CyberAlert -- 06/07/2001 -- "Harsh Light" on Warming Policy
"Harsh Light" on Warming Policy; CBS to Daschle: "Are You Ready to Fight?"; Washington Post's Glowing Profile of "Smiling" Daschle
1) Dan Rather insisted that a new report "may put a harsh light on Mr. Bush's global warming policy." John Roberts warned that scientists "found compelling evidence that the Earth is getting hotter as a result of human activity." But seconds later, Roberts contradicted the blanket assertion as he conceded the scientists "can't say precisely how much of the warming is man-made and how much might be part of a natural cycle."
2) Peter Jennings kept up the media drumbeat for bi-partisanship as he stressed how those on the Senate floor "were particularly enthusiastic" when Trent Lott shook hands with Tom Daschle. NBC's Lisa Myers disclosed that Senator Clinton wants "to stick it to Bush at every turn."
3) ABC's Charles Gibson and CBS's Jane Clayson used interviews with Tom Daschle to advance their agendas. When he deferred a decision on price caps to FERC, Gibson urged him to take action: "The Senate can do it, they can pass price caps." Clayson wanted assurance he was prepared for the GOP onslaught: "Trent Lott has said that it's time for his party...to 'wage war.' That doesn't sound like conciliatory language. Are you ready to fight?"
4) "The Smiling Majority" declared the upbeat headline over a glowing June 6 Washington Post "Style" section profile of Tom Daschle. Robert Kaiser insisted Daschle is "a man from the pre-poisonous age of American politics" and described him as "a moderately liberal Democrat." But Daschle has a higher lifetime ADA rating than George McGovern.
5) The Washington Post isn't so reticent about issuing "conservative" labels. A story on Virginia's GOP gubernatorial candidate applied the "conservative" tag six times," including a reference to "the GOP ticket's conservative tang."
CBS News on Wednesday night again hyped a report on how industrial pollution is causing global warming, as they always do with anything which advances the theory and liberal solutions to it, while not airing stories when contrary evidence is developed.
"The findings may put a harsh light on Mr. Bush's global warming policy," Dan Rather intoned on the June 6 CBS Evening News. John Roberts warned that "a team from the National Academy of Sciences found compelling evidence that the Earth is getting hotter as a result of human activity" and noted how "environmentalists, who met with the Vice President yesterday, today declared it is time to wage all out war on global warming." But seconds later, Roberts undermined the environmentalists' premise that reducing CO2 emissions would have any impact, as he conceded the scientists "can't say precisely how much of the warming is man-made and how much might be part of a natural cycle."
Rather set up the piece, as transcribed by MRC analyst Brad Wilmouth: "America's top climate experts today gave President Bush their latest read on the threat from global warming. It was an assessment the President asked for. CBS News has gotten hold of a copy, and as John Roberts reports now, the findings may put a harsh light on Mr. Bush's global warming policy."
Roberts began: "In the most comprehensive
assessment yet of the issue of global warming, a team from the National
Academy of Sciences found compelling evidence that the Earth is getting
hotter as a result of human activity. The report, prepared at the request
of the White House, found that global temperatures have increased one
degree in the past hundred years, and that with current production levels
of Greenhouse gases, the pace of warming is predicted to accelerate
another 2.5 to 10.4 degrees by the end of this century. Environmentalists
who met with the Vice President yesterday, today declared it is time to
wage all out war on global warming."
After a clip of Condoleezza Rice promising the administration will take the problem seriously, Roberts concluded: "The President may find some wiggle room in this report because while scientists confirm levels of Greenhouse gases are higher now than at any time in the past 400,000 years, they can't say precisely how much of the warming is man-made and how much might be part of a natural cycle."
That's "wiggle room" on a raging scientific debate the networks refuse to report accurately. As demonstrated in a recent MRC Special Report, "Clamoring for Kyoto: The Networks' One-Sided Coverage of Global Warming," during Bush's first three months in office the networks pretended no scientist believes global warming is not fueled by pollution.
To read the study, with links to contrary evidence, go to: http://www.mediaresearch.org/specialreports/fmp/2001/globalwarmingexec.html
Over 17,000 scientists have signed a petition which states: "There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth's atmosphere and disruption of the Earth's climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth."
