Stephen Miller interview: This time, Tapper blew it

According to me, CNN’s Jake Tapper has been one of the heroes of TV journalism in the Trump era.

Tapper generally maintains his composure, asks tough but fair questions, doesn’t opine much on the substance of the issues of the day but takes a strong position on the importance of journalists pushing back against the decline of the old tough-but-fair style of journalism.

Yesterday, I thought he blew it. He stooped to conquer, but did not conquer, in his “State-of-the-Union” interview with Stephen Miller, an adviser to President Donald Trump.

I’m not sticking up, even slightly, for Miller, who long ago sold off any integrity he might have had to play an unctuous groveler to Trump. But Miller was the lead guest on “State of the Union,” sent out to attack “Fire and Fury” author Michael Wolff, former Trump whisperer Steve Bannon and to tell us all that, contrary to the dunce-Trump portrayed in Wolff’s book, the president is (as the president himself modestly disclosed in a tweet) a “genius” and a paragon, and right about everything.

CNN, and perhaps especially Tapper’s show, has trouble booking high Trump administration officials (for reasons that seem obvious, but that also violate the old norms, when an administration would welcome the chance to make its case, even to a potentially skeptical audience. So it seemed a medium-sized deal to me that Team Trump sent Miller to appear on Tapper’s show yesterday, not that I expected it to shed much light on the news of the day.

I turned out to be right about that. But it turned out to be a good show (in the P.T. Barnum sense). I’ll summarize the exchange, and include video below so you can watch it for yourself. But, just to highlight what I said at the top, I thought Tapper’s decision to mock his guest was beneath him (and I wouldn’t be surprised if Tapper knows by now that he blew it).

The old norms of so-called nothing-but-the-facts “objective” journalism” have almost disappeared. They weren’t that great in the first place, as a tool for truth-telling. And, in the Trump era, I have seen that journalists can’t really uphold those old norms without the cooperation of the newsmakers themselves. Trump has taught his team that truth-telling is for suckers.

The refusal of Trump and his crew to respect those norms, mostly by lying constantly and seldom retracting or correcting their lies, has rendered the old norms inoperative. Maybe that’s scope for a longer future piece about the life and death of the norms. But for this morning I’ll just summarize what went down yesterday, which Tapper apparently found so annoying that he resorted to mocking and insulting his guest.

Miller disputed, of course, the portrayal of Trump, in the Wolff book, as a moron who doesn’t read anything and has the attention span of a gnat. Miller alleged that CNN was getting “a lot of joy” out of “sticking the knife” into Trump over the book’s portrayal. Miller said Trump was a “genius,” in business and politics and in his current gig as our savior. Miller didn’t much need to be mocked. His testimony was unintentionally self-mocking.

Tapper, contemptuously, responded to Miller’s Trump-Flattery with: “I’m sure he’s watching and he’s happy that you said that.”

That was a mistake (according to me). Too snotty, and no way for a host to treat a guest.

Miller called him out on it: “That was a snide remark,” he said. “You can be as condescending as you want. It’s part of your M.O.”

Tapper foolishly, I would say, asked Miller why he was attacking him.

“I’ll tell you why I’m attacking you,” Miller said, and pivoted to attacking CNN in general for disparaging Trump all day, every day.

“You have 24 hours of negative trump hysterical coverage on this network that led in recent weeks to some spectacularly false reporting.”

Tapper, calmly, asks to be allowed to finish a question. Miller doesn’t grant that request, but asks for “three minutes to tell you the truth … three minutes to tell you about the Donald trump that I know and that all of our campaign staff know …” Why can’t he have those three minutes?

And here’s where Tapper really jumped the shark, replying: “Because it’s my show and I don’t want to do that.”

Maybe you disagree with me. It is, indeed, his show, and he’s good at what he does. He has no doubt experienced other guests who hijacked the agenda. But I’m afraid the arrogance of “It’s my show and I don’t want to do that” is going to haunt Tapper.

What Tapper apparently wanted to do was to try to get Miller to admit that former top Trump adviser Steve Bannon, contrary to Trump’s recent effort to erase Bannon from the history of the Trump movement, had actually been a key player in both the campaign and the early months of the administration. Tapper’s effort to discuss Bannon started with “Steven. Calm down. Calm down. I have a question.”

Tapper went through a list of Trump administration decisions on which he asserted  Bannon played a significant role and ended with: “Is it really the position of the White House that Steve Bannon had nothing to do with the presidency or can you acknowledge the reality that he was a key player?”

