Ed Driscoll

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“Good-bye, Public Life,” swears Alec Baldwin, which will of course, last as long as his multiple earlier promised retirements from Twitter, but is a lot more fun to read. (Language alert: expect plenty of swearing from Baldwin and others in this post.) The whole thing is a classic, beginning with the first line. As Slate’s Dave Weigel  (who’s no stranger to public meltdowns himself) tweeted, “‘I flew to Hawaii recently to shoot a film, fresh on the heels of being labeled a homophobic bigot’ goes in the #humblebrag hall of fame.”

After numerous paragraphs in which you can almost hear the steel balls clicking back and forth Queeg-style in Baldwin’s hands, my favorite is this passage:

In the New Media culture, anything good you do is tossed in a pit, and you are measured by who you are on your worst day. What’s the Boy Scout code? Trustworthy. Loyal. Helpful. Friendly. Courteous. Kind. Obedient. Cheerful. Thrifty. Brave. Clean. Reverent. I might be all of those things, at certain moments. But people suspect that whatever good you do, you are faking. You’re that guy. You’re that guy that says this. There is a core of outlets that are pushing these stories out. Breitbart clutters the blogosphere with “Alec Baldwin, he’s the Devil, he’s Fidel Baldwin.”

Broadway has changed, by my lights. The TV networks, too. New York has changed. Even the U.S., which is so preposterously judgmental now. The heart, the arteries of the country are now clogged with hate. The fuel of American political life is hatred. Who would ever dream that Obama would deserve to be treated the way he has been? The birth-certificate bullshit, which is just Obama’s version of Swiftboating. And all for the electoral nullification that seems like a cancer on the American system. But this is Roger Ailes. And Fox. And Breitbart. And this is all about hate. It’s Hate Incorporated. But the liberals have taken the bait and run in the same direction—and it’s just as corrosive. MSNBC, in its own way, is as full of shit, as redundant and as superfluous, as Fox.

I think America’s more fucked up now than it’s ever been. People are angry that in the game of musical chairs that is the U.S. economy, there are less seats at the table when the music stops. And at every recession, the music is stopping.

As someone who spends his days pointing out the excesses and hypocrisies of old media, I’m not unsympathetic to complaints regarding how toxic the overculture has become in the last 25 years. But perhaps someone who took to the airwaves of NBC 16 years ago to ostensibly brew up a public murder of a 74-year old Congressman isn’t in the best position to deliver this message.

Not to mention a person who asked in 2011, “What Changes Will We Make After the Giffords Shooting?”, before deciding the best choice of action was apparently to take to Twitter to call a journalist — a profession that Baldwin has attempted to dabble in himself — “a toxic little queen,” whom Baldwin threatened to “fuck…you…up,” before thinking the better of his actions, because, “If put my foot up your fucking ass, George Stark, but I’m sure you’d dig it too much.”

Linking to yesterday’s 5,000-word from Baldwin, Jim Treacher quips “to me, the funniest thing is that the piece is titled ‘I Give Up.’ He gives up! After everything he’s done for you, America, you treat him like this?”

In the same piece, Baldwin refers to “Andrew Sullivan, Anderson Cooper, and others in the Gay Department of Justice,” and to “an F-to-M tranny” who said something he didn’t like.

Does all that stuff make him a homophobe? I have no idea. I can’t read his mind, and I doubt that even he knows for sure. He doesn’t know what he’s going to do or say until it’s already happening. All I can go by are his words, and he’s said a lot of crazy stuff about gay people. It’s always educational when an uber-lib starts spouting off like Archie Bunker.

Speaking of which, yesterday, Twitchy rounded up a number of Baldwin’s fellow leftists who are giving him grief for using the word “Tranny,” but presumably, as Maureen Dowd would say, Ru Paul has Absolute Moral Authority on this subject, and he’s pretty darn laid-back about the T-word:

Media Matters “reporter” Luke Brinker writes, “Daily Caller gossip scribe Betsy Rothstein used the transphobic slur ‘tranny’ to describe transgender activist Janet Mock, defending Piers Morgan against charges that his February 4 interview with Mock sensationalized Mock’s story and stating Mock’s new memoir wouldn’t ‘even exist if she had not been born with a penis.’”

Guess what? Not everyone is offended by the word. Not even drag superstar Ru Paul. In fact, Media Matters would do well to have Paul come and visit and stop being so tightly wound. As Paul once told HuffPost, “It’s ridiculous! It’s ridiculous! I love the word ‘tranny.’ And I hate the fact that [Lance Bass] apologized. I wish he would have said, ‘F–k you, you tranny jerk!’”

Heh.

But back to Keith — note that after previous complaints from Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow — both while still under his employment — here’s yet another MSNBC vet who has no qualms dumping on channel president Phil Griffin:

Phil Griffin is the head of MSNBC, and when I saw that Griffin didn’t have a single piece of paper on his desk, meeting after meeting after meeting, that should have been my first indication there was going to be a problem. Phil is a veteran programmer who knows well the corridors and chambers of television programming—and couldn’t give a flying fuck about content. All he wanted to talk about was Giants tickets, Super Bowl tickets, restaurants, movies. The conversations about the set, about the physical production of the show, cameras, lighting—it seemed like he wanted to get those over with as quickly as possible. He didn’t care. He had four monitors on the wall. They were all on, muted. He never listened to them. He never watched them.

And as Allahpundit notes, “Here’s the good stuff. Note that this isn’t the first time that someone close to MSNBC has accused Rachel Maddow of basically running the network. One of Eliana Johnson’s sources told her the same thing last month. That was dismissed at the time by lefties as conservative hyperbole designed to pin the egregious nastiness of other MSNBC hosts on its biggest star, but now here’s Baldwin relaying a comment to the same effect”.

After quoting Baldwin railing against Maddow, who he says, “viewed me as the equivalent of Mel Gibson,” and Baldwin claiming that a source told him, “You know who’s going to get you fired, don’t you? Rachel. Phil will do whatever Rachel tells him to do,” Allah adds:

That’s the second liberal celebrity in four days to attack MSNBC for becoming as stupid and sensationalist as their worst caricatures of Fox. Bill Maher called Maddow out to her face on Friday night over the network’s weird obsession with Christie’s Bridgegate scandal. (Actual quote: “If it was a Democratic governor not close to New York City, the media capital, would we be talking about it?”) It’s interesting that the Maddow era, which was supposed to be a wonky low-key alternative to the scenery-chewing days of Olbermania, is beset by so many controversies — hosts flying off the handle, reporters hyperventilating over minor scandals, people getting suspended and even fired. Second look at Olby?

That depends on Phil, doesn’t it? In 2008, Olbermann infamously told the New Yorker, “Phil thinks he’s my boss” — before eventually proving it by handing Keith his pink slip. Would Phil be ready to think he’s Olbermann’s boss again anytime soon?

As the late Andrew Breitbart once said after MSNBC was caught lying about the Tea Party (I know — shocking, eh?), “It’s not your business model that sucks, it’s you that sucks.” Baldwin, and NBC’s continuous reliance upon him in various capacities — including an upcoming Law & Order SVU guest-starring role even after losing his MNBC gig — lives out that aphorism daily.