The Liberal Media’s Newest Hero
“Standing her ground. She lost her son in Iraq, she opposes the war, now she’s camped out at President Bush’s ranch and says she won’t leave until he meets with her. An exclusive interview on Good Morning America.”
— ABC’s Charles Gibson touting a segment with anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan, Good Morning America, Aug. 9.
“We had this mother of a soldier who was killed in Iraq sort of camping out there down in Crawford....I wonder why the President doesn’t meet with her?”
— Bob Schieffer on the August 10 CBS Evening News.
“What does her vigil represent? What does the attention she’s getting represent? Does it represent a kind of tipping point in the country where people are really getting frustrated with the progress of the war?”
— David Gregory filling in as host of MSNBC’s Hardball with Chris Matthews, August 11.
“Over the last seven days, this one-woman protest has gone from being a roadside distraction to a potential political problem for the President. In the 11 days Mr. Bush has been on vacation, at least 37 troops have been killed in Iraq. And as the bloodshed continues, his approval ratings are falling.”
— ABC’s Geoff Morrell on World News Tonight, Aug. 12.
“Out of nowhere, Cindy Sheehan has suddenly become the red-hot symbol of opposition to the war....By camping out on the road to President Bush’s ranch, Sheehan, in just ten days, has become a magnet for the anti-war movement.”
— Bill Plante on the August 17 CBS Evening News.
“What began as one mother’s vigil on a country road in Texas two weeks ago has grown into a nationwide protest, putting a grieving human face to the miseries of war and the misgivings about President Bush’s strategies in Iraq.”
— First sentence of an August 18 Associated Press dispatch by political reporter Ron Fournier.
“I think that part of the attention that Cindy Sheehan has gotten is just a kind of a cry from a certain segment of the American public for the President to be more publicly responsive to the suffering.”
— Newsweek’s Jonathan Alter to guest host Alison Stewart on MSNBC’s The Situation, August 19.
ABC Sure Hopes So
“Can Anti-War Moms Stop Bush?”
— Graphic on screen during interview with Celeste Zappala, a mother affiliated with Cindy Sheehan’s anti-war protest group, ABC’s Good Morning America, August 22.
Impressed by Sheehan’s Nonsense
Anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan: “We’re not going to cure terrorism and spread peace and good will in the Middle East by killing innocent people or — I’m not even saying our bullets and bombs are killing them. The occupation that — they don’t have food, they don’t have clean water, they don’t have electricity. They don’t have medicine, they don’t have doctors. We need to get our military presence out of there and that’s what’s gonna start building good will....I see Iraq as the base for spreading imperialism....”
Host Chris Matthews: “Are you considering running for Congress, Cindy?”
Sheehan: “No, not this time....”
Matthews: “Okay. Well, I have to tell you, you sound more informed than most U.S. Congresspeople, so maybe you should run.”
— Exchange on MSNBC’s Hardball, August 15.
Soldiers Rebuff Matt’s Gloom
Matt Lauer in Baghdad: “Talk to me...about morale here. We’ve heard so much about the insurgent attacks, so much about the uncertainty as to when you folks are going to get to go home. How would you describe morale?”
Chief Warrant Officer Randy Kirgiss: “In my unit morale is pretty good. Every day we go out and do our missions and people are ready to execute their missions. They’re excited to be here.”
Lauer: “How much does that uncertainty of [not] knowing how long you’re going to be here impact morale?”
Specialist Steven Chitterer: “Morale is always high. Soldiers know they have a mission. They like taking on new objectives and taking on the new challenges....”
Lauer: “Don’t get me wrong here, I think you are probably telling me the truth but a lot of people at home are wondering how that could be possible with the conditions you’re facing and with the attacks you’re facing. What would you say to those people who are doubtful that morale can be that high?”
Captain Sherman Powell: “Sir, if I got my news from the newspapers also, I’d be pretty depressed as well.”
— Exchange on NBC’s Today, August 17.
More Ridiculous Gas Price Hype
“On World News Tonight, record profits for the oil producers, record prices at the pump. Tonight, a look at what’s really behind the pain for American drivers.”
— ABC’s Bob Woodruff beginning the August 11 World News Tonight.
“Across the nation, gas prices went to record highs today....Will it get to the point that only the privileged can afford gas?”
— John Blackstone on the CBS Evening News, August 11.
