Actually, I don’t know who Donny Deutsch is, period. Not even a little. Now I know him as the former advertising man and talking head wannabe whom our friend Hugh Hewitt helped get fired from MSNBC. Serving a one-week replacement stint for David Shuster, Deutsch’s firing offense was insufficient reverence toward Keith Olbermann while Deutsch was instructing his audience in the true meaning of civility in public discourse.
The New York Times’s Brian Stelter reports on Deutsch’s termination here; Hugh reflects on it in his column “Donny, we hardly knew ye!” He also posts the relevant video clips here.
Performing his usual full-service operation, Glenn Reynolds dubs Hugh “Terminator” Hewitt and quotes this bemused comment on the affair by NRO’s Daniel Foster: “MSNBC has now fired the guy they hired to replace the guy they suspended (David Shuster) and all for the sake of a guy who isn’t even the highest-rated host of his own television program.”
Hugh describes the genesis of the affair:
Deutsch’s shtick this week had been “anger in America,” and when Deutch asked for my opinion on the credibility and impact of talking heads on the political climate, I began with the obvious: Olbermann and Schultz are the biggest hate-mongers on cable, and that before anyone on MSNBC begins to lecture the world on how to conduct civil discourse, the physician would have to heal himself.
Hugh sees a certain irony in Deutsch’s advocacy of civility (he has disparaged Marco Rubio as a “coconut” on the Joy Behar show) and in Deutsch’s defense of Schultz: “When Deutsch pushed back on Schultz, I made the obvious point that Ed is a joke, a position from which I would not be moved, and to which Donny took exception, citing Ed’s ‘big heart’ –an ironic description given Schultz’s recent rant about Dick Cheney’s ticker.”
There is a lot of that kind of irony going around. Being instructed on civility by the likes of Bill Clinton and others among the Democrat/Media Axis is a little like being instructed in diplomacy by Attila the Hun.