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Franks Admits "Combat Over" His Idea, Koppel Takes Shots at Bush --8/4/2004


1. Franks Admits "Combat Over" His Idea, Koppel Takes Shots at Bush
ABC's Ted Koppel plowed right through retired General Tommy Franks' admission that President Bush's May 2003 announcement that major combat was over was his idea, motivated by a desire to bring "closure" to troops and to convince nations which promised troop support as soon as combat was complete to provide those troops. But instead of exploring those rationale, Koppel fired at Franks with snooty statements about President Bush, such as, "you didn't suggest he put on a flight suit and sit backseat on a plane landing on an aircraft carrier, did you?" and "I assume, you didn't paint the banner that said 'mission accomplished,' either?"

2. Lauer Illustrates Influence of NYT, Cites It in Three Questions
Matt Lauer's one newspaper mind. Interviewing New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Bush's homeland security adviser, Frances Townsend, on Tuesday's Today, Lauer illustrated the influence the New York Times has on the New York City-based national media as he twice cited a Times news story, about how the intelligence which prompted the latest security alert was years old, and then demanded that Townsend respond to a Bush-bashing Times editorial which criticized Bush for not following a recommendation from the 9/11 Commission to give full budget authority to the new intelligence coordinator.

3. Today Gives Robert Kennedy Time to Rant About Bush as Dangerous
Tuesday's Today provided a forum for Robert Kennedy Jr. to promote his new book, Crimes Against Nature: How George W. Bush and His Corporate Pals Are Plundering the Country and Hijacking Our Democracy. NBC's Natalie Morales plugged how in it he "charges that the Bush administration has taken corporate cronyism to such unprecedented heights that it now threatens our health, our national security and even democracy as we know it." Morales did raise how on National Review Online Jonathan Adler had asserted that Kennedy's claims are "riddled with misstatements," but after Kennedy insisted that "not a single inaccuracy has been pointed out," Morales cued him up: "So why aren't there stricter regulations now in place?" Kennedy then consumed the remainder of the interview with a multi-minute rant about how "a mining industry lobbyist from the coal industry has been put in charge of administering those, and he has sabotaged them all," how in the Bush administration "criminals give money to a political candidate and then have the cases against them dropped" and how thanks to Bush "one out of every six American women now has so much mercury in her womb that her children are at risk for permanent brain damage..."

4. Reporter Who Found Journalists Back Kerry Denies Coverage Bias
Twelve-to-one support for John Kerry over George W. Bush doesn't mean there's any media bias in favor of Kerry, John Tierney, the New York Times reporter who discovered the overwhelming slant of his colleagues when he coordinated a survey of journalists attending the Democratic convention last week, contended in a Tuesday night appearance on FNC's O'Reilly Factor. Tierney maintained that "most reporters are driven not by ideology" and he insisted: "I think the way it works in campaigns is that who's ever ahead in the campaign is the target because reporters don't want it to be an even race because that puts them out of work. And they want the best story, so they tend to go after the front-runner. Now, they always, of course, tend to go after who's ever in power, so they've been going after Bush now, but they went after Clinton, too."


Franks Admits "Combat Over" His Idea,
Koppel Takes Shots at Bush

ABC's Ted Koppel plowed right through retired General Tommy Franks' admission that President Bush's May 2003 announcement that major combat was over was his idea, motivated by a desire to bring "closure" to troops and to convince nations which promised troop support as soon as combat was complete to provide those troops. But instead of exploring those rationale, Koppel fired at Franks with snooty statements about President Bush, such as, "you didn't suggest he put on a flight suit and sit backseat on a plane landing on an aircraft carrier, did you?" and "I assume, you didn't paint the banner that said 'mission accomplished,' either?"

Franks sat down with Koppel, for a taped interview for Monday's Nightline, as part of his media tour to promote his new book, American Soldier. The August 2 Nightline was pushed back by about 45 minutes, until after midnight in the EDT zone, by golf in ABC's prime time.

