Budget Cut Realities; Lauer Urged Dole for VP; "Appeasement" of China
1) Little political news the
last few nights. ABC, CBS and NBC jumped on the fat "epidemic."
NBC claimed old women are the "soccer moms" of 2000. FNC
discovered a contrite Webster Hubbell.
2) CNN relayed General
Shelton's claim that the GOP's suggested 1.4 percent cut would be
"devastating," but that would still leave more money for Defense
than Clinton originally proposed.
3) Today's Matt Lauer
recommended that Bush pick Elizabeth Dole as his VP: "How powerful a
team do you think they'd be?" Another host suggested that Jerry
Falwell could have stopped anti-gay violence.
4) Equating it to how Britain
appeased the Nazis, Clinton's own former CIA chief accused the
administration of "appeasement" toward China, calling the policy
"wrong-headed and dangerous."
5) Five days until Gumbel
returns to morning TV. In #3 of the MRC's "Top Ten Gumbel
Stumbles," Gumbel takes on Linda Tripp.
6) "I love hearing her
voice," oozed Tom Brokaw about a columnist who aspired: "Perhaps
it will take one more school shooting to move the majority of Americans
into a position more powerful than that of the NRA."
7) CBS News warned Senators
ahead of time they better not reject the CTBT as that would send "a
terrible and dangerous message." 60 Minutes II used the Virgin Mary
to denounce treaty opponents.
8) ABC relayed Clinton's
effusive praise for Hillary: "The person I love most in the world is,
without any doubt, the ablest, most passionate, most committed, most
visionary public servant..."
>>> New York Post ad on Bryant
Gumbel. Pick up a copy of today's (Wednesday, October 27) edition of the
New York Post and you'll see a half page ad from the MRC about Bryant
Gumbel's return next week to morning TV. In the ad put together by MRC
Marketing Director Bonnie Goff, under a picture of Gumbel the ad features
this quote from the July 27 Boston Globe: "Before he agreed to return
to the smiley-face domain of morning television as host of CBS's upcoming
The Early Show, Bryant Gumbel demanded and received assurances from his
bosses that he wouldn't get 'called into the principal's office every
morning' for speaking his mind." The ad then asks: "What mindset
does Bryant Gumbel plan to express?" And the ad provides the answer
with examples of his liberal advocacy. Those outside the New York City
area, but along the Atlantic coast, can get the New York Post as it's sold
at newsstands from Portland, Maine to Richmond, Virginia. <<<
There's been relatively little political news on the networks the last two
nights with all the evening shows leading both Monday and Tuesday night
with the crash of the business jet carrying golfer Payne Stewart. Monday
night the three broadcast evening shows each ran one piece on Pat
Buchanan's announcement that he's running for the Reform Party's
October 26, neither ABC's World News Tonight or the CBS Evening News aired
any political stories as the budget battle has not interested network
producers. NBC Nightly News did feature a "Decision 2000" piece
by Andrea Mitchell on what NBC considers the new swing voters. Mitchell
explained: "The candidates, all middle-aged men chasing next year's
most important swing voters: older women....Four years ago it was soccer
moms. This year it's older Americans, specifically women, the key
undecided voters." Older voters are no longer New Dealers, Mitchell
added, as many voted for Reagan and are "healthier, wealthier, more
broadcast evening shows jumped on an article in the Journal of the
American Medical Association about obesity. All dubbed it an
"epidemic." ABC took "A Closer Look" at, as their
graphic put it, the "Fat Epidemic." CBS's Dan Rather tagged it
an "obesity epidemic" while NBC's Tom Brokaw warned that the
Centers for Disease Control said obesity is "now a problem of
As for the cable
political shows, CNN devoted over half of Inside Politics to previewing
its Wednesday night "town meeting" event featuring Al Gore and
Bill Bradley. (CNN did also look at the budget. See item #2 below.)
Report with Brit Hume delivered a unique story from David Shuster about
Webster Hubbell's contrite address to the American Institute of Certified
Public Accountants in which, Shuster imparted, Hubbell "seemed to
pour his heart out, saying he regrets stealing from his old firm."
Shuster reported that Hubbell admitted committing wrong acts while at the
Rose law firm, such as paying personal credit card bills with firm checks.
Shuster concluded by noting how, unlike many in the Clinton world, Hubbell
refused to blame others:
"It wasn't Washington or an independent
counsel, added Hubbell, that brought all of this on."
