Digby, one of the first “well known” progressive bloggers:
There’s a lot of talk about MSNBC ratings being down accompanied by the usual gleeful triumphalism over on the right. I don’t pretend to fully understand the reason for this, but I must point out that it’s not just MSNBC. The online left has seen a steep decline in traffic since the election as well, which indicates to me that our audience in general is simply not interested in following politics at the moment…
We’ve been through a number of elections, crises, other ups and downs over the past decade but I’ve not seen anything like the drop in interest over the past few months. If it was just me I’d attribute it to my little project having run its course but it’s happening across the liberal media spectrum. I don’t now what the answer is, but it isn’t that there isn’t a permanent audience. There was until very recently. It’s that the liberal audience is tuning out and one can only assume it’s because they don’t like what they see in our politics….
I’m gonna sound like Abe Simpson here, but what the current moment feels like to me is that a lot of Good Liberal Progressives expected things to “change, change utterly“ once Barack Obama was elected — or, at the very least, re-elected. But I’ve been a Democrat for more than fifty years (one of my earliest dateable memories was falling asleep on the couch, the week before my fifth birthday, because neither of my committed Democratic parents could tear themselves away from the television slowly unspooling the 1960 election results). I grew up in New York City during the Mayor Lindsay/Governor Rockefeller years, and watched the “nice” centrists run the Democratic Party into the ditch in 1968, and then the Watergate circus when I was in high school. And I read history, too — including Finley Peter Dunne and Mark Twain on the first Gilded Age, and also the long sad history of poetic dreamers and failed rebellions that eventually led to the Republic of Ireland, but not before sending all four of my grandparents’ families fleeing to the New World after one or another disaster. I was alive when JFK and MLK and RFK were murdered, and when Reagan was almost killed as well. I don’t expect political change to happen swiftly, or efficiently, or to “progress” in a straight line. There is, alas, no Moore’s Law for politics — we have, slowly and painfully, moved towards far better lives for a far greater number of people than could be predicted in 1955, but it has never been a clean or a painless progression.
“We” spent money and time and energy we could barely afford to elect President Obama, not once but twice, and thereby avoided the disasters of Presidents McCain and Romney. President Obama has not been an unmitigated blessing to the Democratic Party, nor has the Democratic Party always been a loyal servant to President Obama. And the Republicans are variously liars, thieves, grifters, ratfckers, self-satisfied morons and generally crazy people. Also, there is no cure for the common cold and no pill that will allow us to eat whatever we want and still loose weight. Welcome to the human condition, aka “politics”.
MSNBC has spent the last 3 months echoing right wing talking points. That is the reason their ratings have fallen through the floor – Democrats are interested in the positive things being done by the administration & publicizing the lack of anything being done by the congress but MSNBC pundits seem to think attacking the President will bring in listeners. They sure got that wrong.
Leave it to PUMA Digby to blame Obummer.
Here is the site traffic data for Balloon Juice.
As you can see it builds to an election eve crescendo, and then it immediately drops off.
It’s no different in sports. Blog traffic on NFL sites build and immediately drop off the day after the Super Bowl. Of course, that’s Obummer’s fault too.
well part of the lack of passion has to be attributed to the constant barrage of immediacy to everything…namely…
I dislike being asked for cash for each and every outrage as if I’m some pavlovian domestic who can be counted upon to tap my wallet each time there’s a new Republican outrage and let me tell you, those damn things (both the Republican boondoggle and the attempt to lighten my wallet) can be counted upon to show up about twice a week. Sorry, but that’s tiring.
The second item is the fact that the R’s do a very good job at keeping the outrage meter at 11, there is a seemingly bottomless well of duplicity, falsehoods, lies, asshattery and plain simple spite in their arsenal. They are fucking relentless in their hatred, they must be using the Uruk-Hai model and I can sympathize with King Theoden and wondering where the fuck is Gandalf, much less that unexpected force from Lorien. They are quite adept at tearing down our society in their forlorn hope to re-establish Little House on the Prairie with a side helping of Mandingo and The Name of The Rose. Christ one week it’s depriving poor kids of food or medical care, the next it’s womens rights and after that, we’re hamstringing the government by blocking any and all legislation. Then they’re kicking gun safety reform to the curb or ginning up some foreign policy nothingburger and when they have free time, they fall back and claim that the current presidency doesn’t have enough minstrel show for them while they’re still; attempting to repeal the ACA and fuck over the recovery with their lack of understanding about how a government is run. For a bunch of asshats who aren’t doing anything, they’re remarkably busy doing whatever they can to redistribute the wealth to themselves and those that write the checks to their campaigns. Everybody else can simply fuck off and please don’t die where I can see you.
While that shitburger is taking place inside the district federale, the media is making sure that we all understand that black people are scary and doing their best to tell Mom and Pop and Uncle Joe that R’s have had their fee-fee’s trampled upon when the President doesn’t simply disavow everything that he’s stood for politically and cave into their wishes because he got more votes than Mannequin Mitt, despite their very best efforts to keep poors, blacks and wimmins from voting. After all, Obama has invited them to his place for chow, for drinks and even taking them golfing, but lets face it, these guys aren’t putting out and they’re still not even going to wear the really cute dress until Obama takes them someplace special, like PaulRyanLand Amusement Park (Grandma gets in free, but you can’t ever ever let her leave). But hell, they don’t let his type in, so I’m thinking that’s not gonna happen. Lets not talk about anything else unless it has the Country Club Corporate spin and hey lookie there, another white girl was killed and all of our collective attention must focus on that, see you in two to three weeks when the next one happens.
So maybe I’m tired and don’t really care that drones are killing brown people instead of our troops, mercenaries or proxies doing it in person or the fact that no matter what the President does, no matter how reasonable he sounds, no matter how much support his policies may have with the majority of Americans, Republicans could give a fuck and they’ll burn it all down if it’s all the same to them, because they have more than you and I, so they’re betting that odds are they’ll do just fine.
So maybe, just maybe, some of us are taking a breather, watching some baseball and cleaning up around the house before we come back to girding our collective loins about the 2014 elections.
@David Koch: Digby’s not a PUMA, but anyone who slurs the President as consistently as you do has to be a Republican concern troll. I’d say a paid Repub concern troll, but I’m sure you’re just as happy to do it for nothing.
@Anne Laurie: ouch. that really hurt.
Digby may not be a PUMA, but this is a pretty flawed leap of logic on her part:
Actually, there are plenty of other reasons that have been mentioned in this thread. People are tired of politics. People are tired of “liberal” news regurgitating rightwing talking points. People are tired of the “news” period, and only the angry faithful conservatives remain vested. And perhaps, people are a bit tired of the endless gridlock in Washington that Obama cannot resolve without dictatorial powers.
I’m a marketing professional, and when performing market analysis as Digby is trying to do here, it’s wise to stick to the data when drawing your inferences without sticking your finger in the wind and projecting your own biases and assumptions.
What politics? Goofy computer games, stupid tv series, food, critters, gardens, rock and roll and personal advice for Cole.
Nothing like the right/republicans/conservatives to cheer on failure.
@piratedan: Outstanding. May I borrow this? Promise to return it in one piece…
@John S.: I thank you for hilighting that passage. It might seem stunning for me to say so, but the much vaunted Digby is being incredibly naive if she thinks cable news shows are about politics. They are, in fact, about entertainment at best, and politi-porn at worst. People don’t watch it to be informed; they watch it to be entertained or to masturbate. And watching the left turn their own product into cannibal porn cannot be good for audience draw.