Miller wouldn’t go there and segued to general adoration of Trumpism and his connection to the forgotten men and women whom Trump supposedly champions. “Trump tapped into a reality that isn’t covered on this network,” he said. “And I know you think I’m interrupting you. But the American people deserve to have two or three minutes of the truth.”

Miller’s public adoration of his boss was embarrassing, but that’s his problem.

Tapper brought up Trump’s tweets in which the POTUS described himself as “a very stable genius.”

Miller brought up some stories on which (he alleged, at least) CNN made embarrassing mistakes, which he said had created “a toxic environment” in the nation. While at the same time asserting that Trump’s connection with the forgotten Americans had created a “magic” that, notwithstanding CNN’s carping, was sweeping the nation.

Tapper: “The president has an approval rating in the 30s. I don’t know what magic you’re referring to.”

Miller said CNN spends 24 hours a day running down Trump, so why wouldn’t Tapper let him speak for three minutes in rebuttal.

Tapper: “I get it. There’s one viewer that you care about right now. And you’re being obsequious. You’re being a factotum right now in order to please him.”

He ended the interview with: “I think I’ve wasted enough of my viewers’ time. Thank you, Stephen.”

Unconfirmed reports suggested that after the interview, Miller refused to leave the studio and had to be escorted off by security guards.

Shortly after the interview ended, Trump tweeted, “Jake Tapper of Fake News CNN just got destroyed in his interview with Stephen Miller of the Trump Administration.”

I don’t know if Tapper will say anything further about this incident. If not in the next few days, maybe in his memoirs. It struck me as bizarre, and as a mistake for Tapper get drawn into an argument, and to get drawn into insulting his guest.

The norms of journalism, about which I’ve been blabbing for decades, are in disarray. They were never as coherent as we thought them, but they seemed to work as long as all the players treated them as rules.  Maybe they needed to evolve. But the Trump Smash version of how to change them doesn’t strike me as a change for the better.

I still admire Tapper’s work, in general. I hope he will address what happened on his show Sunday. If I were Tapper, I would apologize.

Comments (36)

  1. Submitted by Hiram Foster on 01/08/2018 - 10:47 am.

    Temper

    Yes, I thought Miller was baiting Tapper and Tapper too easily rose to the bait. I am a liberal, and as a liberal I am both condescending and smug. In certain situations and circumstances, I border on the insufferable. Tapper’s interview appealed our liberal collective self absorption. But was there really a point to that? Miller wasn’t going to get my vote at the beginning of the interview, and so nothing that was said changed that. Would the impact be different for the millions of people who don’t go to the same meetings I do? Or was the result of the interview to reinforce the both siderism, that so many people these days reject?

  2. Submitted by RB Holbrook on 01/08/2018 - 10:52 am.

    And Now . . .

    The right-wing echo chamber is in heaven over this. Anything at all on CNN perceived as critical of the President-even if it is factually accurate-will immediately be dismissed because of this interview.

    Nice going, Jake.

    • Submitted by Jackson Cage on 01/09/2018 - 08:16 am.

      And there’s the problem,

      RB is just like Gillebrand and her co-horts on the Franken accusations. Just so timid and afraid of how they’re perceived, even by people who are never going to agree or respect them for the rest of their lives. Time to put on your Big Boy Boots. CNN is critical of the President because he deserves the criticism!! Tapper simply said he wasn’t going to allow such nonsense on HIS show. With constituents like RB and candidates like Gillebrand, it’s no wonder the Dems can’t even beat a candiate like Trump.

      • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 01/09/2018 - 10:27 am.

        Making Unnecessary Problems

        Have you ever given an unruly child a drum to play with? The child will do nothing but make noise, annoying everyone and making impossible any conversation that is not a response to the child. Whom do we blame? Yes, the child is at fault, but most of the blame falls on the adult who should have known better.

        Trump and his base are on a par with the unruly child. They are looking for opportunities to disrupt for no better reason than it makes people mad (how many times have you seen Trump fans chortle with malevolent glee over his “first class trolling?”).Of course they are never going to “agree or respect” anyone who isn’t one of their gang. Why, then, given them any more ammunition? A take-down of Miller, however deserved, is just going to be a new shiny object they can use to hijack discussion.

        Unfortunately, those shiny objects drive the debate. Look at the post-election analyses of media coverage of the two presidential candidates. What got covered? Most of the Clinton coverage was about the Clinton Foundation non-scandal, or the e-mail nothingburger. What was anyone supposed to do? Take the high road? t’s time to acknowledge that discourse in this country has sunk to that depth. Why encourage it? Why pour more shiny distractions into the mix?

