Ted to "Save the Human Race"; Brokaw Hit GOP from Left; W's "Intellect"
1) Relax, Ted Turner is here
to save us and your pet dog. Monday night Turner promised to dedicate
himself "to trying to save the human race and make things better for
human beings and the other creatures." He argued Clinton has
"been a real good President."
2) Co-hosting a debate in Iowa
Monday night NBC's Tom Brokaw hit the Republicans from the left,
advocating more Medicare spending and labeling as "graphic
language" platform positions calling for the elimination of the
minimum wage, EPA and women in combat.
3) Women support a Republican.
An alien idea to the news media."For the first time in a long while a
Republican frontrunner appeals to women," marveled Tom Brokaw.
Reporter David Bloom referred to "Bush's surprising support from
4) A broadcast network evening
show finally touched the GOP debates. ABC's Dean Reynolds looked at how
"Bush has seemed stiff, uninformed, programmed," while McCain
"has appeared confident."
5) Ratings for CBS's The
Early Show starring Bryant Gumbel are disappointing. CBS's answer: Fire
three producers and a writer.
6) Now online: Video
highlights of the humorous awards presentations and acceptances in jest at
the MRC's "Dishonor Awards for the Decade's Most Outrageous Liberal
>>> Just two
days left to vote. What was the most biased reporting in 1999? You make
the call. Cast your vote by using our "Special Web User Ballot"
for the "Best Notable Quotables of 1999: The Twelfth Annual Awards
for the Year's Worst Reporting." At the end of every year since the
late '80s a panel of about 50 leading media observers have served as
judges to select the MRC's year-end awards. Again this year they are
voting in 14 categories, but now you too can participate thanks to MRC Web
manager Andy Szul.
Web voting is open until 9am ET on Thursday, December
16. The next day we'll post both the winners and top runners-up as
picked by Web-voters as well as our judging panel. To make your picks, go
worry about anything, Ted Turner will take care of all our problems. And
he'll make sure all the wild animals are safe. And pets too. Monday
night on CNN's Larry King Live, the founder of CNN and current Vice
Chairman of Time-Warner, promised that he'll work toward "saving
the human race" and to making "things better for human beings
and other creatures." He also warned that he thought about running
for President and said he thinks Clinton has "been a real good
Here are three of
Turner's comments to King that I culled from the live December 13
-- "I'm going to
dedicate part of my efforts towards joining with those who want to get it
to the top of the agenda to rid the world of nuclear weapons as soon as we
possibly can, not sit around and let them pile up. They're too
dangerous. They pose a danger to humanity. I'm spending most of my
senior years, most of my time and effort now is going to trying to save
the human race and make things better for human beings and the other
creatures that live on this planet."
-- King: "You going
to run for President?"
Turner: "I've thought about it."
King: "How recently?"
Turner: "Last time, this time."
King: "This time thinking about it?"
Turner: "I thought about it but very briefly. I
don't really have the energy for it."
-- Turner on President
Clinton: "I think overall he's been a real good President and you
know his administration was marred by this Lewinsky thing but, you know,
I'm, it doesn't bother me that much."
King: "Didn't bother you when it was
Turner: "Well I, you know, I followed it you
King: "Had to follow it."
Turner: "Felt sorry for him. In a bad spot,
everybody was but I think the news media gave it an awful lot of play. You
know I don't think it was that big a deal. In Europe it's not, that
kind of behavior is pretty well accepted. It's not here, of
Isn't that just awful
that we don't accept it. Well, actually we did as a nation.
think that the purpose of a Republican debate would be to draw out the
differences on policy amongst the Republican candidates so that Republican
voters could make a better-informed choice. That's how CNN and FNC
moderators and questioners approached the two debates earlier this month.
But not NBC star Tom Brokaw Monday night at the debate which aired live
Monday night from Des Moines on MSNBC from 7 to 8:30pm CT, 8 to 9:30pm ET.
Instead, Brokaw frequently hit the Republicans from the left with points
Gore and Bradley partisans would offer. (Brokaw co-moderated with an
anchor from the local NBC affiliate, WHO-TV.)
