And — drumroll, please — Power Indicator # 4 is that “Unlike the rest of us, he’s excused from paying taxes.” The latter point stunningly correct, Sharpton’s massive unpaid tax bills clearly one big no-never-mind to even the president himself.
But to the point here the most important indicator of Sharpton’s power, as noted by Concha with what seems to be unerring accuracy, is Power Indicator # 3, Sharpton’s hour-long nightly show on MSNBC. Not only is Sharpton a lousy, painful-to-watch TV host, his ratings are somewhere below the cellar, losing his time slot regularly and worse than badly to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer and, of course, to Fox’s Bret Baier. Yet there is not a hint that Sharpton’s show will get the axe from the network. And why might that be? In Concha’s perceptive words;
“So if the ratings are bad and the delivery even worse, why and how does Sharpton still have a program on the air? Answer: Because Comcast and NBC — and this is just an educated guess — must be petrified to fire him (by, yes, the race card being turned against them). Remember, Sharpton gave his crucial blessing to the Comcast/NBC Universal merger a few years back. Not long after, he was magically given his own show at 6:00 p.m. on MSNBC. Reciprocity at its finest.”
Not since President Woodrow Wilson used the White House to showcase the film Birth of a Nation has such a stark reveal existed between progressive leaders, their media camp followers, and their joint and constant need to play the race card — use out and out racism — for everything from getting votes to ratings or audience support.
But surely somebody has to wonder whether Comcast/NBC will now allow themselves to be portrayed as the network that gives TV hosting duties to a man accused by no less than a former New York City police commissioner (among others) of having blood on his hands after the killing of two New York City policemen in the wake of the Eric Garner grand jury decision. Specifically, former Commissioner Bernard Kerik lumped Sharpton specifically in with New York Mayor de Blasio when he said of the assassinations of the two NYPD cops:
“De Blasio, Sharpton and all those who encouraged this anti-cop, racist mentality all have blood on their hands. They have blood on their hands.”
If all of the above wasn’t enough, there’s also the unseemly nature of a Comcast-NBC anchorman critiquing another corporation’s media output. Back in the mid-naughts, when Howard Kurtz and Mickey Kaus were both employed by divisions of the Washington Post, Kaus frequently pointed out the potential conflict of interest for Howard Kurtz hosting a weekly TV show critiquing the mistakes and excesses of the MSM on CNN while being employed by the Post. (Not to mention soft-pedaling scandals involving the brass at CNN.)
Kurtz’s wearing of multiple hats had nothing on Sharpton being a potential one-man Hays Office passing judgement over Sony Pictures.
(Slogan in above mock MSNBC ad supplied by network president Phil Griffin.)