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The 2,366th CyberAlert. Tracking Liberal Media Bias Since 1996
9:50am EST, Tuesday February 27, 2007 (Vol. Twelve; No. 36)

 
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1. Nets Champion Gore's Oscar as 'Springboard' to Presidential Bid
CBS and ABC on Monday night celebrated the Academy Award for the documentary narrated by Al Gore and promoted the cause of those who hope he uses it as a "springboard" for a presidential run. For her lead, CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric paired how the "Oscar win puts Al Gore's global warming message on center stage" with how "environmentalism may be reaching critical mass" as evidenced by how "the largest private equity buyout in corporate history" -- of the TXU utility -- shows that the "Wall Street mantra of 'greed is good' has been replaced by 'green is good.'" Gloria Borger Borger soon trumpeted how Gore is playing his Oscar "for all it's worth because now he's not just another defeated presidential candidate. He's an Oscar-winning environmental evangelist" and, she oozed, "on stage last night...Gore was on top of the world. Not only has he spread the word about global warming, he's helped change the political climate, too."

2. Lauer Boasts NBC Exclusive: 'Could Rock Christianity to Its Core'
Brought to you by the same people who couldn't get enough of Ron Howard's Christian-bashing The Da Vinci Code, comes another promotional effort of yet another Hollywood director's take on Jesus Christ conspiracy theories aimed to Discredit Christianity. At the top of NBC's Today on Monday, host Matt Lauer greeted viewers with the following tease about James Cameron's new documentary set to air Sunday on the Discovery channel: "A shocking new claim that an ancient burial place may have housed the bones of Christ and a son. This morning a Today exclusive that could rock Christianity to its core." Today co-host Meredith Vieira conducted the interview and promoted the discovery this way: "There are so few 'wow' stories out there, this is one of them." While Today did note some doubts about the credibility of the claims, for the most part the entire segment ran as a full blown infomercial for Cameron's documentary.

3. CNN Again Encourages Republicans to Mimic Liberal Schwarzenegger
For the third time since the 2006 midterm elections, CNN's Situation Room has highlighted liberal Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger as a role model for the national GOP. On the Monday edition of the cable program, reporter Jeff Greenfield discussed the California leader's visit to Washington to give a speech and he also described Schwarzenegger's "centrism."


 

Nets Champion Gore's Oscar as 'Springboard'
to Presidential Bid

     CBS and ABC on Monday night celebrated the Academy Award for the documentary narrated by Al Gore and promoted the cause of those who hope he uses it as a "springboard" for a presidential run. For her lead, CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric paired how the "Oscar win puts Al Gore's global warming message on center stage" with how "environmentalism may be reaching critical mass" as evidenced by how "the largest private equity buyout in corporate history" -- of the TXU utility -- shows that the "Wall Street mantra of 'greed is good' has been replaced by 'green is good.'" Gloria Borger Borger soon trumpeted how Gore is playing his Oscar "for all it's worth because now he's not just another defeated presidential candidate. He's an Oscar-winning environmental evangelist" and, she oozed, "on stage last night...Gore was on top of the world. Not only has he spread the word about global warming, he's helped change the political climate, too."

     ABC put "Gore's Moment" up on the screen graphic before reporter Bill Weir touted how "a bigger, looser Al Gore now roams red carpets in Ralph Lauren, gives Grammys to Red Hot Chili Peppers and has Oscar credibility" -- as if a bunch of Hollywood liberals awarding a liberal movie starring a liberal politician somehow gives that politician any more credibility. Weir also championed how Gore's "global warming slide show has made $45 million and counting at the box office. Live versions sell out red state arenas faster than rock stars. And he's up for the Nobel Peace Prize. Which leads to the question, will he run again?"