Hubbell: "I cannot recover from what I did
if I try to blame it on being a high-profile individual. What I did was
That puts Hubbell
to the right of NBC's Geraldo Rivera.
In an Inside Politics story on Tuesday about the House GOP's proposed 1.4
percent spending cut CNN's Bob Franken included a soundbite of the
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs claiming its impact would be
"devastating," but failed to point out that even after such a
cut Defense would be left with more money than proposed by the Clinton
"The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff led the parade against an
General Hugh Shelton: "This would strip away
the gains that we have made or what we've just done to start readiness
moving back in the right direction. In other words, Mr. Chairman, if
applied to this program, it would be devastating."
Senator Trent Lott: "I can't imagine one
percent wreaking havoc."
Franken: "As the political game raged on
outside, the tedious search for a way out continued behind closed
But as National
Review asked in its October 26 "Washington Bulletin" e-mail
report, "one wonders how much more 'devastating' it would have been
had Congress merely accepted President Clinton's defense budget
request." NR pointed out:
"Including the spring supplemental, this
year Congress provided $278.7 billion for defense. The President's request
was $268.8 billion. Even with a 1.4 percent cut, Congress would still be
$6 billion over the President's request -- to which the Pentagon did not
object. (Without including the supplemental, Congress provided $267.8
billion for defense this year, while the President requested $263.3
billion. Again, assuming a 1.4 percent cut would still put Congress ahead
of Clinton in terms of defense spending.) Was General Shelton simply AWOL
when the President made his defense request?"
While on the
budget, and recalling how, as noted in the October 25 CyberAlert, ABC's
Sam Donaldson suggested a 1.4 percent cut in medical research grants could
mean the loss of "the penny that cures cancer," Tuesday's
Investor's Business Daily informed readers that even with the proposed
minor cut non-entitlement spending will continue to soar.
As IBD wrote in
its October 26 editorial:
"No matter who wins the battle over 1.4%,
the amount of federal spending will increase. In fiscal 1999, so-called
discretionary spending will come to about $585 billion. That covers the
Pentagon, as well as a host of domestic programs in education, the
environment, law enforcement and the like.
"The 1.4% 'cut' will come from the fiscal
2000 budget in discretionary spending. But it's not a reduction from this
year's amount. Rather it's a reduction from the amount Congress has slated
to spend on discretionary programs. They've passed spending bills or
planned them to the tune of about $600 billion. The 1.4% reduction will
bring discretionary spending to $592 billion."
Two oddball questions on Today caught by MRC analysts Geoffrey Dickens and
Mark Drake: Matt Lauer recommended that George W. Bush pick Elizabeth Dole
as his VP, wondering "how powerful a team" they'd be; and John
Seigenthaler suggested that by holding a meeting Jerry Falwell could have
prevented any and all of the anti-gay violence.
-- Wrapping up a
Tuesday interview with Pat Buchanan on his jump to the Reform Party, Today
co-host Matt Lauer proposed:
"And Elizabeth Dole dropped out of the GOP
race this past week. Some people are saying she'd make a great running
mate with George W. Bush. They'd have money, name recognition. She might
be able to shrink the gender gap. How powerful a team do you think they'd
money"? I thought the media line was she couldn't raise enough to
stay in the race. More like he'd have money so with any running mate
choice "they'd have money." And those "some people"
are either liberal Republicans and/or Lauer's media colleagues, about the
only ones enthralled by Dole.
-- Talking with
Jerry Falwell on Sunday morning, October 24, about his Saturday outreach
meeting with some gay leaders, Today co-host John Seigenthaler suggested:
"Reverend Falwell, if you had a meeting like this years ago, do you
think it would have prevented acts of violence against gays and
Like the people
who do that kind of thing watch a network news story or read a newspaper
report and then decide to not beat someone up.
Clinton's own former CIA chief accused the Clinton administration of
"appeasement" toward the People's Republic of China, calling the
policy "wrong-headed and dangerous." A Tuesday afternoon AP
dispatch, caught by the MRC's new Director of the Free Market Project,
Rich Noyes, relayed the comments of James Woolsey. No network picked up on
the criticism Tuesday night, but keep your eyes open to see if you see any
In the article
distributed at 1:11pm ET on October 26, the AP's Barry Schweid wrote from
Former CIA Director R. James Woolsey today
accused the Clinton administration of pursuing a policy of appeasement
toward China and likened it to the way Britain and France dealt with Nazi
Germany on Czechoslovakia before World War II.
