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NBC Uses Clintonista to Claim Bush-Cheney "Don't Shoot Straight" --10/7/2004


1. NBC Uses Clintonista to Claim Bush-Cheney "Don't Shoot Straight"
NBC Nightly News on Wednesday devoted nearly a full story to how Vice President Dick Cheney really had met Senator John Edwards before and reporter Kelly O'Donnell, noting that "senior Kerry advisors say this seemingly small Cheney mistake helps them make a larger point," had the chutzpah to feature Bill Clinton's spokesman during the Lewinsky mess, Mike McCurry, so he could charge that "they don't shoot straight with the American people" and "they just don't tell the truth sometimes." He should be an expert on that. O'Donnell proceeded to a "far more serious" matter, that contrary to Cheney's contention during the debate, "Democrats argue Mr. Cheney had repeatedly suggested" a connection between Iraq and 9/11, but unlike with the question of whether Cheney and Edwards had met before, O'Donnell offered up no video or quotes to contradict Cheney. MSNBC's Keith Olbermann considered the most important story of the day to be disproving Cheney's contention that he never before met Edwards.

2. Olbermann Uses Selective Edits to Show Cheney Tied Iraq to 9/11
On Wednesday night, MSNBC's Chris Matthews refused to concede that he had distorted Dick Cheney's comments about a 9/11 link to Iraq and MSNBC's Keith Olbermann set out to prove that Cheney had drawn such a connection, but Olbermann selectively edited a series of Cheney remarks, leaving out Cheney's specific rejection of any such connection. In one Meet the Press interview excerpted by Olbermann, it was Tim Russert, not Cheney, who raised the question of a Saddam Hussein/al-Qaeda link. Cheney, in parts of his answer Olbermann didn't share with his viewers, declared that "with respect to the connections to al-Qaeda, we haven't been able to pin down any connection there," and he labeled as an "allegation" the report that hijacker Mohamed Atta met with Iraqi intelligence.

3. Bias Blast from the Past: NY Times Put "RATS" Ad on Front Page
Prompted by CyberAlert's catch of "ILIE" lettering displayed, by President Bush's face, for 16 seconds on Monday's NBC Nightly News, Clay Waters of the MRC's TimesWatch.org site went back to 2000 to reminisce about how in the fall of 2000 the New York Times considered the letters "RATS" in an anti-Gore ad from the Bush campaign, for a fraction of a second, to be so newsworthy that they splashed it on the front page.

4. "Top Ten Thoughts Going Through Cheney's Mind at this Moment"
Over a photo of Dick Cheney at the vice presidential debate, Letterman's "Top Ten Thoughts Going Through Dick Cheney's Mind at this Moment."


Corrections: An update in the October 6 morning edition of CyberAlert misdated the 2000 NBC Nightly News story on the "RATS" ad and NBC's condemnation of "subliminal" ads. The story aired in September of 2000, not January. In the same edition, item #6, about how Newsweek's Evan Thomas and NBC's David Gregory conceded on Imus in the Morning this week that they thought George W. Bush won the debate last week, but changed their minds in the face of the media line, provided the proper dates for the quotes, but incorrect days. Thomas was on Imus on Monday October 4, Gregory on Tuesday October 5.

NBC Uses Clintonista to Claim Bush-Cheney
"Don't Shoot Straight"

NBC reporter Kelly O'Donnell NBC Nightly News on Wednesday devoted nearly a full story to how Vice President Dick Cheney really had met Senator John Edwards before and reporter Kelly O'Donnell, noting that "senior Kerry advisors say this seemingly small Cheney mistake helps them make a larger point," had the chutzpah to feature Bill Clinton's spokesman during the Lewinsky mess, Mike McCurry, so he could charge that "they don't shoot straight with the American people" and "they just don't tell the truth sometimes." He should be an expert on that. O'Donnell proceeded to a "far more serious" matter, that contrary to Cheney's contention during the debate, "Democrats argue Mr. Cheney had repeatedly suggested" a connection between Iraq and 9/11, but unlike with the question of whether Cheney and Edwards had met before, O'Donnell offered up no video or quotes to contradict Cheney. MSNBC's Keith Olbermann considered the most important story of the day to be disproving Cheney's contention that he never before met Edwards.

