Backtalk with Carlos Watson

What do you think about Oprah supporting Barack Obama in his presidential bid?
I think she just continues to be exceptionally relevant to everyday lives, both big and small. I’m ok with it any time we’re able to get more of our citizens to do good things, and the fact that one of them is high profile in the media is even better. I might feel differently if she were a day-to-day reporter or if she was a classic journalist. I think she’s carved out a different niche for

herself, as a talk show host. She’s an adviser to people for many things, to the books they should read, to how they should relate to their spouses, to how they should raise their kids, to what kind of health things they need. I think it’s a good thing saying that politics matters.

Is it possible for her to go too far in her support for him?
She would be crossing the line if she used her show to give him an unusual advantage.

As journalists, we’re supposed to separate personal feelings from work. But it’s hard not to form opinions about the newsmakers you cover. Who do you think are the most interesting people in the news?
Dick Parsons. I think his departure as Time Warner’s CEO is significant. I think it’s significant that he came in and left on his own terms. I just think his run is fascinating-not as an African American, but as a media mogul period-having a prolonged run at the top of the company and not imploding, not falling in the heap, not getting whacked. That’s not easy to do.

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