"It is wrong-headed and
dangerous," Woolsey said as a House committee prepared to hold a
hearing on legislation that would authorize the sale of conventional
submarines, a theater missile defense and other military assistance to
The House International Relations Committee
separately approved a bill that would increase military links with Taiwan
by promoting U.S. training of Taiwan's military officers and opening up
lines of communication with the Taiwan military during times of crisis.
Committee Chairman Ben Gilman, R-N.Y., said
the bill was in response to "Beijing's outright refusal to renounce
the use of force against Taiwan" and its "overwrought
Woolsey, central intelligence director for
President Clinton in 1993-1994, said the administration policy is a
potentially tragic attempt at "strategic ambiguity" like the
failed effort by Britain and France to discourage Hitler from seizing
"The executive branch needs to be
forced to change its shortsighted policy," Woolsey said in backing
the legislation at a seminar at the Nixon Center, a private research
Woolsey said Clinton's declaration of a
"strategic relationship" with China, his adoption of a one-China
approach on the dispute between Beijing and Taipei and repeated U.S.
apologies for NATO's mistaken bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade
in May have encouraged hard-line factions in Beijing.
Appeasement is "a proper word to
describe the administration's stand," Woolsey said....
Number 3 in the MRC's "Top Ten Gumbel Stumbles," a quote
countdown to Bryant Gumbel's return to morning TV on November 1 as co-host
of CBS's The Early Show, is now up on the MRC home page in RealPlayer
In this quote,
from the March 17, 1998 Public Eye prime time show on CBS, during an
interview with the New Yorker's Jane Mayer, who was promoting her hit
piece on Linda Tripp, Gumbel disparaged the whistle blower:
Willey also spoke about Linda Tripp, a Clinton-basher who seems to be at
every ugly turn in this controversy. Tripp was outside the Oval Office
when Willey emerged from her encounter with the President. Just how is it
that Linda Tripp is so often conveniently involved in the President's
troubles? For some clues let's bring in The New Yorker's Jane Mayer, who
has profiled the controversial Miss Tripp in this week's issue...You write
that co-workers often viewed her as an inveterate busybody. Has she always
been a snoop and a gossip with a particular interest in other people's
To watch this
quote, numbers 10 to 4, as well as #2 which will be posted on Wednesday,
go to: http://www.mediaresearch.org/news/gumbel/gumbelvideos.html
Plus, for over 40
examples of Gumbel praising liberals and bashing conservatives from 1989
to 1999, click on the link to the "Anthology of On-Air Gumbel
Stumbles." The direct address: http://www.mediaresearch.org/news/gumbel/gumbelanthology.html
The latest edition of the MRC's MagazineWatch noted that in the November 1
Newsweek, "columnist Anna Quindlen, fresh from the magazine's party
in her honor with Tom Brokaw and other media bigwigs, announced: Maybe we
really need another school shooting. After lashing out against the NRA and
all those who dare believe in the Second Amendment, she presented a
fascinating solution to resolve the gun control debate in this
Quindlen penned: "Perhaps it will take one more school shooting to
move the majority of Americans into a position more powerful than that of
the NRA. Perhaps it will take one more school shooting to move us from
people who support gun control to people who vote it. But as we continue
to let the widows and the wounded do the work, be warned. That next school
may be the one your children attend; the next accident could be close to
That's the kind of
thinking which impresses Tom Brokaw. As conveyed in the June 22 CyberAlert,
in a June 17 appearance on the Imus in the Morning radio show, Brokaw
praised Newsweek's decision to have Quindlen replace the late Meg
Greenfield as the back of the magazine columnist alternating with George
"Well I think it's a great idea. I love
hearing her voice again. I miss Meg personally and professionally. I knew
her quite well and she was a strong voice and I can't think of a better
successor to her than Anna Quindlen. And it's time that we heard from her
again in that kind of a forum. I think it's a wonderful idea."
covered in the October 26 MagazineWatch, compiled by MRC analyst Paul
Smith, about the November 1 issues:
-- Time's Viveca Novak and Jay Branegan probed
Hillary's brothers Tony and Hugh Rodham and how they have used their
familial connections to muck up diplomacy in the former Soviet Union for
their own financial gain. Are we seeing Billy Carter with double vision?
