Diary

MSNBC WATCH: Lawrence O'Donnell changes interview terms on Ron Paul, praises next guest Alvin Greene

MSNBC WATCH, because somebody has to.

On Wednesday, September 29th, I panned the new MSNBC show, “The Last Word” with Lawrence O’Donnell.

On Saturday, October 9th, I commented that Rachel Maddow had begged Republicans to come on her show, and when one did (Art Robinson of Oregon), she gave a totally unfair interview, then savaged him the next day, when he wasn’t present.

Another Republican has gone on an MSNBC show: Ron Paul has appeared on Monday’s “The Last Word” with Lawrence O’Donnell. It did not go well.

O’Donnell asked Ron Paul about his son, Rand Paul. Paul said, “I thought we agreed that we wouldn’t discuss other candidates!” O’Donnell told his audience that he never made any pre-interview agreements with Ron Paul.

I wasn’t there so I can’t say who is right, but I can guess that Ron Paul is right. Paul probably discussed the interview with Lawrence O’Donnell’s staff. So when Lawrence O’Donnell says “Not me! I didn’t do that!”, he’s not being very honest when we all know we’re talking about the show’s staff.

When the interview ended, Ron Paul again said that he was happy to have the interview, but the interview terms were broken. (Ron Paul wasn’t prepared to talk about Rand Paul’s positions.) O’Donnell offered no explanation or apology to Paul.

Lawrence O’Donnell’s staff has a Twiiter account, The Last Word. Before the show was over, there was this tweet:

Rep. Ron Paul just called @lawrence impolite… kind of awkward. #lastword

Can’t MSNBC hosts give a proper, fair interview to a Republican? It seems clear that Rachel Maddow gave Art Robinson no pre-interview discussion at all. Maddow then asked Robinson to comment on something he wrote fifteen years ago (not an issue in the 2010 campaign), without giving Robinson time to think about it and look at current research. Maddow’s “But you wrote it!” (Anything is fair game because you’re here on my show!) was just wrong.

So, if a Republican must go on MSNBC, what should be the rules?

. Ask pre-interview what the interview is going to be about. Obamacare? A hazing incident 25 years ago? Your children? Something you wrote 30 years ago? The alleged sins of persons you barely know? The alleged sins of 19th century authors that you’ve read? Or will the interview just be one big surprise?

. Audiotape this conversation, because Lawrence O’Donnell will deny that it ever happened. Videotape it. Get it in writing. Notarize it. And the MSNBC host will still sandbag you!

O’Donnell’s next interviewee was South Carolina Senate candidate Alvin Greene. Softball time. Lawrence O’DOnnel said: “I still think Alvin Greene is better than Jim DeMint.”

So let’s get this straight. Lawrence O’Donnell says on the air that Levi Johnston is better than Sarah Palin, and now that Alvin Greene is better than Jim DeMint.

Republicans still want to go on MSNBC?

On today’s Rachel Maddow show, Maddow again read a seemingly racist passsage from a 19th century G. A. Henty novel, “proving” that Art Robinson is a racist by including Henty’s famed children’s novels on a reading list. She did this exact same thing on Friday. You want to graciously come on her show so she can beat you on the head for days?

SUMMARY
Rush Limbaugh says that MSNBC’s new slogan is, in full “Lean Forward. This Won’t Hurt a Bit.”