Those who’ve been around long enough can remember “The Mystery of Al Capone’s Vault.”
It was a live, two-hour special that aired in 1996 featuring Geraldo Rivera. Built up for weeks in advance, the show garnered an estimated 30 million viewers who tuned in to see something spectacular — the unveiling of what was inside the infamous mobster’s secret vault. When the vault was finally opened the only things found inside were dirt and some empty bottles. After the show, Rivera was at least professional enough to own it by saying, “Seems like we struck out.”
It’s a lesson in humility and accepting responsibility his media cohort Rachel Maddow could learn from.
After serving up the biggest investigative reporting flop certainly in the brief era of the Trump presidency — and possibly since ‘Capone’s Vault’ — Maddow had to choose a road to responsibility for her quite public gaffe: the high road (owning and admitting it) or the low one (placing blame onto someone else.) Surprising no one — just like last time — she’s gone with the latter.
Not only is she blaming someone, Maddow has decided to point the finger of responsibility at the least responsible parties involved in the whole affair — her audience! (Which means the number being blamed is extraordinarily small.)
Fox & Friends tweeted “WOW! Rachel Maddow blames viewers for her Trump tax dud, says people “expected too much” and quoted Maddow’s statement on the matter:
Herman Cain added this spot-on commentary:
“Rachel Maddow hyped her Donald Trump tax return non-story on twitter. Her network exaggerated it before the show. She did a crazy, 20 minute, hyperbolic lead-in that made her look completely insane and gave the impression that a massive newspocalyspse was on the way. Then, it all imploded in a nothing-burger so massive that Burger King should sell it as one of stunt menu items.
According to a statement from Maddow, you bought into the hype, believed something big was about to drop, and thus expected too much. You should all be ashamed of yourselves.”
You know its bad when you’re a liberal media personality and other liberal media personalities begin to lampoon you. Steven Colbert’s filleting of the Maddow Trump tax debacle has become instant internet comedy gold:
Not all investigative reporting stories are going to go over big. Of course. And not all are going to sink like a lead balloon, either. But if you happen to be the responsible party for one of the latter and shout from the roof tops, “Tune in tonight!!” in advance of your supposed big reveal, and you don’t deliver — it’s not their fault. It’s not Al Capone’s fault. You can’t even pin that one on John Galt. You have to own it.
[Note: This article was written by Derrick Wilburn]