Thursday, May 30, 2013

Brian Williams Mocks Latinos On NBC Nightly News

At Sonia Sotomayor's Supreme Court confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on July 15, 2009, an exchange between Justice Sotomayor and Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma prompted Sen. Coburn to tell Justice Sotomayor, "You'll have a lot of 'splainin' to do!"  The reference was to a phrase Desi Arnaz often uttered to Lucille Ball on the 1950's sitcom "I Love Lucy".  Many people felt that Sen. Coburn used the phrase to mock Justice Sotomayor's Latina heritage, and many considered it a blatant slur against all American Latinos and Latinas.

On May 29, 2013, Brian Williams read a story on NBC Nightly News about Pres. Obama having lipstick on his collar during a public appearance.  (Let's overlook the fact that this doesn't remotely qualify as a news story and it didn't belong on a national newscast.  Obviously, Brian Williams makes a living reporting garbage stories with no news value.)  During his introduction to the story, Brian said, "The President of the United States had a bit of 'splainin' to do last night...."  There it is again--'splainin' rears its ugly head on national television.  I don't think there's any question that this word is derogatory and insulting to Latinos and Latinas.  It's no different that affecting an exaggerated Chinese or German accent to mock a person from one of those countries. 

News flash for Brian Williams: It's not the 1950's anymore.  Making fun of someone's accent--and by extension their heritage--is insensitive at best and malicious at worst.  It should not be tolerated on a sitcom, much less a news broadcast that is supposed to inform viewers.  A network news anchor is supposed to report facts, not make fun of the way some Americans talk.

But I can guarantee that there will be no repercussions for Brian Williams.  No one at NBC News will discipline him--he's their golden boy as long as Nightly News is the top-rated evening newscast (although the same cannot be said for his other vanity project, the already-cancelled Rock Center).  And Brian's philosophy with regard to personal or professional impropriety is "never acknowledge, never apologize".  He still hasn't apologized for the appalling way in which NBC News edited George Zimmerman's 911 tapes to make Zimmerman appear racist.  So there's zero chance he'll apologize for his slur against Latinos and Latinas.

Brian Williams will just continue on as if nothing happened.  There seems little doubt that at some point in the future he will again affect a condescending foreign accent to mock some immigrant group (domestic groups are not spared either--Brian often mocks New Englanders by saying things like "Fenway Pahk", "Red Sawx" and "pahtying wicked hahd".)  Because Brian Williams' number one priority is to boost his ratings--and his ego--by saying things he believes are "funny" and "cool".  And believe me--political correctness and propriety don't stand a chance when ratings and ego are at stake.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Brian Williams Uses NBC Nightly News To Promote Organizations On Whose Board He Sits

We all know that NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams is an egotistic, narcissistic, self-promoter.  That's stating the obvious.  But on Monday's Nightly News (5/6/13), he outdid even his own lofty narcissistic standards.  On that broadcast, he reported that the Medal of Honor Society was posthumously awarding its Citizens Honors Medal to the six educators who were killed in the Newtown massacre.  Good choice--I think we all agree that they deserve the award.  But what Brian didn't disclose is that he himself sits on the board of directors of the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation.  So in other words, he was using his own newscast to promote an organization on whose board he sits--without disclosing his connection to the organization.  The MOH Foundation relies heavily on citizen donations, so by doing a story on the MOH Foundation, Brian was raising awareness for his organization with the specific goal of generating donations.  That is deceptive, unethical and downright sleazy.

Later in the broadcast, Brian reported the breaking news story that Bill Clinton almost succeeded in brokering a Led Zeppelin reunion for the 12/12/12 Sandy Relief Concert.  Now, first of all, this isn't news and it doesn't belong on a network newscast.  It was just another excuse for Brian to show video of Bruce Springsteen and Jon Bon Jovi, two performers that he personally idolizes and who he frequently includes in Nightly News stories.  Another expedition into narcissism for Brian Williams.  But during this story, Brian also made a point of plugging the Robin Hood Foundation, the concert's organizer.  And guess who sits on the board of directors of the Robin Hood Foundation?  You guessed it--Brian Williams.  And of course the Robin Hood Foundation, like the Medal of Honor Foundation, relies heavily on donations.  So he plugged two organizations on whose board he sits--with the specific goal of increasing awareness of those organizations as a way to prompt his viewers to donate.  And he never disclosed his connection to either organization.  Wow, this guy has some big balls.

