Pushing Lies About Limbaugh
“Radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh says veterans who support withdrawing the troops are ‘phony soldiers.’ Those are his words.”
— MSNBC’s Chris Matthews opening Hardball on September 28. In fact, Limbaugh was talking about leftist anti-war groups touting tales of U.S. atrocities from Jesse Macbeth, a soldier who flunked out of basic training and who is going to prison for making it all up. (With WMV video /MP3 audio )
Host Keith Olbermann: “Comedian Rush Limbaugh tries to back out of his quote: Servicemen protesting the war are quote ‘phony soldiers.’”
Rush Limbaugh: “I never said what you think I said.”
Olbermann: “Not only did he, now he said something similar about the Congressman and Vietnam vet Jack Murtha.”
— MSNBC’s Countdown, September 28.
“A top Democrat is coming out guns blazing against conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh. It’s an angry new shot in the dispute over the war in Iraq and Limbaugh’s charge that some veterans who are criticizing the war are, in his words, quote, ‘phony soldiers.’”
— CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on The Situation Room, October 1.
“Why don’t you just brush off these comments by Limbaugh, like an annoying gnat, instead of legitimizing them and bringing more attention to them?”
— Co-host Meredith Vieira to former Democratic presidential candidate Wesley Clark, who is pushing to get Limbaugh removed from Armed Forces Radio, on NBC’s Today, October 3.
ABC Exposed Same Phony Soldier
Anchor Charles Gibson: “A Closer Look tonight at phony heroes....Increasingly, scam artists are posing as the war heroes they never were, claiming credit for acts of courage in Iraq and Afghanistan. Federal officials have launched a crackdown. Operation Stolen Valor they call it. Tonight, our Brian Ross investigates.”...
Reporter Brian Ross: “The authorities say the most disturbing case involves this man: 23-year-old Jesse Macbeth. In a YouTube video seen around the world, Macbeth became a rallying point for anti-war groups as he talked of the Purple Heart he received in Iraq and described how he and other U.S. Army Rangers killed innocent civilians at a Baghdad mosque. It was a complete fabrication.”
— ABC’s World News September 24, outlining the same bogus soldier Limbaugh discussed on his radio show. (With WMV video /MP3 audio )
Exposing CNN’s Smear of O’Reilly
“It’s rank dishonesty....It’s outrageous because the discussion we had was about how too often the images on TV are these rappers glorifying drugs, glorifying violence, degrading women....You [Bill O’Reilly] said stereotypes are not true....It had nothing to do with racist ranting by anybody except these idiots at CNN.”
— NPR’s Juan Williams on FNC’s The O’Reilly Factor, September 25, referring to CNN’s heavy coverage of supposedly racist comments O’Reilly uttered on his radio show when Williams was a guest.
Katie Rails Against Lapdog Press
“I think certainly people who covered that [the prelude to the war in Iraq] fell down on the job in terms of getting the right information and kind of rolled over in terms of U.S. policy and really didn’t do their due diligence....I remember at the time of the [troop] buildup, I felt really uncomfortable with the whole atmosphere of the country....You know, the whole culture of wearing flags on your lapel and saying ‘we’ when you were referring to the United States, which, and, and, you know, even the ‘shock and awe’ in the initial stages, it was just too jubilant and just a little uncomfortable....Anyone who questioned the administration was considered unpatriotic....I think everyone in this room would agree that people in this country were misled in terms of the rationale for war. I think that’s clear.”
— CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric talking to former CBS and NBC correspondent Marvin Kalb on the Sept. 25 Kalb Report shown on C-SPAN2 the next day. (With WMV video /MP3 audio )
Speaking of Obedient Lapdogs...
“There was this great story in The Atlantic this month about your philanthropy, the CGI [Clinton Global Initiative] and your other activities at the foundation. And the author says you’re basically re-inventing philanthropy, or trying to re-invent philanthropy....He writes that, ‘as a result of this, history may remember Bill Clinton as the philanthropist who happened to be President.’ You okay with that?”
— ABC’s George Stephanopoulos to his former boss, ex-President Bill Clinton, on This Week, September 30.
Stephanopoulos: “You’re also back on the campaign trail now, and a phrase from 1991 is about as resonant as ever.”
Clip of Bill Clinton from 1991: “I always say that my slogan might well be, ‘Buy one, get one free.’”
Stephanopoulos: “Is it more true now than it was then?”
