Dan Rather's CBS Producer Mary Mapes: Speaker on The Nation Magazine Cruise

May 24th, 2007 5:05 PM

Put aside for a minute the chuckles over a leftist magazine, dedicated to the poor of the earth and the worship of Mother Earth, holding a cruise for the rich on a big, polluting cruise ship. Guess who's coming to dinner on The Nation's Tenth Annual Seminar Cruise? Mary Mapes, touted on the Nation Cruise website as the "Peabody Award Winning Former CBS News Producer." It should read: "Phony Document Specialist/Celebrated Smearer of Bush's National Guard Record."

For those who would protest this environmental violation, the Nation Cruise website also pleads its case that "The Nation has partnered with EcoLogic to reforest an area in Guatemala recently devastated by mudslides, planting enough trees to offset the carbon emissions produced by each Nation cruise passenger on this 7-day cruise." Of course, "the cost is $11 and is strictly optional." Imagine: the cruise could cost $8600 per person, but you can't spare the carbon offset change?

There's nothing on the website or in the print ad in The Nation magazine that suggests what topic Mapes will be speaking on. Let's hope it's not journalistic integrity.

There are other old major-media names on the speaker list. Robert Scheer, a long-time correspondent and columnist for the Los Angeles Times, is advertised. He may be best known to long-time MRC followers as the man who won our worst Quote of the Year in 1997 for lamenting conservative opposition to a Ted Kennedy-Orrin Hatch health plan for children: "The mood of the Republican congressional leadership is so ideologically obtuse as to doom even this modest first step down the path of responsibility. They would rather kill people than raise taxes."

Last year, one of the Nation Cruise speakers was Farai Chideya, who's served at Newsweek and ABC News, but now hosts National Public Radio's daily black-oriented News and Notes talk show.

The ad in The Nation promotes the cruise with an odd religious theme (especially since the current issue also carries an American Atheists ad):

Sunday: Dinner with Richard Dreyfuss

Monday: Q&A with Ralph Nader and Liza Featherstone

Tuesday: Ogling the Hubbard Glacier next to Mark Hertsgaard

Wednesday Night: At the blackjack table with Victor Navasky

Thursday: Cocktails with Katrina vanden Heuvel

What's going on here? Did you die and go to heaven?

Nope, you're on The Nation's Alaska Cruise!