The Brad Show: Our first guest, Steve Morrison

Today, we take an ambitious step forward at Putting my own crude attempts at video commentary aside (not that I’ll give them up altogether), we’re inaugurating a new feature: The Brad Show. (Suggestions for a better name are welcome.)

What do I hope this will be? Nothing short of the 21st century version of “The Dick Cavett Show.” I’m hoping for intelligent, in-depth conversations that give you something you can’t get anywhere else — certainly not on local soundbite TV, and not, alas, in your local newspaper.

I think this show, taped Wednesday afternoon at the offices of ADCO, is an excellent example of what I’m aiming for. I had invited Steve Morrison to join me, thinking it would be excellent timing since he was expected to endorse someone in the mayoral runoff on Tuesday. But he decided not to endorse, and so we talked about that — among other things.

The great thing about the talk with Steve is that he came armed with tough questions for ME, such as:

  • As someone who constantly presses for greater civility and nonpartisanship, why didn’t I endorse him in the race? (OK, he was sort of kidding on that one — but he was serious about the next two questions…)
  • Why did I keep saying he got into the race so late?
  • What in the world was I thinking intruding into his headquarters on election night, then using private information gathered by his campaign to report to the world on Twitter that he had lost — even before his campaign had told HIM he had lost? Shouldn’t I have been more forthcoming about why I was there? As he puts it, “How do you get away with that?”

Good questions all, asked by a guy who knows how to ask them. You might even call this interview “The Griller Grilled.”

Here’s hoping future shows can be as interesting as this one.

16 thoughts on “The Brad Show: Our first guest, Steve Morrison

  1. Kathryn Fenner

    I’m not sure I get how you “intruded on his headquarters.” Did you break in? Use false pretenses, or was it just an open door apparently open to the public?

    Similarly, the “private” information was hardly that–lawyers know that confidentiality only attaches where the parties took reasonable steps to maintain confidentiality–Della Street cannot be present with Perry Mason if attorney-client privilege is to attach. You didn’t hack into his data or anything. You stood in an apparently open-to-the-public place and heard what you heard.

  2. Brad Warthen

    He’s not saying I was guilty of trespassing — obviously the door was open, and no one asked me to leave. He’s just saying no one knew in what capacity I was there, which to him indicates I obtained info under false colors — or at least murky colors.

    It’s a good conversation. Watch the show; you’ll see…

  3. Kathryn Fenner

    Anyone with half a brain–and I think Steve has four times that much, would be given pause as to why you were there. You are a blogger and a Tweeter. You are pointedly non-partisan. Why else would you be there if not to report?

    Anyone not related by blood or marriage dealing with you and wishing to keep matters private needs to request off-the-record status, as la Tart did Monday evening, and which you respected.

  4. Burl Burlingame

    Well, there’s no grass growing under Steve Morrison’s feet.

    Like KF, I’m at a loss to understand how any information obviously available to any interested citizen can be deemed private. If you hadn’t tweeted it, someone else might have.

    You’re in a whole new building here, and no one knows where the light switches are yet to illuminate it. I’m beginning to think that public-interest blogs, such as yours, are best supported by 501c3 grants, from outfits such as ProPublica. Or a public-interest sponsor. All you need to produce it is a single living wage for yourself, and in the grant world, that ain’t much.

    There’s a world of difference between your blog and most. You’re interested in letting people know what’s going on, in moderating civil discussion on the issues of the day, on promoting transparency in coverage. It’s a case study in providing for an informed electorate. Most bloggers are only interested in telling people how to think, your deal is in getting them to think in the first place.

    “The Brad Show” title is fine. It’s down-home and direct. But how about “Bradapalooza”?

  5. Kathryn Fenner

    I like the 501(c)(3) idea a lot!

    and Brad Men is great, except that we hope Brad’s deal goes on a lot longer than most TV shows, and maybe he’ll find a woman or two worthy of interviewing?

    I know a Joan ringer….

  6. martin

    1. He’s mad you didn’t endorse him and is not willing to accept that you decided not to endorse anyone as an excuse.

    2. If you enter months after everyone knows who the other announced candidates are, you entered “late”. His defensiveness about this reinforces for me that there is some unacknowledged, unspoken reason that motivated him to enter the race.

    3. He is really mad you went to his headquarters and did not announce in what capacity you were there. There’s no reason you didn’t know in what capacity you were there.

    4. Former senator, former governor, former Goldman Sachs CEO John Corzine recently said business is not politics and does not prepare you for public office. He oughta know.

    This really was a grilling. And, I trust you have learned your place after your dressing down.

    Alas, you are no Dick Cavett. But, the people being interviewed today aren’t the likes of Gore Vidal and Groucho Marx. I trust you read his column in the NYT.

  7. Kathryn Fenner


    I agree with all but number 3. If I see Adam Beam or Jeff Wilkinson, I assume that they may be reporting unless otherwise specified. Steve knew well that Brad is a blogger. He advertised on the blog! The fact that Brad didn’t endorse him makes it even less likely that Brad was there as a supporter, no?

  8. Brad Warthen

    I’m liking “Brad Men”… But it’s one of those clever names that I’m not sure I could sustain. I would feel compelled to make the theme work in all interviews, and that would seem to be too limiting.

    Still… I think I’ll keep an eye out for some really narrow ties…

  9. Doug Ross

    Brad to the Bone
    All That Brad
    The Brad-y Bunch
    The World at Warthen
    Warthen of the Worlds
    Warthen Piece

  10. Kathryn Fenner

    “Nuts and Bolts, and a Few Loose Screws, with Brad”

    or is that an overly obscure home improvement reference?


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