Scott Whitlock is the associate editor for the Media Research Center's NewsBusters.org site.
Scott Whitlock is the associate editor for the Media Research Center's NewsBusters.org website. Previously, he was a contributing editor and the MRC's senior news analyst. Scott's work has been published in The Washington Times, National Review and other outlets. He has been cited in publications such as The Washington Post, Red State, to name a few. Scott's articles have also repeatedly been linked to on the Drudge Report.
Scott is a graduate of George Mason University and grew up in Northern Virginia. He can be contacted at SWhitlock@MRC.org. You can also follow Scott on Twitter.
Latest from Scott Whitlock
Apparently Tim Russert has been paying attention to the misdeeds of Democrats. Last Friday the host of NBC’s Meet the Press appeared on the Today show. He commented that the Patrick Kennedy scandal will allow Republicans to "suggest to the country it’s not just Republicans who misbehave." I wondered if several misbehaving Democrats had somehow escaped his attention. Mr.
Is it possible that Tim Russert hasn’t been paying attention? The host of Meet the Press appeared on the May 5 edition of NBC’s Today show to discuss President Bush and the midterm elections. Anchor Matt Lauer also asked him about the political fallout from Representative Patrick Kennedy’s car crash:
Russert: "Republicans obviously are watching this very carefully because they want to suggest to the country it's not just Republicans who misbehave or the culture of corruption or whatever. It also could be Democrats. And they're going to really dig into this case, I think, pretty actively."
Today’s edition of The View may have given us a window into not only that show’s future, but also the interviewing style we might expect from Meredith Vieira on Today. Ms. Vieira, who joins the NBC program in September, and her co-hosts interviewed Dhillon Khosla, a transsexual who underwent several surgeries in an attempt to become a man.
Hill: "Or maybe a car or a boat or a country club membership or those sort of things? Well, you will be blown away to find out what perks some executives get."
FNC anchor Brian Kilmeade continued the theme of class envy by noting that some people are "upset about Exxon because they're making way too much money."
Did NBC allow a pro-illegal immigration message to air on the Today show? The singer Shakira appeared at 8:47AM EDT on the April 28 edition of the Today show. Wyclef Jean accompanied the Colombian performer and used NBC's platform to advertise a planned May 1 strike of illegal immigrants.
Nobody would argue that President Bush is overly popular at the moment. The media, however, seem determined to keep it that way. The April 28 edition of Today made this point extremely clear. Katie Couric opened the NBC program with this tease of a Brian Williams presidential interview:
Couric: "President Bush on those skyrocketing gas prices, his plummeting poll numbers and whether New Orleans is ready for hurricane season."
At 7:03AM EDT, Matt Lauer introduced the Williams interview this way:
Lauer: "Before we get to all that, let's talk about President Bush on those rising gas prices, the future of FEMA and his dismal poll numbers."
And the sneaky use of adjectives wasn’t the only tactic that Today employed.
Meredith Vieira just can’t help herself. The View co-host will soon be taking over for Katie Couric on the Today show. One would think that she would try and reign in her bias. Apparently not, as she opened the April 26 edition of The View with another attack on President Bush:
Vieira: "...I’m a little peeved when I hear the President say there’s not much we can do about this, folks. According to the President, the American people have got to understand that what happens elsewhere in the world affects the price of gasoline that you pay here, but where is his responsibility in all this? Five and a half years and we’re dealing with these gas prices? It’s ridiculous."
Does lacrosse lead to rape? NBC’s Today show seriously investigated that question in the April 21 edition. Matt Lauer teased the story with this scintillating query:
Lauer: "And still to come, the Duke lacrosse rape case. Is there something about the sport of lacrosse that causes players to act out of bounds?"
The April 18 Fox and Friends First provided a welcome alternative to the mainstream media’s fawning over the dissident generals attacking Donald Rumsfeld. FNC co-hosts Steve Doocy and Page Hopkins interviewed retired Army Lieutenant Colonel Robert Maginnis about his support for Rumsfeld. Doocy teased the segment this way:
Doocy: "Lieutenant Colonel Robert Maginnis. We’re going to talk to him live from down in D.C. about Mr. Rumsfeld. There is that drumbeat, okay, would you call it a drumbeat if there are seven generals, all retired, out of 8,000 active duty and retired generals, is that really a drumbeat?"
Has Meredith Vieira started her stint on the Today show early? The future NBC anchor already knows how to ask combative, loaded questions to conservatives. On the April 12 edition of The View, she posed this query to the Vice President:
Wow, the CBS Christmas parties are sure going to be fun. Veteran commentator Andy Rooney recently amended his earlier comments about designated Evening News anchor Katie Couric. I don’t think these statements will be popular over at CBS either:
Rooney: "I have this ancient view of CBS News as a paragon of journalistic virtue, and that time is gone."
The most charitable way to characterize that statement would be as a backhanded compliment.
In light of CBS’s and CNN’s obvious pandering to left wing sensibilities on the illegal immigration issue, FNC’s Fox and Friends provided a welcome alternative. The April 11 edition of the show featured a interview with Pete Sepp, a spokesman for the National Taxpayers Union. Co-host E.D. Hill opened the segment this way:
Let’s see if I have this correct: According to Katie Couric, the future anchor of the CBS Evening News, a town with Catholic themed values is bad, but Al Jazeera is a "voice of reform?" The April 7 edition of NBC's Today featured Couric’s skewed take on a new English version of the network: Couric: "Analysts claim that unlike most media in the Arab world, Al-Jazeera is a voice of reform, offering uncensored political dissent and debate."
Couric: "Analysts claim that unlike most media in the Arab world, Al-Jazeera is a voice of reform, offering uncensored political dissent and debate."
Now, don’t forget, this is the network best known for carrying long videos of bin Laden and grisly images of murdered American soldiers.
Geraldo Rivera, fresh from protecting children from the evils of hunting, decided to let America know how he REALLY feels about former House majority leader Tom DeLay. In the closing moments of the April 4 edition of Geraldo Al Large, Rivera opened the final segment with this monologue:
Rivera: "For me, the scariest man in American politics was never the Vice President, however intimidating Dick Cheney’s Darth Vader image may be. Now for the last decade, the real chiller that has been the former House majority leader, Tom DeLay of Texas. He's been the dark lord of Congress. And now he's gone."
A very tired and very cranky Al Franken appeared on the March 31 edition of the Today show.
On March 24, the Today show featured a segment on the Vice President’s personal needs for hotel visits. The piece, which aired at 7:20AM EST, featured three references to Cheney’s request that all televisions be tuned to Fox News. A few days later, the Smoking Gun, the website that broke the Cheney story, did a follow up on John Kerry’s requirements. The NBC series has yet to cover this. And if they did, they would probably not report this demand:
"Newspapers: all local plus New York Times, Washington Post"
Nudity. Perhaps that's NBC's strategy for maintaining high ratings if Katie Couric departs the network. The March 17 edition of Today featured a segment on a artist who seeks to "challenge the taboo issue of women’s bodies." The vehicle for such change? Why, topless women, of course. NBC was only too happy to oblige.
The media has manufactured another furor over "controversial" Pat Robertson comments. The televangelist has said he was referring to terrorists when he described radical Muslims as "satanic." His statements recently came under the scrutiny of the women on ABC's The View.