Editgate: Three Strikes and NBC's Steve Capus Should Be Out
At the NBC/Universal Website, Steve Capus' role at NBC News is described in this way:
Steve Capus was named President, NBC News in November 2005. He is the No. 1 News Division executive and is responsible for all aspects of America's highest-rated and most-watched network News division, as well as MSNBC and NBC News Channel. Capus is also the arbiter of issues involving ethics, style, standards, safety and other matters that affect the Division's journalistic bearing.
As we learned after NBC's Friday night "nameless producer" dump, Steve Capus still refuses to name the NBC "senior" producer fired for portraying as racist, by means of malicious mis-editing, a private citizen (George Zimmerman) currently hiding in fear for his life -- which means that this producer remains able to get a job anywhere in the media, free from public scrutiny.
Moreover, Capus stands by his ridiculous assertion that the edit was "a mistake and not a deliberate act to misrepresent the phone call."
Does that sound to you like someone who is "the arbiter of issues involving ethics [and] standards"? Or does that sound more like someone involved in a cover up--one that shills like "media watchdog" Howard Kurtz is aiding and abetting, no less.
If it's true, though, that this was a mistake, then Nameless Producer probably has a wrongful termination suit on his or her hands. But even if Nameless Producer intentionally did this in the hopes of throwing our Community-Organizer-In-Chief a little help in ginning up his base in a crucial swing state, why would Nameless Producer think for a moment that Steve Capus, "the the arbiter of issues involving ethics" would think that such a thing was …wrong?
After all, under Capus' leadership, NBC News has twice before maliciously edited newscasts in order to inflame racial division and attack conservatives--all, of course, in an effort to help Barack Obama.
In August of 2009, NBC's Contessa Brewer (who still has the same job) used deceptive editing so that that MSNBC viewers wouldn't know that the man carrying firearms to a Tea Party was a black man. This allowed Brewer to then host a segment about how racist the Tea Party is towards President Obama and how this racism might just lead to the unthinkable--the assassination of our President:
That is fear-mongering, race-baiting, and malicious editing at its worst -- all under the watchful eye of NBC's "arbiter of issues involving ethics," Steve Capus.
But of course the only message sent by Capus afterward was that, if you do the most unethical act imaginable at NBC, you get to keep your job.
Which probably explains why just a couple years later, NBC's Ed Schultz did the exact same thing to Texas Governor Rick Perry, who was then a candidate for the GOP presidential nomination:
And guess who still has a job? Well, thanks to NBC's "arbiter of issues involving ethics," that would be Ed Schultz.
So over the course of about 30 months and under the watchful eye of Steve Capus, three times now NBC News has used deceptive editing in order to intentionally gin up racial division, all in an effort to aid Barack Obama by targeting his political critics (Tea Party, Perry) or to further the President's cynical reelection campaign to divide all Americans along racial lines (George Zimmerman).
And as a response to a once-respected news outlet openly selling its soul and violating every journalistic ethic to aid a sitting president, you have "media watchdogs" like The Daily Beast's Howard Kurtz more upset that a Republican finally got a few hours exposure on NBC, and Politico's Dylan Byers having to be shamed into covering it at all.
Because this is how it works:
Steve Capus has fostered an environment where, in furtherance of advancing Obama's policy goals and reelection, it is okay to maliciously edit facts in order to falsely smear private citizens (Tea Party, George Zimmerman) and Obama's potential GOP rivals (Gov. Perry) as racist.
Worse still is the fact that no one in the news media, including our so-called watch dogs and rival news outlets, will give these three unpardonable attacks the attention, scrutiny, or condemnation they deserve, because they all believe that the ends justify the means and that anything that helps Obama is a-okay.
This is three times (that we know of) that the very same moral and journalistic crime has occurred under Steve Capus. By any reasonable standard, he should've been fired after it was allowed to happen twice. Now he will surely get away with this third instance of: Oh, my. How did the exact same thing happen again?
But he won't be fired, because the necessary pressure will never be applied, because those with the power to apply it approve of what he's doing.
If you think I'm wrong, give me a better explanation for why Steve Capus still has a job at NBC.
NOTE: This post was updated to clarify GE ownership of NBC, which is 49% , and to add the information about GE's receipt of nearly $25 million in Obama stimulus funds.