Kevin Price
MSNBC: Home of demagogues, activists, and liars?
By Kevin Price
June 20, 2015

Brian Williams appears to be on track to be back, just like the executives announced when the NBC Evening News anchor was thrown out of his seat following several run-ins with the truth earlier this year. The issue of Williams and his "misrepresentations" began with his story about the helicopter he was on in a war zone that never faced attack, though he certainly created a compelling story of how frightening of an experience he "endured."

Since the breaking of the story on his "misleading" reports, virtually everything he has covered since the 1990s has been under intense scrutiny, from witnessing the tumbling of the wall that divided East Germany from the West to the way he casually stumbled on a Pope and was able to have an unscheduled interview with him. These were all fascinating stories, but their veracity remains doubtful and some have been proven to be untrue.

Following such "creative" journalism, NBC had to do something, and that was a six month suspension without pay for Williams from his anchor chair – and his other duties at NBC – to contemplate the consequences of his behavior. From the beginning there has been wild speculation about what would ultimately happen. Some argued that it would be treated like "it never happened," and he would find himself in the anchor chair and would go back to the biggest ratings in the news industry. Others, after seeing the success of his replacement, Lester Holt, thought it would be best to find something else for Williams to do. However, the debate about the future of Brian Williams seems to be over. NBC wants to put their one time superstar on the staff of MSNBC. For those who have served in a high position in any major network, this is a form a purgatory, a way of firing someone without actually pulling the trigger. After all, MSNBC's ratings are pathetic and it no longer even positions itself as a news network with its lineup of overt progressives and slogans that sound more like a political party than an information source (for example, "It's Time to Lean Forward").

That may be NBC's objective, to simply persuade Brian Williams to resign than choose to serve in such a potentially embarrassing position. So far, I have not seen any formal statements from either NBC or their former Nightly News anchor. All I have seen are "reports." There are different news sources, but most carry a similar message as the Washington Post, which reported: "Brian Williams will return to NBC News but will no longer serve as anchor of its signature newscast, 'Nightly News,' various media outlets reported Wednesday evening. Lester Holt, who has anchored the program since Williams was suspended in February, will continue to be the face of the program."

What Williams will do at MSNBC even remains in doubt, according to the Post: "It's unclear what role he'll fulfill or when he will resume working at the network." Back when MSNBC debuted in 1996, Williams was the lead anchor. It is hard to imagine him willing to go back to a position he held two decades ago.

The bigger question, though, is what is NBC thinking? For years MSNBC has been the most overtly political of all the major news site. It is a network full of individuals who have occupied activist positions (such as Al Sharpton) and editorial spots (such as Chris Matthews), rather than considered traditional journalists. Is MSNBC now saying it is a network that is appropriate for liars? MSNBC has long had a ratings problem and has recently been found to be "down double digits," according to TV Newser. On some very important times of the day, the network cannot even reach six digits in viewership. One of the best questions about MSNBC came from The Daily Beast, with the headline, "Why is Brian Williams Good Enough for MSNBC, but not NBC?" Is Williams move designed to bolster the struggling network or to simply finish it off? Regardless of the objective in moving Williams to MSNBC, one has to wonder out loud, what does this move say about the network when it comes to the importance of veracity in journalism?

© Kevin Price


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)

Click to enlarge

Kevin Price

Kevin Price is Publisher and Editor in Chief of

His background is eclectic and includes years of experience in both business and public policy, as well as two decades of experience in broadcast journalism. He was an aide to U.S. Senator Gordon Humphrey (R-NH) and later went on to work in policy areas with some of the nation's leading think tanks including the National Center for Public Policy Research and was part of the Heritage Foundation's Annual Guide to Public Policy Experts... (more)


Receive future articles by Kevin Price: Click here

More by this author


Stephen Stone
HAPPY EASTER: A message to all who love our country and want to help save it

Stephen Stone
The most egregious lies Evan McMullin and the media have told about Sen. Mike Lee

Siena Hoefling
Protect the Children: Update with VIDEO

Stephen Stone
FLASHBACK to 2020: Dems' fake claim that Trump and Utah congressional hopeful Burgess Owens want 'renewed nuclear testing' blows up when examined

Linda Goudsmit
CHAPTER 28: Pantheism, Gnosticism, and Marxism

Victor Sharpe
A two-state solution – but on both sides of the River Jordan

Jerry Newcombe
Providence and America

Cherie Zaslawsky
The shot heard 'round the world': Once & future President Donald J. Trump miraculously survives assassination attempt!

Tom DeWeese
The dangerous delusion of Biden and world leaders of transition to ‘just electricity’

Frank Louis
A thought (or two) on the Republican Platform 2024

Robert Meyer
Competing religious claims

Cliff Kincaid
The next assassination attempt

Pete Riehm
America needs unity, but also accountability

Ronald R. Cherry
The Secret Service

Armand C. Hale
Where are my shoes?

Frank Louis
So now what?
  More columns


Click for full cartoon
More cartoons


Matt C. Abbott
Chris Adamo
Russ J. Alan
Bonnie Alba
Chuck Baldwin
Kevin J. Banet
J. Matt Barber
Fr. Tom Bartolomeo
. . .
[See more]

Sister sites