On Sunday, longtime morning show host Charles Osgood announced to his CBS Sunday Morning audience that his almost 50-year career with the network will be coming to an end on September 25. Osgood took over the CBS Sunday Morning hosting duties from Charles Kuralt in 1994 and while the show took on a sedate tone, Osgood still managed to mix in liberal observations and even a bit of pretentious poetry.
In December of 1994, Osgood offered an ode to incoming House Speaker Newt Gingrich: “As a milepost, then, we offer ‘How the Gingrich stole Christmas’...For pianos and parsleys, peanuts and pajamas. Why he’d even take kiddies away from their mammas.” And during the 1998 Monica Lewinsky scandal surrounding Bill Clinton, Osgood chastised those who had the audacity to investigate: “And what we sow, we someday reap. Last night as I laid down to sleep I dreamed an apparition swarthy, the unshaved ghost of Joe McCarthy.”
More recently Osgood actually questioned if the U.S. Constitution was “truly worthy” of “reverence.”
The following examples of Osgood’s liberalness and absurd observations were culled from the MRC’s archives:
Time to Rethink Our “Reverence” of the Constitution
Host Charles Osgood: “Is the U.S. Constitution truly worthy of the reverence in which most Americans hold it? A view on that from Lewis Michael Seidman, Professor of Constitutional Law at Georgetown University.”
Louis Michael Seidman, Professor of Constitutional Law at Georgetown University: “I’ve got a simple idea: Let’s give up on the Constitution. I know, it sounds radical, but it’s really not. Constitutional disobedience is as American as apple pie.”
— CBS Sunday Morning, January 27, 2013.
Putrid Poetry Corner
“As a milepost, then, we offer ‘How the Gingrich stole Christmas’...
For pianos and parsleys, peanuts and pajamas.
Why he’d even take kiddies away from their mammas.
The Gingrich said things that the Hoos [Democrats] thought were shocking.
He’d take back each present and empty each stocking.”
— Charles Osgood, December 11, 1994 CBS Sunday Morning.
“The best defense it seems somehow is going on the offense now. While seedy stories in the media seem to be getting ever seedier. Each reporter in his turn sounds more and more like Howard Stern. A great investigative boom reporting who did what to whom. We see so many different styles of accusations and denials. When so much mud around you flies, you are bound to get some in your eyes. When such a war has been declared, everyone’s in, nobody’s spared. The jokes, the snickers, and the flippery. The slope we’re on is long and slippery. And there is something in the air which this country best beware: for there is danger in the dirt and lots of people could get hurt. And what we sow, we someday reap. Last night as I laid down to sleep I dreamed an apparition swarthy, the unshaved ghost of Joe McCarthy.”
— Charles Osgood, on the investigation of Bill Clinton, CBS Saturday Morning, February 28, 1998.
The Chutzpah President
“Eight years ago when Wilt Chamberlain’s book came out, I looked at that and it said he claimed to have had sex with 20,000 different women....I said it’s too bad that there’s no reference in here to any moral dimension at all, no sense of right and wrong. It really needs to be talked about, and it’s a bad example for young people...the next morning I came down to do a follow-up...and there was a man standing in the corner on the way out. He was about to begin the next segment. And I did not know who it was, didn’t recognize him at all. And he said, I heard what you said yesterday, and he said, I could not agree with you more. And he said, ‘I’m glad that, that really got said.’ He said ‘I’m Bill Clinton.’”
— Charles Osgood on CBS’s This Morning, October 13, 1999.
Mr. President, Are You Sure You Want Frank Speech? Look at Talk Radio
“Is there risk involved in that, though, sir, if you have people speaking frankly? Do you really want people to say what they think about others? We have something of that kind that goes on talk radio all the time and people say what they think, but it’s not always very constructive....Do you think that today the United States is a racist country and is it mainly white racism?”
— CBS Sunday Morning host Charles Osgood to President Clinton, June 15, 1997.
Mourning The Loss of a Pedophile
“It is with the righteous wrath of an Old Testament prophet that Allen Ginsberg denounced the greed and grasping and the superficiality and the complacency that he believed he saw all around him in this country in 1956....if we are suspicious now of the material world, and sometimes our souls burn a little for the ancient connection to the ‘starry dynamo in the machinery of the night,’ we have Allen Ginsberg, angry on the page but mild and thoughtful otherwise, to thank for that.”
— CBS Sunday Morning, April 6, 1997. The Beat Generation poet Allen Ginsberg was a member of the North American Man-Boy Love Association (NAMBLA), which supports the repeal of age of consent laws and advocates “consensual” sexual relations between men and young boys. Ginsberg defended his affiliation: “I’m in NAMBLA because I love boys too — everybody does, who has a little humanity.”
The Lesson Here? Never Trust Journalist Predictions
“It is estimated that by the year 2000, 19 million Americans will be homeless unless something is done, and done now.”
— Charles Osgood on CBS This Morning, April 19, 1989. From February 22, 2016 Economist article: “In 2014, 1.49 million people used homeless shelters and 578,424 were recorded as being without shelter: sleeping on the streets, in tents, in cars, and other exposed places. Cities completed the 2016 point-in-time count in January.”
“As he [Charles Osgood] introduced Gina (he didn’t share her last name) as the one who would hand out the awards, he took note of the catcalls and whistles that greeted her as she took the stage in a floor-length, backless green gown. He then asked her to turn around, telling the audience, ‘There are two sides to people, a front and a back.’”
— The Boston Globe’s Susan Bickelhaupt’s description of Charles Osgood serving as master of ceremonies at Boston’s Achievement in Radio Awards, November 21, 1996.