Thursday, March 5, 1998 | Vol. Two, No. 10 | Media Inquiries: Keith Appell (703) 683-5004
Who Knew A "Decade of Greed" Savings & Loan Robber Would Become So Popular with the Media?
Susan McDougal, Celebrity Crook
The women in Bill Clinton's past get vastly differing
receptions from the media. Gennifer Flowers was a trash-for-cash bimbo. Paula Jones was a
big-hair nightmare out of a trailer park. And Susan McDougal, who looted a failed savings
and loan that cost the taxpayers more than $50 million, who fraudulently took a $300,000
Small Business Administration loan and never paid it back, is a victim.
But she's better than a victim. Since her conviction on multiple felony counts, she's a
celebrity, appearing from prison via satellite to condemn the man who persuaded a jury she
was a crook: independent counsel Ken Starr. Almost everywhere she goes, the media kneel in
On February 24, she appeared on CNN's Larry King Live. Among King's questions:
"Is this a witch-hunt?... Why do you think Starr's popularity is so low?...In a
sense, do you feel like you're a political prisoner?" When McDougal protested
questioning of Monica Lewinsky's mother, King added: "Germany did it, too." When
McDougal said she wouldn't testify out of principle, King replied: "That's why a lot
of the country respects you."
On February 7, ABC
World News Tonight reporter Michel McQueen argued: "Whitewater figure Susan
McDougal has long maintained that she's in jail on contempt charges only because she won't
invent facts to fit Starr's story."
On February 5, McDougal appeared on Dateline NBC, where Stone Phillips offered
her take on the Lewinsky case: "Susan McDougal claims two years ago, before she went
to jail, another Whitewater figure who had been meeting with Starr's staff to cut a deal
for leniency paid her a visit." She claimed ex-husband and co-conspirator Jim
McDougal told her to say she had an affair with Clinton. Phillips let Starr's office deny
the story, then added: "McDougal says the current investigation is about prying into
people's sex lives. Reaching into the gutter."
McDougal appeared on Dateline NBC last October to compare Starr to the Nazis.
Stone Phillips explained: "Kenneth Starr a Nazi?....Susan McDougal's mother Lorette
Henley knows all about standing firm under pressure. As a teenager in Nazi-occupied
Belgium she saw first-hand how the Gestapo turned neighbor against neighbor, forcing
people to lie about loved ones who were then arrested or shot. She says her family defied
them, going so far as to hide Resistance fighters in their basement." Phillips
compared that to "September 1996, the night before Susan was to testify before a
Whitewater grand jury."
everyone from CBS's Phil Jones ("she claims she's in solitary confinement for up to
22 hours a day") to NPR's Nina Totenberg ("with food being shoved through a slot
in the door, literally") to NBC's Jim Miklaszewski ("being served oatmeal that's
cold and gluey") underlined her "inhuman" treatment while she's in contempt
Rarely in these sob stories did the networks allow an opposing viewpoint. So why are
the networks' anti-Starr poll numbers a mystery? The media have been working to discredit
Starr for a very long time, using a less-than-credible S&L crook to do it. -- Tim
L. Brent Bozell III, Publisher; Brent Baker, Tim Graham, Editors;
Eric Darbe, Geoffrey
Dickens, Gene Eliasen, Steve
Kaminski, Clay Waters, Media Analysts; Kristina Sewell, Research
Associate. For the latest liberal media bias, read the
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