Though Edwards didn't remember himself during the debate, ABC and CBS on their Wednesday evening newscasts made note of how Cheney had sat beside Edwards at a 2001 prayer breakfast, but of the broadcast networks, only NBC centered a story around the subject. Following a piece from David Gregory on Bush's campaign day, the October 6 NBC Nightly News jumped cold to O'Donnell who began, as taken down by the MRC's Brad Wilmouth:
"This is Kelly O'Donnell. More face time today for John Edwards, out front with the Kerry team reaction to the latest report claiming Iraq had long ago destroyed its capacity to produce WMD."
John Edwards, at campaign event: "They're in a complete state of denial."
O'Donnell: "A theme that plays right into the Democrats' second day spin on the VP debate."
Edwards, at campaign event: "He won't forget we were there last night."
O'Donnell: "Today, in Florida, Edwards jumped on what had seemed like a withering Cheney attack on Edwards' many absences from the Senate."
Dick Cheney, at debate: "The first time I ever met you was when you walked on the stage tonight."
O'Donnell: "Edwards let that stand during the debate. The Kerry campaign said, 'Not true,' and sent out photo proof, and today claims at least three meetings. [over C-SPAN video of Cheney and Edwards on dais] Here, side by side at the prayer breakfast in 2001. [video of Edwards in background as Cheney swears in Senators] Again in 2003 when fellow North Carolina Senator Elizabeth Dole was sworn in. And another meeting off camera when both men appeared on the same broadcast of Meet the Press [April 8, 2001, but separately]. Senior Kerry advisors say this seemingly small Cheney mistake helps them make a larger point."
Mike McCurry, Kerry campaign advisor, to O'Donnell: "They don't shoot straight with the American people. That was maybe just a little small indicator, but it kind of sticks in your craw as an example of, they just don't tell the truth sometimes."
O'Donnell: "Far more serious, they say, this assertion from the Vice President:"
Cheney, in debate: "I have not suggested there's a connection between Iraq and the 9/11."
O'Donnell: "But Democrats argue Mr. Cheney had repeatedly suggested the link."
Edwards, at campaign event: "There's also a lot of videotape out there of him suggesting there's a connection between Saddam Hussein and September the 11th."
O'Donnell concluded: "Senior advisors acknowledge some may view the Cheney-Edwards match as a draw. Today, aides say Senator Kerry completed three or four full run-throughs as he prepares for the town hall style debate with the President Friday in St. Louis. Kelly O'Donnell, NBC News, Englewood, Colorado."

MSNBC's Olbermann treated at the most important story of the day disproving Cheney's assertion to Edwards that "the first time I ever met you was when you walked on the stage tonight." Olbermann lectured at the top of Wednesday's Countdown, over matching video clips:
"But Cheney and Edwards met twice in 2001 and again at the beginning of last year. The 2003 event was in the Senate, recorded on tape. January 8th of last year during the swearing in of North Carolina's Junior Senator Elizabeth Dole. Her in the front, Edwards in the back. Cheney as President of the Senate did the honors. Senator Dole was escorted to the ceremony by her husband and by North Carolina's senior Senator, John Edwards. The Bible used for the swearing in belonged to Mrs. John Edwards.
"If that somehow does not count as having met Edwards, there was the April 8, 2001 taping of the NBC News program Meet the Press. Moderator Tim Russert remembered this morning that the then new Vice President and Senator Edwards met at the NBC News bureau in Washington off camera. They were both guests on the show and they shook hands.
"If that somehow doesn't count as having met John Edwards, there was also the February 1, 2001 Senate prayer breakfast, videotaped by the network C-SPAN. Who's the guy on the left? At that event, Vice President Cheney sat next to Senator Edwards and thanked Edwards by name from the podium.
"Other than that, he wouldn't know him if he fell over him. The Cheney team today still insists the Vice President has no recollection of ever meeting Edwards. Mrs. Lynne Cheney told an audience in Tallahassee today that they have crossed paths at that prayer breakfast but, quote, 'Don't you think the Senator ought to go to the Senate once in a while?'"

