Like clockwork, much of the mainstream media quickly jumped to blame the California wildfires on global warming. As CBS’s "60 Minutes" and "NBC Nightly News" jumped on the global warming bandwagon, Headline News’ Glenn Beck offered a different take: government forest mismanagement and environmental pressure groups forbidding California homeowners from clearing flammable brush around their land.
The mainstream television media, for the most part, ignored yet another potential Clinton scandal. As NewsBusters’ Richard Newcombe reported, the Los Angeles Times, certainly not a conservative publication, broke the story of the Clinton campaign raising a large sum of money from very poor Chinese immigrants. One third of these immigrants could not even be located and the vast majority of those located were not even registered to vote. Additionally, there is a possibility of coercion among those immigrants.
How did the morning shows cover it? On Monday, October 22, only FNC’s "Fox and Friends" covered the story. The remaining shows, NBC’s "Today," ABC’s "Good Morning America," CBS’s "The Early Show," and CNN’s "American Morning," all covered for Senator Clinton, ignoring the story.
On "The View" facts apparently don’t matter. After all, on the ladies chat show, a co-host claimed "fire can’t melt steel." The show’s October 18 edition was no exception. During a conversation about Vice President Cheney’s relation to Senator Obama co-host Joy Behar smeared the vice president with this false assertion.
"I think Cheney can do whatever he wants. His daughter is a lesbian. Nobody even calls him on that, and he’s anti-gay in many, many ways."
A quick search will reveal to Behar that Cheney’s only public disagreement with the president involves the Marriage Amendment, which the vice president said repeatedly he opposes.
As NewsBusters previously documented, most of the mainstream media highlighted General Ricardo Sanchez’s criticism of the Bush administration’s handling of the Iraq War, but ignored his criticism of the media’s coverage. The one exception, of course, is Fox News.
Retired Colonel and Fox News Military Analyst David Hunt appeared on the October 17 edition of "Fox and Friends" to discuss Sanchez’s remarks. Although Hunt conceded Sanchez "is the wrong guy to be doing this" due to the Abu Ghraib scandal, he believes that "he’s right."
The October 16 edition of "Fox and Friends" featured conservative talk trailblazer Rush Limbaugh to discuss Harry Reid’s and 40 other Senate Democrats’ smear of Limbaugh. The radio talk show host called the letter "the smear of a private citizen...based on a total lie."
In response, Rush is now auctioning the letter on E-Bay to raise money for the Marine Corps Law Enforcement Foundation, which provides scholarships for children of Marines and federal law enforcement officials killed in the line of duty. Rush noted he will match the final bid to go to the same charity. He asked Reid and the other 40 Democrats to do the same. As of this morning, he has "not heard from them."
Is NBC "Nightly News" anchor Brian Williams really a conservative? "Washington Post" media analyst and CNN "Reliable Sources" host Howard Kurtz implied that he is. Kurtz appeared on the October 10 edition of "The O’Reilly Factor" to promote his new book "Reality Show: Inside the Last Great Televsion News War." When Bill O’Reilly inquired on the lack of conservative representation on the network news, this exchange followed.
BILL O’REILLY: What news man at CBS or NBC is conservative?
HOWARD KURTZ: I wanted to make- first of all, Brian Williams, we can talk about him in a moment, probably President Bush’s favorite anchor.
O’REILLY: He just likes his ties.
KURTZ: Has quoted Rush Li- has quoted Rush Limbaugh, reads conservative blogs as well as liberal blogs.
O’REILLY: I know Brian Williams. He’s about as conservative as Les Moonves.
CNN’s Anderson Cooper appearing on "The View" to promote his special "Planet in Peril." At the outset, Cooper claimed the series has no political agenda.
"There’s a lot of politics surrounding it, a lot of arguments surrounding it. But we just want to look at the facts. There’s no agenda. There’s no- we’re not trying to- we’re not advocates for any cause. We’re basically just looking at facts and letting viewers make up their own minds."
Really? Later in the segment it sure looked like it did. Co-host Joy Behar asked what can be done. The CNN anchor noted to save the environment, we need "major policy decisions."
"View" moderator Whoopi Goldberg surprisingly called out Reverend Al Sharpton for sometimes jumping to conclusions too swiftly, particularly on the false Duke lacrosse sexual assault allegation. In discussing Al Sharpton calling for Isiah Thomas to apologize for his conduct with a female New York Knicks staffer, Whoopi Goldberg called for Sharpton to apologize for protesting the innocent Duke lacrosse players.
WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Will you do me a favor? Will you ask him to please apologize to the Duke lacrosse players?
"Washington Examiner" White House correspondent Bill Sammon reported to the October 8 edition of "Fox and Friends" that the Clinton campaign hired convicted document thief Sandy Berger. In questioning Sammon, guest co-host Greg Kelly asked if the story "has legs." Sammon responded noting the mainstream media’s double standard reputation.
"Greg, I think it's entirely up to the mainstream media. Let me give you an analogy. If one of the Republican campaigns had hired 'Scooter' Libby can you imagine the hue and cry? The guy would be run out of town on a rail. We will see how the mainstream media reports this. I have a feeling they won't work up quite as big a head of righteous indignation. "
The controversy behind CNN’s "God’s Warriors" continues. On the October 4 edition of "Fox and Friends First" guest Alex Safian, Associate Director of the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA), spoke out against Christiane Amanpour’s special and its equating of Islamists with devout Jews and Christians.
Safian noted the absurdity of comparing those responsible for atrocities worldwide with devout Jews and Christians. When questioned if CNN has an agenda he responded, "I think [Christiane Amanpour] and her production team have an agenda" which he claims is "anti-Israel," "anti-Christian," and "white washes Islam."
Is Whoopi Goldberg becoming the Rosie O’Donnell type bully? It appeared that way on the October 3 edition of “The View.” A discussion about Hillary Clinton’s $5,000 a baby entitlement plan quickly descended into a heated exchange between Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Whoopi Goldberg about abortion.
When Hasselbeck noted that $5,000 a baby could lead to fewer abortions in the world, Whoopi told Hasselbeck to “back off” because Hasselbeck has never “been in a position” where she “had to make that decision.”
Whoopi, who claimed to march in a NARAL rally with Katie Couric, also added Elisabeth should have “a little bit of reverence” to the women who had abortions and then spread propaganda about women “found bleeding dead with hangers in their bodies.”
It did not take long after the infamous Rush Limbaugh smear for Democrats to call for a return of the Fairness Doctrine. On the October 3 edition of "Fox and Friends" at 7:33 AM, Congressmen Joe Sestak (D-PA) and Mike Pence (R-IN) discussed Rush Limbaugh’s "phony soldiers" remark. When Congressman Pence asserted that this is an excuse for the Democrats to re-insert the Fairness Doctrine, Congressman Sestak called for a return to "ensure the tone changes if we are to approach this war correctly."
SESTAK: We should be talking about the Fairness Doctrine. And what we should be doing is saying, Mike, this war is it hurting or helping our security? How can we bring about a better end to this? And that's what I believe needs to be done. Do I think both sides' words are wrong? The tone is absolutely wrong. So let's not defend either side and say whether we think or don't think.
With liberal House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appearing on "The View" "objective" journalist Barbara Walters hit Speaker Pelosi from the left. After briefly discussing the renewed Clarence Thomas/Anita Hill controversy, Walters attacked Pelosi for not doing enough to retreat from Iraq.
BARBARA WALTERS: The Democrats came in. They were going to try to bring the troops home. They were going to try to end the war. What happened?
HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI: Well, we are trying to do that. We have a contrast her between a ten year, $1 trillion war that the president is proposing and we’re talking about a year that, that redeployment begins as soon as safely possible and ends within a year. That’s the debate.
Is "The View’s" Joy Behar comparing Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas to O.J. Simpson? With a comment on the October 2 edition of the women’s chat show, it sounded like it. The "Hot Topic" discussion involved Justice Thomas’ new book "My Grandfather’s Son" and Anita Hill’s sexual harassment allegations. In that context, Joy Behar offered the following snarky remark.
"Why is he writing this book? He won basically the round. He’s the Supreme Court Justice for life. He should write a book, ‘If I Harassed Her.’"
Presumably she was alluding to O.J. Simpson’s book, "If I Did It." Joy’s comments amused even the show’s "conservative" Elisabeth Hasselbeck.
Julie Chen followed Barbara Walters’ lead in endorsing a global warming alarmist film, this time on Leonardo DiCaprio’s upcoming documentary, "The 11th Hour." The August 13 edition of "The Early Show" ran an unchallenged piece on DiCaprio’s film, then this exchange between co-hosts Harry Smith and Julie Chen.
CHEN: He has also turned his official website into an eco-site. News about his latest movies is posted side by side, with updates from the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation. And to see how you can help protect the environment, log on to our website at CBSNews.com.
HARRY SMITH: And what was your impression?
