Columns

Ed Schultz of MSNBC: Nothing 'Progressive' About Loutish Meltdown

Inappropriate tirade against Laura Ingraham deserved more network condemnation
By: Florence Snyder | Posted: May 27, 2011 3:55 AM
Ed Schultz

Ed Schultz

MSNBC radio and cable talk show host Ed Schultz calls himself "The Nation's No. 1 Progressive Voice."

This week, he progressed to the Misogynist Hall of Fame with his radio reference to fellow opinionator Laura Ingraham as a “slut.” Schultz managed to use the word twice in one sentence, which is one time more than would have gotten past anybody's kindergarten teacher.

Impulse control is not one of Schultz’s strengths. Last summer, the New York Post reported his “meltdown in the [MSNBC] 30 Rock newsroom.” Schultz was enraged that the marketing folks ran commercials that he wasn’t in. When his huffing and puffing failed to win hearts and minds, he slammed down the telephone and shouted, "I'm going to torch this [bleep]ing place."

White men with microphones have likewise been on the receiving end of Schultz’s verbal violence. According to The Post, Schultz “once told White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs, 'You're full of [bleep].' And after Fox News Channel's Glenn Beck revealed a condition that may make him go blind, Schultz said, "It's a travesty he's not going to see the country he's trying to destroy."

Florence Snyder mug

Florence Snyder

The working people Schultz claims to champion would be fired from their factories, fast-food restaurants, and offices if they acted nuts and uncorked about “sluts.”  But Schultz seems to have a license to behave like a bad-tempered sub-literate seventh grader.  Following his Monday dump on Ingraham, MSNBC brass huddled for two days and emerged with this statement:

MSNBC management met with Ed Schultz [Wednesday] afternoon and accepted his offer to take one week of unpaid leave for the remarks he made on his radio program. Ed will address these remarks on his show tonight, and immediately following begin his leave. Remarks of this nature are unacceptable and will not be tolerated.

MSNBC accepted Schultz's "offer"?  Really?

Call it zero tolerance, Orwell-style. 

Schultz won’t miss a week’s pay, and it sounds like he could use a few days to chill out, but it will be a long time before anyone takes his "civility" lectures seriously. 

MSNBC's slogan is "Lean forward."  It did ... and spit straight into our eyes.


Guest column:  Florence Snyder is a corporate lawyer. She also consults on ethics and First Amendment issues. Contact her at lawyerflo@gmail.com.


Comments (4)

REMARCADO
12:39AM NOV 29TH 2011
DOC
9:35AM MAY 28TH 2011
Hmmm, he can use the "S" word & get slammed, but Geraldo can call Casey Anthony the same & nothing happens.
J Mosier
5:47AM MAY 27TH 2011
I think the remark is being given too much attention. What should garner more attention is that TV & radio shock jocks Ingraham, Beck, Limbaugh, Hannity, Blitzer, etc. are allowed to daily spout lies, stir up hatred and prejudice and never have to be held accountable or punished. They just keep getting richer. Too many dumb & stupid people have the right to vote. This is not what the founding fathers had in mind!
Drew Benjamin
5:19AM MAY 27TH 2011
I listened to Schultz' apology and it sounded as sincere a mea culpa as I've ever heard from a public figure. No passive language, no "if anyone was offended" deflection construction. I'll be honest with you, liberals need a dozen more red hot nail spitting mid-western guys who fumble the courtesy ball occasionally while skewering the hell out of right-wing mythology. We also need about a thousand less milquetoast ethics wallflowers policing them for perceived misogyny. Modern conservatism isn't a political ideology, it's a fact challenged delusion. These aren't the civil Republicans of the 50s that we are politely disagreeing with, they're bug-eyed sociopaths waving Ayn Rand books like bibles. I mean let's put this in perspective Ed didn't sleep with Sally Hemmings, he's just an ex-jock who reverted to some locker room language that he immediately repudiated. Ingraham accepted his apology maybe you should too. To recap...more fire-breathing liberals fewer milquetoast whiners and hand-wringers.

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