Olbermann Uses Selective Edits to Show
Cheney Tied Iraq to 9/11

On Wednesday night MSNBC's Chris Matthews refused to concede that he had distorted Dick Cheney's comments about a 9/11 link to Iraq and MSNBC's Keith Olbermann set out to prove that Cheney had drawn such a connection, but Olbermann selectively edited a series of Cheney remarks, leaving out Cheney's specific rejection of any such connection.

On Hardball the night after the vice presidential debate, Matthews informed his viewers: "The Republican National Committee today criticized me for saying on the Today show this morning that the taped remarks we showed last night of the Vice President's statement on Meet the Press established the fact that in no uncertain terms that the Vice President has asserted that Saddam Hussein was responsible for 9/11. The RNC said we were being selective and cited this clip from the same Meet the Press."

Matthews had cited Cheney's reference to how the Iraq war hit at "the geographic base of the terrorists who've had us under assault now for many years but most especially on 9/11," as proof that Cheney was blaming Iraq for 9/11. In the fuller clip from the 2003 interview, however, Russert asked Cheney if "the resistance in Iraq is coming from those who were responsible for 9/11?" Cheney rejected the notion: "Oh I wouldn't, I was careful not to say that."

Nonetheless, the MRC's Geoff Dickens observed, Matthews refused to back down, going only so far as to put it in the hands of the audience: "I'll leave it to you, the viewer to decide on that one."

In MSNBC's next hour on Wednesday night, Olbermann insisted on the 8pm EDT Countdown that "Cheney's forceful performance at the debate was also self-sabotaged on this day after by comparisons between his insistence last night that he never implied a connection between Saddam Hussein and 9/11 and the series of times that he has." But to make his case, Olbermann distorted and selectively edited a series of Cheney quotes.

First, a rundown of Wednesday's Hardball segment and then a full comparison of Olbermann's Cheney quotes to what Cheney really said.

-- Hardball, October 6. Chris Matthews noted: "Also last night after the vice presidential debate we aired a report by NBC's Brian Williams pointing to cases where the candidate said things that were contradicted by previous statements."

In fact, the Williams segment ran several times: During NBC's post-debate coverage, a bit later on the Matthews-anchored MSNBC post-debate coverage and again on Wednesday's Today show.

Matthews replayed the Williams segment. Williams had asserted: "The first exchange we're gonna show you came during the second round of questions. What you're about to see is Vice President Dick Cheney, who Senator Edwards charged tonight has repeatedly Iraq linked Iraq to the 9/11 attacks. This was the Vice President tonight in his own defense."
Dick Cheney in the debate: "The Senator has got his facts wrong. I have not suggested there's a connection between Iraq and 9/11."
Williams: "But here is the Vice President on Meet the Press, one year ago, September 14, 2003. He was asked to define success in Iraq."
Cheney on the September 14, 2003 Meet the Press: "We will have struck a major blow right at the heart of the, the, the base if you will, the geographic base of the terrorists who've had us under assault now for many years but most especially on 9/11."
Williams: "So Vice President Cheney from tonight's debate and from Meet the Press just over a year ago."

As I noted in the October 6 morning edition of CyberAlert: "But that doesn't contradict what Cheney said in the debate since in 2003 Cheney was simply arguing that Iraq lies in an area of the world which spawns terrorists, including those who attacked the U.S. on 9/11, not that the Iraqi regime specifically contracted the attack."

