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Major Biden is the most talked-about rescue pup on the planet. Is it news that he bit people while on a walk, or maybe pooped on the White House carpet? Some reporters think so. Also, questions about two pieces on ’60 Minutes’ and why hundreds of filmmakers say PBS’s relationship with Ken Burns hurts them.

Commentary: Economics and Politics

Apr 6, 2021

There are many subjects I know only enough about to be dangerous, and economics is one of them.  I took intro econ in college, and at the time I learned that economics is about scarcity.  Only later did I learn it is actually about politics.  If we had everything we want we wouldn’t need government.  Since we don’t, someone has to make and enforce rules to keep the peace generally and to keep greed and larceny at bay specifically. 


Commentary: Economics and Politics

Apr 6, 2021

There are many subjects I know only enough about to be dangerous, and economics is one of them.  I took intro econ in college, and at the time I learned that economics is about scarcity.  Only later did I learn it is actually about politics.  If we had everything we want we wouldn’t need government.  Since we don’t, someone has to make and enforce rules to keep the peace generally and to keep greed and larceny at bay specifically. 


Five candidates are running for two open spots on the Columbia Public School Board of Education, to be decided by voters in the Tuesday, April 6th election. KBIA's Logan Franz spoke with each candidate - here's a breakdown of the issues and goals they have in mind.

 

Two mass shootings in two weeks; 18 people gunned down in different corners of the country. This week, we look at how journalists covered these events, and how race and gender played into the coverage. Also, the NFL’s new television deals bring in $100 billion and art traders deal in NFTs.

Two mass shootings in two weeks; 18 people gunned down in different corners of the country. This week, we look at how journalists covered these events, and how race and gender played into the coverage. Also, the NFL’s new television deals bring in $100 billion and art traders deal in NFTs.

Monday marked the opening of the next tier for COVID-19 vaccination eligibility in Missouri. This week on Views of the News, how transparent is that process, and what lengths are residents going to in order to find and sign up for appointments? Also, criticism rains down on Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, a potential new suitor for Tribune Publishing and how leaders across America are planning to repopulate newsrooms.

Commentary: COVID Reading

Mar 16, 2021

It’s a good thing I like to read because I’ve done a lot of it in the last year.  Jane and I get four daily newspapers and read another online.  I always have two or three books going, and that doesn’t count audio books.


Was Oprah Winfrey’s conversation with Meghan and Prince Harry the best journalistic interview ever done? While it might seem hyperbolic, some journalism scholars are calling it just that. Hear what our experts think. Also, the trials of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin and journalists arrested during Black Lives Matter protests, and Sen. Roy Blunt says he won’t seek re-election.

More than half a million Americans have died of COVID-19. This week, we take a look at how our nation has marked this grim milestone. Also, covering the Texas energy crisis, Ted Cruz’s Cancun vacation and understanding the influence and power of the Black Church. From the Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Kathy Kiely: Views of the News.


Rush Limbaugh has died at the age of 70. Join us as we look back at how he transformed the talk radio genre while shaping today’s Republican party. Also, a member of the Biden press team resigns, evaluating the coverage of former the Trump impeachment trial, and ‘Framing Britney Spears.’

Commentary: Imagining The Trump Library

Feb 16, 2021

Dear Listener,

Here’s some breaking news: I have seen the draft design for the Trump Presidential Library.  I don’t know where it’s going to be located.  It could be on one of his properties, except he may have to sell them all to pay his debts and legal fees. 

But I do know some of what’s going in it, wherever it’s built.  My secret source is a former top official in the Trump administration and therefore completely reliable and trustworthy.  Feel free to add to; here’s your chance to be an architect and interior designer.  I’m sure they’re looking for ideas. 


House impeachment managers started Tuesday’s impeachment trial against former President Donald Trump showing a graphic video from inside the U.S. Capitol. The television networks showed it, uncut and uncensored, during daytime television. Also, Fox News dumps Lou Dobbs, OAN distances itself from a documentary it aired, and a rundown of our favorite Super Bowl commercials.

At a time when attention is a form of currency, is the news media giving U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga) too much? Also, Saturday Night Live’s first new episode since the start of the Biden administration, how the news media explained the GameStop gambit, and preparing for Super Bowl LV. From the Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Kathy Kiely: Views of the News.

Commentary: Close Call

Jan 28, 2021

Since January 6, a sizeable and rapidly growing portion of the 74 million citizens who voted for Donald Trump have come to realize that it’s probably a good thing that Trump was not re-elected.  But we need to remember, it was a very close call.