     [This item was posted Monday night on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

     The two broadcast networks are just following the lead of the Washington Post, which on Sunday's front page painted Gore as the "Coolest Vice President Ever." The February 26 CyberAlert recounted, in part:

The Washington Post awarded its Oscar early to former Vice President Al "The Goracle" Gore. "Al Gore, Rock Star," announced the headline under a Sunday front page picture of Gore on stage with Queen Latifah at the Grammy Awards. The tribute carried this breathless subhead: "Oscar Hopeful May Be America's Coolest Ex-Vice President Ever." Reporter William Booth soon gushed: "Incredible as it may seem, Al Gore is not only totally carbon neutral, but geek-chic cool. No velvet rope can stop him. He rolls with Diddy. He is on first-name basis, for real, with Ludacris." Booth showcased how Laurie David, a producer of the film featuring Gore, An Inconvenient Truth, championed him as "a super hero now" and Democratic consultant Matt Bennett got space to proclaim: "Look, this guy was a visionary. He was right about everything, even the stuff he was ridiculed for." The headline over the jump page, "'Truth': Renewable Energy and the Renewable Man."

Booth touted how the director of Gore's film, Davis Guggenheim trumpeted how "everywhere I go with him, they treat him like a rock star." Booth backed him up: "Guggenheim is not being hyperbolic. Take the Cannes Film Festival: Al Gore was mobbed. By French people. He was a presenter at the Grammy Awards, alongside Queen Latifah, where he got one of the biggest welcomes of the night. 'Wow....I think they love you, man. You hear that?' the current Queen asked the former veep."

     For more: www.mrc.org

     The MRC's Brad Wilmouth corrected the closed-captioning against the video for the February 26 CBS Evening News coverage:

     Katie Couric's tease: "Tonight big business and Hollywood both decide it is easy being green. The biggest corporate buyout in corporate history has Wall Street and environmentalists cheering while an Oscar win puts Al Gore's global warming message on center stage."

     Katie Couric led her newscast: "Hello, everyone. Tonight there are signs in two arenas -- business and politics -- that environmentalism may be reaching critical mass. Today the largest private equity buyout in corporate history was announced by the most powerful players on Wall Street. Several firms have agreed to spend $45 billion to buy Texas electricity producer TXU. If this deal is any indication, it looks as if the Wall Street mantra of 'greed is good' has been replaced by 'green is good.' Here's Anthony Mason."

     Anthony Mason: "In a stunning turnabout, the new buyers of TXU, the largest power provider in Texas, promised to take a company that had been the enemy of environmentalists and make it go green."
     David Hawkins, Natural Resources Defense Council: "This is an earthquake that happened in Texas, but the shock wave is going to be felt from Wall Street to Washington."
     Mason: "-because it signals a major shift in big business attitudes. The big money behind the deal was a consortium of the most powerful financiers in America. They pledge to cancel TXU's plans to build eight new coal-fired plants that would have generated tons of greenhouse gas emissions, reduce carbon emissions by 20 percent, and become the largest buyer of wind power in the country."
     Bill Reilly, Texas Pacific Group: "Now, on virtually every front, we're moving to make this a clean, responsible, environmentally committed company."
     Mason: "TXU is not alone. Florida Power and Light, Exelon in Chicago, PNM in New Mexico, and Duke Energy have all agreed to support global warming legislation. Last month, the CEOs of GE, Alcoa, and DuPont made the same public pledge."
     Jim Rogers, Duke Energy: "The science of climate warming is clear. We know enough to act now. We must act now."
     Mason: "More than half the electricity used in the U.S. is produced from coal, but coal has the highest uncontrolled carbon dioxide emission rate of any fuel, and is the largest source of global warming pollution in the country. TXU says it will invest $400 million to improve energy efficiency. It's the new bottom line: smart environmental choices equal good business."
     Reilly: "In fact, we think that the environmental commitments will help make a success of the, of the business commitments, and it will be green in both senses of the word."
     Mason: "This is a huge business deal, the largest private buyout ever. At the same time, the company is promising to cut rates by 10 percent for its more than two million customers."

     Katie Couric then moved on to Al Gore: "And if green is good for big business, it could be great for politicians. Now that Al Gore's documentary on global warming won an Oscar, a lot of people are wondering if he'll use it as a springboard for another presidential run. Our national political correspondent Gloria Borger is in Washington. Gloria, it looks as if the former Vice President is playing it coy, at least for now."

