ThinkProgress notes: Media Cheerleads For Another War: Blasts Obama For Not Rushing Into Syria.
The hosts of the nation’s leading political talk shows pressed Secretary of State John Kerry on the administration’s decision to seek Congressional authorization for a military strike against Syria, arguing that delaying military action undermined America’s resolve and weakened President Obama.
Though Kerry, who appeared on all five political programs, insisted that Obama’s decision would allow for the proper constitutional process and permit the administration “time to reach out to allies, friends around the world, build support on an international basis,” the hosts appeared to dismiss any need for Congressional deliberations or public debate about the administration’s evidence or the potential consequences of a military attack. NBC’s David Gregory, Fox’s Chris Wallace, CBS’s Major Garrett, ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, and CNN’s Gloria Borger went beyond inquiring about the political timing of Obama’s decision to consult with Congress on Saturday. They repeatedly claimed that Obama’s decision to hold off on immediate military action emboldened America’s adversaries and undermined the nation’s “credibility.”
So why would the media talking heads be all rah-rah for war, death and destruction? Because, as William Randolph Hearst knew back in 1898, it sells papers. In this case, it sells ads on cable TV. It’s the action, not the debate in Congress that gets people watching, and people watching sells boner pills and car insurance.
Now am I so cynical as to think that David Gregory, Chris Wallace, Major Garrett, George Stephanopoulos, and Gloria Borger are all cold-hearted bloodthirsty schemers who want American soldiers fighting and dying in Syria purely for the sake of ratings and profits at their corporate headquarters? Of course not. But they also know that the American audience has the attention span of a fruit fly, and if all they see when they turn on the tube is Harry Reid and John Boehner gasping into a microphone, they’re going to off to another rerun of Ice Road Truckers or Real Wives of Leelanau County before you can get out of the La-Z-Boy.