to throw this out there:

During Monday night’s coverage of damage due to storm system Sandy, both CNN and the Weather Channel inaccurately reported that the New York Stock Exchange was under three feet of water. Meteorologist Chad Myers told Piers Morgan about the damage.

According to the National Weather Service, through broadcast media, there’s three feet of water on the trading floor on Wall Street. Three feet of water on the New York Stock Exchange,” Myers said on air.

Morgan asked longtime Wall Street correspondent Erin Burnett how long the exchange might be closed. She responded, “It’s a wooden floor, and it’s a historic building, the damage it could do would be amazing.”

Throughout the exchange, which lasted several minutes, a lower-third graphic said “3 feet of water on floor of NYSE.”

Wow. Ali Velshi even opined that flooding the New York Stock Exchange “will have an influence worldwide on people’s wealth.” EVERYBODY PANIC!

Or not …

Morgan: You have an update on the stock exchange situation … Do we still think that 3 feet of water got into the exchange? There seem to be conflicting reports now.

Myers: Oh is that right? You know, I got that from the National Weather Service Chat bulletin board. It was right on there, it said three feet of water on the floor. I don’t know if there’s conflicting reports or not.

OH. So not the National Weather Service, but a bulletin board chat? You people don’t know the difference between anonymous people “chatting” and an actual National Weather Service report? And you push the panic button anyway? Tell people that globally, personal wealth could be affected? Based on a dang bulletin board chat?! Geeez. That’s not just incompetence, that’s negligence. Shame on you, Chad Myers.

Once upon a time, not too long ago in fact — I’m thinking 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina — people tuned in to CNN for breaking news. Maybe people ignored the lame nightly programming, but when something big happened, that’s where you went for information. But now CNN can’t even do that right anymore.

This is just the latest in a string of reporting failures by the once-vaunted “most trusted name in news.” Now that’s just a sad joke.


Filed under CNN, Media

I Just Give Up

America has lost its mind. Or at least, the American discourse has. I simply cannot summon enough interest to weigh in on the latest stupid thing coming from wannabes and has-beens Ann Coulter, Sarah Palin, Donald Trump and now Ben Shapiro. Seriously, am I the only one thinking this election has descended into some sort of Nadir of Stupid?

Here’s another one: CNN reported yesterday that single women vote “hormonally,” then determined the post didn’t meet its “editorial standards” and removed it. But not before Imani at Balloon Juice gave them the mocking they deserved over such ridiculous assertions as:

When women are ovulating, they “feel sexier,” and therefore lean more toward liberal attitudes on abortion and marriage equality. Married women have the same hormones firing, but tend to take the opposite viewpoint on these issues, she says.

Oh fer crying out loud. Writes Imani:

So if you see a slut in a short skirt voting for Obama on November 6, ask her if she’s married, offer her a tampon, and then tell her she really meant to vote for Romney but she just doesn’t know it because her hormones are fucking up her mind-head.

I guess I should feel somewhat comforted that CNN removed the post after remembering they have “standards,” but that doesn’t make up for the fact that it made it out there in the first place. And that goes for everything else, including ABC’s fawning over Donald Trump’s “yoooge!” bombshell which they later noted “failed to blow up.” Pardon me if I save my sad face for shit that really matters, ‘m’kay?

America, really, get another hobby. I just can’t deal with this constant stoking of the outrage machine anymore. Racist comment! Sexist comment! Racist comment! Sexist comment! Homophobic comment! Islamophobic comment! Jesus. Is it just me or is this all being coordinated in some arugula-filled room in Beverly Hills as advance marketing for the World Premiere on Nov. 6? Were the ratings for the debates that bad that they need to go into overdrive? Are people losing interest in the election or something? And if they are: can you blame us? Jeeez.

We’re getting near that time when I take my annual hiatus for NaNoWriMo, and not a moment too soon. I’m not going to go away entirely, I never do, but posting will be light as I try to focus on a new project, as well as some other assignments I’ve got lined up.

So you’ll be on your own for the month of November, for the most part. By all means, visit my friends on my blogroll, or maybe we should all just take a break together. I really do think our elections are just making everyone stupider.


Filed under 2012 presidential election, CNN, Media

John Sununu Learns Facts Have A Liberal Bias

God, I know I pick on CNN a lot but Soledad O’Brien should get a dang award for schooling John Sununu on the facts about Medicare, Paul Ryan’s budget, and Mitt Romney’s for-it-before-he-was-against-it support. You’ll have to go to the link for the video because I can’t embed it here for some reason.

Psychologists and sociologists will study Sununu’s blinders-on response for years. This is a classic plug-your-fingers-in-your-ears LA LA LA I CAN’T HEAR YOU stuff.


Filed under CNN, Media, Medicare

Your Liberal Media, CNN Edition


It wasn’t just their Twitter feed:

Moments after Bolduan spoke, the false story began to metastasize inside the network’s online operation.

The erroneous breaking news was made into a chyron at the bottom of the screen. CNN also sent out a breaking news alert.

And a half dozen top on-air reporters and producers within the esteemed news organization told BuzzFeed they are furious at what they see as yet another embarrassment to a network stuck in third place in the cable news race, and torn between an identity as the leader in hard news and the success of their opinionated, personality-driven rivals, Fox News and MSNBC.

“Fucking humiliating,” said one CNN veteran. “We had a chance to cover it right. And some people in here don’t get what a big deal getting it wrong is. Morons.”

CNN is going to have a hard time living this one down. Via ThresherK in comments:

LOL. Can’t wait to see what The Daily Show and Colbert do with this.