     Gloria Borger: "That's right, Katie. He's clearly playing it for all it's worth because now he's not just another defeated presidential candidate. He's an Oscar-winning environmental evangelist. With questions about Al Gore's 2008 intentions still in the air, it was a moment just too good to pass up."
     Al Gore at the Academy Awards: "I guess with a billion people watching, it's as good a time as any, so, my fellow Americans, I'm going to take this opportunity right here and now to formally announce my intention to-" [music cuts him off in planned comedy bit]
     Borger: "The comedic timing was perfect, especially for someone always considered a bit stiff. But on stage last night, after winning for An Inconvenient Truth, Gore was on top of the world. Not only has he spread the word about global warming, he's helped change the political climate, too. Consider this from the 1992 campaign:"
     George H.W. Bush, October 1992: "You know why I call him 'Ozone Man'? This guy is so far off in the environmental extreme, we'll be up to our necks in owls-"
     Borger: "Back then, it wasn't easy being green. Now, 70 percent of the American public believes global warming is real. And the current President Bush is pushing hybrid cars. Need more evidence that climate change is now mainstream? Just today, the governors of five Western states pledged to reduce greenhouse gases, which they say cause record drought and fire seasons. As for Gore, the question in Washington is whether his Oscar win may tempt him to try again for the biggest prize. An advisor says Gore isn't thinking about it now."
     Michael Feldman, Al Gore advisor: "He hasn't completely shut the door, but I don't see, I don't see anything more than that."
     Borger: "But sources tell us to check back this fall, Katie, and see what happens."
     Couric: "In other words, Gloria, he may wait around to see if Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama falter, and if they do, step in?"
     Borger: "Absolutely, Katie. He is in no rush. First of all, he can write himself a large personal check at this point. I was told today that he could raise $50 million very easily. He's a known quantity, and one more thing that appeals to these Democratic primary voters, Katie, he has been opposed to the war in Iraq."


     ABC's World News with Charles Gibson:

     Charles Gibson, with "Gore's Moment" on screen: "There has been a lot of speculation today about the political future of former Vice President Al Gore following his star turn at the Academy Awards last night. The documentary, An Inconvenient Truth, which features Gore talking up the problem of global warming, won an Oscar. So does he want, now, to win something else? Here's ABC's Bill Weir."

     Bill Weir: "There is no comedy without pain, it is said."
     Al Gore on stage at the Academy Awards Sunday night: "I'm going to take this opportunity right now, to formally announce my intention-" [cut off by music as part of planned humorous bit]
     Weir: "This laugh came six year after his most painful day in politics."
     Gore in December 2000: "I offer my concession."
     Weir: "A bigger, looser Al Gore now roams red carpets in Ralph Lauren, gives Grammys to Red Hot Chili Peppers and has Oscar credibility."
     Gore in An Inconvenient Truth: "That's global warming."
     Weir: "His global warming slide show has made $45 million and counting at the box office. Live versions sell out red state arenas faster than rock stars. And he's up for the Nobel Peace Prize. Which leads to the question, will he run again?"
     Al Gore, at after-awards event: "You know, I don't have plans to do that. Don't have any intention of doing it. I am involved in trying to campaign in a different way to get people to see the reality of this crisis."
     Weir: "It is a frustrating response for his political fans, both online bloggers and one veteran of the Oval Office."
     Jimmy Carter on Sunday's This Week: "I've put so much pressure on Al to run that he's almost gotten aggravated with me."
     Weir: "Still, the Gore faithful hold out hope that all this pop culture love will nudge him into the race. And his former campaign manager believes he can still jump in after other Democrats have worn each other down."
     Donna Brazille: "There's an opportunity for Al Gore to get in the race. If one of the top tier candidates stumble and perhaps get out of the race."
     Weir: "And just in case, Republican strategists are sharpening their knives."
     Rich Galen: "It may be a one-trick pony, that global warming isn't enough, I don't think, to be elected President."
     Weir: "He will tackle other political issues in a new book, testify before Congress on global warming, and front a massive environmental concert this summer. So for now, it seems Al Gore is content to shape the debate far off the campaign trail."
     George Clooney, joking on stage at the Academy Awards: "I was backstage with Jack Nicholson and Vice President Gore drinking. I don't think he's running for President."
     Weir: "Bill Weir, ABC News, Los Angeles."

