This Week with Bob Mueller
on Sunday mornings, given all the content and talent that Channel 2 has axed in recent months. (I'd include a link to the show, but the station halted Mueller's blog
last year, and I can find no trace of the show anywhere on WKRN's website.) But after yesterday morning’s disaster of a half hour, you start to wonder why this wheezing show’s respirator is still plugged in.
First there was Mueller’s uncommonly vapid interview with David Fowler, who left the state Senate two years ago to set himself up as Tennessee’s Christian moralist-in-chief. Fowler heads the Family Action Council of Tennessee
, which he created to “promote and defend a culture that values the traditional family, for the sake of the common good.” Mueller tossed Fowler softball questions about the role of clergy in politics, leaving completely untouched Fowler’s rectitudinous-industrial complex: opposition to adoption by unmarried couples (same sex or opposite sex), opposition to abortion for any reason, opposition to any sexual activity outside of heterosexual marriage, sympathy with a constitutional prohibition on atheists in civil service and belief that a failure to defend “traditional” marriage will catalyze
America’s "collapse from within."
Mueller then pivoted to his in-studio panel of pundits to kick around the week's political news, which this week offered up the spectacle of four white guys ruminating on the significance of the King assassination anniversary. I don’t know about you, but when I’m shopping for informed commentary on the history and politics of race and class, Steve Gill is always my first option. (Minor props to Gray Sasser for noting on air the awkward intersection of panel demography and subject.)
We need good local political talk, and the intelligent and affable Mueller might be the guy to pull it off, but surely he can do better than this. Earth to Bob: It won’t cost your penny-pinching overlords at WKRN another dime if you hit your guests with serious questions and invite in panelists who have something to say.
Perhaps we should give WKRN some credit for continuing to produce and air