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On a slow news day when there's no solid gloom or doom to report on the national security or domestic economy fronts, why not run a couple segments on bad stuff that, well, might happen?

That was the Today Show's apparent strategy this morning. First up was a piece on possible terrorist attacks on US shopping malls. A bleary-eyed Steve Emerson, Today's terrorism expert, looking like he had better things to do in Aspen, CO, went along for the ride with Katie Couric.

Monday's Today on NBC devoted over seven minutes of its last half hour to a friendly story and interview with “raging grannies,” some elderly women in Tucson who hold small rallies outside military recruiting offices where they don big, colorful hats and sing song parodies, such as “we're here to stop the war machine, don't get in our way!", "Halliburton profits from war," “taxes unending, military spending, what a waste, what a waste!" Reporter Peter Alexander trumpeted their efforts: "With their will and their words as their only weapons these grannies from 53 to 93 years of age protest on this downtown street corner every Wednesday." As they sang, “Down with the one who would drive the country under," the camera showed a George W. Bush doll decked out in a black and white striped prison shirt with an American flag draped on his shoulder. Four of the grannies then sat for an interview with a delighted Natalie Morales who tossed softballs at them, such as “What do you hope...that people will get out of this, out of seeing you be an activist and protesting the war in Iraq?" Morales didn't follow up when one one proclaimed that “we'll try and remove our President from his office because he is lying to the public and making war all over the world. It's, it's just unacceptable.” Morales soon hailed their “witty lyrics” and sounded in awe as she wondered: “Tell me what it's like to be able to, to speak and to be a voice for a demographic that, generally we don't hear that much from, especially as activists?"

Transcript follows. Real and Windows Media video also available.

Then at 11, in my last few minutes in the car, WAMU aired "As It Happens" from the CBC. They devoted a loving segment to Marc Emery, the Maple Leaf marijuana menace, fulminating egomanically about how he is the mighty ruler of the "cannabis people," and they are oppressed by America, which somehow resembles the Chinese government in its tyranny against Pot.

On Friday night's drive home from the Nats game, I tuned in to WAMU, American University's NPR station, and found a special Peace Talks radio documentary hosted by Walter Cronkite on the "Lessons of Hiroshima." The primary lesson, according to Walter the World Federalist, is that "Nuclear weapons and human beings cannot coexist. In the end, I believe this is the most important lesson of Hiroshima. We must eliminate nuclear weapons before they eliminate us."

An article from today's MRC CyberAlert: The former number two editor of the Washington Post, Robert Kaiser, yearns for the U.S. to follow the cradle-to-grave welfare state system enacted in Finland.

Longtime ABC News anchor Peter Jennings has died of lung cancer at the age of 67.

Jennings began anchoring ABC's "World News Tonight" in 1983.

The longtime reporter was one of the "Big Three" anchors who dominated the evening news in America for over two decades. The other two network anchors, Tom Brokaw and Dan Rather, had already stepped down.

ABC News issued a statement.

"Hate Calls Swamp Herndon Town Hall," proclaimed the Washington Post Metro section headline above the fold in Saturday's edition, "Radio Host Had Urged Day-Labor Site Protests." Staff writer Lisa Rein penned the story on how a substitute talk show host for WMAL---a mostly conservative-programmed news-talk station which carries Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh---had succeeded in harnassing his audience's ire at a local Northern Virginia town planning to use tax money t

Dallas Morning News

(KRT) - Citing "simple decency," Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison demanded Friday that journalists quit poking around for details on Supreme Court nominee John Roberts' adopted children...

Some have also focused on other aspects of his life. On Thursday, the online Drudge Report revealed that a New York Times reporter had made inquiries about the Roberts children, Josephine and Jack, ages 5 and 4.

Today's Washington Post features an article on the "disconnect" between the booming economy and public opinion. The paper reports that, according to its own poll, 52 percent of those polled do not like how the President is handling the economy, as opposed to 42 percent who do. The article cites reasons for this dissatisfaction as anger over Iraq, high gas prices, and small wage increases and cites several statistics, all of which are positive except for that of gasoline prices.

In today's Washington Post, reporter Neely Tucker has an article that is essentially an advertisement for an anti-war documentary called "Original Bomb Child" that airs tonight on the Sundance Channel. The documentary uses a great deal of footage from the National Archives that was shot in Hiroshima and Nagasaki after the US dropped atomic bombs on both cities.

The doubt that this might be a straight news story can pretty much be dashed with this paragraph:

Brian Williams was off this week, but he left a taped piece with his bias for Friday's NBC Nightly News. To mark the 60th anniversary of the Enola Gay dropping an atomic bomb on Hiroshima on August 6, 1945, Williams went to the Smithsonian's Air and Space Museum annex near Dulles Airport -- where the plane is on display -- to talk to the plane's navigator, Dutch Van Kirk. Williams asked: “Do you have remorse for what happened? How do you deal with that in your mind?” Van Kirk indignantly replied: “No, I do not have remorse...”

Earlier this week, AP writer Tom Raum did a ‘Newsview’ piece, ripping President Bush’s nomination of John Roberts to the Supreme Court. Today, he’s back as a Newsview commentator repeating his own ‘Breaking News’ story from yesterday word for word.

John Nichols, The Nation's Washington correspondent, who has had his articles appear in The New York Times, criticized Vice President Dick Cheney this week on The Nation's blog site, for comments he made on CNN's Larry King Live back in June."

Liberals' glee over Robert Novak's outburst on CNN has caused at least one major newspaper to lose sight of some facts.

Scott Collins, in today's (Fri. Aug. 5, 2005) Los Angeles Times, wrote in an article (sign-up req'd)(emphasis mine),

"The CNN incident was a leading topic for bloggers. On the liberal blog, one reader wondered whether conservative activists would demand that the Federal Communications Commission fine Novak for indecency. Many conservatives complained after rock star Bono uttered a profanity during an NBC awards show and the FCC took no action."

Oops. Collins failed to mention that the FCC does not regulate indecency on cable. (Even Josh Marshall of the tpm blog remarked that this was so. Apparently Collins missed this and ran to his typewriter.) Bono's profanity occurred over NBC, which, as a boadcast outlet, is regulated by the FCC, of course.

Just 16 days ago, CBS reporter Trish Regan did a story for the Evening News premised on the idea that the “reality” of the U.S. economy is far gloomier than the positive comments from experts such as Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan. As MRC’s Brent Baker noted in the July 21 CyberAlert, Regan preferred to trust the offhand comments from people she met on the streets of New York City to all of the statistical evidence that the economy is growing at solid pace and creating jobs.

CBS showed Regan prompting a woman on a Manhattan sidewalk: “Alan Greenspan says the economy is doing fine, we’re seeing a lot of growth. What do you think of that statement?”

The woman replied, “I disagree with that.”