 

Lauer Boasts NBC Exclusive: 'Could Rock
Christianity to Its Core'

     Brought to you by the same people who couldn't get enough of Ron Howard's Christian-bashing The Da Vinci Code, comes another promotional effort of yet another Hollywood director's take on Jesus Christ conspiracy theories aimed to Discredit Christianity. At the top of NBC's Today on Monday, host Matt Lauer greeted viewers with the following tease about James Cameron's new documentary set to air Sunday on the Discovery channel: "A shocking new claim that an ancient burial place may have housed the bones of Christ and a son. This morning a Today exclusive that could rock Christianity to its core." Today co-host Meredith Vieira conducted the interview and promoted the discovery this way: "There are so few 'wow' stories out there, this is one of them." While Today did note some doubts about the credibility of the claims, for the most part the entire segment ran as a full blown infomercial for Cameron's documentary.

     The "Lost Tomb of Jesus" is scheduled to air Sunday night at 9pm EST/PST on Discovery: dsc.discovery.com

     (As the day progressed Monday, other television reports cast much more doubt on what Today hyped. Stories on
ABC's World News, the CBS Evening News and CNN's The Situation Room and Anderson Cooper 360 all featured archeological experts who dismissed the finding, pointing to how names like Mary were very common at the time, a poor family such as the one to which Jesus belonged wouldn't have afforded a burial only the wealthy could afford and if Cameron and colleagues are so sure, why didn't they test the DNA of supposed son Judah?)

     [This item is adopted from a posting, by Geoffrey Dickens, on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

     The following are all the teases and then the full segment as it aired on the 7:30am half-hour of the February 26th Today show:

     # 7am, Matt Lauer: "Is it the tomb of Jesus? A shocking new claim that an ancient burial place may have housed the bones of Christ and a son. This morning a Today exclusive that could rock Christianity to its core."

     # 7:03am, Meredith Vieira: "And then we have a potentially amazing story. Have we possibly found the tomb of Jesus Christ? You're looking live at the boxes that could have contained the remains of Jesus and Mary Magdalene. They are in an undisclosed location. There's a news conference later today but we're gonna talk to the filmmakers first, here on the Today show about that discovery."
     Lauer: "More research needs to be done but if this turns out to be true this changes everything."
     Vieira: "Oh it's a huge story, absolutely."

     # 7:20am, Meredith Vieira: "Meanwhile, coming up, a story that's bound to become the subject of a lot of debate. Have archeologists found the tomb of Jesus Christ? We'll get into the controversy but first this is Today on NBC."

     # 7:31am, Matt Lauer: "Also ahead we're gonna talk about a discovery that if it's true it could rock the world. Did this 2000 year-old tomb in Jerusalem once hold the bones of Jesus and his family including a son? A new book and a documentary from Oscar-winning director James Cameron traces an archeological find that could change everything we know about Jesus, Mary and Mary Magdalene."

     # 7:37am, Lauer, over song "Jesus Christ Superstar": "But up next a Today exclusive. Did these boxes once hold the bones of Jesus and Mary Magdalene? We'll find out why director James Cameron and others think it just may be true when we talk, right after this."