For more on the petition, go to: http://www.oism.org/pproject/s33p37.htm
For details on who has signed it so far, go to: http://www.oism.org/pproject/s33p357.htm
TechCentralStation.com currently features an illuminating interview with Dr. Sallie Baliunas of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. She asserted: "The science altogether is unsettled, but we know for sure that the models that make the predictions into the future are exaggerating the warmth."
The interview with James K. Glassman begins:
Glassman: "Dr. Baliunas, we've heard
that temperatures have increased on Earth over the last century. Now, is
our assumption essentially that they had been stable before that?"
For the rest of the discussion, go to: http://www.techcentralstation.com/BigShotFriday.asp
The floor proceeding to turn over the Senate to Democrats on Wednesday morning generated little interest in the evening as the CBS Evening News skipped it and ABC's World News Tonight gave it barely 20 seconds. Peter Jennings kept up the media drumbeat by bi-partisanship as he stressed how those present "were particularly enthusiastic" when Trent Lott shook hands with Tom Daschle.
Only the NBC Nightly News ran a full story. Most noteworthy, Lisa Myers relayed that one Democrat isn't very interested in getting along: "Democratic sources say Hillary Rodham Clinton argues to stick it to Bush at every turn. Others such as John Breaux, and sometimes even Ted Kennedy, want to compromise to get things done."
Peter Jennings explained over matching video on World News Tonight: "In Washington today, the new Senate convened with the Democrats in the majority. The Democratic leader Tom Daschle took over a half-empty chamber. The Senators in attendance were particularly enthusiastic when the new Majority Leader shook hands with the former Majority Leader Trent Lott, the Republican."
The new Senate Majority Leader heard some challenging questions in interviews on the three morning shows on Wednesday, but ABC's Charles Gibson and CBS's Jane Clayson also used the interviews to advance their agendas for price caps and for Bush to compromise.
When Daschle deferred a decision on electricity price caps to FERC, Gibson urged him to take action: "The Senate can do it, they can pass price caps." Clayson wanted to make sure Daschle was prepared for the GOP onslaught: "Senator Trent Lott has said that it's time for his party, the Republican Party to 'wage war.' That doesn't sound like conciliatory language. Are you ready to fight?" She followed up by asking Daschle to provide a way to measure President Bush's truthfulness, recalling how Daschle said Bush "has to work in a more bipartisan way. How will you know that he is doing that, at what point will you see that he's holding to his word?"
> ABC's Good Morning America on June 6. Charles Gibson's questions, as taken down by MRC analyst Jessica Anderson:
-- "Senator, you've got the same 100 members of the Senate today as you had yesterday, just different leadership. So is this a small, incremental shift or is it a sea change?"
-- "But already, some of the Republicans are calling you 'Dr. No,' saying it's going to be your job to be obstructionist and to stop the President's program, and even some of your fellow Democrats say that's not so bad. Some of them say, 'Look, stop signs save lives.' So are you going to be an obstructionist or a compromiser?"
-- "Let's talk some specifics. During the tax cut debate, you called the President's tax cut 'tax fraud' and you say we're going to have to find ways to make corrections in the tax cut that was eventually passed. Well, now you're in control of the Senate. Will you do it? Will you bring the tax bill back up?"
-- "How about caps on electricity prices?
Governor Davis out in California has put his faith in what he said is the
newly-constituted Senate. Do you want to pass energy price caps?"
-- "When you were running through your agenda -- talking about a prescription drug benefit for seniors or a Patient Bill of Rights, hate crimes bill, minimum wages -- that is not the Republican agenda. In effect, do you want to pass bills and invite the President to veto them?"
-- "I'm curious as to what kind of opposition you face. President Bush yesterday very congenial in talking about getting along with the Democrats. Now Minority Leader Trent Lott, in a memo over the weekend, declared war, said the Republicans have to declare war to win back the Senate in 2002. So which Republican Party do you face?"
-- "A yes or no answer, do you use the majority leader platform to run for President in 2004?"
> CBS's The Early Show. MRC analyst Brian Boyd transcribed these questions from Jane Clayson:
-- "Let me ask you first up, your predecessor, Senator Trent Lott, has said that it's time for his party, the Republican Party to 'wage war.' That doesn't sound like conciliatory language. Are you ready to fight?"
-- "There are those who say you smile nice and it sounds good, but you're playing hardball too. Are you not?"
