After playing at being a TV correspondent and doing some of the worst on-air network reporting I have seen in 30 years of writing about media, Chelsea Clinton is declaring victory and moving on, she told People magazine.
Here's an indication of how People reported this "exclusive" news:
After not quite three years as a special correspondent for NBC News – and with just a little while until she and husband Marc Mezvinsky are expected to become parents – the former first daughter is now leaving that position, she tells PEOPLE in a statement, "to continue focusing on my work at the Clinton Foundation and as Marc and I look forward to welcoming our first child.
Having specialized in feel-good stories of "remarkable people and organizations making a profound difference," Clinton, 34, says the highlights of her job included meeting people like Annette Dove, whose TOPPS program in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, "continues to fill the hunger, education and safety gaps for kids of all ages in her community."
To see my decidedly less favorable review of that report, click here.
But NBC News, which paid $600,000 a year for a handful of reports that no self-respecting affiliate in a TOP 20 market would air, is still lying its butt off about her performance as a pretend journalist. Otherwise, it might have to acknowledge that $1.8 million is peanuts when what you are really up to is trying to buy government influence.
"Chelsea’s storytelling inspired people across the country and showcased the real power we have as individuals to make a difference in our communities," People quotes Alex Wallace, a senior vice president of NBC News, saying. "While she will be missed, we look forward to working with her in the future."
That's sad, Alex, having to carry water for the 1 percent that way. But you're still not in a league with deposed NBC News President Steve Capus who said when NBC News hired her it was as if Clinton "had been preparing her whole life" for the job of network correspondent.
Would some of that preparation have included refusing to talk to reporters who were on the campaign trail covering her mother's 2008 presidential campaign?
NBC News has no idea how hiring Clinton shredded its credibility. She can spend her whole life living in a bubble of fantasy professional accomplishments thanks to the money her parents now rake in from their Wall Street friends.
But the shame of this hiring for NBC News doesn't go away with this poster woman of privilege leaving the network.
There are lots of reasons that "Rock Center" bombed, "Meet the Press" cratered, and "NBC Nightly News" and "Today" have been overtaken in demographics by ABC News. But hiring Chelsea Clinton and then insulting the intelligence of viewers by saying how great she is left a lot of people like me shaking their heads at the rank dishonesty of NBC News executives. Why would anyone trust the news product they produce if they are this disconnected from truth?
Gee, I wonder why this announcement was made on Friday of a holiday weekend. The Clintons: The best PR money can buy.