Death-Media Saint: Tim Russert
Okay, so we've had a few weeks to digest Russert's death. I for one haven't been able to watch a single MTP since the memorial show, and even that was beyond bittersweet.
Okay, enough pathological bloviating, this whole thing has been perhaps the best illustration of the whole Death-Media principle (best in a while). You all know how much I love MSNBC, but even the New Yorker's caught on to what a cult of personality it has become.
Olbermann's repeated, vindictive attacks on people who had "dared" to mention Russert in the shows after TR's death essentially confirmed for me what has become a central truth: the media elite are the new Mafia, and when Vito gets whacked by a coronary, you better fucking stand at attention at the funeral or your next on the "Worst Persons" list. In an earlier time I regarded Keith's lists as ironic exercises in self-awareness, but lately I'm not so sure. The fact that "special comments" are now advertised in promos isn't helping things either. Where once they seemed spontaneous and energized critical commentaries, lately they seem little more than canned rants, exercises in utterly oblivious obviousness. Gone is any shred of self-awareness.
I predict a flame-out/breakdown for Olbermann sometime in the next few months, probably after the election but maybe before; all the signs are their, namely mounting popularity (see Sportscenter), incredible stress from his higher than ever intra-media profile, and now the death of Russert gives him a perfect "excuse" for his insanity during the damage control phase of his exit from MSNBC ("Keith was really distressed by Tim's passing and needs some time to recover.")... You heard it here first.
But back to Russert... Everyone lost their s#!+ about that guy! The Times and Post, CBS, CNN, ABC, etc... Everyone!
More on this theme as I roll it around like sausages in gravy in my mind.