And Now For News of Fresh Disaster at CNN

"February Cable News Numbers: FNC Logs 146th Consecutive Win, CNN Tumbles, MSNBC Hangs On," Deadline Hollywood reports:

February cable ratings are in – Piers Morgan may be out at CNN, but what about the rest of the network’s primetime, that looked none too good for the month, all losing around half their audience compared to same month last year. Anderson Cooper at 8 PM dropped 47%, February to February, in overall audience, to average 421,000 viewers, and 46% in the news demo, to 127,000 news-demo viewers for the month, according to Nielsen. In his defense, Cooper’s leadin, Erin Burnett Outfront dropped 39% to post an average of 293,000 viewers in Feburary, and slipped 32% in the news demo, to 100,000 viewers. Morgan’s getting scrubbed from 9 PM at CNN because, for instance, he logged 347,000 viewers for the month — down 46% – and 100,000 demo viewers — down 38%.

Meanwhile, FNC has now reached 146 consecutive months at No. 1 in total viewers, in both Total Day and Primetime, among cable news networks, and is for February the only cable network up in both total viewer and demo compared to last February. In all of cable, FNC ranked third in primetime (8-11 PM) – behind USA and History – and fifth for total day. Meanwhile, neither CNN or MSNBC were able to crack the top 20 in either daypart. CNN ranked 39th in prime and 34th in today day, MSNBC 26th in prime and 27th in total day. Every hour of the day, FNC dominated CNN and MSNBC combined in total viewers. FNC also beat both networks in the news demo.

At Big Journalism, John Nolte blames CNN's horrendous choice of story selection, which illustrates the channel's shrill tone and obvious leftwing bias:

CNN not only made an objective fool of itself last week, the network was once again exposed as something as far-left as MSNBC, but without MSNBC's integrity to admit it. Bill Maher calls Sarah Palin a c**t and he's invited to guest host a CNN primetime hour. But Nugent (who said something just as indefensible about President Obama) is used by almost the entire CNN staff to boost Texas Democrat Wendy Davis.

The American people see through this. And even if you are ideologically aligned with CNN, no one likes to be lied to.

With its increasing left-wing bias, this shrill, phony, obnoxious "attitude" Zucker has asked for, and the non-stop violation of trust for those viewers looking for straight, intelligent coverage of the day's events -- CNN is turning viewers away in droves

This week is looking just as bad as last. It's only Tuesday and the network is already on an anti-Christian rampage against an Arizona bill guaranteeing religious freedom. The coverage has been ignorant, biased, hysterical, and intentionally misleading. I personally oppose the Arizona bill in its current form, but I can still see what CNN is doing.

To paraphrase the headline atop this story by center-right Matt Lewis of the Daily Caller, "Leave us alone" is rapidly becoming "bake us a cake," adding, "let’s be honest about something else. This is really a surrogate battle. A much bigger one is coming:"

The reason conservative Christians are fighting this fight today is because it’s a firewall. The real danger, of course, is that Christian pastors and preachers will eventually be coerced into performing same-sex marriages. (Note: It is entirely possible for someone to believe gay marriage is fine, and to still oppose forcing people who hold strong religious convictions to participate — but I suspect that is where we are heading.)

Think of it this way. If you were a congregant in a church, wouldn’t you expect the pastor to marry you? Why should you be treated different?

Any pastor — if he or she wants to maintain the church’s tax status, that is — had better grapple with this now.

Whether the analogy is fair, or not, refusing to officiate a gay wedding can just as easily be called “denying service.” And it will predictably also be compared to the bad old days of Jim Crow — where racist Christians opposed interracial marriage (until the courts struck down state laws prohibiting biracial marriage).

Gay rights and religious liberty are on a collision course.

The Arizona bill should be a classic example of "We Report, You Decide." But instead, the half-hour of CNN I was forced to watch last night while on the treadmill at the gym featured Anderson Cooper dressing down an Arizona senator for daring to support the bill, making it very clear to his audience that where he expects them to come down on the story.

"Piers Morgan Wasn't Rejected Because He Comes from England. He Was Rejected Because His True Nationality Is The Isle of Smug." Ace writes today, but he's far from the only person at CNN suffering from that condition, in front of the cameras, or behind the scenes. As  Troy Senik wrote last fall at Ricochet, "Populism's Hard When You Don't Like the People," and the contempt that the Time-Warner-owned channel has for at least half of its audience is visible on a daily basis. Which is why they'll never take the excellent advice that Iowahawk proffered yesterday on Twitter -- their internal office politics, literally and figuratively, simply won't permit it:

Update: "Sunday night, after David Carr broke the news that Piers Morgan would be ending his CNN show, I searched Twitter to find how his fans were taking it. This was a mistake. Really, who was a Piers Morgan fan? Have you ever met one?"

And it's not just Morgan, as the Deadline Hollywood quote above notes. Twitchy reports on CNN's "Free fall: Byron York notes ‘striking audience rejection of CNN prime time.’"

Plus, tales of the One Percent: "Have a 360 look inside Anderson Cooper's riverside Hamptons home -- yours for the summer for $150,000."