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An excerpt from my latest item up at the MRC's Web site. See my article for more, including links to external content:

Yet a week before, the business news program entertained Jack Cafferty's theory on Republican control of gas prices.

While NBC's Matt Lauer baited Sen. Hillary Clinton to admonish the administration to say we're not safer, he attacked the President for, in fact, trying to make the nation safer. Lauer prompted Clinton: "Are you comfortable that the United States did not break the law in conducting that kind of interrogations in those secret sites?" Then later in the program, as first noted by MRC's Brent Baker, Lauer repeatedly attacked Bush over interrogation methods worrying: "Are you at all concerned that at some point, even if you get results, there is a blurring the lines of, between ourselves and the people we're trying to protect us against?"

Video clip of Lauer's combative exchange with Bush over treatment of terrorists (3:20): Real (5.6 MB) or Windows Media (6.5 MB), plus MP3 audio (1.1 MB)

On Monday morning, the fifth anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani appeared on the morning shows of each of the three broadcast networks, ABC’s "Good Morning America," NBC’s "Today," and CBS’s "Early Show.

On September 11's edition of the MSNBC show "Imus in the Morning," Don Imus hosted former NBC anchor Tom Brokaw, where Brokaw promised to underline in his NBC spots that "we still don't understand Islamic rage." And, in case you wondered if Tom was a wee bit liberal, he said he was a "big fan" of Newsweek columnist Anna Quindlen -- who felt the death penalty wasn't appropriate for Timothy McVeigh.

Watching Tom Brokaw on this morning's Today show viewers couldn't help feel depressed as Brokaw painted a divided America that is disrepected abroad and losing the war on terrorism. On this morning's special 9/11 anniversary edition of Today, Brokaw opined: "Five years later there are more questions, more uncertainty.

As expected, the airing of the ABC movie, The Path To 9/11, has infuriated the left-wing blogosphere. Their comments range from dark threats against ABC for broadcasting this movie to a self-pitying sense of despair over their inability to keep it from airing. Here is a sampling of enraged comments from the Democratic Underground, the Daily Kos, and the Huffington Post:

Jim Axelrod

On this solemn occasion, our hearts go out to all who lost friends, colleagues, and family members five years ago, as well as to those who worked tirelessly and selflessly to save them. God Bless America.

For those that watched “The Path to 9/11” last evening, and were interested in which scenes were targeted by the Clinton administration for editing, you should see Dan Riehl’s post on the subject here.

Those that are interested in what apparently was altered in the final edition should see Al Brown's post here, as well as Editor & Publisher’s article on the subject.

With that as pretext, I wanted to offer my impressions of Part I.

Matt Lauer gave it the old college try, doing his best to lure Hillary Clinton into some Bush-bashing on the fifth anniversary of 9/11.  But demonstrating savvy political instincts, or at least those of her advisers, Clinton held fire, not deigning to swing at the anti-Bush softballs Lauer served up on this morning's 'Today.'

Lauer: "Are we safer today five years after the attacks of 9-11?"

With many internet companies such as Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft knuckling under pressure from the rulers of China to censor their content, it's refreshing to see it when one takes a stand against political censorship (h/t: Caine Starfire):

The founder of Wikipedia, the online encyclopaedia written by its users, has defied the Chinese government by refusing to bow to censorship of politically sensitive entries.

Did the editorialists of the New York Times and its Beantown subsidiary the Boston Globe have a little side bet as to who could fashion the viler 9/11 editorial? If so, for all the Times's earnest editorial effort to heap bile on Pres. Bush, I'm going to give the nod to the Globe. For in its editorial of this morning, the Globe made explicit what the Times only suggested: George Bush is a bigger threat to America than radical Islamic murderers.

Said the Globe of 9/11:

"In the long run, the reaction of the Bush administration may prove more harmful to the national interest than even these horrific attacks."

The New York Times's 9/11 editorial is no less despicable for being thoroughly predictable. 

On a day when we should be coming together, the Times does its best to tear us apart. On a day when the focus should be on the terrorists who threaten us and the brave people who have defended us against them, the Times trains all its bile on the Bush administration.

Annotated excerpts:

In his commentary at the end on Sunday's 60 Minutes, the day before the five year mark since 9/11, Andy Rooney noted that “we're trying to protect ourselves with more weapons,” a policy with which he only grudgingly agreed as he lamented, “we have to do it I guess.” Then, however, he suggested the fault for terrorism lies with American behavior, not the murderous ideology of terrorists who want to destroy Western democratic culture: “But might be better if we figured out how to behave as a nation in a way that wouldn't make so many people in the world want to kill us." By that reasoning, during the Cold War should the U.S. have adopted policies meant to appease the Soviets? Rooney delivered his remarks on the season premiere of the program (delayed in the EDT/CDT zones by tennis for nearly a half hour) which gave two of the show's three segments to Katie Couric's piece on World Trade Center first responders who are suffering from the air they inhaled. (Transcript follows)

Video clip (25 secs): Real (700 KB) or Windows Media (800 KB), plus MP3 audio (135 KB)

In this weekends edition of the Lexington Herald-Leader (Kentucky), left wing political cartoonist Joel Pett has raised eyebrows with his depiction of a swimming president Bush surrounded by Stingrays, perhaps about to sting and kill the president in a comparison to naturalist, Steve Irwin's death last week.