Skip to comments.Dan Rather blinks [Cal Thomas nails it!]
Posted on 11/26/2004 1:46:41 AM PST by Quilla
Dan Rather, who has announced his "retirement" next March from the anchor desk he has held for 24 years, is a dinosaur. After the last of the old news anchors leaves his chair (Peter Jennings will be the final one sitting), Rather, Tom Brokaw and Jennings will be fossils. There will not be their like again.
Rather earned his stripes and paid his dues during a career that has spanned four decades at CBS and as a wire-service reporter before that. He is a man who loves his country. Recall his emotional breakdown on the "Late Show With David Letterman" following 9/11. Rather said he would go and fight the terrorists if the president asked him. Some thought his performance strange, even grandstanding. I thought he meant it.
While Rather is 73 and could have been expected to retire soon (his predecessor, Walter Cronkite, was forced out at age 65), the controversy over faked National Guard documents purporting to show George W. Bush failed to fulfill his military obligations appeared to give CBS management the excuse it needed to make a change. Rather, who helped bring down Richard Nixon, was himself brought down by a gross inaccuracy and a type of stonewalling reminiscent of the president he tormented.
It doesn't matter who replaces Rather. Everyone at that level of broadcast journalism has been ideologically vetted. No one who is a conservative is allowed to ascend to the top of major news organizations. If you disagree, try naming one. Despite plummeting ratings and numerous surveys that have shown large numbers of people believe the major networks approach the things conservatives care about with a bias, even hostility, network executives refuse to acknowledge those feelings and continue to present the news through the filter of their leftist ideological worldview.
Brent Bozell, president of the Media Research Center and a frequent critic of Rather, observed: "Mr. Rather's bias is part of an institutional problem throughout the national 'news' media - identified by former longtime CBS News correspondent Bernard Goldberg - which is the arrogant notion that their point of view is always accurate and always relevant to any story in which they choose to inject it."
More proof that nothing changes at the networks is the appointment of Jonathan Klein as president of CNN. Klein was executive vice president of CBS News. He praised the "60 Minutes" producer, Mary Mapes, who received and vouched for the forged National Guard documents from a well-known Bush-hater. Klein called Mapes "absolutely peerless . . . in the profession. She is a crack journalist."
Klein also blasted Internet bloggers for exposing the forged documents and CBS's error in standing behind them. He stereotyped a blogger as "a guy sitting in his living room in his pajamas writing what he thinks." The bloggers did a better job than CBS news anchors and producers, who sit around in their expensive suits telling us what they think. Klein carries his biases from CBS to CNN.
The "60 Minutes" curmudgeon, Andy Rooney, has been making a bigger fool of himself lately by calling conservative Christians uneducated and ignorant. When the sports commentator Jimmy "the Greek" Snyder disparaged blacks in 1988, Dan Rather aired video of the remarks, which led to Snyder's firing by CBS management. That Rooney still holds his job after stereotyping and disparaging Christians sends a message of bias, even bigotry, to a substantial audience that CBS has mostly lost and obviously does not care if it wins back.
CBS's eye logo is an appropriate metaphor for what ails the network. "There is none so blind as they that won't see," wrote Jonathan Swift. Notice he didn't say "can't see," but "won't see."
CBS is not blind, but it deliberately closes its eyes to the institutional bias that substantial numbers of Americans can see quite clearly. Unlike the period during which anchors dominated the national news stage, people now have choices. They are choosing cable, especially Fox News Channel, in growing numbers.
If CBS continues in denial - and it will - its evening news ratings, which have been in third place for several years, will suffer further decline. It didn't have to be this way for Dan Rather or for the once great CBS. He should have learned from Richard Nixon that cover-up and stonewalling can come back to haunt you
Great article, Mr. Thomas
So tempting, so tempting.
A subtle pun at Rather's own autobiography "The Camera Never Blinks"?
Good read, but another piece that won't float to the top where the masses will see it..
P.S. It was Rather that pushed old Uncle Walter ("The Most Trusted Man in America") out the door when he made it plain that he could do other things if he didn't get the anchor chair on his timetable.