….swindlers, con artists, frauds, scammers, absconders, charlatans, cheats, cheaters, chiselers, clips, confidence artists, counterfeiters, crooks, deceivers, defrauders, dodgers, double-dealers, falsifiers, four-flushers, gougers and montebanks.
bilkers, cozeners, deceivers, fraudsters, scammers, sharks, tricksters, victimize, fornicaters and fornicatresses, and just generally low-born-gutter-sluts (gender neutral).
Obummer’s approval rating is 51-44. He was mobbed yesterday in Jersey.
His popularity is demonstrative. Yet sore loser bloggers, forever whinning that Hillary lost, want to project their problems on to him.
Maybe a shrink could help them solve their daddy issues.
@cbear: Btw, I’m not sure what a “cozener” is or does, but it sounds pretty nasty and I bet goopers are doing it.
@cbear: … and Methodists!
@David Koch: If only Mr. Uppity had waited his turn.
@cbear: To “cozen” was, in Shakespeare’s time, to con people, and yes, it’s a gooper tradition.
I don’t know, of course, I’m guessing, but I think people are just generally tired. The economy is improving after a really long slog (and a period that was very, very difficult for a lot of people) and things are returning to “normal”.
They’re tired of what I think of as “the churn”, getting whipped around from crisis to crisis (real or trumped up).
Maybe it’s partly regional, too. Unemployment here is down to about 2006 levels and people are buying houses and cars, not like a boom or anything, we don’t really have those here, but more like pre-crash.
I would say it’s a good thing, generally, politics aside. “We” never really had a chance to recover from the crash before they launched Debt Crisis Emergency! , and then the 50 other Emergencies! :)
Calmer is probably better than panicked, right?
I thnk its fair to ask what part the elected Dems play in this political fatigue. Look how the GOP steamrolled everything when they controlled all three branches of government. Remember how simple it was for them to get some of the most dreadful and damaging bits of legislation through, even after they lost the Senate and always with the support of some number of Dems.
It was not unreasonable to hope that some of the worst pain inflicted, some of the most obvious wounds, would be at least be made better. Instead we saw Dems undermine the ACA, ignore key issues and be incapable of getting even simple things passed when they held all three branches. And lets not talk about what happened after they lost the house.
Please save me the sermons on how this is the fault of “X” or “Y” that Dems can’t control or that liberals expect to much and can’t be happy with the minuscule amount of progress made because I am aware of all of that and it is not the point. The point is the GOP gets shit done. In the face of not having 60 Senators when they were the majority, despite having 95% of the nation disagree with their position on the issue, they get shit done. The fact that is horrible shit that is destroying this country and leading to a global mass extinction event that could easily be the end of humankind while the Dems are incapable of even half measures to slow the tide let alone reverse it is a recipe for unenthusiasm.
To quote Pogo, We have met the enemy and he is us!
Geek, midgets, lightweights and frogs.’
Martin Balsam, A Thousand Clowns
@Kay: Heck yes. If all there is to life is being all pissed off all the time what’s the point?
I can’t speak for anyone else. I know I am spending a lot less time on political blogs because all of them are spending WAY too much time being /outraged over right wing stupidity and meanness. If blogs made a point of posting at least two threads on left wing stuff for every thread mocking right wing stuff, I’d pay attention. But, as it is, I’ll skim thread titles.
Benghazi!!! Grift! HOLDER!!! IRS!!! Impeach!! Grift! Privatize! Umbrella-Gate! Grift! Cruz is the worst! No, Paul is. No, it’s Issa. Koch!
A paragraph on each of those things is more than enough for me. Let the Republicans go insane in a vacuum. We’d all be better off for it. Too much time dwelling on that nonsense and we lose our humanity.
Jesus, you’re beyond obtuse, if that’s even possible.
Fournier is whining like mad about “tone deaf and heavy handed”. How much of this shit do you want to talk about? Howard Dean just slapped the shit out of him.
Ratings for baseball have tanked this season.
Worst, attendance has also plummeted.
Clearly the sharp decline in baseball interest is due to the public option.
I have to say Mornin Joe was just really funny slapping down the press argument.
Perhaps ratings for MSNBC are down because they have three hours of Joe “Dead Intern in My Office” and TBOTP every morning and Liberals really don’t care for that. And perhaps the “progressive” blogosphere’s traffic is down because sites like Digby’s and FDL and sometimes GOS run around screaming that the best and most liberal president of my adult life is SIMPLY NOT GOOD ENOUGH for their pure and unsullied-by-reality values and normal liberals take offense to that. Or maybe we liberals are not like conservatives, needing constant prodding of our fear and anger, and we have actual lives that we prefer to enjoy now, after about thirteen years of hair-on-fire panic about the way our country was flushing itself down the toilet.
Maybe Digby should take a look in the mirror.
I feel like I saw it here with Boston and also Benghazi/IRS/AP. I’m just not hearing a lot of fear-outrage-angst. I thought it was great with Boston, actually. It’s been more than a decade of the Terror Threat. People just DEAL now. They don’t panic.
At some point you have to get ON with
@geg6: I know I’ve mentioned it but the local cable company is moving channels off of the analog tier and MSNBC was one that got the boot about 6 weeks ago. I don’t know how widespread that is but I suspect it’s not unusual.
A, or 1: What does MSNBC’s ratings have to do with Obama or any other politician?
B, or 2: MSNBC’s main problems are that it spends too much time blathering over scandallettas and at the same time, has no real brand identity. Morning Joe, a Gingrich admirer, on a “liberal” news channel? This is the same outfit that couldn’t rid itself of Pat Buchanan until it was scientifically proven that not a single person on earth gave a shit what he said about anything, ever. The same outfit that invites John McCain in to talk about things he seems to know nothing about every other Sunday morning. The same outfit that runs prison movies, or whatever the hell you call those abominations, because it is too lazy to keep up its brand over the time spectrum. That reruns its prime time shows too many times all night until Morning Joke comes on.
Last but not least …. since when does a committment to a point of view and good journalism guarantee ratings at all? All evidence in tv history indicates that news ratings are a roller coaster, the ups and downs being driven principally by the news itself. So what? That’s the nature of the thing. So maybe the people at the network that convicted Richard Jewell of the Atlanta Olympic bombing can stop whining and just do its fucking job??
@Thymezone: Hell, I watched Imus before he stepped on his dick!
Well, I have satellite, so no one is moving it there.
As to the topic, Alex Pareene had a good reply to Digby yesterday. He also made the point that Maddow’s show and O’Donnell’s show are still the highest rated on the channel. So actual liberal voices are doing okay. I dropped Digby a few years ago because I couldn’t take her moaning about the half-full glass not being full enough for her. Maybe I’m not the only liberal who thinks that way.
I’ve said this a million times, but I think they make a mistake when they talk about themselves so much, media.
I know they think it’s “in the public interest”, and it should be, freedom of the press, they feel intimidated or chilled, but it always comes off as media people talking to other media people about media. It’s a closed circle.
I know they’re unhappy with the Obama administration approach to the press. We established that in about 2009. I think they should just do the job anyway.
@geg6: I was just navel gazing about the ratings dip.
@Kay: I think that was Joe’s point. He hammered Fourneir on the supposed “power of the politicians”.
Much as I love digby, and I do, the analysis is ridiculous. I’m a political junkie and I don’t bother with cable news at all. Haven’t watched that kind of tv for fucking years. Why? I was a parent with young children and I stopped having time for tv. Meanwhile their audience skewed older and whiter and stupider and more republican. It’s not that I’m disappointed in politics or my party it’s that tv, msnbc, cable, etc… Don’t reflect my interest in politics. I’d watch anything that combatively supported me, my party, or my politics but that kind if thing doesn’t exist. God forbid we have a fix news of the left. I’ll never have a tv show oor news show that unequivocally celebrates gay abortiins, atheist Jews who don’t support Israel, or people who live Michelle Obama and the prez. Why should I watch?
