The hospital where Louise is being treated following her knee surgery has lovely high tech individual rooms with flat screen TV, but no cable — so Louise missed Rachel Maddow on Monday night. Louise asked me “anything new?” when she realized she’d be limited to network news. She and I are both serious political junkies.
I’d monitored the news throughout the day of her surgery, of course, as I waiting for word that the procedure was over and she was out of recovery and into her room. Actually, there was nothing new. Trump was still grandstanding. The Michael Cohen hearings were promising new revelations — but don’t we already see clearly what a corrupt president we have, and what a corrupt administration he is running? Republicans in Congress are still backtracking from setting limits on a lawless president, afraid he’ll unleash a tweet storm and prompt a primary challenger from the right. Nobody much liked Green Book as the Best Picture winner. Seattle is still inching toward spring.
As Louise and I tried to find some satisfying news coverage on her TV, I was smiling a bit at the thought of “we only have network news.” At a point in my life, network news was what we had. The major decision was whether to watch Walter Cronkite on CBS or his competitors John Chancellor on NBC or Harry Reasoner on ABC. Who remembers Harry Reasoner’s snarky demeanor when he was forced to accept Barbara Walters on-air as his co-anchor?
Now Rachel Maddow rules the cable news world, at least for that segment of the population who find Trumplandia and Fox News delusional conspiracy mongers. She’s brilliant, has a great news team behind her, and I love watching the way she can pivot in real time, sheaf of briefing papers in hand, as the story line literally changes while she’s on the air.