If sunlight is the best disinfectant, then CNN and MSNBC are being hit by a supernova. In just a few short weeks, the networks have suffered several high-profile embarrassments as their on-air talent battle over who can hate President Trump in the most idiotic way possible. In the midst of combat, HBO’s Bill Maher tried to put them both to shame.
So far, CNN is still winning, but that’s hardly a distinction. More CNN staffers have done more certifiably insane things than those at MSNBC recently. They’ve got it all -- threats of violence, obscene attacks on the president and even a “poop” comment. What’s amazing is the ever-reliable Don Lemon didn’t even do any of it. (Even the left knows Lemon is a tool.)
The highest-profile incident came when annual employee Kathy Griffin’s career became as radioactive as Chernobyl. The former D List actress pretended to decapitate the president and did her best ISIS impersonation holding a bloody Trump head in her hand. It took the CNN brain trust a day to fire her. Then she made it all worse with a demented press conference where she blamed Trump. Of course.
CNN’s quasi-resident cannibal (No, I’m really not joking.) Reza Aslan apparently is still in a failed quest for brains. (He did a six-part show on the network and his bio still calls him a “host.”) He went nuts so bad after Trump comments on the latest UK terror attack that he called Trump a “piece of sh*t.” Then he apparently wished death on a congressman, writing: “Any chance God could take care of Tim Walberg first?” according to Red State.
CNN counterterrorism analyst Philip Mudd continued in that theme, wishing violence on a member of Congress -- of course, a Republican. He whined that South Carolina Rep. Trey Gowdy "ought to have his ass kicked" for asking about evidence of collusion with Russia.
And host Anderson Cooper made a presidential “poop” comment that he ended up apologizing for. Cooper was angry with Trump supporter Jeffrey Lord's defenses of Trump, even though that’s why he’s on CNN. Cooper was unhappy his constant interruptions weren’t fazing Lord and added, "if he took a dump on his desk, you would defend it."
Things were better at MSNBC, but that’s not saying much. Anchor Thomas Roberts actually asked a guest if Trump is “trying to provoke a domestic terrorist attack.” Because he was being “not PC about this.” Moronic? Yes. PC? No.
Katy Tur said Trump’s infamous “covfefe” typo made her fear someone would hack the president’s Twitter account and cause nuclear war. “This kept me up last night! I was up until 2 in the morning wondering when this tweet was going to go away,” she whimpered.
Then there’s Joe Scarborough – the former Republican congressman who owes his millions to the folks who hate the right. Both he and his cohost/fiancee went back to the “pooping” maturity of Anderson Cooper. Scarborough claimed Trump’s covfefe is “like somebody pooping their pants and then people looking at it and saying that's modern art.”
Even though HBO isn’t a news network, Real Time host Bill Maher finally went too far for liberals. It was if Maher looked at all of the stupidity on CNN and MSNBC and decided to live a popular meme, saying, “I got this.” Maher interviewed Nebraska Republican Sen. Ben Sasse, and Sasse said Halloween isn’t big in the Cornhusker State. That pleased Maher. “I've got to get to Nebraska more," he responded.
Sasse answered like any politician from a farming state, replying, “We'd love to have you work in the fields with us." To which Maher responded, seeking the punchline: “Work in the fields?" He shook his head and then raised his hands, as if to say, “Stop!” adding, “Senator, I'm a house [N-word].”
Unsurprisingly, this has gotten Maher in trouble, especially since it’s not the first time, or even the most ridiculous thing he’s done. He’s even dropped the N word back in 2010, along with calling Tea Party people “teabaggers,” which is sexual and offensive. Then there’s calling Sarah Palin a “c**t” and her son Trig a “retard.” But those were OK because he was attacking conservatives.
This is only a few months into the Trump administration. At this rate, CNN and MSNBC will destroy their careers worse than in the rumble from Anchorman by the time Trump enters his second year. Only that won’t be a comedy, it will just be a tragedy.
Dan Gainor is the vice president for Business and Culture at the Media Research Center. He can be followed @dangainor on Twitter.