Lott & Armey Okayed Gays Being "Destroyed"; Lying Fine with MSNBC
2) Nightline, Time and Gannett join the blame the right for murder crusade. Deborah Mathis: "The Christian Right per say and some particular members on Capitol Hill have helped inflame the air" so that the murderers breathed air that was filled "with the idea" that "gays are different and...therefore evil can be destroyed."
>>> October 19 MediaWatch now up
on the MRC home page thanks to MRC Webmaster Sean Henry and Research
Associate Kristina Sewell. Articles include a page one story on how ABC
avoided GOP budget arguments; a Review titled "Democrats Greedy, But
GOP Worse," by the MRC's Tim Graham on how Bill Moyers used PBS to
preach for "campaign finance reform"; a back page look at signs
CNN's Cold War series may present liberal historical revisionism; On the
Bright Side about how Nightline and FNC exposed Sidney Blumenthal's
dissembling; and three NewsBites: "Invisible Espy" by MRC
analyst Mark Drake on how the networks have ignored the trial of the
Clinton Agriculture Secretary, "Starr Fishing" by Geoffrey
Dickens on how two networks turned a slim story into proof of a "vast
right-wing conspiracy," and "A Life Sentence" by Jessica
Anderson on how CBS News slanted a story to blame a judge for not letting
a convicted woman get an abortion.
A fairly uneventful weekend on the scandal and politics front. Sunday night, October 18, ABC's World News Tonight and NBC Nightly News led with the storms and floods in Texas. Both ran pieces previewing the Microsoft suit set to begin Monday in federal court. (Football bumped the CBS Evening News in the Eastern and Central time zones.)
On ABC, Tim O'Brien looked at the chances the judge will reinstate the Jones case as her lawyers plan to request this week if they don't reach a settlement. O'Brien explained that in dismissing the Jones case the judge said Jones was not "adversely affected," but a subsequent Supreme Court ruling decreed sexual harassment victims do not have to show adverse result. O'Brien cautioned, however, that another Supreme Court case said the harassment must be "severe or pervasive."
NBC Nightly News didn't get any closer to scandal than a story on growing Hispanic voter participation. NBC also ran a piece on the Pope's 20th anniversary.
NBC's Meet the Press featured this illuminating exchange:
Friday night, October 16, ABC's World News Tonight led with the funeral for Matthew Shepard while CBS and NBC also ran full reports on that but went first with how the stock market recorded a record gain for the week.
The Shepard stories all showed snow pouring down in Wyoming and clips of some of the nutty protestors, a presence Dan Rather alluded to in his introduction: "But even as he was laid to rest, it was clear the hatred that killed him lives on." CBS reporter Cynthia Bowers actually ran pro and con soundbites on the need for a hate crime law with Concerned Women for America's Janet Parshall giving the con view. Among the protestors was this enlightened sign shown by NBC: "Aids Cures Fags." NBC also ran a story by its own Wyoming native, Pete Williams, on how people in his state are trying to understand why what happened occurred. ABC's Rebecca Chase reported on the supposed rising crime rate against gays.
ABC and CBS went scandal-free Friday night. ABC took time to note the Pope's 20th anniversary in office with a series of three stories, including one by Peggy Wehmeyer on how the Pope is cracking down on dissent in the U.S., where most ignore his teachings, by replacing liberal Cardinals and Bishops.
NBC Nightly News offered one scandal story, an examination of the Paula Jones settlement chances. Lisa Myers reported that family friend Bill McMillan had been brought in to settle the feuding among her past and present lawyers. Davis/Cammarata want $800,000, Donovan Campbell wants $1.4 million and the Rutherford Institute says it's owed $400,000. That's $2.6 million in total, so Jones won't get much Myers observed. The new Jones proposal: $2 million with one million from Abe Hirschfeld and the rest from Clinton.
Two more examples over the weekend of members of the media assigning blame to conservatives for the murder of Matthew Shepard.
Nightline on Friday night anchor Chris Wallace showed the anti-gay
protestors at the funeral but noted that elsewhere there's a "more
thoughtful" debate going on about the meaning of the killing. He ran
down the issues Nightline would explore:
from what I saw the show avoided any more hits on the religious right and
spent most of its time with a gay filmmaker who interviews men who
-- On Inside
Washington, a show which appears on PBS stations around the country and on
the CBS-affiliate in Washington, DC, host Gordon Peterson asked panelist
Deborah Mathis of the Gannett News Service about a column she wrote during
the past week. Mathis explained what she charged:
-- Catching up on
a "blame everyone but the perpetrators" item from last week,
here's a paragraph from an October 19 Time magazine news story by
Assistant Managing Editor Howard Chua-Eoan:
"Lack of legal restraint"? They are facing the death penalty. If that didn't deter them what more could have?
As the MRC's Tim
Graham reminded me, back in 1991 Howard Chua-Eoan, then an Associate
Editor, blamed society for Jeffrey Dahmer's murder spree, writing in an
August 19, 1991 essay:
Washington columnist Charles Krauthammer labeled the argument by Mathis
"really nonsense." In a comment that also decimates the Time
contention, he observed:
Lie day after day about how Bill Clinton never had sex with Monica Lewinsky and MSNBC will invite back on again and again despite the hole in your credibility. But if a conservative says something tacky but arguably accurate, goodbye. That's the lesson revealed in an October 16 Washington Post profile of Ann Coulter, author of "High Crimes and Misdemeanors: The Case Against Bill Clinton."
Deep in the piece,
the Post's Howard Kurtz ran through her resume, recalling how she became a
paid "contributor" for MSNBC in 1996. But it didn't last long:
UPDATE: A September 28 Nick News special on Nickelodeon, detailed in the September 29 CyberAlert, featured Reid Weingarten as the legal expert for the kids. Host Linda Ellerbee described him simply as "a well-respected Washington lawyer who at different times has both prosecuted and defended public officials accused of crimes." The CyberAlert noted his Democratic affiliation but not who he specifically represents.
An October 10 Washington Post story, on how a federal judge has ruled that foreign citizens are not prohibited from making "soft money" donations, filled in his client list. Weingarten presently represents two figures in the foreign money scandal: Yah Lin "Charlie" Trie and Pauline Kanchanalak.
Nickelodeon Weingarten corrected a girl who said President Clinton has
committed perjury, a fact even accepted by many Democratic House members:
Nice that Nickelodeon, and Ellerbee's Luck Duck Productions which produced the show, inflicted such an independent analyst on the kids. Talk about a conflict of interest with Starr in 1994, Weingarten is actively involved in the scandal now.
A note of personal privilege. With the Microsoft case set to begin today in federal court in Washington, DC, I thought I'd pass along a tidbit I caught Sunday which illustrates why it is that so many people who owned computers before Microsoft became so dominate, even if they think ideologically that the government suit is wrong, aren't too upset by seeing Microsoft harassed.
October 18 Washington Post story titled "Inside Microsoft: An Edgy,
Driven World," reporter Elizabeth Corcoran delivered a sympathetic,
inside look at life from the point of view of hard working Microsoft
software programmers, specifically the 60-person team working on
FrontPage. This paragraph jumped out at me:
How nice. While they're in dreamland all us users have to "waste much time" dealing with the reality of all the bugs. -- Brent Baker 
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