     # 7:40am, the full segment:

     Meredith Vieira: "It could be the greatest archeological find ever. Since the 1970s hundreds of tombs and thousands of ancient bone boxes have been uncovered in the holy land but now one tomb unearthed in Talpiot in 1980 is being regarded differently because it once held a box with this inscription: 'Jesus Son of Joseph.' While the Bible tells the story of Jesus and his resurrection this box could show physical evidence that he existed, was buried and that he had a son, Judah. Those are the claims in a new book from Emmy-winning investigative journalist Simcha Jacobovici and a documentary from Academy Award-winning director James Cameron."
     [Clip from The Da Vinci Code: "Witness the biggest cover-up in human history."]
     Vieira: "It was the central controversial claim of Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code."
     [The Da Vinci Code clip: "Mary Magdalene was Jesus' wife."]
     Vieira: "That Jesus and Mary Magdalene married and started a royal bloodline that continues today. Brown's story was fiction but now a new documentary and book announce a startling real life discovery."
     [Clip from documentary. Simcha Jacobovici: "It's unbelievable." Unidentified man: "This is it!" Jacobovici: "It's the real thing."]
     Vieira: "Journalist Simcha Jacobovici says this tomb discovered underneath what is now an apartment complex near Jerusalem may be the final resting place of Jesus Christ. And this limestone box, called an ossuary, could have held his actual bones."
     [Clip from documentary. Unidentified woman going over tomb inscription: "...is for 'M'"]
     Vieira: "This ossuary may have held Maria's or the Virgin Mary's. This one is labeled Mary Amne which Christian scriptures says was Mary Magdalene's real name. And perhaps most shocking of all the writing on this box translates to: 'Judah Son of Jesus.' If true the consequences are impossible to measure."
     Father Thomas Williams: "Well Christianity really stands or falls with the fact of Jesus' bodily resurrection from the dead and that he physically ascended into Heaven."
     Vieira: "Father Thomas Williams is an NBC News analyst."
     Williams: "Where was this supposed son if, if he had one he would've been a prominent member of this new church and he wasn't."
     Vieira: "The Church is not alone in auguring this tomb may have nothing to do with the Jesus Christ millions now worship. The site was first examined 27 years ago. An archeologist then came to a very different conclusion."
     [Clip from documentary. Professor Amos Kloner: "These are the most common names among Jews in the first century common era."
     David Mevorah, chief curator, Israel Museum: "Suggesting that this tomb was the tomb of the family of Jesus is far-fetched."]
     Vieira: "Jakobovici says experts in statistics, DNA and patina testing back up the conclusion that this could be the biggest archeological find ever."
     [clip from documentary. Man: "We found it, we actually-"]

