RADIO DAY . . . Radio talker Bill Bennett on WIND competing with Don & Roma on WLS, both AM in Chicago, is like Shakespeare vs. Mickey Spillane. Bennett has a working philosophy of being guided by callers. Always reasonable, never cranky, smart guy, lots of experience. Caller the other day said he’d heard Katie Couric on the NBC Today show listening respectfully to NBA player Riotous (But Still Righteous) Ron Artest and the players rep. Artest waved his new CD for viewers, making a fifteen-minutes-of-fame sales opportunity of being suspended for fighting fans in the stands. The players’ rep, Billy Hunter, connected the players’ riot to the Iraq war, implying that we are desensitized to violence and that’s why Artest et al. fought fans. (I did not make that up.)
Matt Lauer on the same show, on the other hand, hit Artest hard with his record of suspensions for bad behavior, including smashing a TV camera. Artest responded that he had paid (been fined) $100G for that smashed camera and asked mockingly, "Where’s the camera at?" Laura Ingraham, whose show follows Bennett’s on WIND, made much of that. She’s funny and works off good insights, as how silly it is to blame the culture for one’s actions when conservative culture warriors have been mocked and scorned for decades for knocking the culture. She is a sort of Ringling Brothers to Bennett’s Shakespeare.
Meanwhile, if you want ongoing, daily critique of TV people like Couric (and often Lauer), you do not go to mainstream media (MSM) reps but to Media Research Center (MRC), whose web-based reporting is based entirely on this day this, that day that. Picky, picky, in view of one MSM media reporter in an email to me some months back. It's called inductive reasoning, I replied. MRC’s Brent Bozell et al. – another site is Accuracy in Media – nail the daily cases of left-wing bias. I would have thought a nod in that direction was in order by the MSM fellow, but he did not want to hear about it.
Jim Romenesko, of Poynter Institute, has quite thorough web-based coverage of (mostly left-oriented) media shop talk. It’s a good place to find MSM replies to bloggers and others, but it’s usually no place to find what MRC and Brent Bozell discover from their right-wing (majority-voter) perspective. Romenesko does a good job telling what LA Times and Wash Post writers say about bloggers, for instance.
One of the latter has a very long column billed as "Unconventional Wisdom," in which he delivers conventional wisdom about bloggers – "spectacular lack of judgment . . . abundant arrogance" – repeating the objection that they should never have run with those exit polls. This is an aside, however: the column is about exit polls, as for instance, that Republican voters are traditionally underrepresented in them, and networks’ unwillingness to ignore them this time, though cautioned to do so by a major exit pollster. The columnist is Wash Poster Richard Morin, q.v.