One of the interesting things to come of this Presidential election isn’t a bad thing. While the entire process seems like – as a coworker put it – one big garbage fire, there’s a certain satisfaction that comes with the realization that the Emperor is not wearing any clothes. All the revelations about how horribly insipid all aspects of society seem to be is not pretty, is not comfortable, and ultimately may be somewhat catastrophic to life as we know it. But if all the world is built on lies and corruption, then what good is all of this anyway? Better to present what it is, tear it down, and build it back up again the way it’s supposed to be.
There are direct revelations, and then there are those where one needs to contemplate a few things and put the pieces all together. The political-media complex has been unearthed for what it is in the Wikileaks e-mails. Newsflash: Democrats hate Christians, the media hates Republicans, and they collude together to impact the outcome of elections and promote a secular agenda. WOW! Who ever woulda guessed!? Um, yeah. Most of us. But until it was laid bare, it was surmising an opinion based on circumstantial evidence and logic, which could be easily enough met with denials to convince the apathetic among us that it was all imagined. No more is this the case.
Alas, the breadth of all this is vast. So, let’s focus on one of the aspects of the release of the tapes by NBC from a “hot mic” episode in 2005. Unless you’ve been in a coma with earplugs in for the last week, you know about the derogatory language Trump was picked up saying on a leaked video. And I’ve already discussed the fact that NBC and the Clinton campaign held the tape until now, which basically means they don’t care about anything but themselves and their political chances. Otherwise they would have done the right thing and released it during the primaries.
But forget about all that for now. Let’s focus on the sheer and laughable response by NBC. Let’s lay it all out in context: in 2005 Trump was picked up having this discussion with Billy Bush. Billy, a “reporter” for Access Hollywood played along like a good Hollywood sex-driven lunatic would be expected to do. He laughs with the Donald, engages in his own commentary (reports are that NBC edited the tape to minimize for the public Bush’s part of this, but that he had a lot more to say) and encourages a woman to hug Trump after the conversation took place. For ELEVEN years, this behavior was known by NBC. In the meantime, Billy Bush kept his job on Access Hollywood, and ultimately was promoted to the Today show.
Not only that, but NBC – who I repeat, knew about this tape – put Donald Trump on the air and made oodles of money from The Apprentice. Word has it that in both the cases of Bush and Trump, there are many cases of crass and rude language. And you know what? I would bet that if all the media personalities on NBC had all their “hot mic” or edited segments released, we would find very few sinless people there. And I am willing to bet that the pattern of behavior with respect to sexual commentary is constant.
But now that we’re in the world of politics, the tape has been released. Remember, NBC could have released this months ago. In doing so, they decided that the “common good” for the country outweighed sacrificing one of their own. They have managed to avoid a lot of scrutiny implicating them on enabling this kind of behavior by rewarding it. But now that the tape is released, well BY GOD, THAT BILLY BUSH NEEDS TO BE PUNISHED! It’s stupid, it’s sickening, and it’s irrational.
Listen, I didn’t even know who Billy Bush was before this. Don’t really care on a personal level that he’s suspended. In a morally upright universe, both Bush and Trump would have been told that it’s unacceptable behavior and they should try to find another network. But none of that happened. So to fake moral outrage now is so disingenuous that it reveals only that the folks at NBC are hypocritical, political, and not wearing any clothes.
Trump and Bush are symptoms of the problem. NBC is the problem. Or, more accurately, part of the system that is the problem.