Yes, and that. The press in general is a bunch of whiny ass little punks who even as we speak are on tv right now whining like babies about how mean it is to ask them have a conversation “off the record.” Waaaaa, it’s not fair! Even though they themselves use and abuse the tool for their own purposes all the time.
But I digress. The DC press corps and the tv talk jocks are spoiled prima donnas who care more about their own prosperity than they do about ours, or the country’s, and they think we don’t know that about them.
I really like Rachel Maddow as an interviewer, I think she has a real talent with unscripted back and forth, she can actually THINK while she talks, her “next questions” are RELATED to what the person said prior, which almost never happens-it means she’s responding rather than reciting. But, she doesn’t do enough of it. She’s gone to too many speeches, too much punditry, almost lectures. I don’t watch as much because of it.
If a Democrat was disappointed in the politics of the country in 2010, the results of the 2012 election were the worst possible outcome since it basically guaranteed more of the same for the foreseeable future. I can see wanting to take a pass.
I remember Nate Silver saying something like liberal blog traffic going down harshly after the 2008 election (but 538 doing relatively well). It’s just what happens. The weather is getting better, people spend more time outside, there’s nothing important happening in politics right now. Fake scandals… who cares? I’d like to see what Republicans do if no one listens… they’ll probably overreach again (and maybe they already have).
The economy is recovering and it happened without any great bargain, cutting medicare/aid or Social Security. There’ll probably be immigration reform (big business probably wants that, so it’ll happen, and the Democrats want it, too, so everyone wins, except for xenophobic conservatives). It’s all going as good as it can do under these circumstances.
If a Democrat was disappointed in the politics of the country in 2010, the results of the 2012 election were the worst possible outcome since it basically guaranteed more of the same for the foreseeable future. I can see wanting to take a pass.
I had a funny experience in the 2012 election. The politics reporter for the Toledo Blade called me to comment on the Etch a Sketch scandal. It was local, so the question was “does it matter for Romney?”
I usually ask the questions in my work, and I’m genuinely curious about his opinion, I see him at political events standing in the back with his legal pad, so I asked him what he thought.
He was REALLY uncomfortable with the question, which I think is proper, his role. He refused to bring himself into it.
If a Democrat was disappointed in the politics of the country in 2010, the results of the 2012 election were the worst possible outcome since it basically guaranteed more of the same for the foreseeable future. I can see wanting to take a pass.
I, like others, gave up reading Digby regularly–although I did all trhough the bush years–because I find the constant disappointment and disgust she displays with the President and the Democrats disheartening and de-motivating. I get where she is coming from but thems the breaks when you are dealing with running a giant, imperialist, nation state with wide interests and a complicated and broken political system.
As for blogs and tv news: people are tired and struggling. They are looking for entertainment. Republicans and Democrats are different classes of people with different forms of entertainment and different “needs” at the moment. The Republicans as consumers “need” anger and entertainment and reassurance and they get it in spades from their TV and Radio stations. Liberals and Moderates and even Leftist Radicals dn’t get that from mass market entertainment–we didn’t see (and don’t see) ourselves in what is offered, we don’t see our issues championed, and we don’t see our champions respected. Al Gore (just in terms of an ex presidential candidate) has never gotten the respect and attention that Newt Fucking Gingerich gets. Jimmy Carter has been despised and ignored while John “I pose with pilgrim kidnappers” McCain is adulated on the talk shows every weekend. What on earth is in it for me?
@David Koch: Awesome article. I love that ratings are down 40 million percent from last year, so it must be because the young adults of this generation don’t care as much about baseball as the young adults of last year’s generation.
I think this is the key difference. The Village see themselves as part, integral, of the story. They are the arbiters, not just the ones passing on facts and information. They decide ahead of time who are the winners and the losers. And since 2009 they decided Obama wasn’t treating them the way they wanted to be treated. Also–why was he so boring? so focused on governing and policy and not the politics of it all like the good Republicans are? They like that, the playing rough bit, they are totally uninterested in policy, in governance. Which to my mind makes them wholly unsuitable for their jobs.
The few who are interested have very little to say about these scandalettes. See Pincus from WaPo the grand voice in security reporting. He pretty much said the Fox news guy was trying to affect policy by divulging these secrets. That he put our national security at risk? The rest of the Village are going around screaming like idiots because they couldn’t care less about that, just their precious fee fees.
@Kay: I don’t know how I would have responded to the question. Did you say “yeah, baby. Victory is ours. Unlimited corporate cash! Etchasketch rules!”
@Shalimar: they lead with the marlins. 1/4 of the attendance drop off is the marlins alone. Now why could that be?
I still want my pony, dammit!!!
@piratedan: Yeah, this was masterful. PirateDan. Just masterful. I’d steal it but I don’t know where I’d put it. It’s truer than true (and no one is truer than you – ha!)
I was just thinking the same thing this morning, as a matter of fact. I cannot stand the level of BS going on and the media just perpetuates it because it lines their pockets, serves their masters and on and on it goes. There is no winning for Obama and whether he’s playing checkers or eleventh-dimensional chess, we are not much further along thanks to the asshats in Congress who can out-obstinate just about anyone.
I trust that good will somehow come of it but I wonder if that good will even be in my lifetime. (sigh)
Anyway, all that blubbering to say PD, you got it spot on.
I also don’t think people “thought everything would change” and we’d be in the days of wine and roses at all. But I do think that most Americans actually believe politics is something that should be done by professionals–they analogize it to any other job that you hire someone to do. At the local level some people experience politics as a hobby and the tea party (to the extent it ever had a local face to what was a national, corporate, front) was simply another hobby for frantic old people to engage in with their friends. But the vast majority of people in this country don’t think the business of ordinary people is political activism. They just don’t. I was reviewing my notes from the Bush years and I discoered that I spent inordinate amounts of time trying to get people I knew IRL to become politically active. They had always talked about politics and had, lets call them ideals for lack of a ruder word, but when push came to shove and they had to make a choice about the war or about getting out and protesting most simply wouldn’t–they had “other priorities.”
I don’t know about anyone else, but this is the perfect moment to take a break from the news. No major election is happening, very little major news at all is taking place in the political universe. I read the New York Times every morning to find out what’s going on in the world, but I watch no television news or commentary, and I come to blogs like this that give me a nice mix of voices and talk about pets (and the occasional pix of Tunch) and food and gardens as well as politics. Otherwise, I stick to Charlie Pierce because he’s so viciously funny.
What I’m completely uninterested in is hearing more about what Republicans are saying and doing (or not doing.) I find that I get into an addictive spiral of Republican nonsense producing anger producing the need to feed the anger even more.
It’s beautiful outside. I don’t want to feel angry. That’s why I spend my evenings reading or streaming Netflix or talking to my husband.
I don’t know. The disengagement can also be attributed to those of us who value ourselves over the fluff of the constant media barrage. I hardly watch MSNBC and quite honestly never watch any of the 24/7 news channels. They are all so full of shit. My integrity and place in this world is not bolstered by them but instead would be torn down by them.
I’ve read Digby since bush43. She is genuine but has become (and please excuse me for saying this) shrill. There used to be some humor there. Some nugget to Ooooo over. Now Digby’s constant tone is equivalent to FDL, although her message is better. I can do without that as a regular thing. Where I used to read Digby at least once a day, now it’s a couple times a week. My head isn’t into it. My very survival requires I don’t live, eat and breath our despicable political state every moment.
Some times I just need a simple cat video. So on that note I will part saying ‘mo kittahs’.
