Bush "Divisive," But Dean a Uniter Who "Brings People Together" --12/29/2003
2. "Bummest Rap" to Clift: Dean as "An Out of Mainstream Liberal"
3. Couric Upset No Woman on
Time's 'Person of Year' Soldier Cover
4. Winning Quotes in MRC's Annual Awards for the Worst Reporting
5. List of the 46 Judges Who Selected the Winning Quotes
George W. Bush campaigned in 2000 as a "uniter, not a divider." But in what may be a preview of the prism through which the networks will see the 2004 presidential campaign, ABC's Terry Moran on Sunday described Bush as a divider, labeling him a "divisive President" and a "divisive figure." CBS's Bob Schieffer similarly portrayed Bush as a divider, calling him "a polarizing politician," who though as Governor did bring people together, now "seems to have become someone that you either love or you hate." But Schieffer hailed Democratic candidate Howard Dean as a uniter.
Hosting Face the Nation, Schieffer trumpeted how Dean "is a hit at this point" because "he seems to be the first Democrat who's found a way to bring new people into the process here. He's found a new kind of participatory politics....Dean has gone into the Internet and begun to bring people together."
Moran filled in on Sunday for George Stephanopoulos as host of ABC's This Week. As if it's solely President Bush's fault that some people don't like his policies, in formulating questions, during a segment with former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Leon Panetta, Clinton's former Chief-of-Staff, Moran twice tagged Bush as "divisive.'
Moran observed: "For many Americans, this is a divisive President. Is he vulnerable in the manner in which he seems to polarize people's opinions?" (Panetta chimed in: "I think that is the case.")
Moran soon repeated his theme: "This President on the world stage. When he was elected, I think few would have expected him to be, within three years, the dominant figure in the world, a leader that everyone else has to reckon with essentially. And there as well, it's hard to argue with the notion that he is a divisive figure."
Over on the December 28 Face the Nation on CBS, regular host Bob Schieffer, during a roundtable with Time magazine's Karen Tumulty, Washington Post reporter Dan Balz and New York Times columnist David Brooks, admired how Dean is bringing people together, citing a left-wing New York Times columnist as the source of his insight:
Minutes later, however, Schieffer expressed concern about how Bush is a polarizer: "Let me ask you, Karen, because I know your magazine did, kind of did an issue on this, and that is George Bush as a polarizing politician. George Bush ran -- and George Bush as Governor was the kind of politician who did seem to bring people together -- but yet he seems to have become someone that you either love or you hate."
Maybe that's at least partly attributable to how the news media portray his policies and hold him, not those who dislike him, responsible for how some dislike him.
In the McLaughlin Group's 22nd annual "Year-End Awards" issued on the show aired over the weekend, Newsweek's Eleanor Clift declared that describing Howard Dean as "an out of the mainstream liberal" was the "Bummest Rap" of the year, contended that how the Bush administration "manipulated evidence to build a case for an unnecessary war" earned her nod for the "Fairest Rap" and for "Capitalist of the Year" she expressed gratitude to George Soros "for dedicating $15 million to defeat Bush."
Those Clift picks in full:
-- "Bummest Rap"
Certainly not in Newsweek!
-- "Fairest Rap: That the administration cherry-picked and manipulated evidence to build a case for an unnecessary war."
-- "Capitalist of the Year"
Katie Couric: Feminist woman first, journalist second. Interviewing two Time staffers the morning after the magazine named "The American Soldier" as its "Person of the Year," Couric's very first concern was "why there's no woman on the cover?"
In fact, one of the three soldiers on the cover is quite clearly a woman, as Time's Managing Editor pointed out to Couric who defended herself, "I couldn't tell because of her helmet."
MRC analyst Ken Shepherd caught Couric's politically correct zealousness as expressed during the segment on the Monday, December 22 Today.
