Monday, 24 February 2014

Adios Piers

CNN made some decision over the weekend.....to dump Piers Morgan (the guy who replaced Larry King).  No hard dates yet.....but newspapers indicate it'll be in roughly four to six weeks.

Piers?  Well....he kinda knew the numbers were bad and could not reverse them.  At present, he hints that he's hoping for some type of arrangement with CNN.....to do some type of show for them.

CNN has been changing a number of things around....trying to regain some of its past glory.  I have doubts that anything positive will come out of this.

My humble bet is that they find some Hollywood character or gal.....hustle up some gossip piece for folks at night, and hope for a twelve-month reprieve while they figure the big trend for 2016 (hint: politics).

Before Larry King came along.....CNN had a nightly topic forum, with some gal that did a pretty good job.  She didn't drag in four-star guests.....but it was interesting and entertaining.  Larry?  He got around to getting stars, nutcases, political figures, and just about everyone with some notoriety. For a couple of years....I'd catch part of his show and thought it was interesting.  By the early 90s....my interest had just about dried up on Larry King.

As for Piers?  He'd crank up fake enthusiasm, pick some liberal topic that people got aggravated over, and  you'd max out on interest in three minutes.  I'm not sure who the heck made the decision to bring Piers into the US and do the show.....but they really screwed up.

So, like the Oprah show, the Phil Donahue show, the various afternoon fake news shows.....I've come to have zero interest in chat-interview shows.  You could schedule re-runs of Bonanza during the same hour.....and I'd likely pick Little Joe and Hoss fifty percent of the time over some fake prominent political figure being interviewed.

McClures

So a history lesson today.

In the early 1890s...journalism was mostly newspapers, and a handful of monthly magazines.  Investigative analysis....was limited.  National trends triggered by magazines....was almost non-existent.

So, along came Samuel McClure.  He had cash, enthusiasm, and a desire to find the bad in people and organizations....then put it into text.

McClure would form in 1893....McClure's Magazine.  He hired some of the best writers and reporters in America...in their youth....and put together a national magazine that was read by millions.  If you had a curious notion over politics, the economy, business, or corruption....you had a subscription to McClures.

The first big inside political figure to McClure?  Teddy Roosevelt.  Teddy had a fair amount of belief in ethics and doing the right thing.  You could say that Teddy's first and only election (November 1904)....went hand-in-hand with the monthly publication and it's targets.

McClures had two problems.  First, their muck-racking business went through a brisk two-year period and really dumped heavily upon Democratic machines and corrupted business operations throughout the nation.  At some some point in 1905......they crossed the line and started to go after Republican machines as well.  Some of their evidence was absolute.....and some was lacking.  At some point in 1905....Roosevelt's tag-along stance with McClures....hit bumpy waves.  For all the good that McClures had done....they were firing away in all directions, with no political figure or party safe.

In some ways, they'd gone turbo in the first three years and used up most of their attraction to the public.

The second issue that came up in 1905....was Samuel McClure himself.  You see....he was a nutcase of sorts.  He had ample funds and probably could have been as successful as Donald Trump is today.....but he continued to overpay for his reporters, his stories, and spent money as freely as possibly.

By 1911, McClure was mostly in default.  The magazine was sold, and became a women's magazine.  McClure never recovered financially.

For a brief period of three years....McClures magazine was probably the most read magazine in the nation, and likely influenced millions in their voting pattern from 1893 to 1905.  No one much talks about this influence today, or notes how various corrupt political machines or big-name companies came to an end in this 1900-1905 era.  Even Standard Oil could not fight the massive amount of voter-pressure put upon Congress to clean up the oil business.  All....compliments of articles via McClures.

Did McClures burn bridges as they rode through?  Yes.  As the Republicans advanced and took over for the corrupted regions of the US.....they got into the same issues.  As Standard Oil got broke up....there were new corrupt companies waiting to be hit on next.

So, before CNN, Time, NewsWeak, Fox News, Drudge, and these news sources that we have today....there was McClures.  And they did a pretty good job.