     Vieira: "Simcha Jacobovici and James Cameron are here for their first television interview on the Jesus Family Tomb and the Discovery Channel documentary called The Lost Tomb of Jesus. Good morning to both of you gentlemen."
     Simcha Jacobovici: "Good morning."
     Vieira: "Read the book over the weekend, watched the documentary. There are so few 'wow' stories out there, this is one of them. I mean Simcha you believe you have found the family tomb of Jesus. You have brought over two of the ossuaries or the, the bone boxes, as we call them and you're gonna display them in front of the, the press later on today. We have them here. I want to show the audience. Got a live shot of them. And you describe which ones we're looking at. Oh there, there they are, right there."
     Jacobovici: "We're looking at the bone box inscribed: 'Jesus Son of Joseph,' that's the more plain one, the smaller one. And the other one says Mari Amne which is, scholars today say is the real name of Mary Magdalene."
     Vieira: "And they were found in that tomb along with other boxes that you believe held the, the remains of Mother Mary. Some of the relatives and also Judah who you think was the son. The box says, 'Judah Son of Jesus.' If this is correct what are the implications? They're huge."
     Jacobovici: "They are huge but they're not necessarily the implications that people think they are. For example some believers will say, 'Well this challenges the resurrection.' I don't know why. If Jesus rose from one tomb he could have risen from the other tomb. It really has to do with ascension. But we're not theologians, I'm not a theologian. We're here, we're reporters and we're reporting the facts and what we're saying is here are the facts. There is a tomb, it has ossuaries. This, everybody agrees on that, archeologists. What do they say? 'Jesus Son of Joseph.' One that belongs to Maria, the mother, one belongs to Mary Magdalene. Another belongs to Josi, which the Gospel of Mark, the, the earliest gospel says is a nickname of the brother of Jesus. These are facts."
     Vieira: "And that was a rare name, Josi? Not one you would find very often."
     Jacobovici: "No."
     James Cameron: "It's the only one, it's the only one found with that exact name."
     Vieira: "And another box is, is inscribed with the named Matia?"
     Cameron: "Matthew."
     Jacobovici: "Matthew, yeah."
     Vieira: "Matthew."
     Jacobovici: "So what we're saying is that we took, we took the facts and had been dismissive. 'It couldn't be, it couldn't be the family of Jesus.' For two reasons. The second Mary couldn't be, isn't Mary Magdalene. But in 1980 when it was found they didn't know that her real name, not her title but her real name is Mari Amne, and that's what it says on the box. And the second thing is what these people said on your show. They're common names. But these are archeologists, they never went to statisticians. What are the odds a cluster of names? We went to statisticians. We were shocked by, by what they said."
     Vieira: "And what were the odds that, that this is indeed the family of Jesus."
     Cameron: "Well I, I think that you, that they don't like to use the term odds but they'll do a probability study and the, sort of the upper numbers that we're coming up with were up in the range of a couple million to one against, I mean in, in favor of it being them. Or say two million to one that it's, that it's not, a chance that it's not them. And the lowest boundary is somewhere around 100 to 1. So 100 to 1 is a 99 percent probability."
     Jacobovici: "It's 100 to 1 for the tomb, between 100 to 1 and 1000 to 1 for the tomb."
     Vieira: "And nothing to you suggests that there's any forgery involved or anything like that?"
     Jacobovici: "Nobody argue, the archeologists who even deny that this is the family of Jesus don't deny that this is a true, authentic find. The issue is that archeologists played statisticians and dismissed the find. What we did is we went to the statisticians. We're just reporting the new-, we're not statisticians, we're not theologians. We're reporting the news. And now the debate is gonna begin because statisticians say it's significant. DNA experts say it's significant."
     Vieira: "I want to talk about the DNA because when these ossuaries were first found there were bones in them back in 1980 and the archeologists removed, the bones were removed and buried. But there was enough remnant in, in the, the box that you believe contained the, the remains of Jesus and the one with Mary Magdalene. And you were able to, to DNA tests. And what did you find?"
     Jacobovici: "We didn't do, experts did-"
     Vieira: "Right."
     Jacobovici: "DNA experts-"
     Vieira: "Were you able to have them conducted?"
     Jacobovici: "They didn't remove, they didn't remove bones. What they removed was what they call forensic human residue. We had a CSI lab in New York work on this. We had a paleo-DNA lab in Ontario work on this. And, and they got mitochondrial DNA. And what they found, see this could have killed the whole theory. If Mary Magdalene and Jesus', if that, if they match it means they weren't husband and wife, they're brother and sister. They didn't match. So they got a DNA profile. And again we're here to, you know, people have to, you know, people are gonna talk about all kinds of rumors, people are already commenting. They have to see the film, they have to see the evidence, March 4th on Discovery. They have to read the book The Jesus Family Tomb because only after they see the evidence will they be able to judge something as shocking as this."
     Vieira: "And there are some critics including and I'm probably not gonna pronounce his name right it's Jozias, 'z' 'i' 'a' 's.'"
     Jacobovici: "He hasn't seen the film and he hasn't read the book so this-"
     Vieira: "Well he is a curator who was involved in the, in the initial finding of the ossuaries. Let me just read to you what he says, James. He says, 'Simcha has no credibility whatsoever. He's pimping off the Bible. He got this guy, Cameron,' you, 'who made Titanic or something like that. What does this guy know about archeology? Projects like these make a mockery of the archeological profession. You were brought into this because, obviously, you felt strongly about it. What do you think of that statement?"
     Cameron: "Well yeah. I mean I, I think that, first of all, it's fair to say that I'm not an archeologist, I'm not, I'm a filmmaker. I'm the executive producer of this film. I helped put together the financing to get it made. I, I looked at the evidence initially and as a, as a, as a layman I found it to be compelling but I, I knew I needed to learn a lot more which I did over the, over the two years of the study. And, and over that two-year period I haven't seen anything that contradicts the, the initial hypothesis. I think people have their, their specific agendas and their, and their specific kind of knee-jerk reactions but I think when they see the film and they see how the evidence is presented then they should, then they should comment. Yeah, I'm not a theologian, I'm not an archeologist, I'm a documentary filmmaker."
     Vieira: "Why wouldn't people be clamoring to get at this information? That's what I don't understand."
     Jacobovici: "By the way, by the way the same Jozias, by the way I agree with Jim, I'm not, I'm an investigative journalist. That's my skill-set. And we went to archeologists and saw, and so they're reporting. It's not us. It's not us doing the science but I'll say this, when Jozias was involved in the find back in 1980 he said, and I quote, 'If I hadn't seen this excavated myself I would think it was a hoax.' So he was very compelled. And then what did they do with all these ossuaries? They put them on shelves, kinda Indiana Jones-style and they ignored it for 27 years. All we're doing is we're telling the world a story and let the scientists-"
     Cameron: "To be fair, to be fair to them, they, there was a critical piece of information they didn't have available. They looked at the, they said, 'Oh well there's a second Mary here, you know Mary Amne is a, is a diminutive of Miriam which is Mary."
     Vieira: "Miriam, right."
     Cameron: "And but they didn't have the information from the, from the Acts of Philip which definitely identifies Mary Magdalene as Mary Amne. If they had that information-"
     Vieira: "Maybe they would've, yeah."
     Cameron: "-they might have looked at the whole name cluster very differently in 1980."
     Vieira: "Well it is-"
     Cameron: "Simcha found that information."
     Vieira: "Yeah I am, I'm sorry that we've run out of time because it is absolutely fascinating, potentially, I mean, many would argue the biggest story or one of the biggest stories of our lifetime if you are correct."
     Jacobovici: "We are unveiling this today at 11am, at a press conference."
     Vieira: "Simcha Jacobovici and James Cameron thank you to both of you. The book is The Jesus Family Tomb and the Discovery Channel documentary is The Lost Tomb of Jesus which will air Sunday night at 9pm/8pm central. I'm sure you're gonna hear a lot more about this. You can also find more on our Web site at today.msnbc.com. And we are back after this. Thank you gentlemen very, very much."