Too bad that progressives are tuning out on liberal websites/MSNBC. I’m so relieved that I don’t have to live under a McCain/Romney Presidency that I’m ecstatic. I love President Obama and even with all of his failings am glad to see that he will be in the White House for a full 8 years.
After Bush’s nightmarish presidency, this is a wonderful break. I’d advise progressives to enjoy these years, continue to push President Obama/Dems to be more progressive and gear up for 2014/2016.
@aimai: At the local level some people experience politics as a hobby and the tea party (to the extent it ever had a local face to what was a national, corporate, front) was simply another hobby for frantic old people to engage in with their friends. But the vast majority of people in this country don’t think the business of ordinary people is political activism. They just don’t.
It is definitely a problem, then, that so many people who DO engage in political activism are right wing crazies.
That was due to UNLIMITED CORPORATE CASH!
@raven: I did too, but I do have an excuse. I was always drunk then.
ETA: I watch Morning Ho now, and no longer have that excuse. Dean was great slapping down the press a bit, hell even Mika joined it for a bit.
This is pretty much what happens to some portion of the Democratic base when Democrats win something – even something minor like the Presidency[*]. When things don’t change much, and when it becomes clear that things AREN’T going to change nearly as much as they would like in the amount of time they would like it to change in, they shut down and turn their anger on the Democratic Party. It happened in the 70s, and it happened to a degree in the 90s but the Republicans kind of overplayed their hand with Clinton and pushed it so hard that people “circled the wagons” and at least pretend now that they weren’t deeply disappointed with Clinton to the point of calling for his impeachment over his own shadiness in the national security area (and refusal to go after Bush the Elder for his cover-ups) and ready to drop out of politics entirely by 1997. I suspect that if the Republicans keep on the trajectory they’re on with Obama, the same will happen with him.
[*] The person who sits in the office of the president is pretty much the most minor position in national politics if you want to get shit done. It’s important to make sure that the person in there is going to do the least amount of harm possible, but control of Congress and the Supreme Court is far, far more important for enacting an agenda – if you hold Congress for 30 years and you trade the Presidency with the other party every 8-12 years for a few years you can get a LOT OF SHIT DONE. If you don’t hold Congress you are mostly fighting stopgap measures. Republicans understand this and you can see it by the non-seriousness of the candidates they put up for the office. Reagan? Bush the Lesser? These guys are not holding the reigns of power and setting agendas – they’re figureheads and mouthpieces for the guys setting the agendas. Meanwhile Democrats think that the presidency is so damn important that they ignore the machine-level work of taking control of state legislatures to control redistricting to take over Congress. That’s why we’re getting our ass kicked – and why the anger over “not getting what we thought we would get” when we got “our” President elected it so misplaced.
@Suffern ACE: Man, 1/4 of virtually nothing can’t have that big of an effect. Last time I was in their original stadium the Mets fans outumbered the Marlins fans…
Some of this is that the owners really didn’t bring ticket prices down with the economy and folks stopped going . Haven’t picked up again. Even in NYC you could manage to get decent priced seats at Shea , occasionally Citifield. Not any more.
@barbara: And this.
@kindness: And this, too.
It’s why I come here, among other things. Cable news? For the birds, I tell you. Give me Google News, NYT, LAT when I can stand it (retch), BalloonJuice, Pierce, TBogg, Jon Stewart, Colbert, soccer and ESPN. I’m good, thanks.
I’m just feeling the need for a break from the crisis du jour (or du moment) , whatever that may be, so I’m following fewer blogs now. I never watch TV news so I’m not in MSNBC or anybody’s numbers. I gave that up years ago in the interests of my sanity. One idiocy after another takes its toll and a break is needed. My blood pressure and stomach lining demand it. I would like to indulge the illusion, even for a few weeks, that we are not going to hell in a handcar. As I write this it occurs to me that all this might be easier to handle if every fragment of news were not reported (and discussed) as a momentous crisis and the worst thing ever at least until until tomorrow’s worst thing. People get tired.
Me, I get tired of relentless negativity and outrage – not just in politics. How can one live that way? Good things happen, beneficial if not perfect bill are passed, people get new jobs, couples celebrate 30 year anniversaries, and eagle flies by you, etc. If one is concentrating entirely on the the negative and the anger, one misses those things and then what is the point?
Oh, I really don’t watch either unless there is literally nothing else I want to watch (and with satellite and a dvr backlog, that’s rare) or there is something they are covering that I want to see (Lawrence OD was pretty good during the Boston bombing, what with his local connections). But they aren’t tanking, the rest of the lineup is, starting with the ratings and mental health and branding disaster that those early morning hours with complete and utter Village idiocy from a GOPer 1% POV brings.
I have never once tuned in to MSNBC. I still watch Stewart and Colbert regularly.
I still skim the front page of Kos, but only ever comment if it has something to do with Minnesota politics, and I can add a local voice.
Haven’t been to DU for six years. Pretty sure my readership of this blog hasen’t changed much.
I’m Tired Madeline Kahn Blazing Saddles
@Omnes Omnibus: 14th here today!
The drop-off in interest is stronger than it was leading up to the 2010 midterms? Stronger than leading up to 1994?!
If this is actually true, this is very, very, very, very bad: 2014 will be the greatest Republican wave election in history.
I was trying to figure out if the Republicans could sweep the Senate strongly enough to get a 67-vote supermajority so that they could simultaneously convict Obama and Biden in an impeachment trial and get John Boehner in the White House. But I think they’d still be one seat short even if they won every seat that’s up for 2014.
@raven: Happy anniversary!
@piratedan: That was delicious. I’d ask for a second helping, but that one was just right.
No. I don’t talk like that. Ever :)
I said it probably did matter in this area just because people would respond to Etch a Sketch, personally. They would pay attention. It was an unfortunate coupling for Romney, because the way people respond to Etch A Sketch here is “used to be a good employer, were made here, now made overseas because the third generation (decadent lay-abouts, for here, anyway) pulled all the value out of the company”. Which is true.
They say “the first generation were machinists and craftsmen, the second generation were engineers, and the third generation are MBA’s”. It’s that last one that is decadent :)
Good thread. I agree with everything everyone said.
I actually listen more than watch because I’m in the car. I am the person satellite radio was made for. It is ridiculous how often I change channels if you give me 120 on a radio. It’s like it’s my job. I take it very seriously. Lotta work.
I took a whirlwind trip to Pittsburgh (really, thru Pittsburgh) to see my daughter and her hockey-playing boyfriend the other week. He’s great. I approve. She knows how to ice skate so they have that should they need an activity.
If I ever stay longer than 24 hours we can do a meet up.
@Baud: Why, thank you. You’re much too kind.
@David Koch: I think I’m starting to understand your POV a bit better now: Obama sucks, and everyone who hates him sucks too.
@Baud: I wasn’t done yet.
@raven: What a loss she was.
I don’t think people here care about Scandalgate, actually.
And! They lost 5 points. It’s down to 22% :)
I believe MSNBC’s ratings are down is because their prime-time lineup is now kinda like “Taking your medicine”. It’s just not really entertaining. Say what you will about Olbermann, but he knew how to make an entertaining program. Same with Imus.
Now, they just try to appeal to your intellect and ignore humor and emotion. Fox does the opposite. I think Roger Ailes watched the early phenomena of Morton Downey, Jr. and Jerry Springer, and saw the possibilities of exploiting the rage factor of the audience.
As far as Digby and FDL go, I used to read them several times a day back in the bad old days, but now I rarely go there. They just have unrealistic expectations of what Obama and the Democrats can do. Yes, Republicans wielded great power and did a lot of damage, but Dems are just not as willing to break the rules and destroy long-standing tradition the way Repubs are.
We’ll never get our Liberal paradise, so they might as well enjoy what they can get.