-- Time Senior Editor Nancy Gibbs yearned to
break free of small-bore government activism a la Clinton-Gore. "It
is Bradley's challenge to every other candidate: Why should they not dare
to dream heroic dreams? as Ronald Reagan once put it."
-- In U.S. News, Kenneth Walsh explored Al Gore
and George W. Bush in their 20s: Gore was "on a personal journey to
find moral clarity about his country's sins, his role in its most divisive
war of the 20th century, and, more broadly, his mission in life."
Bush "was looking for thrills, as a part-time military fighter pilot
and eligible bachelor on the prowl in Houston."
-- Liddy Dole dropped out of the presidential
race, but the magazines weren't as eager as the networks to blame the
supposedly sorry campaign finance system.
-- Newsweek and Time pondered the possibility
that John McCain is a campaign-finance hypocrite.
-- U.S. News & World Report's Washington
Whispers noted that the White House promised to get "very
aggressive" in going around a Republican Congress with executive
To read these
items, go to: http://www.mediaresearch.org/news/magwatch/mag19991026.html
Catching up on some quotes bumped for space from recent CyberAlerts, CBS
News warned Republicans ahead of time they better not reject the
Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) and after they defied Bob Schieffer's
decree a CBS colleague on 60 Minutes II used the Virgin Mary to denounce
On the October 10
Face the Nation, three days before the treaty vote, host Bob Schieffer
warned Senate conservatives:
"If you allow this treaty to come to a vote
and it dies, as it surely will, a terrible and dangerous message will go
out to the rest of the world, that America no longer cares about arms
control. That could be a green light to restart the arms race, and that's
why France, Great Britain and all of America's allies are urging you not
to kill this treaty. If you think the treaty is flawed, fine, postpone the
vote and rethink it all later.
"I know beating the President at his own
game would be fun for you, but some things are just too serious for
partisan victories. Besides, no one will remember the Democrats maneuvered
you into all of this. They'll just remember Republicans killed a treaty
that, according to the polls, most Americans wanted. And that's exactly
the box Democrats were trying to put you in in the first place."
The next week,
after the treaty was defeated, on 60 Minutes II Jimmy Tingle, the show's
equivalent of Andy Rooney, assumed that the piece of paper would have
somehow prevented any country from testing nuclear weapons. In the October
19 commentary caught by MRC analyst Brian Boyd, Tingle even linked the
treaty defeat and negative reaction to the Brooklyn art museum exhibit:
"Last week the United States Senate voted
against a ban on nuclear testing. That basically means any country in the
world with nuclear capabilities could develop and then test nuclear
weapons. Just to see if they work. Think about that. Up to 44 countries,
some of whom don't even have adequate sewage treatment, possibly testing
material more dangerous than an atom bomb. That's pretty scary, but there
seems to be very little moral outrage from our leaders on this issue.
"Now, a couple of weeks ago a controversial
art show opened at the Brooklyn Museum in New York City. This artist
portrayal of the Virgin Mary appearing with elephant dung so upset the
Mayor of New York City, Rudolph Giuliani, that he has cut off the city
funding for that particular museum. Apparently the mayor and a lot of
other politicians feel that tax dollars should go to projects with a
little more moral value than controversial art. Like the lottery.
"Well I wonder what the Virgin Mary would
say about how our tax dollars are used outside of art museums. You know,
for things like the electric chair, or cluster bombs, or nuclear weapons.
Maybe if we were to test nuclear weapons in art museums our elected
officials might be able to see them in a totally different light."
Pretending to quote someone, he concluded:
"'You call nuclear explosions a moral use of the taxpayers money,
Relaying without challenge Clinton's effusive claim of love for Hillary.
MRC analyst Jessica Anderson noticed that in an October 26 Good Morning
America story on a birthday fundraiser on New York City's Broadway for
Hillary Clinton's Senate campaign, ABC reporter Terry Moran relayed:
"The Clintons have always been popular with
the entertainment community, and that support translates into campaign
cash. Tonight's event is expected to raise one million dollars. The
President offered a frankly personal endorsement of his partner through so
Bill Clinton: "The person I love most in the
world is, without any doubt, the ablest, most passionate, most committed,
most visionary public servant I have ever known."
endorsement no one else would want. --
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