In today's news in civility, Yahoo! News Bureau Chief (and former ABC News Director) David Chalian was overheard on a hot mike in a broadcast telling a fellow employee that Mitt Romney was "happy to have a party while black people drown," a reference to Hurricane Isaac striking the Gulf Coast while the GOP convention was on. Ooops! Sometimes it's not a good idea to give vent to your real thoughts near a microphone.
It was an expensive gaff for Chalian; once the remark received attention, Yahoo fired him, with the comment:
"David Chalian's statement was inappropriate and does not represent the views of Yahoo!. He has been terminated effective immediately. We have already reached out to the Romney campaign, and we apologize to Mitt Romney, his staff, their supporters and anyone who was offended."Chalian, for his part, made the standard cut and past apology:
I am profoundly sorry for making an inappropriate and thoughtless joke. I was commenting on the challenge of staging a convention during a hurricane and about campaign optics. I have apologized to the Romney campaign, and I want to take this opportunity to publicly apologize to Gov. and Mrs. Romney. I also regret causing any distraction from the exceptional coverage of the Republican convention by Yahoo News and ABC News.The problem, of course, is not that he is not permitted to hold these thoughts as a news media figure. Lots of them feel that way. A few of them (very few) may even feel that way about liberals.
No, the problem with it is that he can no longer be trusted to maintain the facade of objectivity that the major media hide behind.
No doubt he will have a short vacation before being picked up by MSNBC (or more likely, given that NBC can't afford Keith Olberdork) some liberal non-profit.
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