The MRC's Jessica Anderson caught this exchange from the very top of where Koppel began his interview:

Koppel: "I want to take you back to an anecdote you tell in your book in which you say, in effect, when the President ended up on the carrier out there saying that major combat was over, that was you? You did that?"
Franks: "I confess, I did that, Ted. And factually, I had recommended to Secretary Don Rumsfeld, several days before that, that the President make such an announcement, for a couple reasons, actually. One reason was that I wanted all the troops who had been working hard on the ground in combat in Iraq, to get some sense of closure....Secondly, there were a number of nations who had indicated that they would provide force levels, troops to work with Coalition forces up in Iraq, as soon as major combat operations had been completed. And so, yes, that was my suggestion."
Koppel: "Now, you didn't suggest he put on a flight suit and sit backseat on a plane landing on an aircraft carrier, did you?"
Franks: "No one asked me about how he ought to do it, Ted."
Koppel: "And I assume, you didn't paint the banner that said 'mission accomplished,' either?"
Franks stood by Bush: "No, but I would have agreed with it, and as I looked at the President's comments on the 1st of May, I thought, 'good for him.'"
Koppel lectured: "Clearly, as we look back, the mission was not accomplished. A significant portion of the mission was accomplished....But the fact of the matter is, phase four of the war, which you describe as being the post-major combat phase, the phase that we're in right now, really hasn't gone well at all."

On Tuesday morning, Franks appeared on ABC's Good Morning America, but Diane Sawyer did not raise Franks' admission about declaring combat over.

Amazon.com's page for his book, American Soldier: www.amazon.com

I noticed Franks was interviewed at length by Sean Hannity on Tuesday night's Hannity & Colmes on FNC and appeared Wednesday morning on CBS's Early Show. On Friday night he's scheduled to show up on the Late Show with David Letterman.

Tonight's (Wednesday) Nightline will feature Bruce Springsteen and other musicians to promote the anti-Bush coalition of musicians, Vote for Change. The coalition, which plans to produce a series of fundraising concerts, also includes John Mellencamp, the Dave Matthews Band, Bonnie Raitt and the Dixie Chicks. (Members of the Dixie Chicks and Dave Matthews Band were on today's Today to publicize their efforts.)

Lauer Illustrates Influence of NYT, Cites
It in Three Questions

Matt Lauer's one newspaper mind. Interviewing New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Bush's homeland security adviser, Frances Townsend, on Tuesday's Today, Lauer illustrated the influence the New York Times has on the New York City-based national media as he twice cited a Times news story, about how the intelligence which prompted the latest security alert was years old, and then demanded that Townsend respond to a Bush-bashing Times editorial which criticized Bush for not following a recommendation from the 9/11 Commission to give full budget authority to the new intelligence coordinator.

The MRC's Geoff Dickens noted Lauer's fixation on that morning's New York Times.

Lauer's first question to Bloomberg, who was at the Statue of Liberty for its re-opening ceremony: "We're hearing in the New York Times this morning or reading in the New York Times this morning that some of the information that was used to conduct this or to elevate the terror threat level over this past weekend was three or perhaps four years old and that intelligence officials have no concrete evidence that a plot was still underway. Do you think, given that information, there might have been an overreaction in this city?"

Lauer soon jumped to Townsend at the White House: "Alright Mr. Mayor thank you very much, Mayor Bloomberg. Ms. Townsend let me turn to you. As we've said this information now in the New York Times this morning says that some of the information contained in the intelligence released over the weekend was three or four years old. Was there an urgent need to raise the terror alert warning?"

For his second question to Townsend, Lauer switched from the Times to the Times-like Howard Dean: "Let me read you something that Howard Dean, former Governor of Vermont, former presidential candidate for the Democratic Party said, quote, 'I am concerned that every time something happens that's not good for President Bush he plays this trump card which is terrorism. His whole campaign is based on the notion, that I can keep you safe therefore at times of difficulty for America stick with me. Now comes Tom Ridge. It's just impossible to know how much of this is real and how much of this is politics and I suspect there's some of both in it.' What's your reaction to that?"

A couple of questions later, Lauer was back to the New York Times and its editorial take on President Bush's decision to support a new intelligence coordinator position: "Here's how the New York Times editorial put it this morning, quote, 'He wanted to appear to be embracing the recommendations of the 9/11 commission,' he being the President, 'but he actually rejected the panel's most significant ideas. His intelligence director would be in the worst of all worlds: Cut out of the President's inner circle and lacking any real power.'"

