Greta Van Susteren, the Sarah Palin and Donald Trump sycophant, will have her own hour-long news show on “liberal” MSNBC. Not only that, her new show looks to be a continuation of what she did on Fox News.
It had been rumored that Van Susteren was likely to get an MSNBC show. But now it's for sure.
From The Huffington Post:
Van Susteren will have a daily weekday show that airs 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. called “For The Record with Greta” ― a variation on the name of her Fox show, which was called “On The Record.” The show begins on Monday and will cover “news coverage and analysis of the day’s top headlines spanning politics and beyond,” according to a network release.
That MSNBC release states:
“Greta is a true pro with a proven record of tough journalism,” said [president of MSNBC Phil] Griffin. “Her broad range of experience and sharp news judgment will be of great value to MSNBC as we build on our momentum going into a new year and a new administration.”
Really? I don’t mean any disrespect to Van Susteren who has always struck me as a decent, well-intentioned person but “sharp news judgment” and “proven record of tough journalism” has not exactly been her record at Fox News where she worked for the last 14 years until leaving abruptly last summer.
That is, unless by “sharp news judgment” Griffin meant that time Van Susteren hosted Palin as an expert on the Iran nuclear deal and then fed her talking points to keep her from making a fool out of herself. Or the "tough journalism" of Van Susteren’s stunningly sophomoric interview with Melania Trump, titled “Who is Melania Trump?” in which Van Susteren seemed to think the most important information to impart was how many languages Mrs. Trump speaks. Van Susteren opened the interview with, “Here’s the question I’ve wanted to ask you for a long time. How many languages do you speak?”
I suspect it also has to do with access in a Trump administration. Trump has already proven to be vindictive to media outlets that displease him. If there’s one thing Van Susteren can be relied on to do, it’s to butter him up. Media Matters notes:
Before the Republican primary, Trump appeared more times on Van Susteren’s On The Record than on the rest of the Fox News prime-time shows combined. During the Republican primary, Van Susteren had Trump on for over five hours, dwarfing other candidates. During these appearances, Trump pushed birtherism, claimed Obama didn’t write his own memoir, and made bigoted remarks about refugees. And Andrew Kaczynski chronicled more of Trump’s moments from Van Susteren’s show.
Nevertheless, you can be sure Fox will continue to include NBC in its tirades about the “liberal media” no matter what.
Watch Media Matters’ video of Van Susteren's May 26, 2016 Meet The Trumps special that includes only the Trump comments to get a flavor of Van Susteren’s “tough journalism.”
I’m sure Greta will simply resume the kind of show she was doing on Fox News, albeit at a lower pay scale than she enjoyed at the fully Right Wing network. When she was at Fox News, the idea was that she lended a touch of class and an aura of scholastic knowledge, although she could also specialize in crime blotter sensationalism that Fox News always enjoyed broadcasting. So she was fairly valuable to Fox News as a theoretically more moderate face, particularly when contrasted with something like Hannity.
At MSNBC, she will be a token conservative voice, essentially running the same kind of show but under the umbrella of a more liberal outfit. I agree that the real value of her presence is that she may be able to lure Trump out to make an appearance on their network, and they may be able to get some access. But that depends on Trump and his whims. He’ll certainly have time to talk to her, given that Pence will be handling all the real work at the White House. But will he be interested in talking to Greta on a network he’s repeatedly condemned? Or will he talk to her and while doing so completely insult her new employers? I have a feeling he’ll take the latter path, saying “I do love talking to you, Greta, but it’s such a shame you have to work for these people.”
Both Van Susteren and Kelly have sadly put themselves in a position where they no longer have any credibility with most viewers. Kelly is popular as a Fox News voice, and to those less familiar with her, she would appear to be an independent voice. But the odor of bias and viciousness from Fox News never helps one of its anchors get a real job anywhere else. They’re usually better advised to write books, go on the speaking circuit and show up as an elder statesman on Fox. c.f. Brit Hume.
The comically funny Conservapedia (“The Trustworthy Encyclopedia”) claims “MSNBC… is a liberal propaganda 24-hour cable ‘news’ channel and website aligned with the Democrat party. …MSNBC is considered by many to be one of the most liberal cable news channels of all the mainstream media.” Of course, Conservapedia claims Fox News isn’t fair and balanced because they see it “sometimes actually promoting feminism and the homosexual agenda” so there is that. ;^)
All that said, MSNBC like CNN realizes conservatives by far are more interested in being fed political propaganda. Just look at the crazy longstanding popularity of Rush Limbaugh, for example. There is no liberal equivalent. So both CNN and MSNBC have flirted with wooing conservatives over the years.
When conservative Comcast acquired MSNBC liberals fretted it would swing Fox’s way. Yet, that trend was already long in play. MSNBC has featured Republican Joe Scarboro’s morning show for pretty much a decade. Liberals in my Twitter feed bitch about “Morning Joe” endlessly. Are MSNBC/NBC owners accelerating this trend by picking of Megyn and Greta? Probably.
However, will Megyn and Greta tone down the right-wing bullshit now they’re outside of the bubble? I look at former Foxy Alisyn Camerota. Since joining CNN I haven’t seen much foam spewing from her mouth. I can see Megyn easily wooing a mainstream audience by dumping her Kool Aid at the Fox cafeteria on her way out the door.
Greta? She’s a bigger question mark. For years she didn’t quite fit the foaming, right-wing Fox News mold by featuring white girl abduction of the day sensationalism. However, she fell in love with vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin and started featuring embarrassing ass-kissing sessions with the likes of Rush Limbaugh. Her show ever since has overwhelmingly featured Republicans who she invariably softballs to the point of prompting them for spin. So it’s unclear to me if Greta morphed her format to just play the Fox News game for better ratings or if she found true right-wing religion.
In any case, the propaganda shift isn’t going in liberals’ direction.
I can imagine Van Sustern’s impending collision with MSNBC has raised eyebrows over there too.