NewsBusters Time Machine
In 1993, more than a decade before Dan Rather would fully disgrace himself as a partisan determined to take down George W. Bush, he fawned over then-First Lady Hillary Clinton’s efforts to nationalize health care. Twenty six years ago this week, on September 22, 1993, Dan Rather interviewed Clinton and fawned over all her hard work: "You know, as I hear you talk, as I have before on this subject, I don't know of anybody--friend or foe--who isn't impressed by your grasp of the details of this plan."
CNN, the network that likes to brag about being all about “facts first,” doesn’t always have a great track record when it comes to reality. Fourteen years ago this week, on September 19, 2005, the network’s founder appeared on his own network to credulously insist that despotic dictator Kim Jong-il “didn't look" evil. Ted Turner proclaimed, “...He didn’t look too much different than most other people.”
It was 31 years ago this week that the Michael Dukakis for President campaign made a disastrous campaign appearance. It was so bad that it ended up in an ad for his opponent, George H.W. Bush. But, of course, that didn’t stop some in the media for rushing to the defense of the Democrat, crying foul on behalf of the liberal. Some things never change.
For someone who was ultimately exposed as a liar, Brian Williams had no problems smearing conservatives as ignorant and gullible. Nine years ago this week, the now-disgraced NBC Nightly News anchor appeared on the Late Show With David Letterman to bash Tea Party conservatives. Teed up by Letterman as to why the Tea Party wants their “country back,” a smug Williams mocked, “It makes people feel better to say ‘Take our country back.’ If you ask them, they would say from, ‘from the Trilateral Commission, from the big bankers, from the Council on Foreign Relations.”
This week, we go into the NewsBusters archive and find that journalists weren’t just content to fawn over Barack Obama, they needed to top each other with superlatives. So the Democratic president wasn’t just great, he was the best since Lincoln, a “national poet.” It was just three years ago this week, on July 27, 2016, that Andrea Mitchell gushed over Obama’s speech to the Democratic National Convention.
In the Trump era, journalists and hosts like to think they are truth tellers and that “democracy dies in darkness.” So it’s always good to look back, from time to time, at the Obama years. 2020 Debate moderator Rachel Maddow may despise the current Republican president, but she but she couldn’t restrain the gush when it came to Barack Obama. Four years ago this week, on July 14, 2015, Maddow hailed the achievement of “this American generation.”
New York City underwater? Gas over $9 a gallon? A carton of milk costs almost $13? Remember when that happened on June 12, 2015? No? That was the wildly-inaccurate version of 2015 predicted by ABC News 11 years ago this week. Appearing on Good Morning America in 2008, Bob Woodruff hyped Earth 2100, a special that pushed apocalyptic predictions of the then-futuristic 2015.
How extreme is Bill Maher? The Real Time host gets really angry when anyone says something nice about Ronald Reagan. And it was six years ago yesterday that Maher melted down, trashing the “race-baiting” two term president as “the man most responsible for our decline.” What set Maher off? Other liberals saying that the current GOP is so extreme, it’s too conservative for even Reagan. On June 7, 2013, he sputtered, “: Ronald Reagan was an anti-government, union-busting, race-baiting, anti-abortion, anti-gay, anti-intellectual."
In this week’s NewsBusters Time Machine, we flashback to a conversation between the left and the very far left. Three years ago this week, on May 6, 2016, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow and Bernie Sanders discussed the need for a liberal Fox News. Again, this all happened on the deeply liberal MSNBC. After Sanders complained about Americans being “a little bit tired of corporate media,” Maddow replied, “What’s the solution to corporate media?”
For all the talk in the liberal media about Donald Trump’s extreme tweets, you think there would be some humility on MSNBC. After all, that network is the home of Chris Matthews, a man who has been spewing the verbal equivalent of tweets since before the advent of Twitter. Seven years ago this past Tuesday, he blurted out a hateful comparison of conservatives and Republicans to the “grand wizard crowd.”
The month of April saw some dark days for America. On April 19, 1995, it was the Oklahoma City Bombing. On April 15, 2013, it was the Boston marathon bombing. What do those two have in common? Liberal media outlets smeared conservatives as responsible for both. On the April 19, 2010 edition of Countdown, then-MSNBC host Keith Olbermann went on an unhinged rant, assigning Rush Limbaugh culpability for the actions of domestic terrorist Timothy McVeigh:
It’s time for another NewsBusters Time Machine. A new book about ABC’s long-running show The View features a former producer calling Rosie O’Donnell “medically insane.” This shouldn’t be a revelation if one just watched the show. Twelve years ago this week, on March 29, 2007, ABC gave co-host O’Donnell a platform to promote her unhinged 9/11 conspiracy theories. In a heated discussion about the Middle East, token conservative Elisabeth Hasselbeck pressed O’Donnell: “Do you believe that the government had anything to do with the attack of 9/11? Do you believe in a conspiracy in terms of the attack of 9/11?”