 

CNN Again Encourages Republicans to Mimic
Liberal Schwarzenegger

     For the third time since the 2006 midterm elections, CNN's Situation Room has highlighted liberal Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger as a role model for the national GOP. On the Monday edition of the cable program, reporter Jeff Greenfield discussed the California leader's visit to Washington to give a speech and he also described Schwarzenegger's "centrism." Additionally, Greenfield highlighted the former movie star's liberal initiatives:

     Jeff Greenfield: "In 2005, frustrated by a Democratic legislature, Schwarzenegger went to war, promoting ballot measures to curb the power of unions, to cap the budget, to change redistricting. All of those measures went down to defeat."
     Arnold Schwarzenegger: "I just made terrible mistakes."
     Greenfield: "So, in a remarkable 180 degree turn, Schwarzenegger began cutting deals with the legislature on education spending, on expanding health care to all children, on dealing with the budget deficit and roads through bond measures, that's borrowing. He's joined Senator John McCain, embracing a massive effort to cut greenhouse gasses, something the conservative GOP base is not exactly crazy about. And he's even defended the Republicans' public enemy number one, Hillary Clinton, over her Iraq War vote."

     Greenfield then featured a clip of Schwarzenegger, in full centrist mode, (as the media defines it) defending 2008 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. He did offer a slight criticism, noting that some Republicans think the former movie star's "centrism" is an abandonment of core conservatism. However, Greenfield made up for this by suggesting that if the Constitution didn't forbid it, Schwarzenegger could be a formidable presidential candidate:

     Schwarzenegger: "Every human being makes mistakes and that's why they understand when a politician says, €˜You know, I made mistake.' It's that simple. Now, with Hillary Clinton, I think that people should, when it comes to the war, should elevate this whole discussion and really not, you know, pick on, on things like that, but, really, try to get along in Washington."
     Greenfield: "He finished his speech in Washington by reminding his audience of the smoking tent he erected in Sacramento outside his office where legislators could come to smoke a stogie and shmooze, in his words. And his advice to President Bush?."
     Schwarzenegger: "Get yourself a smoking tent."
     Greenfield: "Now, there are Republicans who argue that Schwarzenegger's centrism is really an abandonment of core conservative principles. But when you realize that he won a 17 point reelection in the nation's biggest state, in a big Democrat year, you might understand why folks like John McCain, and Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney might think that their favorite part of the U.S. Constitution is the one that says no foreign born citizen can run for President. Wolf?"

