On a day largely devoted to remembering Margaret Thatcher, one of the 20th century's greatest conservatives, would it really have been too much for Morning Joe to have had on at least one conservative guest to discuss her legacy? Apparently, yes.
Morning Joe's lineup of political guests today leaned 100% left: Jon Meacham, Al Hunt, Cokie Roberts, Sen. Tim Kaine, former Obama aides Robert Gibbs and Melody Barnes, Tony Blair, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Mayor Michael Nutter, Eugene Robinson, Maureen Orth and Joe Klein. Joe Scarborough sometimes like to boast in such circumstances that his presence more than counterbalances the liberal avalanche. But on the major political issue of the day, gun control, Scarborough was just one more voice among many ripping Republicans for their opposition to President Obama's proposals. More after the jump.
At the end of an interview with former British Prime Minister Tony Blair on Monday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer turned to the subject of climate change and fretted: "We've had a crazy week in this – year in this country of extreme weather. Are you seeing around the world the kind of motivation and will that's necessary to, A, admit there's a problem, and then address the problem?" [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Blair replied in part: "This climate issue is real, and we are very irresponsible for future generations if we don't deal with it and we should recover, I think, a sense of urgency about it." Tossing all objectivity aside, Lauer joined in the advocacy: "I hope we will."
In an interview with British Prime Minister David Cameron aired on Wednesday's NBC Rock Center, Nightly News anchor Brian Williams cautioned Cameron about one of his predecessors: "You'll concede, Prime Minister Blair may never recover from that label that was attached to him. Someone used the word 'poodle' to describe his relationship with President Bush as the march to war [in Iraq] continued."
Moments earlier, Williams touted Cameron's criticism of the Iraq war: "Cameron, whose wife was in New York on 9/11, gave a speech in '06 criticizing the Iraq war, in which he said, 'Democracy cannot quickly be imposed from the outside. Liberty grows from the ground. It cannot be dropped from the air by an unmanned drone.'"
There was a marvelous moment on this weekend's "Chris Matthews Show" when the host literally stuck his foot in his mouth claiming in front of four British journalists that former Prime Minister Tony Blair "was much closer emotionally and politically to Bill Clinton" than George W. Bush.
Guest's Andrew Sullivan of the Daily Beast and Gillian Tett of the Financial Times both immediately shook their heads as the BBC's Katty Kay and Matt Frei said "No" and "Wrong" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
With a script and a dramatic voice over befitting a trailer for the latest superhero movie out of Hollywood, one of the first promos for Chris Matthews' documentary on Bill Clinton has begun airing on MSNBC. The ad begins with an announcer teasing viewers, "His presidency was over, his mission just beginning" and then goes on to tell the story of a post-presidential Clinton achieving universal adulation complete with shots of adoring crowds and accolades from the likes of Tony Blair and of course Matthews, who shrieks like a fan boy: "You're like a one man Peace Corps!"
Even the Academy Award winning actor Kevin Spacey shows up, narrating a scene he was once witness to: "And they were yelling 'Peacemaker! Peacemaker!'"
When lefties turn on each other ... never a pretty sight.
Former president Bill Clinton, he of the elephantine memory, still nurses a grudge against MSNBC's Rachel Maddow for a crack she made about him way back in March.
In an appearance with former British prime minister Tony Blair in Philadelphia on Monday, Clinton said that "one of the leading television commentators on one of our liberal cable channels said I was the best Republican president the country ever produced, which would come [as] quite a surprise to the Republicans, half of whom still think I'm a closet communist," according to Politico.
Based on the two pictures seen at the right, it doesn't exactly take Sherlock Holmes to figure out that the people at the Associated Press who decide on what pictures to use to tease the wire service's assorted video clips are not all favorably inclined towards Tony Blair.
Rather than show a picture of the former UK Prime Minister, the AP chose pics of a demonstrator outside where the inquiry was held.
As of about 8 PM ET, the "Raw Video" feed was still in the rotation and easily accessible at many hosted.ap.org pages carrying an international story. An accessible link to that vid is here at YouTube.
“President Obama's response to the government crackdown has been criticized by some Republicans as timid,” Katie Couric noted on Wednesday's CBS Evening News as she featured a retort: “Today, in an exclusive interview with CBS News, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair came to his defense saying he believes the protestors understand the tough position the President is in.”
