Chet Huntley, anchorman

Television journalism went into decline when Chet Huntley retired.  He had a neat voice, he never talked down to his audience and he was all business — his business, journalism.  The Joe Friday — "just the facts, ma’am" — of reporters.  Even those times he stepped over the line and showed his feelings, I’ll bet it was due more to human error than the compulsion to commandeer the bully anchor pulpit for spouting self-important opinions.

Many of Mr Huntley’s successors are refugees from speechwriting and press secretary gigs in the House, Senate and White House.  They made their career switches after working their Rolodexes.  OK, it’s a free country.  But that’s why it is difficult to understand why their bosses all of a sudden want to invoke the hallows of journalism school in taking on the so-called citizen journalism phenomenon.  Did you know that Huntley crossed a picket line once because he believed journalists had no business being represented by the same union that represents actors?  What would he say now.

That’s where Gregg and Evan Spiridellis pick up the slack by working their video magic on the subject.  You’ve got to watch this.  Hilariously yet gently on point.

PS:  Huntley actually could have joined an actors union by way of his uncredited turn in one of the best movies made about corporate politics — and one of my all-time favorite movies — Executive Suite [1954]. 

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