Tuesday night, Matthews soon harangued Ben Ginsberg of the Bush campaign about it, pounding him incessantly. For those "questions," see the October 6 morning edition of CyberAlert: www.mediaresearch.org

On Wednesday's Today, Matthews blasted Cheney: "We have the record from Meet the Press, thank God, to base the truth on. To find the truth. Last night was an argument, the evidence suggests, states in fact, that the Vice President wasn't telling the truth." See the October 6 afternoon edition of CyberAlert for a full rundown of Matthew' rant on Today: www.mediaresearch.org

Now, back to Wednesday's Hardball. Matthews acknowledged: "The Republican National Committee today criticized me for saying on the Today show this morning that the taped remarks we showed last night of the Vice President's statement on Meet the Press established the fact that in no uncertain terms that the Vice President has asserted that Saddam Hussein was responsible for 9/11. The RNC said we were being selective and cited this clip from the same Meet the Press."

MSNBC then played a lengthy 1:50 excerpt from the September 14, 2003 Meet the Press which showed that Cheney was talking about making the Middle East region less hospitable to terrorists:
Tim Russert: "Can we keep 150,000 troops beyond next spring without, in effect breaking the Army?"
Dick Cheney: "Tim we can do what we have to do to prevail in this conflict. Failure is not an option. And, and go back again and think about what's involved here. This is not just about Iraq. Or just about the difficulties we might encounter in any one part of the country in terms of restoring security and stability. This is about a continuing operation on the war on terror. And it's very, very important we get it right. If we're successful in Iraq. If we can stand up a good representative government in Iraq that secures the region so that it never again becomes a threat to its neighbors or to the United States so it's not pursuing weapons of mass destruction, so that it's not a safe haven for terrorists, we will have struck a major blow right at the heart of the, the base if you will, the geographic base of the terrorists who've had us under assault now for many years but most especially on 9/11. They understand what's at stake here. It's one of the reasons they are putting up as much of a struggle they have is because they know if we succeed here that, that's gonna strike a major blow at, at their capability-"
Russert: "So the resistance in Iraq is coming from those who were responsible for 9/11?"
Cheney: "Oh I wouldn't, I was careful not to say that. With respect to 9/11, 9/11 as I said at the beginning of the show changed everything. And one of the things it changed is we recognized that time was not on our side, that in this part of the world in particular, given the problems we've encountered in Afghanistan which forced us to go in and take action there as well as in Iraq that we, in fact, had to move on it. The relevance for 9/11 is that what 9/11 marked was the beginning of a struggle in which the terrorists come at us and strike us here on our home territory. And it's a global operation."
Matthews then opined: "So when the RNC says that when the Vice President said quote, 'we will have struck a major blow right at the heart of the base, if you will, the geographic base of the terrorists who've had us under assault now for many years but most especially on 9/11,' he wasn't saying that Iraq was responsible for 9/11. When I first heard the Vice President say that on Meet the Press of September of last year I was struck by the assertion that the tragedy of 9/11 was based in Iraq, that the Vice President was pointing a finger at Saddam Hussein's role in 9/11. The RNC says that's not true. I'll leave it to you, the viewer to decide on that one."

Minutes later, Hardball repeated the same slap at Cheney using the same clip in question. David Shuster checked in: "Chris, it was indeed a feisty debate but it was also a one where the experts say the truth got stretched most prominently by the incumbent Dick Cheney. From Vice President Cheney the misleading statements started with this."
Dick Cheney during the debate: "The Senator's got his facts wrong. I have not suggested there's a connection between Iraq and 9/11."
Shuster: "But Cheney suggested exactly that a year ago on Meet the Press when he described Iraq as:"
Cheney, on Meet the Press in 2003: "The base if you will, the geographic base of the terrorists who've had us under assault now for many years but most especially on 9/11."


-- Countdown with Keith Olbermann, October 6. Olbermann claimed that Cheney was "self-sabotaged on this day after by comparisons between his insistence last night that he never implied a connection between Saddam Hussein and 9/11 and the series of times that he has."
Cheney, during Tuesday night debate: "The Senator has got his facts wrong. I have not suggested there's a connection between Iraq and the 9/11."

Olbermann then played a series of four Cheney clips:

#1: Cheney, from September 14, 2003 Meet the Press: "We will have struck a major blow right at the heart of the base, if you will, the geographic base of the terrorists who've had us under assault now for many years, but most especially on 9/11."