LOL. I’m sure I’ll agree with your future comments also.
But I thought 27% was one of nature’s constants.
and MSNBC wonders why their ratings are in the toilet?
SERIOUSLY…who is the audience for a show like this?
Glenn Greenwald, Sirota, Tavis Smiley,
Pareena, West, Hamsher, Walsh….who’s missing from tonight’s Emoprog
Chris Hayes bash Obama show?
We forced ourselves to watch before the election (after ridding the area around the teevee of heavy objects) and then we tried to watch after the election but they repeat the same stuff over and over and over and they just snipe at the President and tell him what he “should” do and repeat the fright wing talking points.
Why should we suffer through that mess?
I’ll say it again..
It was the Obama Coalition that built up MSNBC’s ratings.
So, seriously, you think that the Obama coalition is gonna continue to watch a network that has decided to join in on the Obama bash-a-thon?
@geg6: amen and preach! There nay not be a cure for the common cold, but there is a cure for pompous assholery – don’t take two digbys and you won’t wake up whining in the morning.
I don’t watch cable news anymore. I haven’t since 2010. When I was on Active Duty, I promised my kids that my last deployment, in 2008, would be the last one; we were already planning on getting out. So, I get back and we’re getting ready to PCS and I’m watching the news about something in somewhere and people killing each other,e tc. My kids started getting upset, the two oldest mostly. They started stressing really bad that I was going to have to go to war again, crying, nightmares, losing sleep, everything. So, I stopped watching the news. They didn’t need the stress. And I got out; they didn’t need that stress either.
That was a righteous and awesome rant! Bonus points for the LOTR references!
FYI, you can get podcasts of Maddow and Maher. It’s a lot more pleasant than watching.
And don’t ask what’s in the foot-longs.
*Guiltily switches off Rachel Maddow*
@mr.peabody: part of fixing the damage done by the GOP involves not doing things the way they do. Process has its place.
Awesome. Both about the daughter’s BF and that you might actually stay for a few days and we’ll be able to meet. Was the Parkway East (376)/Squirrel Hill Tunnel closing what caused you to have to drive through town or was that just the best way to get to daughter’s place?
@Joey Maloney: She’s not that into you, dude.
mike with a mic
I think the Democrats have changed. We sent the old New Deal Democrats and their policies to the ash pen of history. Along with their bigotry and nativism. We are now correct, neoliberal and socially liberal. And those things go well together.
Change does happen, I just don’t think people like it. And Obama will make chained CPI the progressive solution, another good thing.
I’m happy, but then again, I’m not a New Deal Democrat.
Maybe we ought to do things like research viewers and former viewers of MSNBC to find out about possible reasons for viewing changes before issuing grand sermons on Democratic politics and how great or awful Democratic voters and progressive bloggers are — unless, of course, the ‘topic’ of MSNBC ratings is just an excuse to rant about whatever bug is up one’s ass on those themes.
MSNBC’s product has aged out. Used to watch Rachel, but she’s gotten kind of preachy and boring, as a result can’t stay awake to watch Lawrence. The election is long over, Mitt Romney and the Freaks aren’t around for nightly entertainment and, even though we still have the wackos in the Congress, it’s kind of old hat. I’ll bet the right wing audiences are even getting tired of Obama paranoia. I sense that people are kind of done with the type of 24/7 scandal-rama political entertainment provided by cable and the internet. It blossomed in the 90’s with the Clinton scandals, carried through 9/11, the wars, Obama/Hillary and the Tea Party vs. the first non-white president. Now, it’s like a band that put out some good early albums but is struggling to find a new identity. The new thing in cable/internet appears to be more original dramatic programming, some of which is pretty good. A welcome change.
@mike with a mic: The defining character of the panoply of New Deal Democrats, which spanned not just segregationist Southerners but immigrant communities and organized and non-organized labor across the Northeast and Midwest, was ‘bigotry and nativism’?
@Hoodie: I’m tired of having to listen each and every time to some 10 minute introduction via historical reference every single god-damned time Rachel Maddow has to discuss anything. I understand the value of bringing context to coverage, but this is fucking old.
Lawrence O’Donnell shouldn’t have a show but instead should have a guest smug rant on other shows. ‘And now, here’s 5 minutes of Lawrence O’Donnell delivering a loud, stern, over-syllabically-emphasized lecture!’
Chris Hayes Delivers MSNBC’s Lowest 8 PM Ratings Since 2006
By: Jason Easley
May. 29th, 2013
MSNBC’s great experiment of putting Chris Hayes at 8 PM has turned into a total disaster as All In is delivering the network’s lowest ratings since 2006.
Chris Hayes’ second full month in prime time since taking over for Ed Schultz saw total viewership drop by 32%, and viewership among those age 25-54 decline by 13%. All In’s bad ratings caused The Rachel Maddow Show to deliver its worst ratings month since 2008. Maddow’s ratings are down 21% in terms of total viewers, and 22% with viewers age 25-54. The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell had the smallest decline in total viewers at 18%, but suffered a 33% decline with viewers age 25-54.
Chris Hayes is going to take a lot of heat for these ratings, but it isn’t all his fault. Phil Griffin and the other “geniuses” running MSNBC tossed Ed Schultz out of weeknights because they thought they could remake the network as wonk TV, and attract more younger viewers with Chris Hayes.
They couldn’t have been more wrong.
The problem has been that Chris Hayes isn’t well suited for primetime. He was a fine weekend morning host, but his EmoProg Obama bashing style is the complete opposite of who MSNBC’s audience was.
@Omnes Omnibus: Word. Me too. BJ front pagers are not immune from it either. Remember couple of weeks ago when we had an avalanche of front page posts worrying about impeachment?
Not quite sure why you bring up Lindsay and Rockefeller when talking about following Democrats in the 60s, as they were both elected as Republicans.
(Lindsay switched to Dem. in the 70s, at the tail end of his stint as mayor.)
Won’t even get into “centrists” re: ’68. Mayor Daley and his ilk were institutionalized powers within the party, but hardly centrist.
Mike in NC
I turned on MSNBC for about an hour yesterday while reading a book on my iPad and it was wall-to-wall Republicans throwing out bullshit about the greatness of Michelle Bachmann and the depravity of the Obama Administration’s “scandals”. Noticed very little pushback.
I’m another one who stopped reading Digby a while back. Same reason as other folks – she is too freaking negative. OMG every freaking post is THIS is soooo AWFUL. I actually think writing talent wise, she’s the best non snarky serious writer out there. Years ago, I even told my niece to read her just so that she could learn how to write well
@mr.peabody: Have to agree with you on Olbermann. You can say whatever you want about the guy, but he knows how to put together an entertaining show.
Personally, I don’t tune into political stuff as much. Now even when I have MSNBC on, I’m not necessarily watching it. It’s more on in the background. I listen to satellite radio during work. I listen to a show on XM POTUS which is hosted by what I consider a right of center woman. 2-3 wks ago, she was agog over the “scandals” and I just switched channels which I never do with her, because I find her show pretty entertaining. I seriously wonder if the “scandals” have been ginned up by the GOP because they know the 24 hr news channels need to fill up time during the summer months. It just dovetails into everything else perfectly.
I don’t get cable and BJ is the only political blog I read. For politics, besides Balloon Juice, I read NYT daily. Unlike conservatives I don’t need to see everything through a political lens.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@rikyrah: His format and style are all wrong for a daily, shorter show that’s looking at the days news, and his commitment to diversity and non-MSM guests is admirable, but you can’t cram four guests and a host and the outline of a topic or event into a segment that’s less than ten minutes. They probably should have tried Kornacki in that slot as a compromise between Schultz’s often semi-informed bluster and Hayes’ graduate seminar style. Or just given Schultz a more grounded anchor-y co-host to discipline the show.
