Al Sharpton has been officially named the host of the 6 PM hour on MSNBC. The network announced Tuesday that Sharpton will host "PoliticsNation" on weeknights starting August 29.
This was to be expected, as a kind of payoff.
My colleague Wayne Barrett of The Daily Beast has written that Sharpton previously "signed a pivotal agreement that helped Comcast and NBC secure Federal Communications Commission approval for their $30 billion merge."
MSNBC is thus seeming to reward Sharpton with a prime-time news show, Wayne said.
Wayne also said he was told by a Comcast spokesperson that "Comcast has given $140,000 to Sharpton's National Action Network since 2009 -- the same year the merger was first proposed."
Back in the late 1980s, several activists (as well as a former FBI agent whom I got to know very well) told me that Sharpton had tried to get blacks to give him information about black revolutionaries like Assata Shakur, who fled to Cuba. Sharpton was doing it as an informant with the FBI. My FBI source had all the dates and records of Sharpton's meeting with blacks who he was trying to trick into giving him information about other blacks who were on the lam. (See here).
Sharpton was not working to trick black activists because he was patriotic, but because he was a hustler who was trying to stave off feds hunting down racketeers, and Sharpton -- let's say -- knew some racketeer types.
He was hustling then, and it pains me to say it -- given all the good that he did, for example, standing with the family of Amadou Diallo, who was murdered by police officers 12 years ago in the Bronx -- but Sharpton is still hustling today.
Most shameful of all is MSNBC, as well as the other cable stations, if you want to know the truth.
They give us Eliot Spitzer and the idiot who's replacing Larry King -- what's his name, yeah, Piers Morgan, the queezy, sexist guy who seems to ask the creepiest, oozy questions of women he interviews.
Not to mention the ex politicians posing as newspeople who get gobs of money pretending to be credible purveyors of the news.
And now the Rev. Al Sharpton.
Tell me this is a bad dream, please.