After the local WHO-TV
anchor repeatedly pressed gun control and demanded the candidates explain
why they don't favor it, Brokaw made this liberal argument in the guise
of a question:
"Senator Hatch, why not have means testing for
Medicare. Why should someone who earns my kind of income, for example, pay
and get the same kind of coverage as a school teacher or someone who works
on a farm here in Iowa. Pick an investment banker and put him up against a
cop. Why can't people who earn more money help make it possible for
older Americans, who have real need, to get prescription drugs under their
Soon after Brokaw
marveled at a strange document that someone gave him: "I've been
reading the Iowa Republican Party platform, we're here in the state of
Iowa, and I have for each of you some questions that arise out of the very
graphic language in that platform. If I could begin with you Mr. Forbes:
It calls for the elimination of the minimum wage, the Iowa Republican
Party platform. You think that's a good idea?"
Where's the "very
Next, he went to Senator
McCain: "In the Iowa Republican Party platform they call for
prohibition of women in any combat role. No one on this stage or almost in
America has more combat experience than you do. Do you think that's a
good idea, prohibit women from combat?"
Where's the "very
Plugging along, Brokaw
moved to Gary Bauer: "It says that Creationism is a science and
evolution is a theory and they ought to be taught equitably in the
schools. Do you agree with the entire premise in that statement in the
Iowa Republican Party platform?"
Where's the "very
Bauer provided the best
retort: "If you want to read a wacko platform, you ought to try
reading the Iowa Democratic Party platform."
Going to Senator Hatch,
Brokaw extended his mantra: "Continuing with the Iowa GOP platform,
they call for the elimination of the Environmental Protection Agency. You
think that's a good idea?"
Where's the "very
Then Brokaw went to
George W. Bush: "The platform also calls for the elimination and the
phasing out of Medicare and Medicaid and privatize those programs
entirely. Bad idea?"
Time prevented Brokaw
from pressing his theme more, but I'm still waiting to hear the
"very graphic language." Maybe that's NBC News code for solid
showing of the debate Monday night prompted NBC Nightly News to run a
couple of campaign-related stories Monday night, but not a word about the
campaign aired on the December 13 ABC or CBS evening shows. NBC looked at
George W. Bush's support among women, which surprised the network, and
the decline in influence in Iowa of the Christian Coalition.
(Nightly News also ran a
full story by Jim Miklaszewski on concerns about the upcoming Panama Canal
turnover, such as whether Panama can handle the responsibility, fear of
Panama's inability to prevent terrorism since it has no standing army
and the temptation of corruption. Not mentioned by Miklaszewski: Concern
expressed by conservatives that a Chinese-affiliated company will run the
ports at both ends of the canal.)
On Monday's Nightly
News Tom Brokaw marveled: "For the first time in a long while a
Republican frontrunner appeals to women. What's different about George
David Bloom answered that "when it comes to Bush
the so-called gender gap may be dead." Citing a survey by the
women-oriented iVillage.com Web site, Bloom explained how it found
Republican women support Bush over McCain by 54 percent to 8 percent. Bush
beats Al Gore 35 percent to 28 percent and versus Bill Bradley he's
ahead 36 percent to 21 percent.
Not wanting to miss a
chance to castigate conservatives, Bloom asserted: "A top Republican
strategist, a woman, says too many Republicans come across as, quote,
'dour, scolding, intolerant.' Not Bush, she says, and other
Anita Blair, Independent Women's Forum: "I think
women believe him when he says I want to be compassionate. George loves
his wife obviously and loves his mother. I think that those are things
that resonate, especially with women voters as a change from Bill
Bloom: "Now alarmed Democrats and especially
abortion-rights groups are trying to undercut Bush's support among women
with television ads, such as this."
NARAL ad: "Get the picture? George W. Bush is
Kate Michelman of NARAL: "They just don't know
enough about him yet and when they do he will lose support."
Bloom concluded with some circular analysis followed by
an admission that he's surprised by female support of a Republican:
"The gender gap could reappear if undecided women, many of them
independents and Democrats, break sharply for Gore or Bradley. But tonight
Bush's surprising support from women is among his greatest
Next, Brokaw checked in
on the declining power of the Christian Coalition in Iowa, but found it
still has its followers, such as David and Becky Struthers in Collins who
"The Struthers are members of the Christian
Coalition. Their agenda: A candidate compassionate to farming and
conservative family values."
Brokaw asked: "The
coalition was once a political powerhouse but can it still influence
Mark Rozell of Catholic University answered: "I
think it's more difficult for the Christian right to be influential in
this election cycle because they don't have a single standard
After noting how members
volunteer and vote in higher proportions than other groups and letting one
of its leaders point out that many members are now working in several
campaigns, Brokaw added: "This time the coalition is looking for a
winner. But to win, experts feel the Coalition needs to be less
confrontational, more compromising." David Yepsin of the Des Moines
Register explained: "They've compromised some of their views.