— Question posed to Clinton a few moments later.
Captain Dan the Lawsuit Man
“Plaintiff, Dan Rather, one of the foremost broadcast journalists of our time, seeks to recover damages from CBS.... Throughout his career, Mr. Rather has promoted, championed, and been emblematic of journalistic independence and journalistic freedom from extraneous interference such as governmental, political, corporate, or personal interests. Defendants’ improper responses to the attacks on the Documents wrongfully damaged Mr. Rather and these values which he championed....Even if any aspect of the Broadcast had not been accurate, which has never been established, Mr. Rather was not responsible for such errors.”
— Excerpts from Dan Rather’s September 19 lawsuit against CBS and Viacom claiming executives made him a scapegoat to appease the White House after Rather’s September 2004 60 Minutes National Guard story.
“Most People Know” Dan’s Right?
CNN’s Larry King: “Are you sorry about that [60 Minutes National Guard story] now?”
Ex-CBS anchor Dan Rather: “No.”
King: “You think the report was correct?”
Rather: “Yes. And I think most people know by now that it was correct.”
— Exchange on CNN’s Larry King Live, September 20. (With WMV video /MP3 audio )
Laughing at Fox “Ignoramus”
“Chris Wallace asked [Hillary Clinton] the question [about the Clintons ‘hyper-partisan view of politics’] and he’s talking about partisanship, and he’s from Fox Television! I think that might be laughable, when he’s the one that took down her husband a few months ago and he’s talking about excessive partisanship!...He’s there representing Fox Television putting down partisanship. What? Of course she had to laugh. What else could she say, ‘You’re an ignoramus’?”
— MSNBC’s Chris Matthews talking to Keith Olbermann about Senator Clinton laughing during her appearance on Fox News Sunday, September 26 Countdown.
Uh, It Was a Metaphor
“Nelson Mandela is still very much alive despite an embarrassing gaffe by U.S. President George W. Bush, who alluded to the former South African leader’s death in an attempt to explain sectarian violence in Iraq....’I heard somebody say, Where’s Mandela? Well, Mandela’s dead because Saddam Hussein killed all the Mandelas,’ Bush, who has a reputation for verbal faux pas, said in a press conference in Washington on Thursday....”
— September 21 Reuters dispatch headlined, “Mandela still alive after embarrassing Bush remark.”
The Incorruptible Ahmadinejad
“The important thing, I think, Harry, to understand, he’s [Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is] described in the West as a madman, crazy. That’s not the case. I found him to be as many politicians are, very engaging, very friendly. He’s clearly not mad, he’s sane....He’s a very, very wily character. Fascinating man in background. He is genuinely religious, genuinely humble, there are no fancy clothes, fancy cars. He lives with his wife and his three children. They live in an apartment in Tehran. He is a very modest man and said to be absolutely incorruptible as well. He’s a fascinating character.”
— CBS’s Scott Pelley telling Harry Smith about his interview with the Iranian leader, September 24 Early Show.
Championing Bigger Government
Co-host Diane Sawyer: “The final stop on this week’s ‘Take Control of Your Life’ tour, headed to Capitol Hill to ask tough questions about the issue of family leave. Did you know that among 173 countries surveyed there are only five countries without a national maternity leave? Lesotho, Swaziland, New Guinea, Liberia and the U.S?...”
Co-host Robin Roberts: “There are paid leave proposals in Congress right now. So, what’s stopping the government from making the law truly family friendly?”
— Introducing a segment on proposals for government to force businesses to pay for maternity leave, September 28 Good Morning America.
Can’t Keep the Klan Waiting
“Some of these Republican candidates not going to this black university in Baltimore? What’s up with that?...Giuliani is not, Romney is not....Fred Thompson is not going. What are they afraid of?...Did they all have a Klan meeting at the same time?”
— Co-host Joy Behar on ABC’s The View, September 19, talking about GOP candidates not attending a debate hosted by liberal PBS host Tavis Smiley.
America the Awful
“Over the past six years we’ve had to add to the American picture: rendition, illegal wiretapping, voter suppression, no habeas corpus, the neglect of our great city New Orleans and the people, an attack on the Constitution and the loss of our best young men and women in a tragic war. And this is a song about things that shouldn’t happen here, happening here. And so right now we plan to do something about it — we plan to sing about it.”
— Bruce Springsteen introducing his song “Living in the Future” before a live concert on NBC’s Today, Sept. 28.
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