Couric introduced her guests: "Time's magazine's Person of the Year issue hits news stands today and this year it honors the American soldier. Jim Kelly is Time's Managing Editor and veteran war photographer James Nachtwey was embedded with the Army's First Armored Division in Baghdad and took the remarkable images in this week's issue, he was also wounded while on assignment. Gentlemen, welcome, good morning, nice to have you both. I was so, I have to say, just personally, I was so pleased to see this."
The cover of the December 29/January 5 issue of Time, with the "Person the Year" cover, featured three helmeted soldiers holding weapons. The choices reflected Time's quest for "diversity." From left to right, a black man, a white female and a white man.
For a fairly good-sized image of the cover, though still a bit smaller than the real magazine: www.time.com
The winning quotes in the MRC's "Best Notable Quotables of 2003: The Sixteenth Annual Awards for the Year's Worst Reporting."
To determine this year's winners, a panel of 46 radio talk show hosts, magazine editors, columnists, editorial writers and media observers each selected their choices for the first, second and third best quote from a slate of five to eight quotes in each category. First place selections were awarded three points, second place choices two points, with one point for the third place selections. Point totals are listed in the brackets at the end of the attribution for each quote. Each judge was also asked to choose a "Quote of the Year" denoting the most outrageous quote of 2003.
The MRC's Kristina Sewell distributed and counted the ballots. Rich Noyes assembled this issue and Mez Djouadi posted the complete issue on the MRC's Web site.
To see the full results, with RealPlayer clips of many of the television quotes, go to: www.mediaresearch.org
Damn Those Conservatives Award
"Attorney General John Ashcroft has earned himself a remarkable distinction as the Torquemada of American law. Tomas de Torquemada...was largely responsible for... [the] torture and the burning of heretics -- Muslims in particular. Now, of course, I am not accusing the Attorney General of pulling out anyone's fingernails or burning people at the stake (at least I don't know of any such cases). But one does get the sense these days that the old Spaniard's spirit is comfortably at home in Ashcroft's Department of Justice."
Baghdad Bob Award for Parroting Enemy Propaganda
Diane Sawyer: "I read this morning that he's [Saddam Hussein] also said the love that the Iraqis have for him is so much greater than anything Americans feel for their President because he's been loved for 35 years, he says, the whole 35 years."
Dominique de Villepin Snottiness Award for Whining About the War
"I want to speak to you today about war and empire.... We are embarking on an occupation that, if history is any guide, will be as damaging to our souls as it will be to our prestige and power and security....We have forfeited the goodwill, the empathy the world felt for us after 9/11, we have folded in on ourselves....We are far less secure today than we were before we bumbled into Iraq. We will pay for this, but what saddens me most is that those who will by and large pay the highest price are poor kids from Mississippi or Alabama or Texas who could not get a decent job or health insurance and joined the army because it was all we offered them."
The Invisible Liberal Award for Camouflaging Ideology
"The rap on Dean is that he's like Dukakis and Mondale and McGovern. Well, McGovern was a liberal, but we had an issue and that was the war. Dukakis was no liberal and neither was Mondale. Both of them had several people to the left in those primaries. It was what the Republicans did to them once they got the nomination that made them seem to be liberals in both cases."
Media Suck-Up Award
"You became First Lady like no other First Lady before you. You had your own interests, you got involved in public policy. No First Lady had done that without being severely criticized. Did you realize what you were getting into?" "I don't think people realize how strong your faith is."
Pompous Peter Award for Jennings' Arrogant Condescension
"This week we were surprised to see several hundred artists and writers walking through the streets of Baghdad to say thank you to Saddam Hussein. He had just increased their monthly financial support. Cynical, you could argue at this particular time, but the state has always supported the arts, and some of the most creative people in the Arab world have always been Iraqis. And whatever they think about Saddam Hussein in the privacy of their homes, on this occasion they were praising his defense of the homeland in the face of American threats."
Romanticizing the Rabble Award for Glorifying Protesters
"The size of the demonstrators, at least here, at least in Europe, seems to underscore, Chris, that there are now perhaps two world superpowers. There's the United States and then there are those millions of people who took to the streets opposing U.S. policy."