     [This item, by Scott Whitlock, was posted Monday afternoon on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

     This is not the first time that CNN has urged Republicans to embrace Schwarzanegger's liberalism. On November 9, just days after the 2006 midterm elections, correspondent Bill Schneider suggested that the GOP should learn the lesson of California and move left:
     Bill Schneider: "Will Republicans move further to the right? Not if they got the message of the election. Republicans lost because they abandoned the center. Independents voted Democratic by the biggest margin ever recorded. The election also provides an alternative model of a Republican who moved to the center and thrived."
     Schwarzenegger: "We fight our causes but, in the end, we find common grounds. This is the California way. The voters have endorsed it. I embrace it."

     Less than two weeks later, on November 20, Schneider was at it again. This time he called for the GOP to abandon the "lame duck" Bush and follow, you guessed it, Schwarzenegger's brand of Republicanism: "Well, you know, unlike most Republicans, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger did very well this year and his success carries a message for his fellow Republicans. What do Republicans do now? To paraphrase some famous advice: €˜Go west old party,' and follow the example of one Republican who had a very good year. Arnold Schwarzenegger is an actor. In three years as governor, he has played three different roles. Call it the three faces of Arnold. He started out as a moderate in 2004, campaigning side-by-side with Democrats to rescue the state budget."

     A transcript of the February 26 segment, which aired at 4:30pm EST:

     CNN Graphic: "Arnold's Message: Can't They All Get Along?"
     Wolf Blitzer: "His state is blue; his party pairs with red, but Arnold Schwarzenegger thinks in shades of purple and today the California governor pushed for more of the nation's leaders to do the same thing. Our senior analyst, Jeff Greenfield is in New York. He's standing by live to explain what's going on. Hi, Jeff."
     Jeff Greenfield: "Hi, Wolf. Well, Governor Schwarzenegger was in Washington today and he brought a message that demonstrates why he's one of the most remarkable and successful figures around. The message of this highly successful politician? Stop playing politics. But it's a message that resonates because the €˜Govenator' has delivered on it, and followed it, once and again. Schwarzenegger's message was a lament. A lament that Washington was in the grip of partisan gridlock."
     Arnold Schwarzenegger: "For too long this town has been about divide and conquer. Find an issue that splits our country in half and then crack it just enough so you can come out ahead. It doesn't look like anything has changed here in Washington. The same things are happening all over again."
     Greenfield: "What makes the words resonate is that the Governor himself is something of a born-again centrist. In 2003, after winning a recall election, he sounded strong bipartisan themes."
     Schwarzenegger: "I have appointed to my cabinet Republicans, Democrats and independents, because I want the people to know that my administration is not about politics, it is about saving California."
     Greenfield: "In 2005, frustrated by a Democratic legislature, Schwarzenegger went to war, promoting ballot measures to curb the power of unions, to cap the budget, to change redistricting. All of those measures went down to defeat."
     Schwarzenegger: "I just made terrible mistakes."
     Greenfield: "So, in a remarkable 180 degree turn, Schwarzenegger began cutting deals with the legislature on education spending, on expanding health care to all children, on dealing with the budget deficit and roads through bond measures, that's borrowing. He's joined Senator John McCain, embracing a massive effort to cut greenhouse gasses, something the conservative GOP base is not exactly crazy about. And he's even defended the Republican's public enemy number one, Hillary Clinton, over her Iraq War vote."
     Schwarzenegger: "Every human being makes mistakes and that's why they understand when a politician says, 'You know, I made mistake.' It's that simple. Now, with Hillary Clinton, I think that people should, when it comes to the war, should elevate this whole discussion and really not, you know, pick on, on things like that, but, really, try to get along in Washington."
     Greenfield: "He finished his speech in Washington by reminding his audience of the smoking tent he erected in Sacramento outside his office where legislators could come to smoke a stogie and shmooze, in his words. And his advice to President Bush?."
     Schwarzenegger: "Get yourself a smoking tent."
     Greenfield: "Now, there are Republicans who argue that Schwarzenegger's centrism is really an abandonment of core conservative principles. But when you realize that he won a 17 point reelection in the nation's biggest state, in a big Democrat year, you might understand why folks like John McCain, and Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney might think that their favorite part of the U.S. Constitution is the one that says no foreign born citizen can run for president. Wolf?"

-- Brent Baker

 


 


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