For the August 3 New York Times story which so enthralled Lauer, "Reports That Led to Terror Alert Were Years Old, Officials Say," see: www.nytimes.com

For the editorial: www.nytimes.com

Today Gives Robert Kennedy Time to Rant
About Bush as Dangerous

Tuesday's Today provided a forum for Robert Kennedy Jr. to promote his new book, Crimes Against Nature: How George W. Bush and His Corporate Pals Are Plundering the Country and Hijacking Our Democracy. NBC's Natalie Morales plugged how in it he "charges that the Bush administration has taken corporate cronyism to such unprecedented heights that it now threatens our health, our national security and even democracy as we know it." Morales did raise how on National Review Online Jonathan Adler had asserted that Kennedy's claims are "riddled with misstatements, gross exaggerations, and outright falsehoods, combined with repeated ad hominem attacks on administration officials," but after Kennedy insisted that "not a single inaccuracy has been pointed out," Morales cued him up: "So why aren't there stricter regulations now in place?" Kennedy then consumed the remainder of the interview with a multi-minute rant about how "a mining industry lobbyist from the coal industry has been put in charge of administering those, and he has sabotaged them all," and how in the Bush administration "criminals give money to a political candidate and then have the cases against them dropped."

Kennedy blamed Bush for how "one out of every six American women now has so much mercury in her womb that her children are at risk for permanent brain damage, cognitive impairment, mental retardation, liver disease, kidney disease and a grim inventory of other diseases."

(Kennedy argued in the book that the Bush administration's "corporate cronyism" is comparable to the "rise of fascism in Europe in the 1930s," a contemptible comparison Sean Hannity pounded at him over on Tuesday's Hannity & Colmes on FNC.)

At the top of the 9am half hour on the August 3 Today, the MRC's Geoff Dickens observed, substitute co-host Campbell Brown teased: "And also Matt, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has penned a powerful indictment of the Bush administration's environmental policies. It's called Crimes Against Nature but does he go too far? We'll talk with Robert Kennedy Jr. in just a few minutes."

Before an ad break, Brown plugged: "And up next a book out today by Robert Kennedy Jr. charges President Bush with crimes against our natural resources. The author makes his case ahead."

Fill-in news reader Natalie Morales handled the in-studio interview with Kennedy. She set it up: "With the presidential campaign in full swing the candidates' records are being scrutinized like never before and one key issue for many voters is the environment. In a new book, Crimes Against Nature, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. charges that the Bush administration has taken corporate cronyism to such unprecedented heights that it now threatens our health, our national security and even democracy as we know it. Robert F. Kennedy Jr., good morning, thanks for being here."

The first question from Morales: "Well right in the book on page two in the intro you write that, 'I want to be very clear here. This is not a book about a Democrat attacking a Republican administration,' and though the sub-heading of the book in itself is 'How George W. Bush and His Corporate Pals Are Plundering the Country and Hijacking Our Democracy,' throughout the book is this continued theme, how do you then, therefore not want this to be perceived as a book about a Democrat attacking the Republican administration?"

Kennedy maintained that he's "bi-partisan as I approach the environment," but then charged that the Bush administration is trying to "literally eviscerate 30 years of environmental laws" with its "radical agenda."

Morales, who never tagged him as liberal, then hit him with criticism from a "conservative" source: "Well this book stems from an article of the same title that you wrote in, for the Rolling Stone in the November of 2003 and a lot of critics, of course, came out on that one. Jonathan Adler from the conservative publication the National Review wrote of this, of your essay at the time, 'It is riddled with misstatements, gross exaggerations and outright falsehoods combined with repeated ad-homonym attacks on administration officials. Crimes Against Nature paints a shocking, that is, shockingly inaccurate picture of Bush environmental policy.' How do you respond to that?"

Kennedy insisted that "not a single inaccuracy has been pointed out."

The third question from Morales was her last as Kennedy used it to launch a lengthy rant: "Let, one of the, you call the number one polluter is, is Big Coal in the book. You say, 'King Coal sends more greenhouse gases into the air and more mercury and acid rain onto our Earth and produces more lung-searing ozone and, or particles than any other industry.' So why aren't there stricter regulations now in place?"
Kennedy: "We have strict regulations, we have strict laws. But a mining industry lobbyist from the coal industry has been put in charge of administering those, and he has sabotaged them all. And his name is Stephen Griels. He's been under numerous criminal and ethics investigations. Unfortunately, we have a Congress and Senate that are controlled by the same party, and so there's no big congressional investigations, and, therefore, no attention paid to this by the press. But, you know, this is affecting our day to day lives."
Morales tried to get in: "You have three kids with asthma and you-"
Kennedy: "I have three kids with asthma. One out of every four black children in New York now has asthma. We don't know why we're having this epidemic of pediatric asthma, but we do know that asthma attacks are triggered by particulates and ozone, most of which are coming from 1100 plants that are discharging those pollutants illegally. The Clinton administration was prosecuting them."
Morales, barely audible: "Right."
Kennedy: "But this industry gave $48 million to President Bush during the 2000 campaign, have given $58 million since. And one of the first things the Bush administration did when they came into office was to order the Justice Department and the EPA to drop all those lawsuits. This has never been done in American history before, where criminals give money to a political candidate and then have the cases against them dropped. And that, you know, the, the, probably the worst human health impacts today are mercury, which women, particularly one out of every six American women now has so much mercury in her womb that her children are at risk for permanent brain damage, cognitive impairment, mental retardation, liver disease, kidney disease and a grim inventory of other diseases."
Morales: "Right. And unfortunately we are running out of time so we, we do thank you for your time. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. Appreciate it so much. The book, again, is called Crimes Against Nature."

An excerpt from Adler's December 3, 2003 National Review Online article, "Kennedy's Crimes Against Facts," about Kennedy's Rolling Stone piece which matches his book:

....The latest, and perhaps most egregious, example of anti-Bush environmental fear-mongering is an essay by Robert F. Kennedy Jr. in the December 11 Rolling Stone, "Crimes Against Nature." In it, Kennedy accuses Bush of "a ferocious three-year attack" on environmental protection involving "more than 200 major rollbacks of America's environmental laws." These policies "are already bearing fruit," Kennedy alleges, "diminishing standards of living for millions of Americans." In Kennedy's world, a phalanx of former corporate lobbyists conspires to "eviscerate the infrastructure of laws and regulations that protect the environment" and "eliminate the nation's most important environmental laws by the end of the year," all for narrow corporate gain. In Kennedy's world, the Bush administration's "corporate cronyism" is comparable to the "rise of fascism in Europe in the 1930s." If reality bore any relation to Kennedy's fantasy, there would be reason for concern. Yet as with so many recent environmental-activist attacks on the Bush-administration environmental record, Kennedy's screed is more fantasy than fact....

Although Kennedy claims his article was "rigorously fact checked," it remains replete with errors. "Crimes Against Nature" paints a shocking -- that is, shockingly inaccurate -- picture of Bush environmental policy....

[M]any of Kennedy's crimes against fact are quite serious. Right off the bat, Kennedy charges that the Bush Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) "excused" coal-burning power plants "from complying with the Clean Air Act." This is simply false. The administration revised federal regulations governing when older industrial facilities must install modern air-pollution equipment to allow for upgrades and repairs without increasing emissions above permitted levels. In practice, these changes will enable facilities to undertake efficiency improvements that in many cases, will produce a net decrease in polluting emissions. Yet even assuming these reforms to the "new source review" regulations effectively exempt power plants from the upgrade requirements, power plants, and other industrial facilities remain subject to numerous regulatory requirements under the Clean Air Act, including caps on emissions of sulfur and nitrogen oxides and provisions, controls to attain ambient air-quality standards, and mandates designed to prevent "upwind" facilities from causing air-pollution problems in "downwind" states, among others.

Kennedy claims the administration "redefine[d] carbon dioxide" to no longer be considered a pollutant subject to regulation under the Clean Air Act. Yet carbon dioxide has never been regulated as an air pollutant under federal law....

Kennedy accuses the administration of proposing to "remov[e] federal protections for most American wetlands and streams." Here again Kennedy is all wet....

Although Kennedy accuses the Bush administration of "more than 200 major rollbacks," he identifies few significant changes to environmental law. More often, Kennedy labels as a "rollback" the Bush administration's refusal to embrace Clinton initiatives, many of which had yet to take effect when Bush entered office. Kennedy claims Bush "weakened efficiency standards" for air conditioners because the Bush administration rejected a proposed Clinton regulation to tighten energy use requirements for new ACs by 30 percent. Yet the Bush administration went ahead and tightened AC efficiency standards nonetheless -- just not as much as the Clinton administration had proposed. Such a failure to adopt more stringent regulations can hardly be characterized a "major rollback."...

END of Excerpt

For Adler's piece in full: www.nationalreview.com

Kennedy responded with a letter to NRO which failed to point out any errors by Adler, a fact Adler noted out in his retort, but Kennedy did add his claims about mercury poisoning, the same charges he made on Today. Adler countered that allegation:
"...Kennedy makes additional misleading claims about the Bush administration's plans to regulate mercury emissions. After sitting on proposed mercury regulations for years, the Clinton administration issued regulatory findings in December 2000 that called for the development of binding emission regulations by 2004. Perhaps this is more 'academic hair-splitting,' but contrary to Kennedy's suggestion, no regulations on the books require any emission reductions from power plants. This week, the Bush administration released two proposals to regulate mercury: the command-and-control technology mandates envisioned by the Clinton administration and a market-based 'cap-and-trade' plan to reduce mercury emissions from power plants by 70 percent at a substantially lower cost. When the regulations are finalized next year, they will represent the first-ever binding limits on such emissions."

For the exchange posted on December 18: www.nationalreview.com

Amazon.com's page for Kennedy's book: www.amazon.com

Reporter Who Found Journalists Back Kerry
Denies Coverage Bias

New York Times reporter John Tierney Twelve-to-one support for John Kerry over George W. Bush doesn't mean there's any media bias in favor of Kerry, John Tierney, the New York Times reporter who discovered the overwhelming slant of his colleagues when he coordinated a survey of journalists attending the Democratic convention last week, contended in a Tuesday night appearance on FNC's O'Reilly Factor. Tierney maintained that "most reporters are driven not by ideology" and he insisted: "I think the way it works in campaigns is that who's ever ahead in the campaign is the target because reporters don't want it to be an even race because that puts them out of work. And they want the best story, so they tend to go after the front-runner. Now, they always, of course, tend to go after who's ever in power, so they've been going after Bush now, but they went after Clinton, too."

As recounted in the August 2 CyberAlert, Tierney surveyed 153 journalists at a press party during the Democratic convention in Boston. "When asked who would be a better President," Tierney relayed in his Sunday [August 1] news section "Political Points" column of tidbits from the campaign trail, "the journalists from outside the Beltway picked Mr. Kerry 3 to 1, and the ones from Washington favored him 12 to 1."

Tierney revealed to O'Reilly that he had some help with his noble effort: "We sent out six people with clipboards and surveys."

"What surprised me," Tierney told O'Reilly, "was that although the Washington correspondents I talked to narrowly favored covering President Kerry, in the rest of the country, and that was two-thirds of the sample, they favored Bush. So overall, journalists said they would prefer to cover President Bush next year than President Kerry."

But in his Sunday article, Tierney suggested that's not because they think Bush is a good President but because they believe the Bush team is fun to cover, probably because of what reporters see as missteps. Tierney wrote: "Why stick with the Bush administration? 'You can't ask for a richer cast of characters to cover,' one Washington correspondent said. 'Kerry will be a bore after these guys.'"

In addition to favoring Kerry's policies, as reflected in saying overwhelmingly that he'd make a "better President," the reporters polled also favored Kerry on a personal level, saying they'd prefer to spend time with him over Bush. Tierney recounted in his August 1 story: "With which presidential nominee, we asked, would you rather be stranded on a desert island? Mr. Kerry was the choice of both groups: 31 to 17 among the Washington journalists, and 51 to 39 among the others. 'Bush's religious streak,' one Florida correspondent said, 'would drive me nuts on a desert island.'"

For Tierney's piece in full online: www.nytimes.com

For the August 2 CyberAlert item with an excerpt from Tierney's article and a reminder about how a few weeks ago Evan Thomas, Assistant Managing Editor of Newsweek, observed on Inside Washington that "the media, I think, wants Kerry to win," go to: www.mediaresearch.org

Now, a lengthy rundown of the interview with Tierney on the August 3 O'Reilly Factor on FNC, as taken down by MRC analyst Brad Wilmouth. Tierney, a member of the Times' Washington bureau, appeared from a Washington, DC in front of a bookcase backdrop.

