David Shuster guest hosted The Jim Bohannon syndicated radio show yesterday. It was a return to the airwaves for DC-based Shuster whose MSNBC contract ran out earlier this month. He’d been suspended indefinitely last April for trying out for a job at a rival network.
“I have nothing but good feelings toward MSNBC in the 8 and a half years that I was there,” Shuster said on the show. “I was looking around, and we had a disagreement about what happened. And MSNBC decided ‘you’re contract says that we don’t have to put you on the air.’ And the fact of the matter is they did not have to put me on the air.”
Shuster talked about the perks of not working full-time for most of the year — such as charity work, being with his family, and getting to look at the media from an outsider’s perspective.
When asked by a caller about his feelings toward Fox News, where Shuster worked for 6 years, he said, “A very wise man once told me: I should never talk about Fox after having worked there. Just because, no good could come out of saying what I really feel.” He then mentioned the study that implies that Fox News viewers are misinformed. “There are some terrific journalists at Fox News Channel. I think Shep Smith is probably the premiere anchor/journalist of my generation. He’s terrific, and he does the news straight and let the chips fall where they may.”
“MSNBC will never be as liberal as Fox is conservative,” said Shuster to another caller. When the discussion turned to Glenn Beck, Shuster said the Fox News host has “every right to broadcast what he wants, but the rest of society also has a right to say when he’s wrong.”
So, where is Shuster going in 2011?
Although the former MSNBC correspondent misses his “life-long friends” at MSNBC, he hints at where he is going in 2011 with statements like “far more people get their news — or will go to news sites online than will actually have access to cable news.”
Earlier this week Shuster told Yahoo’s Michael Calderone,”I accepted full-time job in journalism starting after the first of the year,” without going into detail.