Jennings Again Delivers Most Anti-Bush Spin of the Night -- 02/12/2003 CyberAlert
2. Impugning the Worst of Motives to Why Alert Status Raised
3. CNN's Morton Derides How Bush Does Opposite of Clinton
4. Actor Danny Glover Calls Bush a "Racist"
5. Letterman on the French, plus Miller and Goldberg on
CBS and NBC were satisfied Tuesday night to note how Secretary of State Colin Powell contended Osama bin Laden's audio tape offered proof of his links to Iraq and then to point out how others in the government fear it's a signal of an impending terrorist attack on the U.S. But ABC's Peter Jennings wasn't satisfied with just doing that. He once again offered the most anti-administration spin of the night with a trilogy of three stories addressing subjects not touched by CBS or NBC.
Anchoring the February 11 World News Tonight from Phoenix, Jennings argued that "a lot of people say they've made the connection" between Iraq and al Qaeda, "but haven't proved the connection." Reporter Martha Raddatz seemed to imply the administration's tough line toward Iraq may cause more terrorism: "Well, there are some people, Peter, who are saying the administration has created this link, linking up al-Qaeda and Iraq, because of the possible invasion of Iraq. And many believe this may backfire, saying, 'Who stirred up this hornets nest?'"
Jennings charged that taking on al Qaeda and Iraq "might well be stretching the United States quite thin" before highlighting "dissatisfaction" on Capitol Hill from Bush Iraq policy opponents over plans for a post-war Iraq.
Later, ABC went to reporter Jim Sciutto in Mecca who relayed comments from the Hajj which matched anti-American sloganeering of the far-left. A Muslim from Britain alleged that the Bush Iraq policy is "part of a strategy to...control the Muslim world because that, after the fall of Russia and other superpowers, there is nothing else for America to fear except for Islam."
Sciutto passed along how an Iraqi claimed "the U.S. isn't coming to Iraq to change the regime...It's coming for oil." Sciutto even found a Muslim from New York who maintained: "I come here and I connect with people from Iraq....And these are the people that die. It's not the politicians who hide in bunkers. It's innocent people who just want to live their lives."
Yes, that was true on 9-11 thanks to Muslims from Saudi Arabia who struck civilians.
-- CBS Evening News. How David Martin handled Powell's link of bin Laden and Iraq: "Secretary of State Powell said the bin Laden tape confirms the case made last week at the UN about the links between Iraq and al Qaeda, links the administration is citing as one of the prime justifications for war."
-- NBC Nightly News. Jim Miklaszewski reported: "The Bush administration claims today's tape is further proof of Iraq's ties to terrorism. But intelligence officials fear it signals something far more ominous and imminent: A possible new wave of terrorist attacks inside the United States."
-- ABC's World News Tonight. Peter Jennings inserted his own opinion into the subject: "And Osama bin Laden, as we said, the United States, or the Bush administration at least, is portraying this statement as evidence of a link between al-Qaeda and Saddam Hussein. ABC's Martha Raddatz is at the State Department. Martha, a lot of people say they've made the connection but haven't proved the connection."
Setting up another story, on a hearing not mentioned by CBS or NBC, Jennings asserted: "There was more about Iraq on Capitol Hill today. And the headline is dissatisfaction. At a Senate hearing, Senators from both parties wanted to know what the Bush administration intends to do in Iraq after the military phase. ABC's Linda Douglass reports that if you believe the witnesses today, the administration may not know."
Linda Douglass indeed highlighted questions "from both parties," but didn't note that four of the five Senators she cited are clearly critical of Bush's policy on Iraq. She ran soundbites from Democratic critics, Senators Joe Biden and Paul Sarbanes as well as Republican detractors, Senators Lincoln Chafee and Chuck Hagel. The one pro-Bush Senator: Richard Lugar.
Jennings moved on to the wondrous Hajj and how Muslims gathered there are very critical of the U.S.: "You've heard a couple of references already this evening to the Hajj, the annual Muslim pilgrimage to the holy places in Saudi Arabia. It is one of the most important events on the Muslim calendar and has deep meaning for ever Muslim who will try to make the pilgrimage, or the Hajj, at least once in his or her lifetime. ABC's Jim Sciutto is in Saudi Arabia for this year's pilgrimage where there is, he tells us, a lot of talk about impending war."
