TV Critic Slams MSNBC for Chris Hayes Climate-Change Documentary Without Dissenting Voices

Brian Lowry, a former TV critic for the Los Angeles Times who now writes for the trade paper Variety, slammed tonight's MSNBC eco-documentary by anchor and bicyclist Chris Hayes: “the editorial approach of this Chris Hayes-hosted hour continues an all-too-common trend of cable news preaching to the choir, where not a single dissenting voice is incorporated in any serious way.”

It's called "The Politics of Power." Lowry’s liberal enough that he conceded agreement with the notion that “there is no such thing, scientifically speaking, as a credible ‘dissenting voice’ on the subject of climate change.” But he’d like a program where Hayes invites the global-warming "denialists" and makes them squirm in the hot seat like a classic “60 Minutes” patsy:

“Politics of Power” would be more provocative — and potentially more persuasive — if it included people who insist global warming is all a myth concocted by tree-huggers. It’s worth noting, too, that conservatives are not monolithic on the subject, even if they generally still dislike Al Gore.

Besides, speaking of ticking clocks, “60 Minutes” didn’t make a name for itself simply by doing happy-talk pieces, but rather by confronting subjects with hard evidence and tough questions, then watching them squirm in the hot seat.

The left always views resistance to the greens as a corporate conspiracy: “Hayes draws a direct comparison to the days when the tobacco lobby insisted nicotine is not addictive.”

Lowry noted the Hayes special includes “goofy-sounding” tape clips from Sen. James Inhofe and other critics, but no interviews. “Did MSNBC ask such officials, and nobody would participate? That’s certainly possible, given the way politicians now gravitate toward friendly media venues where they know they’ll be served up softball questions. But there’s no mention of anybody declining such a request,” he wrote.

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis