A viewing alert for two NBC dramas this week and a note about the slant of CNN's Tuesday night town meeting:
> NBC shows "ripped from today's
headlines"? In a crossover story line airing on NBC's Wednesday
night Law & Order and Friday night Homicide: Life on the Street, an
Independent Counsel impedes the investigation of a murder. (Law &
Order is a 10pm ET/PT drama set in New York City which follows a criminal
case from the investigation by detectives through prosecution in the
courtroom. The 10pm ET/PT Homicide: Life on the Street follows homicide
detectives in Baltimore.)
Here's how TV
Guide describes the episodes:
The February 17 Law & Order: "A
crossover with Homicide: Life on the Street involves a government
worker's murder and an Independent Counsel with a White House
The February 19
Homicide: Life on the Street: "A crossover with Law & Order,
involving a government worker's murder, concludes as the investigation
exposes a connection to the White House, and an ambitious Independent
Counsel uses his authority to take the case out of the hands of the New
York and Baltimore police."
& Order follows a two-hour special at 8pm ET/PT titled
"Confirmation: The Hard Evidence of Aliens Among Us?" At least
Fox holds its low-brow reality specials to one-hour.
> CNN even more tilted Tuesday night than expected. The February 16
CyberAlert warned that the announced panelists for CNN's planned Tuesday
night town meeting tilted left as did those scheduled for Larry King Live.
three hours and 34 minutes of discussion framed around the liberal agenda.
Host Jeff Greenfield, for instance, spent the first 10 minutes of the
second half of the town meeting talking with Walter Cronkite about what
must be done so that the "responsible media" no longer report on
stories in tabloids and on the Internet about the personal lives of
politicians. In other words, the show accepted the premise that the
Lewinsky story was an illegitimate invasion of Clinton's privacy. In
over two-and-a-half hours CNN couldn't find time to raise a conservative
concern, such as how the media fueled Clinton's politics of personal
destruction by so eagerly demonizing Ken Starr.
The panelists on
the stage for "A Conversation with America: We the People,"
which aired from 8 to 9pm ET and continued from 10 to 11:34pm ET: liberal
former CBS News anchor Walter Cronkite, liberal former Congressman and
current NAACP chief Kweisi Mfume, Sally Quinn of the Washington Post and
former Republican Senator Howard Baker. Arianna Huffington got some time
from her location in Los Angeles with Morgan Fairchild and Harry Shearer,
neither of whom are known as conservative. Others given time in the first
hour: Chuck D. and Alvin Poussaint.
made a brief appearance in the 10pm portion, but the comments from those
allowed speak were overwhelmingly about "moving on" and a major
part of the second half of the town hall meeting was devoted to discussing
what issues the nation should address: race relations, closing the gap
between rich and poor and spending more on education.
In between the two
parts of the town meeting, from 9 to 10pm ET CNN aired Larry King Live
with the scheduled Hugh Downs of ABC's 20/20, Ben Bradlee of the
Washington Post and former Clinton adviser David Gergen of U.S. News &
World Report, plus: token conservative Pat Robertson as well as husband
and wife Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen, both enthusiastic Clinton fans.
So, a ratio of five liberals to one conservative.
At the risk of
alienating their fans in the CyberAlert subscriber list, I'd note that
the only two conservatives CNN featured all night, Huffington and
Robertson, are the most prominent conservatives who called for an early
end to the Senate trial.
Much more on
CNN's liberal night in a full CyberAlert on Thursday. -- Brent Baker
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