Barbra Streisand Political IQ Award for Celebrity Vapidity
Left-wing filmmaker Michael Moore: "What happened to the search for Osama bin Laden?...You don't think they [the U.S. government] know where he is?"
Begala & Carville Prize for Demonizing George W. Bush
"This is the worst President ever. He [George W. Bush] is the worst President in all of American history."
Fruitless Plains of Poverty Award
"We are about to show you bread lines in America that you may find hard to believe. With the recession there has been a sudden leap in the number of people on emergency food assistance. The lines we found looked like they'd been taken from the pages of the Great Depression. It's not just the unemployed. We found plenty of people working full-time, but still not able to earn enough to keep hunger out of the house. If you think you have a good idea of who's hungry in America today, come join the line. You'd never guess who you'd meet there....Almost half the people fed by these lines are kids. The Agriculture Department figures one out of six children in America faces hunger; that's more than 12 million kids. Nationwide, children have the highest poverty rate. Preschoolers come here with their parents and play in boxes as empty as the day's want ads."
Bill Moyers Sanctimony Award
"I decided to put on my flag pin tonight -- first time. Until now I haven't thought it necessary to display a little metallic icon of patriotism for everyone to see....I put it on to take it back. The flag's been hijacked and turned into a logo -- the trademark of a monopoly on patriotism.... "When I see flags sprouting on official lapels, I think of the time in China when I saw Mao's Little Red Book on every official's desk, omnipresent and unread. But more galling than anything are all those moralistic ideologues in Washington sporting the flag in their lapels while writing books and running Web sites and publishing magazines attacking dissenters as un-American....I put this on as a modest riposte to men with flags in their lapels who shoot missiles from the safety of Washington think tanks, or argue that sacrifice is good as long as they don't have to make it....I put it on to remind myself that not every patriot thinks we should do to the people of Baghdad what bin Laden did to us."
Media Millionaires for Higher Taxes Award
"While these arguments we're having here in Washington over tax cuts may look sort of abstract to most people in America, it is not abstract when your kid's teacher gets laid off....Libraries are closing, teachers are getting laid off. Gray Davis is in the position of having to decide whether he should deny prosthetic limbs to poor people."
Politics of Meaninglessness Award for the Silliest Analysis
"To many New Yorkers, the scenes of a city under siege were achingly familiar. New Yorkers watching the televised bombing of Baghdad yesterday said they were riveted by the raw and uninterrupted display of American military might. But for some, the bombing brought back particularly visceral and chilling memories. They could not help thinking about Sept. 11, and how New York, too, was once under assault from the skies."
Good Morning Morons Award
"There's an article in the Style section of the Washington Post this morning. It says you've logged 26 years of personal minutiae, filling 4,400 two-by-three inch notebooks, color-coded by season. An example: '12:17' -- this is when you made the announcement -- 'Ascend stage, stumble, regain balance; 12:18: Applause, 'Where the Streets Have No Name,' plays (U2); 12:19: Clap, wave; 12:20: Adjust tie (red, white stripes); 12:21: Double thumbs up; 12:22: Sing along with National Anthem, right hand on heart.' What, what do you do this for?!"
Al Franken Cheap Shot Award (for Lambasting Rush Limbaugh)
"What must it be like to live in Rush Limbaugh's world? A world where when anyone other than conservative, white men attempts to do anything or enter any profession, be it business, politics, art or sports, the only reason they're allowed entry or, incredibly, attain excellence is because the standard was lowered. Be they liberals, people of color, women, the poor or anyone with an accent.... Edgy, controversial, brilliant. What a way to shake up intelligent sports commentary. Hitler would have killed in talk radio. He was edgy, too."
What Liberal Media? Award
CBS's Lesley Stahl: "Today you have broadcast journalists who are avowedly conservative....The voices that are being heard in broadcast media today, are far more -- the ones who are being heard -- are far more likely to be on the right and avowedly so, and therefore, more -- almost stridently so, than what you're talking about."