-- "Let me talk for a minute about the Supreme Court. The two parties are already locked in intense negotiations about how President Bush's judicial nominations will be handled, so let me ask you, if for example, the President were to nominate Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia as Chief Justice how would you and your party respond?"
-- "No predetermined decision, you voted for him when he was up for Associate Justice. Has anything changed since then?"
-- "You talk about compromise, Senator Daschle, without a lengthy explanation name three issues, if you would, where you will compromise your position to work with the Republicans and the White House."
-- "You talk about Republicans moving toward the middle, with this change in power President Bush will certainly have a more difficult time passing his agenda. You said you want to work with him, but that he also has to work in a more moderate way, he has to work in a more bipartisan way. How will you know that he is doing that, at what point will you see that he's holding to his word?"
-- "But what must he do that he hasn't done to date?"
-- "Is it really a new attitude or is it just the same old mantra, we have to work together to get things done?"
-- "You're in a powerful position right now, Senator, but there are many who suggest you might make a run for the White House yourself in 2004. Yes or no?"
"The Smiling Majority" declared the upbeat headline over a glowing June 6 Washington Post "Style" section profile of new Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle. The jump page headline promised: "Tom Daschle, Changing the Tone in Washington." Despite months of partisan-bashing of every Bush policy -- recall a Lexus versus a muffler on the tax bill -- veteran Post editor and reporter Robert Kaiser insisted Daschle is "a man from the pre-poisonous age of American politics."
Kaiser also described Daschle as "a moderately liberal Democrat." But a quick ratings check determined that Daschle has a higher liberal rating than his apparently more moderate predecessor, George McGovern.
An excerpt from the top of the June 6 profile, which carried the subhead: "Sen. Tom Daschle Is at the Top Of the Political Game. All Agree His Success Is Due to His Winning Way."
Tom Daschle has new shirts -- nifty ones with wide, spread collars that come up a little higher on the neck than your standard-issue senatorial white shirts. They look like fancy English shirts, many striped or checked in blue, most with French cuffs.
This is Tom Daschle of Aberdeen, South Dakota. What's the story on the shirts?
"My family used to complain to me that my shirts were too ragged, not what you'd expect for the Democratic leader [of the Senate]," the newly most-influential man on Capitol Hill explains. "So for my birthday and Christmas last year they bought me some of those shirts and expected me to wear them." Are they English, or what? "Nordstrom's, places like that."...
Now Daschle is the leading Democrat in town and, arguably, in the United States. The shirts, and the fellow in them, are about to get a lot more visible.
What will America see? An unusual Washington player. He still spends two months a year in South Dakota, but Tom Daschle has been playing the Washington game for nearly three decades. His record suggests that he has taken to heart the old-fashioned saying that there's no limit to what you can do in this town if you don't care who gets credit for it.
So even now, as he assumes the Senate majority leadership, Daschle's name evokes no memorable anecdotes or images, recalls no soaring oratory or cloakroom confrontations. There's no Daschle doctrine, no legislative monument that bears his name, no public notoriety at all, really. He's from another era -- a politician without a compulsion to be seen, quoted, praised. And yet, if you talk to the people who have worked with him over those three decades, you hear quite amazing descriptions:
"He's the best I've seen," says Bennett Johnston, the former Democratic senator from Louisiana. "He works as hard as any senator I've ever seen," says Bob Bauer, a Democratic lawyer who was Daschle's legal counselor in the impeachment trial of 1999. "Of all the many people I've worked for in politics," says Ron Klain, a principal aide to Bill Clinton and Al Gore after leaving Daschle's staff, "he is by far the most easygoing." "If you look up 'patience' in the dictionary," says Michael Meehan, Daschle's political director for four years and now his man at the Democratic National Committee, "there's a picture of Tom Daschle."
Even Republicans find it difficult to speak harshly of Daschle. "I served with Tom in the House Agriculture Committee," says Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), "and I've served with him in the Senate for a long time, and I can't find anything to say about him that's unpleasant."
Steve Bell, for most of two decades the senior aide to Sen. Pete Domenici (R-N.M.), sounds like a critic when first discussing Daschle: "He's very tough, very partisan, very clever. He is implacably after the possession of power." Then Bell's tone changes: "In other words, he's a professional....He's a guy you can deal with." Whom does he remind Bell of? "He reminds me very much of [former Republican leader Howard] Baker," Bell replies. Baker is Bell's personal political hero. He's also -- with Mike Mansfield, the Senate Democratic leader from 1961 to 1977 -- one of the men Daschle cites as model majority leaders.
