Yesterday, John King hosted Dick Cheney. Some might call it an interview. I'd say it was close to ... shall we say oral sex. King serviced Cheney. Arianna Huffington suggests we consider what the Cheney interview would have looked like if Jon Stewart did it, like he did the Jim Kramer interview. She writes,
Jon Stewart's Jim Cramer interview was a pivotal moment -- not just for Stewart, Cramer, and CNBC but also for journalism. It was a bracing reminder of what great research and a journalist more committed to getting to the truth than to landing the big get -- and keeping the big get happy, and ensuring future big gets -- can accomplish.
...Each time King let Cheney get away with spouting gross inaccuracies and revisionist history, I kept thinking how different things would have been had Stewart been asking the questions. Stewart without the comedy and without the outrage -- just armed with the facts and the willingness to ask tough questions.
Arrianna refers to a question supported by statistical data which King wimpily offers to Cheney, diluting it, apologizingly saying, "Some people say..." Arianna comments:
I say it is time for CNN to start using journalists who do their job. John King didn't do his job-- the job that people on OpEdNews do every day, effortlessly and reflexively-- speaking truth to power, holding leaders' feet to the fire. If we can do it at OpEdNews.com, journalistic professionals like John King MUST do better, or CNN should replace them with people who can-- maybe with commedians. I am sure they could do a better job than CNN's purported pro, John King.
These are not some numbers that belong to some people being trotted to make their case. These numbers are actual data -- empirical evidence. It would be as if King were interviewing a flat-earther and asked him: "There are people on this planet, watching this interview right now, who would say that the earth is round. And they have some pictures taken from outer space to back up their case. So what would you say to someone out there who is saying that?"
King's desperate attempt to distance himself from the question would be laughable if it weren't so repellent. It's not him asking Cheney why we should listen to him. It's not him putting forward objective data. It's some strawman viewers, so please don't hold it against him. And please, please come back. And tell your friends.
This is the problem with King and too many in the Pontius Pilot traditional media: They are so caught up in the obsolete notion that the truth always lies in the middle, they have to pretend that there are two sides to every issue -- and even two sides to straightforward data.
Someone needs to kidnap King and take him to a deprogramming center -- preferably one run by Jon Stewart and his team.That way, the next time a denier of truth or an apologist for the broken status quo -- whether Republican or Democrat -- sits across from him, King can skip the qualifiers and do what journalists are supposed to do: hold public figures' feet to the fire.