Dylan Ratigan Protests 'Since When Is It My Job to Be a Democrat or a Republican?'
In a discussion with The Atlantic last week about "What I Read," Dylan Ratigan claimed he's unfairly typecast as a lefty just because he's on MSNBC:
One of my great frustrations with working in cable news is that the entire cable news infrastructure has been branded through partisan political lenses and so people assume that if you're on MSNBC you're left and if you're on Fox News you're right. There's no question that I'm painted as left because of the network I'm on. The branding precedes the talent in cable networking. Since when is it my job to be a Democrat or Republican? I recognize that both political parties are bought by six industries: energy, banking, health care, defense, agribusiness and communications.
So he sounds like Bill Moyers, but wants to be recognized as nonpartisan and objective. Welcome to the land of Major Media Poseurs, Mr. Ratigan! But too many remember gems like Ratigan tagging the Tea Party as pyromaniacs who want to "burn the whole town down" and then turned around and promoting Ted Rall on the need for a radical-left revolution, "perhaps even through violence." (Ratigan had a rough time with the 2010 electoral results.)
He should also open a few eyes with this line: "I don’t subscribe to any print media. I wouldn’t read a newspaper now unless you put a gun to my head and even then I would really try to negotiate with you. It’s not that I reject the content, it’s that I reject the format." He means that he reads papers like the New York Times online, but wouldn't dirty his fingertips with the On Dead Tree stuff.
He rejects the format. Gotcha. And therein lies the problem, since it’s the format that pays for the way Ratigan and others like him consume their information. It also doesn’t help a newspaper such as the New York Times, which it still hasn’t figured out a way to keep people from accessing their online content for free, with its Maginot Line paywall.
I hope he realizes the format we will reject next is cable news. Personally, I haven’t found anything on any cable news channel helpful for years now. If I had Ratigan’s proverbial gun to my head and I had to choose between the New York Times and cable news as my source of information, I’d pick the Times, with all its faults.
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