CBS Mornings co-anchor John Dickerson on Monday hijacked the usually lighthearted “Talk of the Table” segment to hyperventilate about “Our Democracy” and January 6. Using the Iowa Caucuses as a jumping-off point, Dickerson panicked that the people of Iowa might soon select a candidate who had “attacked the culminating sacrament of the national election in 2020.”
“Talk of the Table” is a recurring segment in which each co-anchor gets a couple of minutes to talk about whatever they choose, be it a funny story, an interesting factoid, or an obscure news item. For example, Nate Burleson’s contribution on Monday was a video of a man who put on an impromptu magic show in a Portland, Oregon cafe.
Dickerson instead kicked off the segment with a clumsy monologue about democracy, complete with weird pseudo-spiritual rhetoric and a heavy dose of January 6th induced pearl-clutching.
My “Talk of the Table” is about the Iowa caucuses. We’ve been talking about them. As someone who started going to Iowa almost 30 years ago to cover the Caucus, I still kind of swoon at the basic act of people in a room participating in democracy. But while this looks like the past, we can’t lose sight of how different this all is. The frontrunner, Donald Trump, three years ago was being accused by the leaders of his party in the House and Senate of promoting an attack on the Capitol. His Vice President accused him of the same.
He continued: “So in Iowa, we have this near sacrament of democracy, possibly locking in a candidate who those closest to him, those in his party, say attacked the culminating sacrament of the national election in 2020. Not only on January 6th but in the months before it.”
If any of that sounded familiar, it’s because it’s the same speech we’ve all heard a million times before from just about every talking head in the corporate TV news media. Dickerson checked all the boxes: January 6 handwringing, overtures to Our Democraty™, heavy-handed religious overtones, the whole shebang.
He wrapped up with this dramatic clincher:
Those voters, those votes that trump sought to overturn were cast by people putting their hopes and dreams and fears into their vote in events just like the Caucuses tonight in Iowa. Today kicks off an election unlike one we’ve ever had before in America, where, like what’s happening in Iowa, it will look familiar, but the context is very different.
Generally when writing up the idiotic diatribes of news goons we’ll try to include only the relevant or most impactful portions. But Dickerson’s tirade was so absurd that there really wasn’t any fat to trim at all. The whole mess speaks for itself.
These people are just exhausting.