Monday, October 10, 2016

Shooting the NBC Messenger--But They Do Deserve It

At the 2nd debate (ABC News)
Donald Trump has a snowball's chance of being the next President; I suppose that's still a probability greater than zero, so we'll have to wait until November 8th to be absolutely sure. He has only himself to blame for the lack of discipline, the ad hominem attacks, etc. etc. But the nail in his coffin was last week's release of a vulgar 2005 video soundtrack, recorded long before he ran for President and ironically while he was still a Democrat.

NBC sat on the video for 11 years. Clearly they knew what they had; the content was explosive and could fatally wound his candidacy. If NBC News purported to be any kind of news organization, it would have published this information when Mr. Trump began campaigning, long before Mr. Trump had won the nomination. He wouldn't have gotten far, and the Republicans would have fielded a much more credible, seasoned Presidential nominee.

Mrs. Clinton might have still beaten Jeb Bush, John Kasich, Ted Cruz, Scott Walker, or any candidate other than Donald Trump, but the country is measurably poorer for not only having a choice of a better Republican nominee but also a more enlightened discussion about the future. For not having this opportunity I do blame NBC. Such gamesmanship would be expected from political partisans but not from a news organization. I guess they really are Democratic operatives with bylines.

[Addendum: Wall Street Journal -- NBC Plays Defense After Trump Recording Surfaces.
The focus in the WSJ article is the impact on the career of Today host Billy Bush, Mr. Trump's interlocutor on the controversial recording. Sounds like a misdirect to me--the real consequence was the torpedoing of the whole GOP nominating process.]

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