        As far as Senator Gillibrand is concerned, she has proven to be a strong, progressive voice in the Senate (the ideological purists may sneer at her recent conversion, but ideological purity does not win elections). Sexual harassment has been one of her signature issues. Would having her explain, time and again, why Senator Franken should be exempt from scrutiny or accountability, really productive?

  3. Submitted by Bill Schletzer on 01/08/2018 - 10:56 am.

    wrong

    I saw the “interview”. Miller didn’t want to be interviewed, he wanted to rant. He answered no question, he didn’t pause to allow Tapper to guide or participate in the “interview”. I’m surprised you could discern any quotes from Tapper because they were always in the background or the whiney, loud drone of Miller’s pathetic performance. You invite a guest into your house and he starts ripping up your furniture and emptying your refrigerator onto the floor and refuses to stop. You physically stop him or call the police but you give up the “dialog” pretty quickly.

    this semi-articulate sentence, missing a parenthesis: “CNN, and perhaps especially Tapper’s show, has trouble booking high Trump administration officials (for reasons that seem obvious, but that also violate the old norms, when an administration would welcome the chance to make its case, even to a potentially skeptical audience” would make more sense if Miller were coming on to discuss some important policy issue. Trump people don’t come on, apparently, to discuss policy but are only too willing to come on to discuss and demonstrate Trump’s lack of fitness for his office.

    Add the fact that the insults started with Miller insulting Tapper and CNN and then refusing to grant space for Tapper’s responses. From what I’ve seen online, Eric, yours is the only response outside of Trump’s that has anything negative to say about Tapper, the victim of verbal abuse.

    • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 01/08/2018 - 11:20 am.

      Wrong?

      I think the old adage “give them enough rope and they’ll hang themselves” applies here. Let him rant, and let the silent question of whether people like this should be in power hang over the broadcast.

      On the other hand, the likelihood of any minds being changed by either approach is pretty small.

  4. Submitted by Cameron Parkhurst on 01/08/2018 - 11:03 am.

    Tapper jumped into the mud with Miller

    And sullied himself. He seems to view these interviews as an attempt to play “gotcha” and that never works. An effective interviewer does enough to get the viewer to reach the conclusion that is sought, that way the viewer owns the conclusion and believes it. When the interviewer gives the answer, there is no ownership or buy in by the viewer, it is just the “fake” media at work again. It can be hard to do, but is effective when done well. Plus, if Tapper does not want to let Miller talk, don’t invite him on the show.

    • Submitted by TJ Jones on 01/08/2018 - 11:51 am.

      “interview”

      What happened to an interview being about providing information and different viewpoints and letting the viewer arrive at their own conclusions? I think the above comment by Cameron captures the current environment of media today. “… does enough to get the viewer to reach the conclusion that is sought…”

      Reach the conclusion that is sought? Really? Confirms that Tapper had a pre-disposed conclusion to get to and come hell or high-water, he’s going there.

      • Submitted by Steve Titterud on 01/08/2018 - 10:29 pm.

        “letting the viewer arrive at their own conclusions” ? Huh ?

        This idea, and also your horror that an interviewer or “journalist” would stoop to using the media resources to project their own opinions, has long ago – LONG AGO !! – ceased applying to the profession of “journalism”.

        It seems the entire profession has abandoned any pretext of providing a timely, accurate, unbiased source of information since the rise of Fox News, whose success they all deeply admire, though not a one of these folks would ever admit it. Imitation, they say, is the most sincere form of flattery.

        If Jake Tapper is a “journalist”, then so is Sean Hannity. They both hawk their goods the same way, although working different sides of the street.

        And for those here who are liberals, neo-liberals, and quasi-liberals who paint any critic of a liberal hero – whether a Jake Tapper or Hilary Clinton – as a conservative or Trump sympathizer, they couldn’t be more wrong.

  5. Submitted by Jon Kingstad on 01/08/2018 - 11:27 am.

    Answering the question

    Tapper opens the interview with a straightforward question: “Did Trump meet with the Russian “jumos”?” Miller was there and he could answer the question. He never did. He said “I have no knowledge of that meeting.” Miller bobs and weaves to avoid answering any question but trying to talk over Tapper to insult the network and promote his alternative version of the “truth.” Tapper put him in his place.

    • Submitted by Joe Musich on 01/09/2018 - 03:40 pm.