Following a single soundbite from Blair, Couric plugged more on the Web: “For more of my extended conversation with Tony Blair, you can go to our Web site at CBSNews.com.”
On Tuesday’s The O’Reilly Factor, FNC host Bill O’Reilly showed clips from the Kalb Report show in which moderator Marvin Kalb, a veteran of both CBS and NBC News, interviewed O’Reilly. During the interview, which was recorded on September 27, O’Reilly managed to embarrass Kalb as the liberal host seemed to criticize President Bush for ordering American troops into war after the President himself "avoided military service," but he seemed to forget that Bill Clinton, who ordered a war against Serbia, dodged the draft and avoided military service altogether while Bush did at least serve in the National Guard. Kalb posed the question: "Do you believe that a President who avoided military service himself should be sending young men and women to fight in what are called ‘wars of choice’?"
After O’Reilly flippantly asked Kalb if he was talking about Bill Clinton and pointed out that Bush served in the National Guard, Kalb claimed that "Bill Clinton did not start a war such as the Iraq War." After mentioning that Clinton ordered war against Serbia, O’Reilly charged that Kalb was asking "another left-wing question," and took a jab at the moderator: "You wanted to hit Bush, and then I hit you with Clinton, and you were going, ‘Uh-oh, I forgot about him.’ Come on."
During the weekend's coverage of President Bush's trip to the G-8 Summit in Japan, ABC correspondents Martha Raddatz and John Cochran both reminded viewers of faux pas by the President from past G-8 Summits. On World News Saturday, while downplaying expectations of any significant accomplishments at the summit, Raddatz relayed: "In fairness, the G-8 rarely has created any breakthrough announcements. The most memorable moments had little to do with real news. There was the famous shoulder rub with Germany's Angela Merkel, and the live microphone that caught the President talking in less-than-diplomatic terms while he lunched with Tony Blair." (Transcript follows)
ABC showed the clip of Bush startling German Chancellor Angela Merkel by grabbing her shoulders from behind, and a censored clip from 2006 of him using profanity while talking about the terror group Hezbollah with then-British Prime Minister Tony Blair. Bush: "What they need to do is get Syria to get Hezbollah to stop doing this [BLEEP]-"
On Friday’s CBS "Early Show," co-host Maggie Rodriguez teased an upcoming interview with former British Prime Minister Tony Blair about global warming: "Also ahead this morning, we'll talk about a disturbing new report from some scientists in Colorado who say that there is the very real possibility that for the first time we will see the ice in the North Pole melt away completely during the summer."
Rodriguez elaborated as she later introduced the segment:
There are disturbing reports out this morning about the situation in the North Pole. Scientists are saying that by this summer there may be no ice on the North Pole at all, and that would be a first. Although the scientists also say there would be no significant short-term consequence to this, to not have ice in the North Pole year-round for the first time in history is symbolic of the growing threat of global warming.
Google News early Sunday morning, at its "Top Stories" front page, posted a suggestive Photoshopped picture of President George W. Bush and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair next to a headline about the California Supreme Court's recent ruling on same-sex marriages.
In the picture, Bush and a shirtless Blair are cuddling underneath an American flag.
Accident? Something to do with Google's auto-generation software program?
Larry King, best known recently for his scintillating interviews with thinkers such as Paris Hilton, proved that he can still ask tough questions, to conservatives that is. In an interview with Vice President Cheney about Guantanamo, he wondered, "You have to torture them when they’re there?" Former VP Al Gore, on the other hand, received puff questions about Madonna and penguins.
Speaking of media coddling, "Good Morning America" anchors Diane Sawyer and Robin Roberts appeared to be infatuated with the story that 2008 Democratic candidate John Edwards and his wife Elizabeth spend their wedding anniversaries at Wendy’s. Roberts even promoted the former senator by referring to him as "Presidential nominee" John Edwards.
ABC's World News Sunday featured a report about the upcoming meeting between President Bush and recently elected British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, which included speculation about how Bush's relationship with Brown will compare to that with Tony Blair. Between anchor Dan Harris and correspondent John Cochran, the derogatory charge by Blair critics that he was Bush's "poodle" was mentioned three times. While Cochran described the label as "perhaps unfair," when the report concluded, Harris, after having already mentioned the "poodle" insult once as he introduced the story, followed up by remarking, "Potentially no more poodle." (Transcript follows)