Poor Katie Needs Gas Money
Co-host Matt Lauer: “Pain at the pump. Gas prices are going sky high. I paid $2.94 a gallon over the weekend to fill up the car.”
Co-host Katie Couric: “It’s ridiculous. I had to take out a loan to fill up my minivan. It’s crazy.”
— Exchange at the top of NBC’s Today, August 15. Couric makes about $15,000,000 a year.
John Roberts, Bigoted Caveman
“Supreme Court nominee John G. Roberts Jr. consistently opposed legal and legislative attempts to strengthen women’s rights during his years as a legal adviser in the Reagan White House, disparaging what he called ‘the purported gender gap’ and, at one point, questioning ‘whether encouraging homemakers to become lawyers contributes to the common good.’”
— First paragraph of August 19 front-page Washington Post story headlined, “Roberts Resisted Women’s Rights.” The comment by Roberts was actually a joke about whether having more lawyers was good for the country.
“As a woman looking at some of the quotes from these documents, I was really struck. And I don’t know whether they were quips, but they were in White House documents that were destined for a presidential library. In one case, he talked and questioned whether it was a good thing for a woman to go back later in life to law school and whether this was a good move or a wise thing.”
— Washington Post reporter Robin Wright on PBS’s Washington Week, August 19.
Shockingly Conservative Roberts
“In these documents he [Supreme Court nominee John Roberts] is much more conservative than I ever would have guessed. He is on the most conservative side of almost every issue within the Reagan administration.”
— NPR’s Nina Totenberg on Inside Washington, Aug. 20.
Keith Distorts Rush, MRC a “Scam”
“The winner, oh, it’s the irrepressible Rush Limbaugh. On the radio, he said, quote, ‘Cindy Sheehan is just Bill Burkett. Her story is nothing more than forged documents. There’s nothing about it that’s real,’ unquote. I guess she made up that dead-son-in-Iraq business. He also referred to her supporters as ‘dope-smoking FM types.’ I guess the painkillers wipe out your memory along with your ethics. Rush Limbaugh, today’s ‘Worst Person in the World’!”
— MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann announcing his choice for the daily title of “Worst Person in the World” on Countdown, August 17.
“A very close second: Brent Bozell — yeah, the wacky guy from that Media Research Center scam — accused me of distortion for having said that Rush Limbaugh had said on air, quote, ‘Cindy Sheehan is just Bill Burkett. Her story is nothing more than forged documents. There’s nothing about it that’s real.’ The only person distorting as usual is Bozell. Limbaugh said it on the air on August 15th. We have the transcript. Nothing in the transcript mitigates what he said. I’ll put it online over the weekend.
“So, Bozell is close, but the winner is Limbaugh for saying, ‘I never said this,’ when, of course, he sure did, especially considering the line comparing Sheehan to Burkett was a featured quote on his Web site for his paying subscribers until it was mysteriously scrubbed off. And having now added about Sheehan’s dead son, quote, ‘I’m leery of even having to express sympathy. We all lose things.’ Like your career, Rush. You’re finished, credibility spent. Get lost! Rush Limbaugh, once again, today’s ‘Worst Person in the World!’”
— MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann on Countdown, August 19. MRC never said that Limbaugh was being incorrectly quoted, only that Olbermann had distorted Limbaugh’s point that, for the liberal media, “it doesn’t matter what the specifics of Cindy Sheehan’s case are.”
Bloody Bush “Scared S**tless”
“Cindy Sheehan is my hero. She is the hero of all Americans who make up the 62 percent of us who oppose this war. As an American exercising her right to free speech, she is a brave, passionate, living example of democracy.... No wonder Bush is intimidated. No wonder he can’t even walk down his driveway to speak with her. He is scared shitless. Whether he acknowledges it or not — whether his aides try to insulate him from the truth or not — his hands are covered in the blood of Cindy Sheehan’s son. They are dripping with the blood of all who have died there.”
— Actress Christine Lahti, who starred in the recently-cancelled WB network drama Jack and Bobby, in an August 11 Huffington Post blog entry.
PUBLISHER: L. Brent Bozell III
EDITORS: Brent H. Baker, Rich Noyes, Tim Graham
MEDIA ANALYSTS: Geoffrey Dickens, Brian Boyd, Brad Wilmouth, Ken Shepherd, Megan McCormack, Mike Rule
RESEARCH ASSOCIATE: Michelle Humphrey
CIRCULATION MANAGER: Jennifer Bookwalter