CHEN: Oh he was very sweet, and--oh of him or the movie? Gotta go green.
CBS, the Rathergate network, offered up another misleading report. The August 8 edition of "The Early Show,"at 7:09 AM, edited a Hillary Clinton quote from the August 7 AFL-CIO debate to portray her as a populist.
JOIE CHEN: Front-runner Clinton also came up against sharp elbows with rivals accusing her of cozying up to big-money lobbyists. Before thousands of union members, the New York Senator sought to portray herself as champion of the little guy.
CLINTON: So if you want a winner who knows how to take them on, I'm your girl.
What she actually said was in the context of her preference in attacking the Republicans. The full quote is much more divisive than portraying herself "as champion of the little guy."
CBS’s Harry Smith led the charge against "global climate change," first with billionaire airline founder and activist Richard Branson and then in the health segment. On the August 7 edition of "The Early Show" at 7:49 AM, Harry Smith hosted the health segment on how to handle the heat with the current heat wave that is affecting much of the eastern half of the United States. With many Americans baking in the hot conditions, Smith appealed to their emotions with this editorial comment.
"Before we do anything else, there is in fact, global climate change. It really affects some climates much more than others, and it's really caused some real serious problems."
Republicans held a debate on Sunday, but CBS’s Hannah Storm seemed more interested in Rudy Giuliani’s personal life and then Mitt Romney’s crankiness. On the August 6 edition of "The Early Show," at 7:19 AM, Storm kicked off the segment noting there was a Republican debate the previous day but, "they did not talk about an issue hanging over front-runner Rudy Giuliani and that is his wife, Judith, who has become a controversial topic in his campaign."
Are Barbara Walters and Anderson Cooper really objective journalists? Ask them, and they will answer in the affirmative, even though Walters did not bother to find a Republican to fill in for the vacationing token non-liberal Elisabeth Hasselbeck.
With Hasselbeck’s absence, Caroline Rhea and Melissa Claire Egan filled in as guests co-hosts. After the "Hot Topics" segments, CNN anchor Anderson Cooper previewed the upcoming presidential election. Walters noted this observation.
BARBARA WALTERS: It’s very difficult. We don't seem to have a Republican on this panel except that nobody knows your opinion or my opinion Anderson [Cooper]. That’s the only saving-
Barbara Walters announced that comedian, actress, and liberal activist Whoopi Goldberg will take Rosie O'Donnell's place as the moderator on "The View." Barbara Walters made the announcement.
"Today is the day we have been waiting for. You are about to meet the new moderator of 'The View' and we are thrilled. She is brilliant. She is funny. She's an enormous talent. She's an Oscar winning actress, a Broadway superstar. And we have her. Please join us in welcoming Whoopi Goldberg."
Although she will likely be less controversial than Rosie she does have a history of left wing remarks.
Most recently, as a guest co-host of her new show, Whoopi railed that "nobody as a right to burn [their own Dixie Chicks CD's]" and "burning them in public brings on 1933."
The July 31 edition of "The Early Show," just like the CBS Evening News broadcast, actually ran the news of two left leaning academics citing progress in Iraq. David Martin’s set up story featured co-author Kenneth Pollack explaining Iraqi improvements.
However, just as correspondent Allen Pizzey refused to mention any improvements, and snidely dismissed John McCain’s positive assessment on Iraq, the CBS crew is often skeptical of any positive signs. Though much more subtle, host Harry Smith displayed some disbelief to guest Michael O’Hanlon.
With any weather related disaster, the mainstream media typically blames it on "global warming." This was no exception on the July 26 edition of "The Early Show." Upon reporting on the flooding in Britain, correspondent Elizabeth Palmer concluded her report blaming the disaster on global warming and predicting more to come.
"But most people think that with climate change, flooding like this, or even worse, could become common place here in Britain."
As if floods did not occur before the industrial age. CBS followed NBC's "Today" as correspondent Keith Miller blamed the disaster on "global warming."
On July 25, two of the major morning news shows, "Today" and "The Early Show," covered the recent foreign policy disagreements between Senators Obama and Clinton with very stark contrasts.
Bob Schieffer on CBS’s "Early Show"hyped her supposedly inevitable nomination exclaiming "it’s Christmas in July for Mrs. Clinton" and "this is going to be Mrs. Clinton’s nomination to lose." Scheiffer, noting Clinton’s response to Obama, fawned "boy...she jumped on this one" and tied it in to her "experience." To top it off, Schieffer claimed "this Clinton machine is now really running."
