The Media Research Center today announced its Best Notable Quotables of 2008: The 21st Annual Awards for the Year's Worst Reporting, and MSNBC's Chris Matthews "won" the dubious honor of Quote of the Year for gushing over a Barack Obama speech back in February: "I felt this thrill going up my leg. I mean, I don't have that too often….And that is an objective assessment."
Top runner-up for Quote of the Year went to Reuters for this ridiculous post-election headline: "Media bias largely unseen in U.S. presidential race."
MRC President Brent Bozell offered this comment: "Year after year, the liberal media outdo themselves in providing conservatives the sheer joy of laughing at their own words. The year of the Obama Paparazzi was no different, as they salivated over their savior and did everything in their power to crush conservatives. And we wonder why Americans don't trust the media."
This year's winners were selected by a panel of 44 judges, consisting of radio talk show hosts, magazine editors, columnists, editorial writers, and media observers. Judges this year include columnist Cal Thomas, radio host Neal Boortz, economist Walter Williams, American Spectator editor R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr., and former National Review publisher William A. Rusher. To read all the award-winning quotes, along with audio and video clips of the broadcast quotes, please visit www.MRC.org.
A few highlights from the MRC's 2008 awards:
■ The Obamagasm Award
"Some princes are born in palaces. Some are born in mangers. But a few are born in the imagination, out of scraps of history and hope." -- Time's Nancy Gibbs in the November 17 cover story.
■ Half-Baked Alaska Award for Pummeling Palin
"The fact of the matter is, the comparison between her [Sarah Palin] and Hillary Clinton is the comparison between an igloo and the Empire State Building!" -- MSNBC's Chris Matthews on Hardball, October 14.
■ The Irrelevant Reverend Wright Award
"To see his [Jeremiah Wright's] career completely destroyed by three 20-second soundbites, all of the work he has done, his entire legacy gone down the drain, has been absolutely devastating to me - to him, sorry....We are still a racist country." -- Washington Post writer Sally Quinn on PBS's Charlie Rose, April 30.
■ From Camelot to Obamalot Award
"Today, the audacity of hope had its rendezvous with destiny....Obama is now an adopted son of Camelot. His candidacy blessed not just by the Lion of the Senate, patriarch of the clan, but by JFK's daughter." -- David Wright on ABC's Nightline January 28.
■ The Crush Rush Award for Loathing Limbaugh
Author/humorist P.J. O'Rourke: "It's the twilight of the radio loud-mouth, you know? I knew it from the moment the fat guy [Rush Limbaugh] refused to share his drugs...."
Host Bill Maher: "You mean the OxyContin that he was on?...Why couldn't he have croaked from it instead of Heath Ledger?" -- HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher, February 8.
■ Politics of Meaninglessness Award for the Silliest Analysis
"Not doing it [fighting global warming] will be catastrophic. We'll be eight degrees hotter in ten, not ten but 30 or 40 years, and basically none of the crops will grow. Most of the people will have died and the rest of us will be cannibals." -- CNN founder Ted Turner on PBS's Charlie Rose, April 1.
■ Madness of King George Award
"When somebody asks you, sir, about the cooked books and faked threats you foisted on a sincere and frightened nation; when somebody asks you, sir, about your gallant, noble, self-abnegating sacrifice of your golf game so as to soothe the families of the war dead; this advice, Mr. Bush: Shut the hell up! Good night and good luck." -- MSNBC's Keith Olbermann in a "Special Comment" on Countdown, May 14.
■ Barbra Streisand Political IQ Award for Celebrity Vapidity
"If you have a few hundred followers, and you let some of them molest children, they call you a cult leader. If you have a billion, they call you 'Pope.' It's like, if you can't pay your mortgage, you're a deadbeat. But if you can't pay a million mortgages, you're Bear Stearns and we bail you out. And that is who the Catholic Church is: the Bear Stearns of organized pedophilia." - Bill Maher on HBO's Real Time, April 11.
■ Admitting the Obvious Award
"When NBC News first assigned me to the Barack Obama campaign, I must confess my knees quaked a bit....I wondered if I was up to the job. I wondered if I could do the campaign justice."
-- NBC reporter Lee Cowan in an article for NBC's "The Peacock" advertising supplement, March 23-29.