The dude you’re responding to sounds like a DougJ parody totebagger troll, dig his bit about ‘progressive chained CPI’.
So I wouldn’t bother trying to get any sense out of his attack on that bigoted ol’ Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt coalition.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@Nickws: I think his beef is more that all we talk about is gays and wimmins and immigants and hard-working white American men would come back to the party if we’d just shut up about all that.
You only get asked for cash twice a week? I get on average asked 2-3 times a day. Of course some days it’s only once but that is made up for by someone(s) asking 5-6 times the next day. I offered to volunteer in instead of cash and was soundly ignored.
I think liberals are burned out on the constant conservative bug nutty bullshit. Which of course was it’s intent in the first place. What’s the old sales line, If you can’t win them with the truth, bullshit them till they they cry uncle.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
@geg6: and we have actual lives that we prefer to enjoy now, after about thirteen years of hair-on-fire panic about the way our country was flushing itself down the toilet.
This, this has been the last six months have been the first time in over a decade the country didn’t feel like it was about to self destruct.
@raven: Link to Howard Dean slapping the shit out of Ron Fournier? I’d love to see this, or at least read about it.
@Ruckus: it varies with me in regards to how many on-line versus snail mail and phone calls I get and what the outrage du juor is at that moment, so it is a ymmv kinda thing. Sorry that you get tapped so often, I agree with your methodology tho in offering time versus cash and sometimes that sorts out the grifters from those that actually want help. I do often wonder if R’s can ever be happy as long as one liberal somewhere, anywhere is happy.
@Aimai: That’s what happened to me. Had children and now don’t have time to watch TV except when the kiddos are in bed. I go online for news. I know many parents who do the same thing.
Also, no MSNBC on basic cable and more and more people that I know are getting rid of cable and using an antenna and media player.
Ah, so that explains why I keep reading good things about him over at the G.O.S.
As others pointed out, people’s interest in elections/politics goes up and down with the election cycle, just as fairweather fans watch sports. I used to follow sports all the time, but now having crossed 40, I really only watch on weekends when there is time, or during playoffs. Hell, I missed the Super Bowl blackout because I was flying from NY to Chicago at the time. Even when NPR gets too into the weeds of DC political maneuverings, I turn it off.
One thing to keep in mind is that such frustrations have happened before. I’m currently reading “The Presidents’ Club” by Nancy Gibbs, which follows the relationships between sitting presidents and their predecessors. A President venting frustration at an uncooperative Congress seems to be an American tradition. So, while I side with Obama on his battles with Congress, he is going through difficulties that other men in the job have had. Granted, he has a whole bunch of guys who just cannot deal with a black guy in the WH. But Truman’s diaries show that he was constantly annoyed at how his social betters looked down on him, the failed businessman from Kansas City, and how they felt he was sullying the reputation of the Oval Office. LBJ was not only battling Congress after 66, but a Kennedy clan that he distrusted immensely.
There are 2 reasons I don’t watch as much msnbc as previous. The main one is that Tweety et al were talking about the 2016 election before the results were all in for 2012. Giving poll numbers on who is the frontrunner etc every night. Enough! It’s over. You have to wait for next time. It’s like the day after the Superbowl they begin the pre-game show for next time.
The other reason keeps me from watching Chris Hayes, who I really like, is his glasses. They are reflective so I see the studio lights in blue, and then the light hits the toroiseshell and makes orange light play along the frame under his eyes. Makes me feel I’m going to have a seizure.
Scandals, sure, partly – but beyond that: we have nothing to look forward to for three years. There’s no reason to be involved in politics since nothing’s going to change.
Which is the whole point of Republican obstruction. Make the Democrats lose hope and interest.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
@eyelessgame: Which is the whole point of Republican obstruction. Make the Democrats lose hope and interest.
No, the point of Republican obstructionism is it means they can avoid the one thing they fear the most and actually governing and end up becoming the target of some rage driven GOP faction. Go see Bachmann; they all love her because she always says the right things and never did anything that could be measured on one of their many purity tests.
Why watch any political coverage when you already know what everyone’s already going to say? All of the talking heads have their narrative and nothing’s going to change. The pundits will be clueless, the interviewers (except for Maddow) won’t ask difficult follow up questions which is why the liars and grifters won’t go on her show, the guests are all the same handful of Republicans and/or establishment Dems, the outrage is all ginned up nonsense, and the real problems that need fixing like climate change and income inequality will be completely ignored. It’s too early for a new horse race, and too late to stop Obama from being elected.
DIGBY – “It’s that the liberal audience is tuning out and one can only assume it’s because they don’t like what they see in our politics….”
YOU – “People are tired of politics. People are tired of “liberal” news regurgitating rightwing talking points. People are tired of the “news” period, and only the angry faithful conservatives remain vested. And perhaps, people are a bit tired of the endless gridlock in Washington that Obama cannot resolve without dictatorial powers.”
You use more words and conjure more specifics, but the line between what Digby implies and what you’re saying is so fine, it’s near-invisible. Can’t comprehend where you dredge up a “flawed leap of logic” and then merely embroider on her point.
Why follow politics these days? The story is always the same: Republicans try and fuck everything up, media blames the Dems, Blue Dogs sell out the Dems, Obama forced to compromise. Rinse, repeat.
Late to the game here, but I stopped watching Rachel et al over the last year or so because I get all the same news online during the day. By the time the evening rolls around, I’ve already read multiple analyses, refutations, rebuttals, you name it, and am ready to move on. TV is as far behind the internet with respect to news as newspapers are/were to the 24/7 cable news maw. Rachel’s show isn’t going to differ that much in tone/content from TRMS blog, and anyway I prefer Steve Benen to most of the guests she has these days. Lawrence O’Donnell’s smug superiority always bugged me, and Chris Hayes may be a dandy wonk but I just don’t feel the need to watch his show.
It’s the same reason that progtalk radio never gets off the ground. The Fox crowd thrives on outrage. We. Just. Don’t.
I think it’s rather hilarious that Chris Hayes style is considered “Emo” by some, when in fact the “emos” are the folks who can’t handle anything other than treating Obama like he’s Justin Bieber and they’re the Fan Club. Chris Hayes is an “Obama-basher” ? What a fucking joke! I have known with almost total certainty from Day One it was announced that Chris Hayes could not continue to have the best cable news-talk show on television in the Ed Schultz weeknight spot, and that obvious prediction has become simple fact – while Schultz’ excellent and welcome Midwestern populist shit-stirring is lost on a weekend desert island. But it’s nuts to suggest that the problem is that Hayes is “emo” – rather than having a penchant for in-depth analysis and discussion that apparently eludes the folks who think politics is cheerleading for a sitting President (who clearly doesn’t need their emotional adulation so much as an energized base that is creating tangible political space for Obama to move on issues.) The President is a grown up. It’s too bad a large cohort of his fans are so foolish, emotional and – ultimately – apolitical. The problem at MSNBC is dumb executives.
I guess the question is, is the problem that people don’t like our politics (ie the policies that politicians are pursuing) or they don’t like the media’s coverage of politics, which concentrates on the “horse race” and keeping score?
