Media Matters

* Jim Lehrer–of PBS News Hour fame–recently died. He will be missed. As will his era. Lehrer personified broadcast journalism as something other than conflict-showcasing show business for political junkies and partisans. It was a service with public understanding more of a goal than ratings-driven optics. We won’t see his kind again.

* The House impeachment managers included Democratic Rep. Zoe Lofgren of California. Lofgren worked on the congressional staff that investigated Richard Nixon and was serving in congress during the Bill Clinton impeachment. There’s got to be a book there somewhere.

* Most journalists have pet linguistic peeves. I’m no exception. The misuse of “notoriety” and the context-challenged ubiquity of “awesome” are two such. Another is “icon.” The Associated Press recently referred to first-term Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as the “progressive icon” acting as an Iowa surrogate for Bernie Sanders. Unless she doubles as a sacred Christian image, how does a 30-year-old, rookie Congresswoman warrant icon status? Or is that unfair, and AOC is just reflective of, well, awesome, societal impact?

* What’s in a name? Even if you are 20th Century Fox, there’s no escaping the contemporary, polarizing connotation of “Fox.” Last year the Walt Disney Co. bought a bunch of Rupert Murdoch’s entertainment assets, including the iconic studio and the Fox Searchlight art house. The newly renamed, Fox-less entity: 20th Century Studios and Searchlight Pictures. Now nobody will associate Disney with Trump, Ailes or Hannity.

* Being a White House press secretary can have career implications. Some, such as Trump’s first spokesperson, Sean Spicer, have to go on “Dancing With The Stars” to cash in. Others, such as Barack Obama’s Jay Carney, wind up as the spokesman for Amazon.

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