#2: Cheney, from September 8, 2002 Meet the Press: "Mohammed Atta, who was the lead hijacker, did apparently travel to Prague on a number of occasions, and on at least one occasion, we have reporting that places him in Prague with a senior Iraqi intelligence official a few months before the attack on the World Trade Center."

#3: Cheney, from March 24, 2002 Meet the Press: "One of the lead hijackers, Mohammed Atta, had, in fact, met with Iraqi intelligence in Prague."

#4: Cheney, from December 9, 2001 Meet the Press: "It's been pretty well confirmed that he did go to Prague, and he did meet with a senior official of the Iraqi intelligence service."


Olbermann's distortion of Cheney's point in #1 was fully outlined earlier in this item in the section on Chris Matthews.

For the others, MRC analyst Brad Wilmouth tracked down the original interviews and compared the full text to what Olbermann and his MSNBC producers selectively played. The portions run by Olbermann on Wednesday's Countdown are displayed in ALL CAPS.

On #2, Olbermann left out how Cheney emphasized that "I'm not here today to make a specific allegation that Iraq was somehow responsible for 9/11. I can't say that," and how Cheney described as "unconfirmed" reports of an Atta meeting with Iraqi intelligence.

From the September 8, 2002 Meet the Press:

Russert: "One year ago when you were on Meet the Press just five days after September 11, I asked you a specific question about Iraq and Saddam Hussein. Let's watch:"
Russert on the September 16, 2001 Meet the Press: "Do we have any evidence linking Saddam Hussein or Iraqis to this operation?"
Cheney: "No."

Russert then asked on the 2002 show: "Has anything changed, in your mind?"
Cheney: "Well, I want to be very careful about how I say this. I'm not here today to make a specific allegation that Iraq was somehow responsible for 9/11. I can't say that. On the other hand, since we did that interview, new information has come to light. And we spent time looking at that relationship between Iraq, on the one hand, and the al-Qaeda organization on the other. And there has been reporting that suggests that there have been a number of contacts over the years. We've seen in connection with the hijackers, of course, MOHAMED ATTA, WHO WAS THE LEAD HIJACKER, DID APPARENTLY TRAVEL TO PRAGUE ON A NUMBER OF OCCASIONS. AND ON AT LEAST ONE OCCASION, WE HAVE REPORTING THAT PLACES HIM IN PRAGUE WITH A SENIOR IRAQI INTELLIGENCE OFFICIAL A FEW MONTHS BEFORE THE ATTACK ON THE WORLD TRADE CENTER. The debates about, you know, was he there or wasn't he there, again, it's the intelligence business."
Russert: "What does the CIA say about that? Is it credible?"
Cheney: "It's credible. But, you know, I think a way to put it would be it's unconfirmed at this point."



On #3, in fact it was Russert, not Cheney, who raised the question of a Saddam Hussein/al-Qaeda link. Cheney, in parts of his answer Olbermann didn't share with his viewers, declared that "with respect to the connections to al-Qaeda, we haven't been able to pin down any connection there," and he labeled the Atta matter an "allegation."

From the March 24, 2002 Meet the Press:

Russert: "Iraq's Saddam Hussein. When we spoke on September 16, five days after the tragic day of September 11, I asked you if any evidence of linkage between Saddam Hussein and Iraq and al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden. At the time you said no. There's an article in The New Yorker magazine by Jeffrey Goldberg which connects Iraq and Saddam Hussein with al-Qaeda. What can you tell me about it?"
Cheney: "I've read the article. It's a devastating article I thought. Specifically, its description of what happened in 1988 when Saddam Hussein used chemical weapons against the Kurds in northern Iraq, against some his own people. I was aware that he had used chemical weapons against the Kurds. That's been general knowledge, but what the article is very good at is pointing it out in depth that he may have struck, if the article's correct, as many as 200 towns and villages over a 17-month period of time and killed upwards of 100,000 Iraqis.
"What's even more depressing is the apparent medical legacy that's left of continuing increased rates of infertility, birth defects, rates of liver cancer among children, etc., as a result of these attacks. It demonstrates conclusively what a lot of us have said is, that this is a man who is a great danger to the region of the world, especially if he's able to acquire nuclear weapons.
"With respect to the connections to al-Qaeda, we haven't been able to pin down any connection there. I read this report with interest after our interview last fall. We discovered, and it's since been public, the allegation that ONE OF THE LEAD HIJACKERS, MOHAMED ATTA, HAD, IN FACT, MET WITH IRAQI INTELLIGENCE IN PRAGUE, but we've not been able yet from our perspective to nail down a close tie between the al-Qaeda organization and Saddam Hussein. We'll continue to look for it."