Tim Russert on NBC’s "Today," by contrast, forecasted "a fight to the finish" because Obama "punches back" by accusing Clinton of irresponsibility voting for the Iraq War. Russert also opined that Hillary risks hurting the left wing base of her party.
On the July 24 edition of "The Early Show," co-host Harry Smith interviewed home and garden expert Danny Lipford on how to keep gardens irrigated under parched conditions. Lipford demonstrated a lawn belt that can soak the grass beneath the surface. Such a product will "only cost you about $140.
Harry Smith, who's income is safe to assume to be much higher than the average American, gleefully responded, "now that the minimum wage is up, maybe we can afford it." Smith was clearly responding to the new increase in the minimum wage, effective today, of $5.85 per hour.
The co-hosts on "The View" discussed the issue of health care on the July 18 edition. Barbara Walters, who previously endorsed Michael Moore’s "Sicko", did so again. To bolster her argument that health care is an important issue, Walters stated "this is why Michael Moore has a film called ‘Sicko.’"
Co-host Joy Behar continued on her many anti-Bush rants, this time about a health insurance initiative. Behar’s main source was noted left-wing partisan Paul Krugman.
JOY BEHAR: You know, they call themselves compassionate conservatives, right? Bush has just vetoed a bipartisan bill that would extend health coverage for 4.1 million children in this country. Now, that is not a compassionate conservative.
On the July 16 edition of "The Early Show" host Harry Smith actually puffed two Republican governors, because they are taking strong liberal positions. Smith interviewed California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Florida Governor Charlie Crist who are "teaming up to cut greenhouse gases."
"The Early Show" anchor seemed bewildered that "some people still don’t believe we have a problem." Harry Smith cited the left wing Union of Concerned Scientists and stated that "it really is a matter of decades before you may be losing coastline."
Smith then editorialized, "what is it you guys get that Washington doesn’t get?" And wanted to know if they can "wait for the White House to figure this out."
Anti-male sexism is certainly not new for "The View" as former co-host Rosie O’Donnell admitted to discriminating against men in her hiring practices. On the July 16 edition, the women of the show discussed Senator Hillary Clinton and her issues with her husband’s affairs. Joy Behar took up the mantle when she opined that the "woman is more culpable" in a man’s infidelities because "they think with Mr. Happy," "they’re idiots." It did not stop there as Joy said "they’re all weak in that area" and it is "one of the unfortunate truths about men."
After the sexist rant, Joy Behar tied Senator Clinton’s alleged ignorance of the former president’s affair with her vote for the Iraq War.
Barbara Walters, an alleged objective journalist, used her perch on the July 11 edition of “The View” to mock Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff’s “gut feeling” about the terror threat wondering "how does this help us to know this?"
Joy Behar took it a step further citing “the boy who cried wolf” to exclaim that the Bush administration no longer has credibility due to past so-called “lies.” And dismissed this new warning as “a joke.”
Token non-liberal Elisabeth Hasselbeck very boldly responded noting Secretary Chertoff’s “gut feelings” were likely based on intelligence. She also noted Joy Behar’s and other leftists’ catch 22 standards for the administration’s terror policy stating: “If he didn’t say it and then there were an attack, what would we be saying? Why didn't he say it?”
After a two week hiatus, the ladies of "The View" returned to discuss the political issues of the last couple of weeks. Guest co-host Whoopi Goldberg reacted harshly to the president commuting "Scooter" Libby’s 30 month prison sentence. Upon implying that Vice President Cheney has something to hide and Libby will not confess because strange things may happen to them. "look at the old man that went hunting with him," Goldberg said. What all of the co-hosts missed was that Richard Armitage was the source who outed Valerie Plame.
Although Elisabeth Hasselbeck missed the Armitage element, she did mention former President Clinton’s many pardons. Joy Behar dismissed those as "ancient history," but Hasselbeck noted that Clinton is now heavily criticizing President Bush’s actions when Clinton is short on the credibility himself.
Do you have a bad case of poison ivy? According to "The Early Show" you can blame that on those that drive SUV’s and cook on the grill. On the July 2 edition’s usually non-controversial "Health Watch" segment, host Harry Smith began the segment stating "scientists say [poison ivy] is worse than ever for a number of reasons, including global warming."
"Early Show" medical contributor Dr. Emily Senay cited a study that "rising levels of carbon monoxide" is "spurring poison ivy to grow bigger, to grow faster, and to produce a more potent form of this oil that it makes, urushiol."