      You know …

      I think for the reason Jon about avoiding the question Edward R Morrow might have handled the same way. All Miller was doing is trying to talk over Trapper. Give Trapper some credit. He is responding to the this administration”troll” machine within a live setting with the gusto needed.

  6. Submitted by Connie Sullivan on 01/08/2018 - 11:42 am.

    No, Tapper didn’t blow it. He had invited a blow-hard who refused to participate in an interview in any way: Miller insisted on presenting his canned attack on the Wolff book and on Steve Bannon’s presence therein, and kept speaking over the show’s host, Tapper. He refused to acknowledge that an interview, a kind of conversation, involves questions and answers. It’s supposed to be a dialogue, which is not what Miller intended to let occur.

    I ask Eric: Does a TV program, or network, have the right to insist on an interview format being followed? Or, do they just exist to showcase a ranter and raver like Miller? Miller was screaming at Tapper and at the public listening. He deserved the “Calm down. Calm down.” reprimand from Tapper (you could tell that Miller is not used to being told to calm down, or to pay attention to another person; he shut up for a second, in surprised response to Tapper’s admonition).

    I am appalled by the right-wing Fox people, like Hannity, who shout over their guests if those guests have anything mainstream or left-ish to say. Miller is of that ilk. He cannot abide an intellectual exchange of any kind.

    In my opinion, Tapper provided welcome relief to us all when he turned from non-participant ranter Miller and announced the next segment of his show to the camera. Whew!

    • Submitted by Bill Schletzer on 01/09/2018 - 06:42 am.

      I agree

      People like Miller refuse to actually participate in a dialog, answer questions or defend their statements. I think it is because their positions are intellectually indefensible. Miller’s yelling over Tapper is comparable to Trump giving a campaign rally at an arena full of his fans. They can say anything they want, no matter how far from the truth, because their audience wants that.

  7. Submitted by Misty Martin on 01/08/2018 - 12:01 pm.

    What I like most about your articles, Eric,

    Is that you aren’t afraid to call “a spade, a spade”. You bring an integrity to journalism that the country really needs right now.

    Thank you.

  8. Submitted by Joel Stegner on 01/08/2018 - 12:53 pm.

    You got it wrong

    Miller was recruited to do an interview, in which he is responsible to listen carefully to questions and answer them honestly. Miller turned this into a hate filled speech about a number of people and organization on Trump’s enemies list including CNN. He did allow questions and continually talked over Tapper in a completely rude and condescending way, showing what a cold-hearted bully and jerk his is. I really do not understand why the news networks spend time talking with arrogant fools like Miller, when shat he shares is of no value, unless you enjoy the lnewest dishonest talking point. An interview that allows tno questions, but a continuous stream of uncontested false claims insults our intelligence. At least Miller, I have no desire to hear his name or his verbal vomit again.

  9. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 01/08/2018 - 01:02 pm.

    Calling the kettle black

    Mr. Miller’s assertions about CNN are wryly amusing, since FOX “news” has existed pretty much solely to promote the “conservative” viewpoint, and for the past year, provide uniform praise of the Current Occupant in approximately equal measure to the usuallly-unjustified criticism with which the same network bombarded his predecessor. If the current administration is unhappy with CNN’s coverage of the White House and the administration that goes with it, perhaps we’re looking at a case of, to use another old-fashioned phrase, “the chickens coming home to roost.” It seems to me that the exchange simply illustrates the sort of polarization that’s in style at this historical moment.

    I do think Tapper (and the rest of us) might have been better served by allowing Mr. Miller to make an even greater fool of himself in detail as well as generally, by letting him rant for a minute or three, but, having stood in front of a classroom wherein children on an almost daily basis made the same kinds of assertions-without-substance that Miller and other administration officials are inclined to make, I know it’s often very difficult to bite one’s already-bloody tongue. Years of practice taught me to let the ignorant parade their ignorance publicly, and perhaps Tapper should have done that in this case.

  10. Submitted by Hiram Foster on 01/08/2018 - 01:11 pm.

    Conventions

    There are certain conventions that are routinely observed when conducting interviews. Questions, within a certain parameter are asked. And answers also withing a certain parameter are answered. Notice that the questions aren’t always fair, nor are they always intended to elicit information. In many instances, the questions are more designed to tell you about the cleverness of the interviewer than to advance any understanding. Similarly, questions are often not answered. Now there are tensions in this interaction. A lot of what happens depends on the relative statute the two parties possess, or aspire to. No interviewer would ever treat John McCain, the way Tapper treated Miller. But it’s also the case that Miller felt he could treat Tapper as disrespectfully as he did, because Tapper is only a midlevel news figure.