In fact, until the Saturday after the election, when PA was called for Biden, Trump’s reelection was at least an Electoral College possibility. 


The Trump presidency comes to an end. After two impeachments, how will Joe Biden and Kamala Harris move the nation forward, and how will journalists record it for history. Also, a CNN reporter’s emotional reaction following one of her own COVID-19 reports.

This week on Views of the News, a look back – and a look ahead – from the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. Also, a Voice of America reporter is reassigned after questioning Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and Vogue editors defend their February cover, a portrait of Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris some say is too casual.

Commentary: Dear Diary

Jan 12, 2021

If I kept a daily tab of the past week or so, it might read like this:

Dear Diary,

New Year’s Day: Our own Sen. Hawley plans to formally contest the election and jump to the front of the line to inherit Trump’s Base.  In Julius Caesar Shakespeare wrote: “Yon Cassius has a lean and hungry look.”

January 2: Misinformation, confusion, lack of coordination, lack of leadership, malfeasance, criminal behavior in the vaccination rollout.  In other words, business as usual in Trump’s bureaucracy.


How did Donald Trump assemble the second largest voter coalition in American history?  He won more than 74 million votes, which is more than the entire population of France.   

To illustrate the breadth of his appeal, you can drive from the Idaho-Canada border to Key West and from the Rio Grande to Lake Erie and not have to cross a single blue state.  Had 65,000 voters in Arizona, Georgia, Nevada and Wisconsin voted for Trump instead of Biden, Trump would have won the Electoral College majority and been reelected.


Rashida Jones (left), Monica Richardson (right)
Courtesy MSNBC, Miami Herald

Some big changes at the top, as Black women are named to run major newsrooms; Rashida Jones will run MSNBC and Monica Richardson takes over as executive editor at the Miami Herald.

Commentary: Georgia on Our Minds

Dec 1, 2020

Growing up we loved Ray Charles.  His songs had wide appeal and were singable.  I loved his star turn in the Blues Brothers movie. 

His first hit was “Georgia on My Mind,” which later became the official state song.  And lots of us have Georgia on our minds.  I do for four reasons.

President Donald Trump gave his first interview this weekend, but for journalists, the real story is not what he said, but what interviewer Maria Bartiromo didn’t.

Has Fox News been outfoxed by competition that's even more partisan? 

Commentary: Trump After January 20

Nov 17, 2020

Someday I will do one of these commentaries without mentioning Donald Trump, but not soon and certainly not today.

Today I’ll explore the range of possibilities that exist for Trump after noon on January 20.  Not included is his being inaugurated for a second term.  The catastrophizers need to get back on their meds. 

Let’s start with the book ends.  There is the scenario in which he rides off into the sunset into a quiet and peaceful retirement in Florida to play golf.  I’ll pause here to let the derisive laughter subside.

Commentary: Election Week

Nov 10, 2020

In case last week was a bit of a blur, here is a log of the week after the election.

Wednesday, November 4: There’s an old Clint Eastwood movie named The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.  That describes the election for Democrats.


What will we remember from the moments leading up to the election of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice-President elect Kamala Harris? Will it be the raw, emotional reactions of voters in the streets, the commentators offering very personal perspectives… or will it be Steve Kornacki’s khakis? 

Commentary: Election Handicapping

Oct 28, 2020

I talked to my favorite Republican and Democrat last week about next week’s election.  Here’s what they said.

Both think Judy Baker will almost, but not quite, beat Caleb Rowden for the local state senate seat.   The Republican says Rowden is lucky Cooper County is part of the district.  The Democrat says Rowden’s outside money is crucial.


President Trump (left) is interviewed by Leslie Stahl (right) for '60 Minutes' on CBS News.
Courtesy of CBS News

Even after President Donald Trump leaked his interview with ’60 Minutes,’ nearly 17 million people tuned in to hear his exchange with Leslie Stahl. Was it the plan all along to walk out on the interview?

Commentary: The Presidential Disco Ball

Oct 20, 2020

In my stubborn and almost certainly quixotic quest to understand President Trump and especially his most ardent followers, I locate others trying to do the same thing.  In the October 11 New York Times Magazine Dan Brooks looked at why liberal comedy shows on television have mostly failed.  It’s worth reading for the main content, but there is this nugget toward the end of his article that I had to read three times before I finally got it:


We’re streaming right and left, and with Election Day inching near, there’s no shortage of politically minded entertainment programming from which to choose. This week, we’ll look at the dramas, documentaries, mockumentaries and stage shows which await.

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