They've decided they want to win some elections."
Brokaw concluded with a
plug for reality: "For Coalition members, like the Struthers,
abortion and affairs of the church remain important, but they know that in
order to improve their lives they must vote for a candidate who can win in
ignoring the December 2 and December 6 Republican presidential debates,
ABC's World News Tonight finally showed viewers some clips from them in
a Sunday night, December 12, story on questions about George W. Bush's
intellect. "In the debates, Bush has seemed stiff, uninformed,
programmed, or all three," Dean Reynolds maintained, while John
McCain "has appeared confident."
As noted in the December
6 and 9 CyberAlerts, none of the three broadcast network evening shows
aired stories about what happened at the two debates the nights after they
took place, so ABC's December 12 piece was the first broadcast network
evening show story on a debate this month.
Under the guise of
previewing the Monday Iowa debate, Dean Reynolds took up a subject
explored last week by the cable networks, but for the first time by a
broadcast network evening show:
"Two relatively flat performances at recent
debates have made some Republican Party officials worry publicly about
Bush's potential as a candidate and as a President."
Orrin Hatch at the December 6 debate: "And frankly
I really believe that you need more experience before you become President
of the United States. That's why I'm thinking of you as a vice
Reynolds: "It all fits hand in glove with
not-so-subtle suggestions about his intellect."
FNC's Brit Hume at December 2 debate that ABC News
bagged, leaving FNC to show it: "Can you tell us sir what do you read
everyday. What do you read for information?"
Bush: "Well I read the newspaper."
Bush: "I read the Dallas Morning News. I read the
New York Times. I read the Wall Street Journal and I read the Austin
Reynolds: "By contrast, McCain has appeared
confident and has been able to brush off questions about his temper."
McCain, December 2: "You know a comment like that
really makes me mad."
Reynolds: "In the debates, Bush has seemed stiff,
uninformed, programmed, or all three. And that's what his friends are
saying. This is not good."
After analyst Stuart Rothenberg said Bush has a problem
that will be hard to overcome, Reynolds continued: "Despite the
criticism, Bush doesn't sound all that worried."
Bush: "I've been underestimated before, and
Governor Richards regrets it."
Reynolds ominously concluded: "In the comparisons
that are sure to be drawn between the Governor and McCain tomorrow night,
Bush's supporters clearly hope he will wind up on top. They'd rather not
talk about what happens if he doesn't."
Gumbel has proven he can't attract an audience as the new The Early Show
is being watched by fewer than tuned into the previous This Morning
program. So what is CBS's solution? Deal with Gumbel? No, hurt the
little guys behind the scenes. The New York Post reported Friday that CBS
News fired three producers and a writer for the show.
Here's an excerpt of
the December 10 story by the New York Post's Michael Starr which MRC
research associate Kristina Sewell passed along to me:
CBS has canned four news veterans from
"The Early Show," its struggling, $30 million morning program
co-hosted by Bryant Gumbel and Jane Clayson.
"This is no bloodletting,"
executive producer Steve Friedman said of the firings, which occurred late
Wednesday. "There are staff changes all the time -- that's how these
Yet the shake-up comes as "Early
Show" continues to do poorly in the ratings. Since its debut on Nov.
1, the third-place show has often scored lower ratings than its
predecessor, "CBS News This Morning." And it has failed to make
any inroads against its nearest competitor, ABC's "Good Morning
"We're closer to 'GMA' now than [any
time] since our premiere week," Friedman said. "We're closer to
them than they are to the 'Today' show."....
CBS pumped $30 million into "The Early
Show's" new street-level studios in the GM Building on 59th Street.
Producers Bryna Levin, Craig Frisina and
Pat Olsen and writer Allen Honigberg were given their walking papers
"Early Show" executive producer
Al Berman left at the end of last month to develop programming for CBS
News. He was replaced by Lyne Pitts. Friedman stressed that the firings
had nothing to do with
Pitts. "I told Lyne I was going to do
this when she took the job," he said. "I felt, as a fairness
thing, I would take a look at people from scratch, as we did the
He added: "There are always going to
be phases when you're developing a show. Phase One is getting on the air,
and Phase Two is making the show great. "We've not [yet] got a
full-fledged, major-league program."
