1/17/2005
 
Dan Rather = Richard M. Nixon
The Big Trunk (AKA Scott Johnson) of Powerline has written a significant piece on the coverup of the CBS Rathergate affair. Johnson delves into the twisted, byzantine actions by CBS executives and the flawed "Report" by the "Panel" consisting of Richard Thornburgh and Louis Boccardi who released their report dated January 5, 2005, months after it was promised "in weeks, not months" by CBS.

My own efforts at this "scandel" was reported here, with followups here and here. Johnson is able to put the whole thing in perspective (IMHO) with these two paragraphs:
The report is more or less mysteriously silent on the inquiries, participation, knowledge or involvement of top CBS management including CBS News President Andrew Heyward and CBS President Les Moonves during the twelve-day cover-up. "Shortly" after Rather's on-camera interview of Burkett on September 18, the report (page 202) states, "Heyward determined that CBS News would issue an apology for the September 8 Segment on Monday, September 20 on the CBS evening News."

One of the eerie echoes of Watergate in the Rathergate affair is the four terminations -- of CBS News Senior Vice President Betsy West; 60 Minutes Executive Producer Josh Howard; Howard's deputy, Mary Murphy; and 60 Minutes producer Mary Mapes -- with which CBS has now sought to end the scandal. Dan Rather is not pulling the strings here; perhaps Rather himself is only a bit player like Ron Ziegler. Could it be that Moonves or Heyward, and not Rather, is playing the role of Richard Nixon in the Rathergate scandal?

There can be no doubt that the fabled MSM has a decidedly leftist tilt in spite of protestations to the contrary (Marc Cooper makes some good points) by many on the left of center. This can be confirmed by checking the number of positive stories about republicans/conservatives vs. democrats/liberals.

Did the MSM have an agenda? No doubt! Did the MSM merely take after a sitting president (regardless of who is in office), again, no doubt (see Marc Cooper's entry here -read the whole thing)! Does that mean there is no bias? No way! CBS and the rest of the MSM will survive if and only if they get away from partisan carping (regardless of which side of the aisle they support) and start reporting real news, not manufactured (Rathergate style) news.




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