Donahue, NOW, GLAAD criticize cabler
Phil Donahue is not going quietly.After having been nixed by MSNBC, Donahue let a few salvos fly on Wed., issuing a protest email that condemned his former network for being impatient with his six-month old program. A media watchdog Web site even went so far as to blame Donahue’s anger on a leaked internal memo claiming his liberal stance would not be tolerated by viewers. It claims the memo calls Donahue “a tired, left-wing liberal out of touch with the current marketplace.” “We were hoping to break through the noisy drums of war on cable and become a responsible platform for dissenters as well as administration supporters,” Donahue wrote. Meanwhile, net is also weathering a storm regarding its recent hires. The National Organization for Women and the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation have criticized the net for hiring controversial radio host Michael Savage for a weekend program. “Savage launches venomous attacks at every class of people, with the exception of straight white men,” GLAAD’s Web site said in a press statement. The group’s Web site also posted some of Savage’s more inflammatory comments, also pointing out that another recent MSNBC hire, former Republican leaderDick Armey, once referred to Rep. Barney Frank as “Barney Fag.” The media watchdog FAIR likewise had some choice words for the network, which in recent weeks has brought in former Republican pols Armey and Joe Scarborough as well as independent Jesse Ventura. “Jesse’s going to be their left-wing,” said FAIR senior analyst Steve Rendall of the libertarian former governor of Minnesota, adding that the net has turned into a showcase for angry white men. “There must be enormous pressure at the network to ensure that liberal voices are outweighed by conservative voices.” MSNBC would not comment, instead referring reporters to a statement. “We respect the right of those who wish to protest. However, we also strongly defend his (Savage’s) new show as a legitimate attempt to expand the marketplace of ideas,” the net wrote.