Apparently nobody over at the “liberal” CNN could have anticipated today’s SCOTUS ruling:

And 12 minutes later:



Filed under CNN, Media

Seriously, CNN?


I cannot believe y’all are making me defend Michele Bachmann and Herman Cain. That probably pisses me off more than anything. Geeez.


Dear CNN:

Just, stop. Right now.

Stop this shit:

And this:

You’ve got thousands of people from coast to coast protesting a dehumanized economy that rewards the greedy few at the expense of the majority. People across the country are suffering. National unemployment officially sits at nearly 10% (and most certainly is greater than that) … and you’re asking Republican presidential candidates to make a statement on whether the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is a Christian religion? Seriously?

That’s your idea of a bold, hard-hitting line of questioning for these candidates? The people who want to run the country?

We deserve better than this. America deserves better.

This the kind of shit that makes me want to claw out my eyes, then run screaming through the halls of CNN’s offices in New York City.

Or tell those kids to stop occupying Wall Street and start occupying the corporate news media.


Filed under 2012 presidential election, CNN, Media

Your Modern Pro-Life Conservative Movement


Guess it was his lack of personal responsibility …. honestly, the fact that the MSM doesn’t even cover stories like this on a presidential candidate is shocking …

First they applauded Rick Perry’s execution of hundreds of prisoners, then they shout “yes!” when Wolf Blitzer asks if we should just let the uninsured die:

Thanks, CNN and MSNBC, for mainstreaming these crazies. Thanks for pretending the Tea Party is just a grassroots conservative movement, not the same reactionary Neanderthals we’ve always had babbling on the political fringe. Once upon a time our media had the good sense to ignore the creepy crawlies hiding under the Republican Party’s rock. Now they ignore the people protesting our wars and trying to protect workers’ rights. Who are the real extremists: the people who want hospitals to let the uninsured die to teach them a lesson, or the people who want to let teachers keep their collective bargaining rights?

This makes me sick to my stomach. How can Mitt Romney and the rest of that crowd stand up there and hear their audience cheer for death without so much as blinking an eye? What the hell is wrong with you people? How can you live with yourselves?

And thanks, Wolf Blitzer, for framing such a simple-minded and utterly fictitious scenario so Ron Paul can present his smug “personal responsibility” morality play. I challenge Blitzer and the rest of the idiots at CNN to find us a 30 year old strapping young buck with a good job, plenty of money, and no health insurance for the simple reason that he thinks he’s bullet proof. I dare you.

Good luck.

And good luck to the rest of us if one of these nutballs becomes president in 2012.


Filed under 2012 presidential election, CNN, Media, Republican Party, Tea Party

CNN’s “Leave It There” Problem

Since we’re memorializing our late, great news media this weekend, I thought I should direct folks to Jay Rosen’s piece on CNN’s “leave it there” problem. Rosen’s Jon Stewart clip from last year is priceless and sums up everything that’s wrong with cable news. Rosen writes:

But too often, on-air hosts for the network will let someone from one side of a dispute describe the world their way, then let the other side describe the world their way, and when the two worlds, so described, turn out to be incommensurate or even polar opposites, what happens?… CNN leaves it there. Viewers are left stranded and helpless. The network appears to inform them that there is no truth, only partisan bull.

Last week CNN’s Ali Velshi actually made news for not doing this. A clip of Velshi calling Rick Santorum on his hilarious claim that the stimulus “only created 240 million jobs” went viral, with bloggers and the Twitterati dutifully applauding Velshi for telling Santorum to “check his math.” So, you know, good for Velshi — but even here he missed the point. Worse than Santorum’s math was his obviously incorrect facts, which Velshi completely ignored. Think about it: we live in a country of 300 million people! A stimulus that created 240 million jobs would have created more jobs than workers, more jobs than able-bodied adult citizens.

Which begs the question: is this what it takes before a CNN host calls a guest on their does a guest have to make claims so obviously this flat-out wrong before a host calls them on it? Before CNN decides not to “leave it there”?

Says Rosen:

Leave the partisan fights to the guests: sounds great. Until you think about it for a minute. And really, that’s all it takes: about a minute. In a hyper-polarized environment like the one we increasingly have in the U.S. these fights have long since broken the borders of opinion. They now routinely break out over matters of fact. (Example: does cutting Federal tax rates increase revenues to the government?) Leaving partisan fights—over matters of fact—to the guests is a disaster, journalistically. But intervening in those fights takes skill, knowledge… and balls. Because one side could be a lot righter than the other, factually speaking.

In other words, you could have a situation where in order to do your duty journalistically, you have to take sides and say, “I’m sorry, Senator, but that simply doesn’t square with what we know.” Soon as you do that, your mantra, “We cover both sides but don’t favor either side” starts working against you. Cognitive dissonance rises. You’re not doing “straight news” any longer. You’re calling foul on the deceiver, raising the question: why did you invite this guy, anyway? You’re taking to heart what Daniel Patrick Moynihan was supposed to have said: You’re entitled to your own opinion. You’re not entitled to your own facts.

Rosen notes CNN’s managing editor Mark Whitaker has hinted they’ve seen the error of their ways. Whether CNN will continue to “leave it there” remains to be seen.


Somebody, please tell me he’s joking:


Filed under Ali Velshi, CNN, Media, Rick Santorum

The Most Trusted Name In News

CNN celebrated its 31st anniversary on June 1. I’d say this proves they’ve officially outlived their usefulness:


Filed under CNN, Media