Democracy Soup

Making sense out of the world of politics

Conan O’Brien spoke for a lot of us in anger at NBC

with 3 comments

If there was ideal justice in the world, NBC’s $45 million penalty to Conan O’Brien if O’Brien doesn’t host the “Tonight Show” would be donated, equally by the two parties, to help those without jobs, money, or food in this Great Depressive Recession.

But we always know that in the United States, there will be huge haves, and plenty of have-nots. True socialism won’t happen, but what a lot of people want, liberal and conservative, big city and small town, is a shot for the 90% to do better, equal to their effort, to make enough to have a decent shot at a future.

Right now, we aren’t even close to dreaming about the economic “nirvana” of the 1960s and 1970s. And unlike in the Great Depression of the 1930s, we don’t have skirmishes that involve so much money for people who work less than 40 hours a week, have untold weeks of vacation.

I don’t have a dog in the Leno-O’Brien battle (Letterman is #1 among broadcast late-night shows in my household). Our captivation with this story isn’t on the money, it’s about how employees are treated by their employer.

For those lucky to have a job, there is anger — an anger outside a lack of pay raises. There is anger over working too hard since there aren’t enough people to do the work. Maybe we aren’t able to speak up over the troubles, fearing that will give the employer a chance to let us go.

So when Conan O’Brien fires off a letter, going after his present employer, we cheer. Not for O’Brien, who will end up with a talk show and millions regardless of what happens at NBC. But we cheer that someone blew off some steam at an employer.

Yes, those who are unemployed are probably thinking, “Well, you still have a job.” True. But the fight shouldn’t be between the 90% have-nots; the struggle has to be between getting a better employment structure, preferably without the handcuffs of employer-tied health insurance, so that more of us, the 90%, can find themselves with more opportunity to live the American dream, at least the one we used to have in the 1960s and 1970s.


Written by democracysoup

January 13, 2010 at 11:18 am

Posted in television

3 Responses

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  1. From the few times I’ve seen clips of O’Brien on youtube, he’s not funny. Leno is barely any better. Letterman only barely better than Leno (a lot of dross with a few genuinely funny bits). Maher is funny (a lot of funny bits with a little dross).

    Paul Allen

    January 13, 2010 at 10:07 pm

  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by buzzflash and Teri Rehkopf, Stephan Farmer. Stephan Farmer said: RT @buzzflash: Conan O’Brien spoke for a lot of us in anger at NBC #p2 […]

  3. haha, Letterman is so funny! I love him.

    Help For Insomnia

    February 8, 2010 at 10:34 am

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