Monday, December 4, 2017

When the Dust Settles...

You knew there would be a Matt Lauer blog entry eventually, and here it is...

I was checking my Twitter feed while in a medical waiting room Wednesday morning when the tweets started rolling in.  I thought it was a joke.  NBC fired Matt Lauer.

First and foremost, please don't lose sight of the plight of the victims.

In addition to Lauer's behavior, here's what bugs me the most.  It's apparent from the Variety, New York Post,  and New York Times stories that some in management knew what Matt Lauer was up to.

As noted here before, the most galling thing about Luzerne County's Kids for Ca$h scandal is the number of people who knew kids were going before a judge without legal representation and they did nothing.  It's clear many at NBC knew Matt Lauer was a predator.
Governor Bob Casey often said "What did you do when you had the power?"  At NBC, those with the power looked the other way-- and they allowed Lauer to run amok.  If the victims can prove management protected Lauer, those victims are in for a major pay day.  They deserve every penny-- and more.  However, you can't put a price on dignity.  I sincerely hope they all heal quickly.

It's clear Mr. Lauer needs help, and he realizes that.  There is plenty out there, and I hope he finds what he needs.  Back on TV some day?  Maybe.  Long shot.

I can't say I was ever a Matt Lauer fan.  I always thought he was an average talent who happened to hook on at an established and powerful franchise (sound familiar?)  "Today" will take a hit, but it will survive.  There are some good broadcasters out there and the show will carry on.  It's survived several other blunders in its history.  Yes, this is a big one-- but "Today" has history and tradition, and some strong remaining performers.

The professional demise of Matt Lauer signals the end of the big money, powerful anchor era.  Networks have been burned.  Economics have changed.  We live in a different world.