I thought that according
to Gumbel only conservatives and Reagan hurt the little guy.
you missed the MRC's "Dishonor Awards for the Decade's Most
Outrageous Liberal Media Bias," now you can watch a television news
story about them, view video excerpts of the humorous awards presentations
as shown by C-SPAN and read a newspaper account of last Thursday's
events. All thanks to the MRC's Andy Szul, who with some help from Eric
Pairel, posted a bunch of new stuff Monday night on the MRC Web site.
Go to http://archive.mrc.org
and click on the photo of Justice Clarence Thomas at the dinner accepting
an award in jest and in addition to being able to see the text and videos
of all the award nominees and winners, you'll have access to:
-- Video of the December
10 Fox News Channel story on the Fox Report by reporter Eric Burns.
-- Highlights of the
awards banquet, as shown by C-SPAN:
Michael Reagan presents the nominees for the "How
Do I Hate the Gipper? Let Me Count the Ways Award." Award accepted by
Cal Thomas presents the nominees for the
"Presidential Kneepad Award for the Best Journalistic Lewinsky."
Award accepted by John Fund.
Ed Capano presents the nominees for "I'm a
Compassionate Liberal But I Wish You Were Dead Award (for media hatred of
conservatives)." Award accepted by Justice Clarence Thomas on behalf
of Julianne Malveaux.
-- Text of a December 13
Washington Times story on the awards banquet by Clarence Williams, which
you can read here in full:
Paybacks are hell -- and the most liberal
members of the media took their turns getting paid back last Thursday
A chance to gang up on the liberal media
elite was a clarion call for the 500 supporters of the Media Research
Center who gathered at the Washington Monarch Hotel to recognize the most
biased coverage by reporters of the '90s, and to "honor" the
decade's worst reporting.
"I would not have missed this for all
the campaign contributions in China," said M. Stanton Evans,
president of the National Journalism Center and the master of ceremonies
for the evening's "Dishonors Awards."
"No liberals," he noted,
"were actually injured in the production of this program."
Conservatives got the chance to slap their
knees, yuck it up and let their hair down -- all at their liberal
Among them Oliver North, Justice Clarence
Thomas, pundit William F. Buckley Jr. and Michael Reagan, former President
Ronald Reagan's eldest son, who said he was only "trying to change
the world" by converting "one liberal at a time."
For $125 a plate, guests got the chance to
digest a host of quotes -- displayed on large projection screens -- along
with their mixed salad greens.
The event played out like a celebrity roast
-- only the celebrities weren't around to have their feet held to the
fire. As the award winners weren't invited to personally accept their
prizes, certain high-profile conservatives were called to the podium to
accept the glass awards for them.
Awards were given out in bizarre categories
such as "The Presidential Kneepad Award (For the Best Journalistic
Lewinksy Impression)" which the Wall Street Journal's John Fund
accepted for Time magazine's Nina Burleigh (who coined the
"kneepad" allusion to presidential peccadillos in a piece in the
New York Observer).
"This is the lowest form of satire --
quoting a journalist with his own work," quipped R. Emmett Tyrrell,
editor of the American Spectator. "As a journalist, a serious
journalist, I'm embarrassed to be here," Mr. Tyrrell joked, before
picking up the "The Corporal Cueball Carville Cadet Award (For
Impugning The Character of President Clinton's Adversaries)" on
behalf of Newsweek's Evan Thomas.
"Indeed this award is appropriate -- I
can see through it," said former Reagan Administration Attorney
General Edwin Meese, who claimed "The How Do I Hate the Gipper? Let
Me Count the Ways Award," for TV critic John Leonard.
"The media can't seem to get over
Ronald Reagan - I hope they never do," Michael Reagan said.
Several journalists found themselves
nominated in multiple categories, notably "Today" show host
Bryant Gumbel, who shared honors for the "Most Biased Quote of the
Decade Award" after a live vote by the audience.
President Bill Clinton ended up being the
butt of much of the humor, although Geraldo Rivera also got more than his
share of ribbing.
"Geraldo Rivera is to journalism, what
Bill Clinton is to statesmanship," said Cal Thomas, a syndicated
columnist and TV talk show host.
Organizers proclaimed the Dishonors a huge
success. They want to host the event on an annual basis, to continue to
cast light on the "egregious offenses" of the media.
"Clearly it's a target-rich environment," Mr. Evans said.
The direct address to
allow you to experience what you missed on Thursday: http://www.mediaresearch.org/news/nq/dishonors.html. --
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