Sciutto began from Saudi Arabia: "Any way they can, they have flooded into Mecca, surging mix of nationalities, races and the sexes, which is one of the few places where Muslim men and women worship together. For Muslims, the Hajj is a journey of a lifetime. Five days of peaceful meditation. But this year, many are distracted by the possibility of war. In the Saudi desert just outside Mecca, where pilgrims climbed the hill where they believe Mohammed delivered his last sermon, Saudi Arabia's top cleric warned that all Muslims, not just Iraqis, are under threat. 'Your enemy has beared its fangs,' he told the crowd. 'But it will not defeat you, even with its vast troops and equipment.' He didn't name the U.S., but most here believe a U.S.-led war against Iraq would be an attack on their faith."
That peace was broken by their fellow Saudi Muslims.
Impugning the worst of motives to why the terrorist alert status was raised to "high." On Monday's Early Show on CBS, Hannah Storm treated "skeptics who question the timing of this warning," as a legitimately newsworthy as she asked Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge about how they say "this is potentially a means to justify to the American people the need to go to war with Iraq."
And on Tuesday's The View on ABC, actress Amy Brenneman suggested the alert was issued just to scare everyone so the public will then believe whatever the administration says to advance its agenda.
-- CBS's The Early Show, February 10. One of Hannah Storm's questions to Tom Ridge: "And yet still there are some skeptics who question the timing of this warning, saying that this is potentially a means to justify to the American people the need to go to war with Iraq. What's your response?"
-- ABC's The View, February 11. Near the top of the daytime show created by Barbara Walters, Joy Behar charged: "I think they're crying wolf. I don't believe it. I may be in denial like Michael Jackson, but I don't buy it this time."
A half hour later when actress Amy Brenneman, star of CBS's Judging Amy, came aboard she backed up Behar. Though she didn't quite complete her sentences, her Hollywood Left implications about it all being a distraction so people won't oppose going to war with Iraq, were strongly hinted.
Looking at Behar, Brenneman argued: "I kind of agree with you. I don't know whether to believe that alert or not. I am so, I don't know what to believe and I just think like wait a minute, they could just be saying everybody get nervous so then we have to believe whatever they [cuts self off as she puts hands on forehead]. I don't know. I'm really messed up about it. But when you said that, I thought gee, you know."
For a picture of
Catching up with an item from Sunday, on CNN's Late Edition Bruce Morton derided how the Bush administration is "convinced that everything Bill Clinton ever did was wicked, bad and awful, and so they want to do the opposite."
Morton cited how "Clinton wanted to save all that wilderness area in Alaska, and Mr. Bush wants to drill for oil there. Clinton fussed about clean air, this President wants to ease new restrictions on coal-burning power plants."
Morton reserved the most time, however, for how Clinton provided "surpluses," but, "obviously, the Bush administration thinks those are evil. Because what they want is deficits -- big ones, maybe the biggest ever."
Noting how Clinton preferred "negotiations" while Bush prefers using "force," Morton concluded by warning that the biggest cost of Bush's changed approach is not the higher deficits a war with Iraq will bring, but that "it's real cost is in people, the lives war changes, the lives it takes."
Following an e-mail to the MRC's tip mailbox, intern Rudy Peseckas found the tape and compared it to the transcript for Morton's diatribe which ran during the 2pm EST half hour on the February 9 Late Edition.
Morton began his polemic: "A friend of mine here at CNN has a theory about the Bush administration. They're convinced that everything Bill Clinton ever did was wicked, bad and awful, and so they want to do the opposite. I thought he was joking at first, but now I'm not so sure.
Over a matching graphic, Morton intoned: "In 2001 the government ran a $127 billion surplus, the fourth in a row. This year, the Congressional Budget Office expects a deficit of $199 billion, much larger than the deficit they forecast just five months ago. The CBO foresees a surplus again in 2007, but we know that's nonsense. Remember during those bad Clinton years, when they were forecasting surpluses for the next 10 years? Look how quickly the administration turned that around. These forecasts are closer to fortune-telling than to science.
Morton concluded: "And none of these estimates includes the cost of invading Iraq. That's another 'Let's do what Clinton didn't' thing. Clinton mostly favored negotiations, talk. This President, just about from the beginning, has seemed to favor force. War will make the deficit higher, of course. Nobody knows how much higher because nobody knows how long or short, how tough or easy the war will be. And war's real cost can't be measured in red ink, anyway. It's real cost is in people, the lives war changes, the lives it takes."
Of course, military inaction costs a lot of lives too, probably more, in the long run.