My guess is that a lot of people don’t like the way the media covers politics and tune out when there’s not a “big game” (election) coming up. Unfortunately for the media, they’re so addicted to the “who won/who lost today” model that they can’t picture any other way to discuss politics. Even Rachel Maddow and Chris Hayes fall into that trap more often than not.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist:
Kornacki is a nice guy, but he’s just a slightly less sharp version of Chris Hayes. That primetime lead in spot needed an Ed Schultz. Schultz takes a lot of heat for his style, but he and Al Sharpton are the only MSNBC hosts who have an appeal to the less nerdy and non-political-junkie audiences. They have a more emotional and visceral appeal (maybe Sharpton and Schultz are the real “emoprogs” whil Kornacki and Hayes are totally out of the closet political nerds.) Schultz is the only MSNBC host with real potential to attract more white working class, union (or WANT to be union) viewers. Schultz also probably had as many if not more African-American guests on as Sharpton, which should be a key demographic concern for MSNBC in increasing viewership. The weekend space was great for the extended round-table approach of MHP and Hayes. Having Chris Matthews (who I can’t stand, but who has that bullshit affectation of being from Boston blue-collar, despite his living in the DC bubble for decades) sandwiched with Schultz was relatively smart programming. Moving Hayes to weeknights was such an obviously stupid move, it could only have been thought up by some broadcasting executive. At least Kornacki isn’t stuck on that piece of shit show at noon with the SE Cupp, the utterly useless Krystal Ball and The Man With One Name.
Clap harder, then. OK.
I stopped watching MSNBC regularly about a month ago because they decided that the faux scandals were real scandals and started parroting right wing talking points like the other networks. Up until then, they were pushing gun regulation and immigration reform and marriage equality and marijuana reform and reproductive rights and then their producers decided that the issue du jour was faux scandals. So, I’m taking a break. Plus, I started biking extensively and it’s a lot more fun and interesting. Also, the NBA playoffs and the NHL playoffs have been on (as well as college baseball). I like Chris Hayes but must admit I haven’t watched more than 1-2 of his shows. I like Digby but haven’t read her in months and she’s way too anti-Obama for me anyway. I still read DKos but haven’t commented much since the election.
Hayes (on weeknights) and Maddow do what cable news does, but just not as egregiously as most. When most people think “politics” they aren’t actually thinking of politics so much as the “politics” that’s played on television. I honestly don’t see how someone, no matter how high-minded, could have a prime-time cable news show without covering the daily parade of crap. That’s the problem – the 24/7 news cycle itself tends to dictate content. Hayes broke out of that bullshit because he had a weekend show that wasn’t competing in the generic “news” arena. What really irks me is the notion that somehow MSNBC has failed Obama and things would be better if Rachel Maddow didn’t cover the fake scandals. Actually, Rachel Maddow, et. al have done a pretty good job of pointing out how fake these “scandals” have been. O’Donnell has gone so far as praising the IRS for taking on the Tea Party’s false “social welfare” claims (I agree – there hasn’t been enough vetting of this fraud.) There seem to be an awful lot of hysterics among supposed Obama supporters – frankly it’s just as crazy to think that progressive politics can somehow be centered in the Oval Office as it is to think that whatever cable news is covering is substantive “politics” when the country is almost literally going to hell, with climate change, economic stagnation, raging economic inequality, an economic elite almost totally unchallenged, a criminal financial sector even more powerful than before the crisis, etc. etc. MSNBC is the only place you get a decent slice of news or analysis that looks at these issues. But some folks think the problem is they aren’t fawning enough over Obama. No wonder we’re fucked.
Since when is politics centered in what happens in Washington DC. Change hasn’t ever happened in this country because people waited for Congress or the President to do it. A lot of the GOP’s penchant for obstruction was hardened by the idiots in the Tea Party who – to the detriment of the country but in some perverse way to their credit as citizens – got off of their ugly white asses and challenged what they saw as “status quo.” If Obama supporters had done more of the same starting back in 2009, rather than patting themselves on the back for putting a decent man in a near impossible situation, those scum would have had less impact.
Even the attempted public push for health care reform was muddled because OFA was so focused on the White House and the painful progression of the bill through congress that they had no clear message. Better to have pushed to the left of anything Obama could have conjured from that fucked up political process, but with a clear message that normal people could understand to advance public opinion. Watching the local OFA was painful, after working on the campaign. One of the organizers admitted to me later they were confused because “they didn’t know what would be in the bill.” Huh? That’s just sad, from the perspective of how social movements have impact on real people versus the ultimate sausage-making of politics. Totally amateur – but it’s because after 2008 they thought they were “political professionals.” It’s the pathetic confusion of people who are totally invested and steeped in electoral politics trying to assume the role of social activists. Fucked up.
@rikyrah: I think Chris Hayes should be at 10 pm and move the ponderous heavies to 8; if they want a younger crowd, they shouldn’t be looking at 8 pm.
And this is certainly an illustration of one reason that a large segment of Democrats are starting to tune out.
Basically, the Democratic party, including most of Balloon Juice, now hates us. Most of you guys are former Republicans who think that Obama is great, because he’s a former Republican, basically, too, and is moving the country in the direction that former Republicans would have liked.
Not only do you absolutely loathe anyone to the left of you, much more than you do almost anyone to the right of you, as shown by your demonizing of Digby above… but you also are angry and embarrassed that you got kicked out of your own party and were forced to join the party with all the weirdos in it. And so you take it out on the weirdos, and the freaks, and the hippies, and, well, more or less anyone who has been consistently right about anything.
And thus, in response, we give up and get disgusted and stop participating, and the Democratic party moves further into your comfort zone.
I wonder if you have considered that, if you keep demonizing everyone who is even slightly to the left of you, to such an extent that they drop out of politics, then the Democratic party will also end up uncomfortably far to the right of you? No, I’m sure you haven’t. This isn’t about logic, this is about emotion.
Yep and yep. I also don’t watch any tv to get my news (though I do download Maddow’s show as a podcast) because the entertainment factor of the crappy news reporting sucks.
I have also quieted down on following a lot of news because despite huge gains of people who apparently share some of my basic ideals, my ideals are still getting short shrift. I can’t rely on the people I help elect, despite my emails and faxes to them (I read on AmericaBlog that politicians still respond better to a fax or snail mail) for the most basic things, like hands off social security. Why should they get my support? I can’t believe I’m writing that but there it is. This member of the electorate is burned out. The news tv shows are shite.
Seems like there’s a huge opportunity for someone to cash in on more shows like Maddow’s.
I love Digby. She’s too much of a bummer for me to read all the time, alas.
@Fred Fnord: Heighten the contradictions, man! Unicorns for all!
Jim, Foolish Literalist
I would say Kornacki is a political nerd and Hayes is a more of a political science/sociology nerd. I think Kornacki’s more nuts-and-bolts approach is better suited to a nightly one hour show, though I suppose he might be kind of awkward as an anchor.
Basically, the Democratic party, including most of Balloon Juice, now hates us.
I guess you’d rather be hated than laughed at?
Most of you guys are former Republicans
who think that Obama is great, because he’s a former Republican, basically, too,
and is moving the country in the direction that former Republicans would have liked.
Uh huh. John Boehner is speaker of the House for the second congress because the electorate thinks Obama is moving the country too far to the right.
Atrios had a great line about the Beltway thinking the country ran a spectrum from Free Republic to the New Republic. The trouble with the Professional Left, including Atrios as I recall, is that they think the country, or rather, the electorate runs a spectrum from Digby on the sainted and holy unblemished Left, with Balloon Juice on the far right, with Atrios in the middle.
@Fred Fnord: Oh, this is great: one of our most pure trolls (and I mean pure trolling, not a purity troll) does his little “say anything that gets under people’s skins” act and suddenly every other one of us gets hit with a bucket of progressive whine.
I, for one, am not a former Republican, and don’t hate “anyone to the left of me”. I just hate it when anyone to either side of me says stupid shit. And I’m at a loss to understand why people to the far, far left of me have decided to say stupid shit for a living.
@Fred Fnord: You.Are.Crazy. No one who enjoys this blog is a Republican.