Quote of the Year
"If she had lived, Mary Jo Kopechne would be 62 years old. Through his tireless work as a legislator, Edward Kennedy would have brought comfort to her in her old age."
END Rundown of winning quotes
On Tuesday: The first runners-up.
In recognition of their time and effort, for the second time in CyberAlert, a listing of the names and affiliations of the judges for 2003.
As explained in item #4 above, the panel of 46 radio talk show hosts, magazine editors, columnists, editorial writers and media observers received a ballot and each selected their choices for the first, second and third best quote from a slate of five to eight quotes in each category.
- Lee Anderson, Editorial Page Editor, Chattanooga Free Press
- Chuck Asay, editorial cartoonist, The Gazette in Colorado Springs
- Brent Baker, MRC VP; Editor of CyberAlert and Notable Quotables
- Mark Belling, talk show host, WISN in Milwaukee
- Neal Boortz, nationally syndicated radio talk show host
- L. Brent Bozell III, President of the Media Research Center
- David Brudnoy, radio talk show host, WBZ in Boston; journalism professor
- Priscilla Buckley, Contributing Editor of National Review
- William R. Cotterell, political reporter, Tallahassee Democrat
- Blanquita Cullum, syndicated talk show host for Radio America
- Midge Decter, author, Rumsfeld: A Personal Portrait
- Bob Dutko, talk show host, WMUZ in Detroit
- Eric Fettmann, columnist & Associate Editorial Page Editor, NY Post
- Ryan Frazier, editorial writer, Richmond Times-Dispatch
- Mike Gallagher, syndicated talk show host for the Salem Radio Network;
- Tim Graham, Director of Media Analysis for the MRC
- Karen Grant, talk show host, KION in Monterey/Salinas/Santa Cruz
- Betsy Hart, columnist, Scripps Howard News Service
- Stephen Hayes, staff writer for The Weekly Standard
- Kirk Healy, Executive Producer, WDBO Radio in Orlando
- Matthew Hill, talk show host, WPWT in the Tri-Cities of Tenn/Va
- Quin Hillyer, editorial writer for the Mobile Register
- Jeff Jacoby, columnist for the Boston Globe
- Marie Kaigler, radio talk show host and media consultant, Detroit
- Cliff Kincaid, Editor of the AIM Report
- Mark Larson, talk show host, KCBQ in San Diego
- Kathryn Jean Lopez, Editor of National Review Online
- Patrick B. McGuigan, Contributing Editor of Tulsa Today
- Joe McQuaid, Publisher, The Union Leader in Manchester, NH
- Robert D. Novak, CNN commentator; Chicago Sun-Times columnist
- Rich Noyes, Director of Research for the Media Research Center
- Kate O'Beirne, Washington Editor of National Review
- Marvin Olasky, Editor-in-Chief of
World magazine and professor of
- Janet Parshall, nationally syndicated radio talk show host
- Henry Payne, editorial cartoonist, The Detroit News
- Wladyslaw Pleszczynski, Executive Editor of The American Spectator
- Michael Reagan, nationally syndicated radio talk show host
- Mike Rosen, talk show host, KOA in Denver; columnist,
- William A. Rusher, Distinguished Fellow, Claremont Institute
- Ted J. Smith III, Professor of journalism, Virginia Commonwealth University
- Tom Sullivan, talk show host, KFBK in Sacramento
- Cal Thomas, syndicated columnist and host of
After Hours with Cal Thomas
- R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr., Editor-in-Chief of The American Spectator
- Dick Williams, columnist; host of Atlanta's Georgia Gang
- Walter E. Williams, economics professor, George Mason University
- Thomas Winter, Editor-in-Chief of Human Events
For links to Web pages for the judges, see the posted version of the judge list: www.mediaresearch.org
-- Brent Baker, on the road in Massachusetts