By The Mirror Contributor Evan Gahr
In newly obtained private emails, MSNBC’s Ed Schultz likened CNN to fecal matter, pined for a job with Fox News, claimed the 2008 McCain presidential campaign kept him off Larry King and, most disturbingly, manifested profound micro-aggression towards Oprah Winfrey.
For those not familiar with contemporary parlance micro-aggression is racism so subtle that only a select group of particularly enlightened lefties recognize it. Witness the California professor upbraided for micro-aggression when he chastised his students for poor grammar.
But Schultz did something much worse than telling people not to talk like the SNL character Buckwheat. As a radio host angling for the silver screen, Schultz dismissed Oprah, a proud behemoth of color, as too much of a lightweight for him. This, after putting out feelers to Winfrey’s people to appear on her new cable network.
The electronic missives were sent in 2008 to NBC sound engineer Michael Queen, who Schultz, then a radio host, enlisted to get him a TV show. Queen pitched Schultz to CNN, NBC, MSNBC president Phil Griffin and (at least the way he treats him now) Satanic Fox News president Roger Ailes. [Related: Schultz begs Fox News to hire him]
Ultimately, Schultz bypassed Queen and signed directly with MSNBC the next year.
In a federal lawsuit that could go to trial later this year, Queen asserts that Schultz never delivered on his promised 25 percent cut of income from any show he arranged. All Queen received from the working man’s bosom buddy for helping him achieve fame and fortune was the $11,500 that he paid for a pilot.
To establish that Schultz welched on his promise, Queen’s lawyers filed voluminous emails between the two men attesting to their legally binding partnership.
In the April 2008 exchanges, Queen apprises Schultz of his pitches, including a fulsome letter to Ailes. Queen also tries to calm Schultz, who is convinced that Sen. John McCain’s (R-Ariz.) 2008 presidential campaign got him blacklisted from Larry King’s then-CNN show because Schultz called the Arizona senator a “war monger” at an Obama campaign rally.
On the morning of April 22, 2008, Schultz emailed Queen that, “Larry King will not have me on tonight. It goes back to the War Monger comment. We have been told that the McCain camp [missing word] furious that I get camera time on the networks. Ripped into CNN for the one on one interview John Roberts gave me on the War Monger comment.”
Then, with his mastery of the English language and sly wit, Schultz exclaims, “Give me a break. What a bunch of shit.”
Queen does his best to assuage the broadcaster’s inner beast of an ego, per Stuart Smiley, that he’s good enough and smart enough for his own show: “Don’t let them get you down. All the more reason to go to Oprah via Obama.”
Schultz: “In the meantime, I WILL have my time with [NBC’s] Ben Silverman, I have not at all given up on that by any means. Fox received their pitch today. Those are the folks I am not sure about. But they might surprise me.”
Schultz makes it stunningly clear he wants nothing to do with that Oprah woman, whose new network is woefully too inadequate to accommodate his considerable political acumen. But MSNBC and FNC would be just dandy.
“I am not interested in Oprah,” he wrote Queen in an email. “She is not a serious player for a political show despite her association with Obama. The networks is [his grammar] our only chance. Hopefully, Fox or MSNBC will come through.”
MSNBC did. But now they are circling the wagons about all the Schultz buffoonery and possibly worse emerging from court files. Staying silent could easily be their way of trying to protect themselves legally. The network doesn’t always ignore embarrassing inquiries. But it is possible someone in legal told them to do a deaf mute routine.
To that end, network president Phil Griffin has so far ignored all inquiries to his personal email account and fax machine about the restraining order Schultz’s ex-wife obtained against him. All of those emails cc’d Schultz. [RELATED: That Time A Woman Obtained A Protection Order From Ed Schultz]
This could prove the biggest PR disaster since Gary Condit decided it was a swell idea to date Chandra Levy and give her oil massages in his Adams Morgan apartment.
Griffin also remained mute this weekend when asked if MSNBC shares its B-Lister’s estimation that the good folks at CNN are dung and Oprah is too lowly for him.
(By the way, Oprah’s people didn’t return a request for comment.)
And what about that supposed Larry King purge?
McCain 2008 campaign aide Nicolle Wallace, now at ABC’s “The View,” did not reply to repeated emails.
Still, the notion that McCain would try to get someone who criticized him blacklisted is counter-intuitive. Unlike WaPo Executive Editor Marty Baron and BuzzFeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith, who can’t even handle a single loaded question, McCain relishes a good fight.
Still, if the McCain campaign hatched some kind of monomaniacal plot to keep Schultz off Larry King, it failed miserably. Schultz appeared on the show just 16 days after he claimed McCain got him bounced.
Does anybody—particularly those who view the entire world through the prism of race and gender– notice a disturbing pattern?
Schultz thinks a black woman is too much of a political lightweight for him but not Larry King?