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Posted by on Apr 12, 2009 in Media, Politics | 4 comments

The Rachel Maddow Show’s A Fine Wine

Being Easter Sunday and all that, I felt redemption for something I wrote in passing reference about Rachel Maddow. I called the MSNBC cable news hostess a “liberal flame thrower.”

Maddow is, yes, a liberal. The “flame thrower” element is a description applied by Fox’s Bill O’Reilly for anyone on the left of which he disagrees.

I’m in agreement with Ms. Maddow more often than not.

As is so often the case, the post in question mentioned Maddow once in a critical review of MSNBC’s new primetime host Ed Schultz. The comments from readers on The Moderate Voice and my own blog all chastised me for my Maddow characterization.

I stand corrected.

From a pure journalistic perspective, Maddow is the best interviewer on television since the death of Tim Russert.

A Rhodes scholar, she does her homework. Her producers have the intelligence to allow her enough time to probe deep into a guest’s responses. In this regard, she’s a bulldog. She’s relentless. And she carries it out in a low-key professional manner. No yelling and insulting ala O’Reilly and his sidekick Sean Hannity.

Furthermore, Maddow is an excellent teacher. She can grasp a complex subject such as the budget reconciliation bill and explain it in language a fifth grader can understand. I’m a political junkie and not embarrassed to admit how much I learned about the U.S. Senate’s 60-vote majority cloister rule after listening to Maddow’s explanation.

She also offers provocative guests, experts in their fields, one seldom sees on MSNBC, CNN or Fox. Maddow is not a Washington Beltway protege which works to her advantage.

When she sticks to politics or relative substantive issues, Maddow is on firm ground even if one disagrees with her slants, angles and any other agendas on her platter.

And, unlike most TV hosts, she not only apologizes for errors or misstatements from previous shows, she corrects “mischaracterizations” as was the case of describing Colin Powell as “uncomfortable” with a series of questions she asked the former Secretary of State. Powell said that wasn’t the case, she reported the following day.

She does tend to be a little prissy with those “Holy Mackerel” stories. The “GOP In Exile” and the show’s concluding segment are fluffy time killers, but, by and large, she offers an informative and entertaining show.

“The Rachel Maddow Show” is like a fine wine. It grows on you.

Cross posted on The Remmers Report

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Copyright 2009 The Moderate Voice
  • Holly_in_Cincinnati

    Really? Ms. Maddow is less annoying than Mr. Olbermann but I am not particularly impressed. I find both liberal and conservative talkers just plain indigestible.

  • I agree, Jerry. She’s the smartest, most prepared interviewer on prime time and rarely-if ever-get’s it wrong. Now I fully expect lots of comments like the one above (sorry Holly) and more to come, responding to her personality, her politics and style, but not the substance of what you wrote. She knows her stuff and actually interviews, rather than just opening a mic and saying ‘what do you think?’

  • StockBoySF

    Yes, I find Rachel Maddow to be reasonable and honest. She does definitely have a liberal leaning in her show but she is respectful of her guests and give them time to answer. I remember when she got her first Republican willing to come on- she was so happy. She kept saying something like, “I don’t bite… really”. But she doesn’t take any BS either.

    She’s also criticized Obama and the Dems when she felt it was necessary.

  • Silhouette

    She is good. That’s for sure. She and I are both daughters of airforce brass….airforce brats…lol..

    Must be something to that and the not mincing words thing? If that little “owning a vagina” issue wasn’t standing in her way, she’d be lauded as the top reporter in news today.

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