Daschle has no visible enemies. This is unusual, to say the least. There are senators who detest Trent Lott, the outgoing majority leader -- both Democrats and Republicans. George Mitchell of Maine, Daschle's predecessor as Democratic leader and another rather soft-spoken senator from a small state, was the object of fierce Republican hostility. Robert S. Byrd, Mitchell's predecessor, was a remote, self-important majority leader who, far from being difficult to dislike, was hard to like.
These attributes make Daschle a throwback, a man from the pre-poisonous age of American politics. Fierce partisanship has infected Capitol Hill for a generation; animus and ill will are now routine. But Mansfield and Baker didn't engage in aggressive partisan hostility -- indeed, his friends have said for years that partisanship, not least in his own party, is what drove Baker to leave the Senate when he was still a relatively young man of 59. So Daschle is sending a signal when he names as his models those lions of a very different Senate.
The signal is not about ignoring partisan differences. Daschle is a moderately liberal Democrat, always has been, and isn't shy about promoting his views on divisive issues. The signal is more about style. Daschle's is reassurance personified....
To read the rest of the tribute, go to: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A26041-2001Jun5.html
"Moderately liberal" as opposed to just plain liberal? Daschle's lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union: 13 percent. His lifetime rating from the liberal Americans for Democratic Action (ADA): 83 percent, making him more liberal than fellow South Dakotan George McGovern, the man who personified liberalism for decades, who earned a 75 percent lifetime rating from the ADA.
Check the numbers. For the ADA, go to: http://adaction.org/lifetimesensouthdakota.html
For the ACU, go to: http://www.conservative.org/rating2000/sd.htm
The Washington Post isn't so reticent about issuing "conservative" labels, and without qualifiers like "moderately conservative." This past Sunday's front page story, on how at a convention Virginia Republicans picked Attorney General Mark Early as their gubernatorial candidate, applied the "conservative" tag six times (and that's outside of quotes) while avoiding any ideological label for Democratic candidate Mark Warner, whom Post reporter R.H. Melton simply described as "a venture capitalist who also is 46." Creatively, Melton cited "the GOP ticket's conservative tang."
Here are the paragraphs from the front page June 3 Washington Post story in which reporter R.H. Melton applied conservative labels. So they stand out, I've put each CONSERVATIVE in all caps:
-- "Earley, a staunch social CONSERVATIVE who has made outreach to minorities, labor and other Democratic constituencies a touchstone of his career, will be joined on the election ticket by two other strong GOP partisans, state Del. Jay Katzen (Fauquier) and former state Cabinet secretary Jerry W. Kilgore, of Henrico County, who were unchallenged for the nominations for lieutenant governor and attorney general, respectively."
-- "In speeches through the convention weekend, Earley wrapped himself snugly in Bush's mantle while vowing to continue the CONSERVATIVE agenda of Gov. James S. Gilmore III and his predecessor, U.S. Sen. George Allen. At the same time, Earley said he is reaching out once again to black voters and other minorities who helped him throughout his state Senate career."
-- "Though Hager had waged a tenacious struggle for the GOP nomination, he was outmaneuvered in the end by a tightly managed Earley organization directed by longtime strategists for Gilmore and Allen, as well as a network of Christian CONSERVATIVES who have supported the Norfolk native for years."
-- "As his supporters waved pencil-size flashlights in the darkened convention hall, Earley invoked the Jeffersonian ideals of limited government and personal freedom, adding the modern mantra of Virginia CONSERVATIVES: bolstering gun ownership rights; preserving the state's right-to-work law against union organizing; and pushing for restrictions on abortion, as he did for nearly a decade in the General Assembly."
-- "[Democratic candidate Mark] Warner campaign manager Steve Jarding, responding to the convention's drumbeat of criticism against the Democrat and the GOP ticket's CONSERVATIVE tang, criticized the Republicans for being 'devoid of a vision for the future, and well schooled in the slash-and-burn politics of the gutter.'"
-- "Some Democrats and independent observers have cautioned Warner about the risks inherent in trying to demonize Earley as just another CONSERVATIVE ideologue, saying that tactic has largely failed since 1993, when it last worked against lieutenant governor nominee Michael P. Farris."
But it's a tactic the Post is willing to advance. -- Brent Baker
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