We just happen to live in the real world, and don’t expect Rainbows and Sparkleponies.
Grow the fuck up.
I guess I’m a “former Republican” because my family left when I was still young when Goldwater emerged as the candidate. But I have to say that watching LBJ escalate the Vietnam war, Jimmy Carter help institute de-regulation, the schmooze-fest between Reagan and a Democratic Congress, Clinton’s “era of big government is over”, etc. etc. – not to mention living in the first Mayor Daly’s Chicago in the late ’60s – doesn’t make me think too highly of the old-line Democrats either. I’m a dedicated Democrat who hates anti-pragmatic crap like the Greens and Naderism, and I’ve done more for Obama than any politician ever. I’m well to his left, but he’s still the best President in context of his time in my lifetime. The problem with Obama isn’t with Obama (although there are areas, like housing and “Giethnerism” where I think he has fallen far short of what he could have achieved through the executive.) It’s the inability to move people at the grassroots effectively. A lot of it is the nature of contemporary society, it’s so media driven and politics has been turned into a 24/7 news cycle. The morons and assholes who want to obstruct or drive resentments have an advantage. The truth is that today’s Democratic Party has more very progressive people and more diverse voices with some impact – even represented in Congress – than any I remember. Not that it matters a hell of a lot. These are complicated times with some very difficult core issues eating at us – global warming and the globalization of our economy have actually upped the political ante and are more critical and tougher than most of the “back in the day” issues that Democrats have grappled with. Among other things, our economic elite is barely part of the same society as the rest of us. And crackpot white populism has gone mainstream in the GOP. But the Democratic party has always been utterly compromised. It’s easy to forget that FDR did nothing to challenge the hegemony of Dixiecrats in congress because he needed them. Or that LBJ was moved to legislate for civil rights solely by one of the most effective mass social movements of the 20th century – in which people died they were so committed to change. And he followed that excellent first act by totally fucking us with Vietnam. A President, from the best to the worst, is largely a reflection of their time.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist:
Yeah – Kornacki is kind of like Lawrence O’Donnell without the sarcasm. Which, of course, is one of the main reasons I watch O’Donnell. I can’t for the life of me imagine anyone thinking that Chris Hayes would be “better” in the old Ed Schultz time slot, leading into another well-scrubbed, super-well-educated, cheerful nerd with geek glasses. Made absolutely no sense. If anything, the network needed to find another Ed Schultz type, black or white, who has “average Joe” appeal and could push a more populist, emotional message without any embarrassment or nuance. Or maybe someone with a background in comedy. I’m not kidding. That’s another angle they should have considered before “nerd sandwich.” And I say that as someone who likes both Hayes and Maddow a lot (although Maddow can get annoying.) It’s bizarre.
Much better response than my long-winded reply.
@Bruce S: my mother refers to Chris Hayes as ‘Rachel Maddow’s little brother’.
Kate from the Golden Gate
What everyone else said.
I was never much of a political junkie before the blogosphere made it so easy, and there were long periods (most of Bush 43 for example) when it was an obsession. And right now, not so much.
I’m definitely tired. I like the president a lot, and think us lucky to have him, but the long cycle of “Popular president suggests something reasonable. Most Americans approve. Republicans throw tantrums, call names, tell lies, and refuse to let the proposal come to a vote. Rinse. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.” is getting exhausting.
Charlie Pierce and the Balloon Juice crew are the only ones I’m still reading every day right now. I expect that will change at some point as well, when I can face it all again.
@Bruce S: Personally, I found your response much more civil and well thought out.
But I come from the School of Tbogg; I don’t have that much patience with the concern trolls.
I tried to keep on after Keith O but it is not the same.
I liked getting news as sportscast and cramming 2 hours of news into 40 minutes.
I liked hard follow up questions and focusing on the corruption and lawlessness in the halls of gov’t.
We don’t get much of that anymore.
No more news that is not US elections.
No more international stories.
No more guests who don’t already work for the network, and or host their own shows.
No anti war stuff on any of the shows, just rah rah military!
After Keith left and Rachel made the point of saying” I don’t feel I am limited in what I can cover” it has never been the same.
GE paid no taxes at all -remember how HARD it was for her to even mention that?
Just the once?
I can only watch by using the DVR and telling myself repeatedly -if I had to sit
through this many commercials I would certainly never think this show was worth it…
So I fast forward to see if there any stories where the guests are not MSNBCGE employees and watch those.
So 10 minutes out of 3 hours.
I don’t watch any segment where we will be hearing from Krytal Ball, Wonkette, brunette wonkette ,[whatever her name is -the two that just mug for the camera the whole time], CIA operatives /shills, miltary shills, Howard Fineman, EJ Dionne, oh , never mind.
The point is there isn’t any news on there anymore, and no investigative journalism which is what KO was to me.
Both good responses, actually.
I am just about the same age as Annie Laurie – like her, one of my earliest memories that can be specifically dated is the Kennedy-Nixon debates, with my working-class (and Catholic) parents glued to the TV screen.
I am not now, nor have I ever been, a fascist (Republican, conservative, whatever other label — fascist works best for me). I’m a liberal, always have been, and am apparently to the left of our President on most things. But to emo-prog firebaggers like Fred Fnord I (and others like me) are “Obots”, so we are somehow their enemy (which means, in their fevered imaginations, that we must be former or secret fascists).
I’m sorry, but I find emo-prog/firebagger connection to reality to be – while not insanely evil like the fascists – rather tenuously tethered.
I only very occasionally check in to Digby anymore, though she was one of my most important daily life-rafts that helped keep me sane during the misbegotten Cheney/Bush reign.
Number of reasons, similar to others here, but mostly because I simply feel much more at home here anymore than anywhere else in Left Blogistan. I just don’t check in with as many other sites (like Daily Kos or Sadly, No! or Atrios, etc.) as I used to. And I still miss Media Whores Online and The Poorman, but maybe I wouldn’t be reading them much, either, if they were still around.
I also don’t watch MSNBC as much as I did from a few years back (when Rachel first went on the air there) till right after the 2012 elections. Probably won’t till the 2014 mid-term campaign gets into high-gear. Not real happy right now with how even the MSNBC liberals (like Rachel) are piling on the bullshit over the DOJ/AP/Rosen “scandal”.
After over 40 years of donating to and volunteering for Democratic campaigns (going back to Vietnam War protests and my first political campaigns with McGovern, and Kucinich in Cleveland, all the way to spending the last two weeks prior to the election last fall back in my old home state of Ohio working for the Obama campaign) I guess I am, right now, a bit tired of politics. I’m not even reading all my Nation magazines anymore.
I’ll get back on the horse for the 2014 mid-terms, of course.
In the meantime I’ll mostly just tune in here, keep my business moving along, watch some baseball, do the yardwork (looks nice, but too many plants for the desert, really – I should probably cut back), do the family thing (my son who lives nearby just got married in the biggest celebration, across multiple days, ever in my family, mostly hosted by my wife and myself, and my elderly mother is needing more and more care from us on a weekly basis) and catch as many concerts of new music as I can (the stuff “the kids” are doing today is amazing).
Still, fuck all fucking fascists, and their fellow-travelers in The Village.
The professional left and their firebagger fan club have a lot of balls trying to blame Pres.Obama for THEIR low ratings and decline in web traffic.
These are people who have been pissing on his head for over 5 years now. Insulting his supporters (their potential viewers) and trying to drive a wedge between liberals and the Democratic Party.
Now when the results of their efforts are examined, they prove once again how much ODS they have by trying to pin their failure on him.
You have a demographics problem that mirrors the GOP. It’s up to you to figure it out.
PS. the answer isn’t to scream louder