Friday, July 07, 2017

The real story behind the CNN story

Jane and Ted. Absent: Mika.
As you know, CNN is rapidly destroying whatever credibility it had, and credibility in journalism is everything. So as a company CNN is losing value.
Last week, more Americans tuned in to watch re-runs of “Yogi Bear,” “Full House,” and “Friends” on Nick At Nite than to watch Anderson Cooper and Don Lemon’s shows on CNN.
What'e interesting is that Time Warner owns CNN, and AT&T is buying Time Warner, assuming Donald Trump doesn't put his foot down. What do you think about a corporation that let's an asset decline in value as it plans to sell that asset to someone else?

Well, maybe it doesn't matter.
According to Pew Research, CNN took in about $1.2 billion in revenues in 2016. That’s just 10% of Time Warner’s Turner segment revenues, and just over 4% of Time Warner’s 2016 entire top line. A merger with AT&T would put that number at an even lower 0.6% of total revenues for the merged entity, considering AT&T’s 2016 revenues. Is 0.6% of what would be the combined entity’s top line worth it for the liability of taking in a brand that is now under constant attack on the internet?
What all of this means is that several rich guys will continue to be rich. What do they care about
Mika Brzezinski? Heck, when AOL bought Time Warner, Ted Turner, who created CNN, lost $8 billion. Chump change.

Here are the players:

If AT&T decides to keep CNN, president Jeff Zucker may lose his job. I think he'll be okay. These guys write all kinds of defensive clauses into their contracts. Nevertheless, there's this gossip:
Zucker makes far less in salary at CNN than the $20 million that Ailes reportedly made at Fox News and, irksomely, he doesn’t have the access to the Time Warner company plane that other top execs enjoy.
Oh no! Not the plane!

Jeff Bewkes, the chairman of Time Warner for the time being, and the man ultimately responsible for the CNN carnage, is filthy rich in his Greenwich, Connecticut, mansion. He apparently doesn't care about Mika.

AT&T Chairman Randall Stephenson will inherit Mika unless he jettisons CNN. He's filthy rich. When I read that he's national president of the Boy Scouts I thought maybe he'd restore some sanity to CNN. Alas, he publicly opposed the BSA's former policy banning openly gay Scouts and stated his intention "to work from within the BSA Board to actively encourage dialogue and sustainable progress."

Really, really beware of anyone who wants to dialogue on sustainability. Stop everything and warn your children.

Mika's spiritual father is Ted Turner, who started CNN, then sold it to Time Warner, then was unceremoniously pushed out. He's got billions and owns two million acres. An article about him on CNN says: "Turner follows the advice of his father, who tragically shot himself." So many mysteries, so little time.

Turner' says his biggest fear is nuclear weapons. He wants to get rid of them all, saying having the weapons is like having "dynamite in your basement." Wow, I can see the equivalence.

"It's time to put war behind us," Turner says, "We've made enough progress to where we can say goodbye to war." Throw in disease and you got me.

Ted owns 28 homes, including 14 ranches, and 50,000 bison and two private jets.  He has four girlfriends. He no longer owns Jane Fonda.

I don't know how many cars he owns, but one of them has two bumper stickers: "Save the Planet" and "Save Everything."

Save me.

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