For Release: November 10, 2010
Contact: David Almasi at (202) 543-4110 x11 or (703) 568-4727 or [email protected] or Judy Kent at (703) 759-7476 or [email protected]
MSNBC: Network Gone Wild!
CEO Immelt Ultimately Responsible for Hosts' Out-of-Control Radicalism, says The National Center for Public Policy Research
Washington, DC ľAs General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt tours Asia with President Obama, the controversy at GE's MSNBC network is reaching a boiling point. Its most radical hosts are running amok -- disobeying company policy, using heated rhetoric at progressive rallies and even promoting revolution. Adding MSNBC's antics to its financial and ethical woes provides ample grounds for Immelt's resignation.
"Immelt's open and unapologetic support of President Obama's agenda has sent a signal that it is open season on anything conservative, especially Tea Party activists. It's the equivalent of yelling 'fire' in a crowded theater over at MSNBC," said Tom Borelli, Ph.D., director of the Free Enterprise Project of the National Center for Public Policy Research. "In the early days of television, people had a great deal of respect for members of the media. Not anymore, and with good reason. MSNBC is now a cavalcade of crackpot theories and radical discourse. Since NBC Universal is in a free-fall, Comcast should think twice before it closes the deal to buy GE's media empire."
In the past few weeks, several of MSNBC's biggest hosts engaged in behavior that brings shame on the network, including:
• Dylan Ratigan, the host of "The Dylan Ratigan Show," actually promoted revolution on his November 8 program. Prior to an interview with radical cartoonist/author Ted Rall, in which Rall implied that violent revolt may be necessary to enact a progressive agenda, Ratigan said: "Are things in this country so bad that it might be time for a revolution? The answer obviously is yes, the only question is how to do it."
• At the "One Nation" political rally at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. on October 2, "The Ed Show" host Ed Schultz made a blanket condemnation of anyone holding conservative views, telling the crowd: "We... must fight the forces of evil -- the conservatives in this country, across the board."
• Lawrence O'Donnell, the host of "The Last Word," proclaimed himself a socialist. On the November 5 edition of "Morning Joe," O'Donnell said: "I am a socialist. I live to the extreme left, the extreme left of you mere liberals."
• After breaking NBC policy against employees making political contributions by donating $7,200 to three Democratic candidates (including one who had been a recent guest), "Countdown" host Keith Olbermann received a slap on the wrist when he was suspended for only two shows.
"Some of these same hosts who are now winking at revolution and filling the air with heated rhetoric are the ones who are also claiming the tea party movement is something to be afraid of. It's hard to believe that the network is now relying on Chris Matthews and Rachel Maddow to maintain respectability," added Deneen Borelli, full-time fellow with the Project 21 black leadership network.
Tom Borelli added: "The buck stops with Immelt and he needs to be held accountable for MSNBC gone wild. By tying GE's future to Obama's political agenda Immelt has transformed the network into a public relations arm of the White House. MSNBC is simply following his lead. It's something that must stop, and the way to stop it is for Jeff Immelt to step down."
The Free Enterprise Project is demanding that General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt resign due to his lobbying for economically risky Obama Administration initiatives and simultaneously running the MSNBC news network. The petition calling for Immelt's resignation can be found at http://www.bigbusinesswatch.com.
Project 21, a leading voice of black conservatives since 1992, is sponsored by the National Center for Public Policy Research (http://www.nationalcenter.org).