ubiquitous_a (ubiquitous_a) wrote in ontd_political,

Mad about Maddow: The MSNBC host seeks influence, but she wants it on her own terms

Few of a particular political persuasion are as entertaining or insightful as Rachel Maddow, who is willing to describe herself as a liberal on the left. Clearly, Maddow is terribly allergic to conservatives.

She is disturbed by what conservatives think, how they assess what is happening to us all out here, and what the wildest or most cynical of them present as facts, which they often see as nothing more than opposing opinions, even if they come from the scientific world.

Her allergy rises to bumps that do not ache or itch as much as they inspire Maddow to what is easily some of the finest commentary available on cable television. She is largely eloquent and in command of the English language on a level one is not accustomed to in television commentary.

Her statements almost always come from the same place - somewhere between the respectable left and those who intellectually live on the left side of the moon, but the depth of her wit is what makes Maddow special. It can slide from the intelligent dig to the devastating sendup.

Having grown up during the civil rights movement and become used to the inevitable presence at marches and demonstrations of Stalinists, Trotskyites and the other regular menagerie members of the left, I never met anyone like Maddow. Those old-time leftists were inevitably humorless and were always trying to gain influence among the leaders and the troops of the most impressive nonviolent revolution in the history of the species.

What makes Maddow unique is that while she surely seeks influence, she prefers it on terms that are her own, deeply informed and saturated with a sense of fun.

Maddow has given the Obama administration more than a few hot feet on Afghanistan, its war on terror and its position on rights for male and female homosexuals. But she became famous during the presidential campaign for holding John McCain and Sarah Palin up to ridicule for denying or contradicting what they had recently said or done.

Maddow still gives the hard blues to right-wing pundits and unintentionally hilarious political figures with the video proof that they are distorting, misleading or lying with a straight, red or tear-flowing face.

It is no news that Maddow is a lesbian who has leaped full-bore into the loud anarchy of variously tinted propaganda passed off as objective news reporting, but she has not given up her individuality to make homosexual issues bigger than they actually are.

Maddow knows that the nation, like the average American family, is on a frontier far ahead of most of the world, Western or not. As long as they are not guilty of a commitment to the same indefensible social sins committed by certain heterosexuals - such as pedophilia - male and female homosexuals will have their day.

Whether same-sex marriage will be ratified across the country is far less important than recognition of the humanity that Maddow and any equally talented person has to offer. Whenever the country denies almost any version of its humanity, something very important is lost within the national soul.

Loss of soul is not a problem that one can envision Rachel Maddow having at any time in the near future.


He does a great job of articulating why I adore Rachel.  She manages to actually be entertaining, but also provide meaningful discourse without distorting the facts for her own purposes.

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