Morton, no surprise, was a long-time CBS News Washington reporter before jumping to CNN about ten years ago. To remind yourself of who he his, you can see a small picture of him at:
Jeannette Walls, in her "Jeannette Walls Delivers the Scoop" column for MSNBC.com with Ashley Pearson, picked up on the interview and provided a translation in their Tuesday edition. An excerpt:
..."Yes, he's racist," Glover said in response to a question from a reporter from the Brazilian magazine Into E, according to our source's translation.
"We all knew that but the world is only finding it out now. As Texas's governor, Bush led a penitentiary system that executed more people than all the other U.S. states together. And most of the people who died from [the] death penalty were Afro-Americans or Hispanics."
Glover continued: "[Bush] promoted a conservative program, designed to eliminate everything Americans had accomplished so far in matters of race and equality."...
END of Excerpt
For the entire column: http://www.msnbc.com/news/871116.asp
For a picture of Glover and a rundown of his movie and TV roles, check his Internet Movie Database page: http://us.imdb.com/Name?Glover,+Danny
Last September Glover was amongst a bunch of left-wing celebrities who helped pay for a full page New York Times ad denouncing President Bush's war on terrorism. The ad screeched: "We call on all Americans to RESIST the war and repression that has been loosed on the world by the Bush administration. It is unjust, immoral, and illegitimate." The signers also equated 9/11 with the terror inflicted by the U.S. military in Baghdad, Panama City and Vietnam. For details:
David Letterman on the French, plus Dennis Miller and Bernard Goldberg on MSNBC.
> Brit Hume concluded his FNC show on Tuesday night with this monologue joke from David Letterman: "How many folks saw Colin Powell at the UN? I thought he was pretty persuasive, but a lot of folks are still demanding more evidence, you know, before they actually consider Iraq a threat. For example, France. France wants more evidence, they demand more evidence. And I'm thinking, the last time France wanted more evidence it rolled right through Paris with a German flag."
Hume didn't say, but I believe that aired on Friday's Late Show on CBS.
A bit funnier than Tom Brokaw's bad joke the same night on NBC's Late Night with Conan O'Brien. The NBC News anchor joked that the Bush administration raised the terror alert level to orange for "high" and are advising American to not congregate in large groups "because they may be trying to discourage anti-war protests."
> Tonight on MSNBC, finally some TV worth watching. At 8pm EST on Donahue: comedian/actor Dennis Miller. At 9pm EST on Hardball's "College Tour" from the University of Miami, going up against "President Bartlet's" inauguration on sister network NBC, Bernard Goldberg, author of Bias: A CBS Insider Exposes How the Media Distort the News.
Miller has been a very un-liberal Hollywood-like political observer of late, praising President Bush's efforts on terrorism and Iraq while making fun of liberals. Highlights of recent media appearances:
-- On MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews a couple of weeks ago, trying to appeal to those in favor of abortion, he suggested "to not think of this as a war, but just think that we've chosen to abort Hussein." Miller explained that liberal opposition to school vouchers turned him to the right and he delivered fresh cracks at Bill Clinton and John Edwards. See:
-- On the Tonight Show in late January Miller delivered some zingers against opponents of taking on Saddam Hussein militarily. He made fun of Sean Penn, the French, the ACLU and the French again. See:
-- Last November on the Tonight Show Miller praised Bush's anti-terrorism efforts, favored attacking Iraq and juxtaposed the "wocka-wocka porno guitar of the Clinton administration" with how Bush "makes me proud to be an American again. He's just a decent guy." See:
-- In a June, 2002 Tonight Show appearance Miller mocked liberal orthodoxy: "If you put the Guantanamo Bay terrorist prison outside of Kabul it would be their Epcot." And: "I say we create a new airline, called the ACLA, the American Civil Liberties Airline where you don't check anybody, you don't ask any questions, and let those morons fly on that one." See:
-- And in November of 2001, noting how reporters say "it's the public's need to know about our ground forces being in there," on the Tonight Show Dennis Miller led the audience in a reprimanding journalists: "We don't want to know!" Miller also called for oil drilling in Alaska and praised President Bush for ending "the '70s porno guitar of the Clinton administration." See:
For Miller's Internet Movie Database page with a rundown of his acting credits: http://us.imdb.com/Name?Miller,+Dennis+(I)
Donahue, with Dennis Miller, will air at:
Hardball, with Bernard Goldberg, will air at:
Enjoy Phil Donahue and Chris Matthews while you still can. We may miss their liberal antics when Donahue is replaced and Matthews is bumped to pre-prime time, as Drudge has reported, by Sam Donaldson and Jesse Ventura. -- Brent Baker