On #4, which took place just three months after the 9/11 attacks, so well before debate over going to war with Iraq started, Cheney did state his belief that Atta met with the Iraqi intelligence service, but in a caveat excluded by Olbermann, Cheney cautioned: "Now, what the purpose of that was, what transpired between them, we simply don't know at this point." In addition, Cheney was responding to a challenge from Russert not to defend the position that Iraq was involved with 9/11, but to evidence that it had been. Russert cited a series of claims about ties to al-Qaeda and then pressed: "Do you still believe there's no evidence that Iraq was involved in September 11?"

From the December 9, 2001 Meet the Press:

Russert: "Let me turn to Iraq. When you were last on this program, September 16, five days after the attack on our country, I asked you whether there was any evidence that Iraq was involved in the attack and you said no. Since that time, a couple articles have appeared which I want to get you to react to. The first: 'The Czech interior minister said today that an Iraqi intelligence officer met with Mohammed Atta, one of the ringleaders of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the United States, just five months before the synchronized hijackings and mass killings were carried out.' And this from James Woolsey, former CIA director: 'We know that at Salman Pak, on the southern edge of Baghdad, five different eyewitnesses -- three Iraqi defectors and two American U.N. inspectors have said, and now there are aerial photographs to show it -- a Boeing 707 that was used for training of hijackers, including non-Iraqi hijackers trained very secretly to take over airplanes with knives.' And we have photographs. As you can see that little white speck -- and there it is, the plane on the ground in Iraq used to train non-Iraqi hijackers. Do you still believe there's no evidence that Iraq was involved in September 11?"
Cheney: "Well, what we now have that's developed since you and I last talked, Tim, of course, was that report that -- IT'S BEEN PRETTY WELL CONFIRMED THAT HE DID GO TO PRAGUE AND HE DID MEET WITH A SENIOR OFFICIAL OF THE IRAQI INTELLIGENCE SERVICE in Czechoslovakia last April, several months before the attack. Now, what the purpose of that was, what transpired between them, we simply don't know at this point, but that's clearly an avenue that we want to pursue."

It looks like Olbermann "self-sabotaged" his accuracy with such selectively misleading soundbite clips.

Bias Blast from the Past: NY Times Put
"RATS" Ad on Front Page

Prompted by CyberAlert's catch of "ILIE" lettering displayed, by President Bush's face, for 16 seconds on Monday's NBC Nightly News, Clay Waters of the MRC's TimesWatch.org site went back to 2000 to reminisce about how in the fall of 2000 the New York Times considered the letters "RATS" in an anti-Gore ad from the Bush campaign, for a fraction of a second, to be so newsworthy that they splashed it on the front page.

The October 5 CyberAlert had revealed: Four years ago, the NBC Nightly News took seriously the appearance of the letters "RATS," in a single frame of an enlargement of part of the word "BUREAUCRATS," in an anti-Gore ad from the Bush campaign. The September 12, 2000 NBC Nightly News carried two full stories on the controversy. Jump ahead four years, and on Monday night the NBC Nightly News displayed the letters "ILIE" for 16 seconds next to President George W. Bush's face in a "Decision 2004" graphic beside anchor Tom Brokaw as he introduced a story by David Gregory. The letters came from the word "FAMILIES" in a sign on the far side of Bush, which read: "TAX RELIEF FOR WORKING FAMILIES." To look at what NBC Nightly News viewers saw: www.mediaresearch.org

A reprint of Clay's October 6 TimesWatch.org item:

In a catch picked up by the Drudge Report, the Media Research Center caught an NBC Nightly News graphic showing the letters "ILIE" for 16 seconds next to President Bush's face, while anchor Tom Brokaw was introducing a story from reporter David Gregory.

