He argued that Ed is what happens when we let corporations choose our progressive voices. While I do see that point, it's also true that Ed wasn't made by corporations. He was made a left voice by Democrats in Congress.
Randi Rhodes, prior to her big implosion, would always do a mini-one when discussing Ed and note that she was an independent voice whereas his money came from the Democratic Party machine. The Democrat backing is what made Ed Schultz a media name. Here's Somerby:
On Monday night, Schultz got to work with a near-fascistic display. He gloried in the death of bin Laden (and his son) while urging his impressionable viewers to worship their commander in chief. As we watched his long, loud, bumptious, reptilian display, we thought of Jack Oakie’s performance in Chapin’s famous film, The Great Dictator (1940). More specifically, we thought of Oakie’s bumptious portrait of Benzino Napaloni, “dictator of Bacteria.”
Oakie’s portrait of Mussolini was (and is) funny, cutting, insightful. But on Monday night, that wasn’t an actor crafting a portrait of the deeply bumptious Il Duce. Instead, that was the host of a “progressive” TV “news” program—and the great man was soon saying this:
SCHULTZ: Great to have you with us tonight, folks.
This is the story that the globe is paying attention to. There is no question about it. It’s the story that we are all fired up about. I’m fired up about this guy right here: The president of the United States.
You know, I wish I had five hours to talk to you tonight and have fun with this, because we’re going to talk about American exceptionalism tonight.
As Il Duce creamed in his pants about the greatness of his Dear Leader, he said we’d have lots of fun that night talking about rotting corpses and our Italian—sorry, our American exceptionalism. And don’t worry—things quickly got worse! As he continued, Schultz began helping us see that the troops love their Dear Leader too.Media criticism that calls out some guy and says the guy creamed his pants? I believe C.I. owns that. (As I'm sure Bob Somerby still knows since his idiot friend is forever stalking C.I.)
I'll further add that calling out what Schultz is doing? Pretty easy when others have laid the groundwork. Ava and C.I. did so Sunday night, minutes after Barack finished his speech (see "TV: Blather"). Monday morning's nonsense on NPR led C.I. to activate a phone list and get NPR to dial back the rhetoric and start offering other views -- which they started on Tuesday morning. I know she also worked TV angles but I know about the NPR because I was on that phone list and was brought in to lobby various higher ups about the one-sided message and why it needed to end.
So on Wednesday? It's a breeze to walk in now.
"Iraq snapshot" (The Common Ills):