I could have sworn I saw her standing next to the Crack whore down the street.... oh never mind
It was a foreshadow of things to come...
Shorenstein Center panel convenes Brokaw, Jennings, Lehrer, Rather, Woodruff
On this panel discussion about the state of the media (before Rather's recent memo Waterloo), Rather and Woodruff were evidently a bit cowed by the severe freeping they were getting; concerned Americans were apparently complaining to their studios -- especially via E-mail.
Judy was particularly concerned that this could disrupt her professional focus!
Angry comments were apparently effective in making them realize that many of the American people are actually afraid of the press and what they're doing to our nation with their selfish partisanship. As noted below, the whole transcript is there to read. I may post a thread for its URL if I get enough interest. It's a 77-page PDF file.
I'd be exaggerating if I said that the discussion empasized how the panelists felt intimidated. But I picked up on that.
MS. WOODRUFF: No, I don't see it as a media problem. And I'm going to chime in with what Jim, what he and Tom have said, I mean it's going on but what we do in our newsrooms, the decisions we make about what we are going to cover and how we are going to approach stories can't change because people are out there fighting each other. Sure, it makes it an interesting story and we want to cover that story. But in no way should we feel on the defensive for example, if we get a lot of e-mails or letters or calls or whatever, and people are saying, you're not representing that point of view, sure, we should pay attention, we want what we do, to a degree, to be interactive, we want to be responsive, in a way. But it can never govern what we do. And I would just add here, I think a lot of this divisiveness that we are talking about here this morning has been churned up by our political leadership, I mean there is a lot that they are doing, both political parties, to churn this up. --Transcript
Scary pic... Why do they all have the same shaped heads?
A man who truly loves his country does not try to take down a sitting president with a smear campaign knowingly based on forged documents. Rather's hatred of Republicans will be his legacy...his dress stain if you will.
I just realized of whom the aging Dan reminds me in his photos- He looks like his old nemesis J. Edgar Hoover, with hair. Must be a personality thing...
ping to my link to the Shorenstein Center panel on media and politics from earlier in the year (right before the DNC convention). Some fortuitous stuff from Brokaw, Jennings, Lehrer, Rather, and Woodruff.
The MSM needs to learn the old/early digital programing bit,,,Garbage-In-Garbge-Out.
The Old Media never stood for the unfiltered dissemination of information for the interpretation of the people - they stood for the art and power of filtering it for us for their own political ends. They were and are unelected political operatives that until the cable and the Internet came along enjoyed enormous influence.
Dan Rather's latest blunt instrument attack on George Bush, timed to influence the election, is only the latest from 40 years of these types of tactics. The difference is that this time, we have other means to get information and he and his cohorts stood exposed in the open.
>>I think a lot of this divisiveness that we are talking about here this morning has been churned up by our political leadership, I mean there is a lot that they are doing, both political parties, to churn this up. --<<
What? MS. WOODRUFF is concerned with this divisiveness caused by political diversity?
Well said indeed. Now that RatherBiased Dan is being allowed to ride off into the sunset like a Texas Toad hopping merrily across old U.S. 90 on a hot July afternoon in search of an old '57 Chevy hubcap filled with rainwater, everyone seems to want to let Danno off the hook.
NO FRIGGIN WAY!
As you (TGB) pointed out, what Rather, Mapes, Heyward and the rest of that motley crew were trying to do was to turn a presidential election around in favor of THEIR annointed candidate, John F'in Kerry!
Does anyone with half a brain think that Rather would be announcing his upcoming retirement if the Democratic Party, in a mass orgasm, were preparing for the (gag, choke, spew) Inauguration of President-elect John Forbes Kerry?
No, I didn't think so either.
If Rather is still breathing oxygen on January 21, 2009, I would love to think that FORMER President George W. Bush will direct his attorneys to sue the living dogs--t out of Dan Rather and CBS News for what they did to him personally, and for what CBS did to all of America.
They don't call 'em SEE-BS for nothing.