    To me, the loser was the media. What should have been a serious sort of thing was quickly reduced into a mudslinging battle of egos, a demonstration of exactly the lack of seriousness which is harming the credibility of the media generally, and compelled me to cancel my cable subscription more specifically.

    • Submitted by Steve Titterud on 01/08/2018 - 10:35 pm.

      It’s a journalistic “race to the bottom”…

      …and it seems nothing can stop it, as there is GOOD MONEY in it.

      • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 01/09/2018 - 09:14 am.

        Racing to the Good Money

        Therein lies the problem. The public likes this sort of thing. They don’t want careful reporting or nuanced discussion. They want to see train wrecks.

        The news media, like any other business, is driven by consumer demand.

  11. Submitted by Curtis Senker on 01/08/2018 - 01:26 pm.

    Oh man, that was hard to watch, and this from someone who gladly admits to indulging in shadenfreund.

    Tapper has been pretty thoroughly discredited; I don’t know he did much harm, so this debacle, combined with NBC’s mind blowing Oprah tweet are beating a very dead horse.

    BTW…am I the only one who sees Trump’s trolling for the successful shell game it is?

    • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 01/08/2018 - 03:34 pm.

      I find it amusing that you determine Tapper “discredited” from an interview in which the dynamics are debatable, yet the past year of the Trump “emperor has no clothes” reveal means nothing as to the credibility of Trump

      As for the Trump trolling–to what purpose ? Or more explicitly, to what”leader of the free world”, “President of all of the US”, purpose ? Or do you think that there should be no expectation of gravitas or reasoned thought and discussion ?

      Being a paid internet troll is usually only a job for Russians trying to bring down democracy.

      Hmm, now that’s an interesting angle for you to bring up…

      • Submitted by Curtis Senker on 01/08/2018 - 07:30 pm.

        Jake is one of the major reasons CNN had to debase itself in defending accusations of spreading fake news. That’s why I don’t think he did much damage yesterday; that ship has sailed. He’s frustrated because he’s beaten at every turn.

        While leftists tore their hair out about “Crooked Hillary, Trump took the White House. And while they were all debating what he meant by covfefe, Trump has seated more federal judges in 1 year than Obama did in 8; dismantled 90% of Obama’s regulatory overreach, pulled the rug out from under Iran, backed Norko down and ushered in the biggest tax cuts in a decade.

        He’s very good at trolling folks who don’t pay attention.

        • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 01/09/2018 - 12:59 pm.

          One again, the purpose of the President being the Troller in Chief is…?

          Please answer that question in light of the fact that that trolling is obviously extremely divisive.

          • Submitted by Curtis Senker on 01/09/2018 - 02:59 pm.

            Let me see if I can make it plain, for you. When Trump trolls leftists, their attention is diverted from the serious work he’s accomplishing. When they suddenly realize they’ve been owned and start to squawk, he trolls them again.

            In the 21st century, the world is extremely divisive; using that divisiveness to your advantage is a valuable skill.

            • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 01/09/2018 - 03:46 pm.

              And . . .

              Exacerbating that divisiveness is one of the most important qualities we look for in a President.

            • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 01/09/2018 - 04:18 pm.

              Sorry bud, but most people can walk and chew gum at the same time.

              The big noisy tweets merely demonstrate his cluelessness and deteriorating condition, but the craven malignity of the Republican party and their allies is not lost to view and is fact emphasized by Trump’s noisiness. History is being kept.

              You seem to be losing sight of the fact that demographics are going against you and your conservative friends, and the demographic challenges are accelerating thanks to Trump’s insulting and antagonistic (trolling) tweets.

              Is Trump bringing any new votes for the conservatives? I think not.

              It going to be awfully hard to play the Tweedledee/Tweedledum argument in voter suppression for the next few cycles–by then your conservative friends will be replaced.

              Thanks Trump–tweet away !!

  12. Submitted by Carrie Preston on 01/08/2018 - 03:20 pm.

    Exasperated

    How could any interviewer not be exasperated when talking to this white house? Miller was angry and ready to do battle on behalf of his boss from the start of that interview..