O'Reilly: "Now for the top story tonight: Can President Bush get a fair hearing in the media? New York Times columnist John Tierney conducted an informal survey about who journalists favored in the election. One hundred fifty-three media people answered anonymously, and overwhelmingly they favor John Kerry. Surprise! Mr. Tierney joins us now from Washington. Now, I admire the way you did this. You trapped these people at a party in Boston before the convention, these journalist types, right?"
Tierney: "Right. We sent out six people with clipboards and surveys to talk to them all."
O'Reilly: "All right. And they answered anonymously so they could answer honestly, and overwhelmingly they favored Kerry. You're not surprised by that, are you?"
Tierney: "Well, I wasn't surprised to find that most journalists lean Democratic. There have been other surveys that show that in the past, but what did surprise me was because I wanted to test not just your political bias because we, you know, that's been tested before, but also what kind of professional bias do you have because my thesis, and I found this being in Washington two years, is I think most reporters are driven not by ideology, but they're really driven by, you know, the same as people in most professions, by what helps them professionally. And I was curious which candidate do you want to win the election for your career? Which is going to be a better story in the next four years?"
O'Reilly: "So you believe that these people answering wanted Kerry to win because it would help them, because they'd get better stories to cover. Is that what you're saying?"
Tierney: "No, see, I asked them two questions. I asked them who would be a better President. And when I asked them that, it was pretty overwhelming for Kerry. But then I asked them strictly from a journalistic standpoint, would you rather cover President Kerry or President Bush? And there, I'll tell you the truth, I had expected them to say Kerry simply because a change in administration is good, it's new people in Washington, more news stories, more work for everyone here. But what surprised me was that although the Washington correspondents I talked to narrowly favored covering President Kerry, in the rest of the country, and that was two-thirds of the sample, they favored Bush. So overall, journalists said they would prefer to cover President Bush next year than President Kerry."
O'Reilly: "Okay. Now, can the press, and I agree with what you've come up with here, I don't think that the press, and I've worked at now at CBS News, ABC News, and here at Fox News, are driven by a crazed ideology. Some of them are. The columnists, particularly, but not the straight reporters. But they do play to the home crowd....But let's get back to Bush. Here's my problem with it. I got two problems. The first one is I don't know, if you're playing to the home crowd, whether you can cover any election objectively if you're always trying to curry favor with the sentiment that Kerry's the best President. That's the problem."
Tierney: "Well, see, I don't think the reporters are really, I mean, my fault with reporters would be that they really tend to write for each other more than they write for the home crowd."
O'Reilly: "That's right. That's right. Exactly."
Tierney: "But they're trying to beat the competition. I mean, I think the main thing driving them is getting on the front page, beating the competition, being first with the story."
O'Reilly: "And to get on the front page of the L.A. Times and the New York Times, if you have a negative Bush story, you got a much better chance to get on the front page, much better."
Tierney: "I think, no, I think the way it works in campaigns is that who's ever ahead in the campaign is the target because reporters don't want it to be an even race because that puts them out of work. And they want the best story, so they tend to go after the front-runner. Now, they always, of course, tend to go after who's ever in power, so they've been going after Bush now, but they went after Clinton, too."
O'Reilly: "Now, I got to, sure they did. Clinton got worked over like mad, but Clinton almost did it to himself, all right? Bush, you can disagree with him policy-wise, and everybody respects disagreement, that I know. But Clinton was a different deal. He got into a personal mess and brought it upon himself. Last question, it's hollow to us here at the Fox News Channel when we're accused of being biased toward Bush, you know, and all this hue and cry and screaming and jumping up and down. When you come in with a survey that says twelve to one, Washington journalists favor Kerry, now, it just makes us laugh here. If this is the prevailing wisdom, even if it were true that the Fox News Channel favored Bush, which it doesn't -- remember, we broke the drunk driving story right before the last election -- you guys should say, 'Gee, that just balances it out.' Right?"
Tierney: "Well, I think that you guys have the same motivation that we have, which is, you know, to get the best story and be there first and beat the competition. And I think that's the overriding thing that journalists have. And I think especially political reporters, the hard core political reporters, really, what they care about is who's winning the war and let's get the best inside story on the war."
O'Reilly: "Well, they also care about getting on page one. And, again, it's my thesis, and I know you disagree, that if you bash Bush, particularly in the big urban newspapers, you got a much better chance of getting on page one."

To see what Tierney looks like, check the posted version of this item to which the MRC's Mez Djouadi will add a still shot from Tierney on The O'Reilly Factor.

-- Brent Baker