Also during Monday's broadcast, Brian reported that Pfizer would begin offering Viagra for sale on the web as a way to offset internet sales of generic and knock-off Viagra drugs.  In that story, Brian referred to Pfizer as, "The folks who make the real stuff."  Do you know what else Pfizer does?  They sponsor NBC Nightly News segments.  Since Jan. 1, 2013, Pfizer has sponsored nine different Nightly News "Making A Difference" segments.  Of course, that's in addition to the commercials they run for their various products on Nightly News, other NBC shows and the many NBC Universal/Comcast networks.  So by promoting Pfizer (and reminding us that they make "the real stuff"), Brian was shamelessly promoting one of his biggest sponsors.  Perhaps this was just an opportunity for Brian to say "Thank you" to his pals at Pfizer.  But maybe it was something else.  Maybe Pfizer actually paid NBC News to have Brian Williams read a faux "news report" about them.  That's known as a product placement or branded content.  And I certainly wouldn't be surprised to learn that NBC News accepts payment for product placements on Nightly News.  After all, paying to have a news report appear on Nightly News would be a great way to let people know that Viagra will now be available on the web.  And if Brian Williams himself is selling it, all the better.  Because he has such integrity.  Does anyone believe that the weasels at NBC News wouldn't do something like this?

So let's recap:  On one Nightly News broadcast, Brian Williams promoted two organizations on whose board he sits (both of whom rely heavily on donations) and one mega-huge pharmaceutical conglomerate that sponsors Nightly News segments and advertises on NBC.  Brian Williams is a self-promoting, narcissistic scumbag. There's no other way to describe him.  A news anchor who uses his broadcast to promote his sponsors and help solicit donations for organizations on whose board he sits should not be allowed on the air.  When is the FCC going to demand that NBC dump this guy?

Friday, May 3, 2013

NBC Nightly News Weasels Begin Promoting Sunday Night Football--In May!

This blog has been dormant for the past 8 months.  The reason was pretty mundane: My computer was really old and it couldn't access the new, updated version of  Basically I was locked out of my own blog.  Now I have a different, slightly-less-old computer and I can access this site again.  In lieu of this blog, I've been expressing my opinions through Twitter (@FakeBriWilliams) which has been working pretty well in terms of making my views known (although not quite so well in attracting followers).  I'm not sure what role this blog will have in the future--perhaps it will act as an adjunct to my Twitter posts, since 140 characters can be quite limiting when trying to express the enormous asininity of Brian Williams and NBC Nightly News.  We'll see.

Thought for the day:  It's been three months since the Super Bowl, which means it's time for the weasels at Nightly News to start promoting NFL football again, even though the regular season doesn't begin for four months.  The reason: Sunday Night Football is--by far--NBC's best-rated show and it brings the network a ton of ad revenue.  On last Tuesday's (4/30/13) Nightly News, a story about a Boston bombing victim featured a photo of Patriots QB Tom Brady.  The same broadcast also included a 2:15 story about how the new Atlanta Falcons stadium may displace some local churches.  On Friday (5/3/13), Maria Bartiromo's Nightly News report on the economy included a segment about how the Miami Dolphins were now hiring support and service personnel.  These football references were no accidents--they were intentionally inserted into their respective news stories as a way to shamelessly promote the NFL--and, by association, Sunday Night Football on NBC.  This is the way the sleazy weasels at NBC operate.  They (and "they" includes weasel-in-chief Brian Williams) use Nightly News as a promotional vehicle for NBC sports and entertainment shows.  I guarantee that over the next four months, Nightly News will provide a steadily increasing stream of football-related stories leading up to the start of the NFL season.  And once the season begins, we can expect the NBC weasels to shift into high gear and resume their regular practice of concluding Sunday Nightly News broadcasts with a football story--usually a story that relates directly to one or both of the teams playing later that night on NBC.  NBC Nightly News is often little more than a commercial for Sunday Night Football and other NBC shows.  Did you see the way Nightly News promoted the Olympics last summer?  That's how they roll at NBC.

To quote George Costanza--"I'm back, baby!"