Today's Times ignores the brouhaha, perhaps dismissing the juxtaposition as inadvertent. But that's not how the paper treated a similar moment during Campaign 2000 regarding complaints from the Gore campaign about a Bush ad in which part of the word "BUREAUCRATS" ("RATS") was highlighted in a single frame, which appeared on screen for less than half a second -- extremely difficult to spot unless you were watching for it.

Yet somehow "RATS" became a week-long story in the media at large and especially at the Times, which put it on the September 12, 2000 front page in a story by then-reporter (now Washington editor) Richard Berke: "Democrats See, and Smell, Rats in G.O.P. Ad."

Breathless Berke: "Then, if the viewer watches very closely, something else happens. The word 'rats,' a fragment of the word 'bureaucrats,' pops up in one frame. And though the image lasts only one-thirtieth of a second, it is in huge white capital letters, larger than any other word on the commercial....Several Republican and Democratic advertising consultants who were told of the commercial, as well as many independent academics, said they were startled that such a word would appear and said it appeared to be a subliminal attempt to discredit Mr. Gore."

Berke's article tossed around accusations of subliminal advertising, as did a Times editorial on September 13th (headlined "Subliminal Headache for Mr. Bush"), which darkly accused ad producer Alex Castellanos of "a declaration of intent to use subliminal techniques....If Mr. Bush really means that such techniques are not acceptable to his campaign, perhaps he should sever his connection with Mr. Castellanos."

At the end of the week, Berke went on PBS and demonstrated how he'd been spoon-fed the story by the Gore campaign: "The Gore people called me last week, and they said, 'We want you to view this tape of a commercial. We don't want to tell you anything more about it. Judge for yourself.' So they showed it to me. I'm looking at it. I don't notice anything unusual about it. Then they slow it down; I still don't notice. It takes me a while sometimes -- you know, go figure. It took me several viewings to notice the 'rat.'"

END Reprint from TimesWatch.org

Indeed, the September 18, 2000 CyberAlert recounted: "New York Times reporter Rick Berke denied any nefarious political agenda in the decision by his paper to plaster across page one his 'dispassionate' story on the 'RATS' ad. On PBS's Washington Week in Review Friday night he conceded he was more than spoon-fed the story by the Gore team as he was so slow on the up take 'it took me several viewings' of the ad played in slow motion by a Gore operative 'to notice the RAT' frame of it. But, a female editor supposedly noticed it at regular speed." See: www.mediaresearch.org

For the latest examples of liberal bias in the New York Times: www.timeswatch.org

"Top Ten Thoughts Going Through Cheney's
Mind at this Moment"

From the October 6 Late Show with David Letterman, over a photo of Dick Cheney at the vice presidential debate with his cupped hands in front of him, the "Top Ten Thoughts Going Through Dick Cheney's Mind at this Moment." Late Show home page: www.cbs.com

10. "What should I do next -- the phony chuckle or the unconvincing smile?"

9. "Hopefully he won't mention Halibur -- oh crap."

8. "W. better be tivoing 'The Gilmore Girls'."

7. "Where's the girl with my Jack and Coke?"

6. "To get the female vote maybe it's time to rip off the shirt and show some abs."

5. "Good God it's true -- Edwards is devastatingly handsome."

4. "How the hell did the Yankees get shut out by the Twins?"

3. "I can snap this man's neck like a twig."

2. "That was the cue to bring out Osama! Where the hell is he?"

1. "Let's quit the cat and mouse crap and take this out to the parking lot."

-- Brent Baker