  13. Submitted by chuck holtman on 01/08/2018 - 06:32 pm.

    Stephen Miller is a principal tip of the sword

    of the authoritarian project, which advances by destroying democratic norms in favor of power. He did not come onto Jake Tapper’s show to engage in dialogue and mutual reasoning, but to destroy dialogue and reasoning as norms of political engagement. I didn’t see the exchange but it seems that Tapper, while pushing back on Miller’s interactional thuggery, abetted Miller’s mission by allowing his forum of dialogue to be converted to a locus where dialogue was obliterated.

    The establishment media have facilitated the authoritarian project for decades by laying a thin raiment of dialogue and reasons over what is only power unconcerned for truth or cogent linkage to democratic goals. Approaches such as Tapper’s are useful in provoking authoritarianism at last into the light of day, but it is futile and counterproductive then to try to shout it back into the illusion of democratic dialogue. Media figures who at last recognize the threat to the nation posed by those who have dominated their shows for years haven’t yet processed how to navigate this late-realized truth. A first step, of course, would be not to invite those whose bad faith is obvious. Of course, it would help if humanity were more disposed to critical thought, and less disposed to yield their freedom for a promise that others will be made to suffer.

  14. Submitted by Solly Johnson on 01/08/2018 - 08:37 pm.

    Jake Tapper

    Do a search of CNN with Jake Tapper with the subject of “Critics with questionable records condemn U.S.” It shows the blatant propaganda regarding Jerusalem vote that he spews by picking countries that challenge U.S. policy, while failing to state that most of the world, including staunch U.S. allies, voted in favor of the resolution that objected to moving the embassy. I certainly do not consider him a hero in television journalism, nor any of the reporters on CNN and other mainstream outlets for that matter.

  15. Submitted by Dennis Ringstad on 01/09/2018 - 03:22 am.

    You can’t debate the anti-intellectuals of the Trump administration and expect anything truthful or constructive to come out of it. Trump is a man-child who loves tabloid tv and the WWE and so does his base. Tapper I think had an insightful moment where he recognized Trump probably enjoyed Miller’s performance and what do you know a tweet from Donald “the like really smart stable genius” Trump materialized. He was probably running around the oval office in his pajamas and cape.

  16. Submitted by Nick Foreman on 01/09/2018 - 03:23 pm.

    Obviously Black, you are now standing up for the idea that CNN

    Can not stand up against faux news and its complete lies and bs. Never a real critique about faux news from you. MP now strikes me as an apology to the right, similar to the complete nonsense by Young’s trash dump on last Sunday: blacks and poor men who die while trump and the rich receiving deferment after deferment. According to him we should have continued the war and the draft to save the rich.

    You gave more mileage to the right wing fascists without any necessity. Goodbye.

  17. Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 01/10/2018 - 11:43 am.

    Hand grenades

    and Assault rifles, is what Miller brought to the interview, and now Erik you seem to be apologizing or critiquing because Tapper fought back with a pen knife! Sun Tzu would not be impressed.

  18. Submitted by ian wade on 01/11/2018 - 12:26 am.

    Tapper apologize?

    Actually, he should stand tall. Every journalist needs to call these charlatans out for what they are.

  19. Submitted by Howard Miller on 01/13/2018 - 02:13 pm.

    dang it

    i had seen the interview. As i already have a strong distaste for Stephen Miller, i found his habit of shouting over the interviewer obnoxious, just shrugged off Tapper’s treatment of Miller. Then I read your piece, Mr. Black.

    You got me thinking about it, Mr. Black, and I agree with you. In my words, Tapper sunk close down to the Miller/Trump/Bannon level of “civil discourse.”

    Less of that by all partisans would be a better conversation. Thanks for your work, Mr. Black.

  20. Submitted by Ross Reishus on 01/14/2018 - 10:59 am.

    Stephen Miller

    Miller is someone who’s been bullied into being a bully. Bullies, like our POTUS, only respond to a show of force. And contrary to armchair psychologist, and real ones…..The only way to take a bully down is by (sadly) playing their own game. The only thing wrong with what Tapper did, was he waited too long (in the interview) to do it. The only way news organizations are going to be taken seriously in the future, is for every single reporter everywhere, to start doing what Tapper did in this interview. It was not perfectly handled, true, but the message needs to keep going from there. No more B.S. allowed on the air. None. The news used to be this way under Cronkite, Rather, and similar greats. Since FCC regulations to force us back to that generation of news are not forthcoming under a GOP held government, the only other way back is one reporter at a time, corporate puppeteers-be-damned. Its been my observation that some house cleaning has been done here at MinnPost in that regard as well. I applaud. Meanwhile Tapper should be carried through the streets with a ticker tape parade, and promoted to CEO of CNN.

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