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What If Dems Fought Back Against Corporate Media Shills Like Tim Russert?

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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 07:07 PM
Original message
What If Dems Fought Back Against Corporate Media Shills Like Tim Russert?
The mainstream news media in the United States may have always leaned at least somewhat to the right, but since the Telecommunications Act of 1996 resulted in progressive consolidation of mainstream news into fewer and fewer hands, it has become, in many ways, a mouthpiece for corporate America and (since 2001) the Bush administration.

What I find particularly infuriating is when so called journalists with far right wing agendas pretend to be nonpartisan and unbiased. Liberals and moderate voters can ignore obvious right wing extremists like Rush Limbaugh, Anne Coulter, and Bill OReilly. But they tend to take much more seriously the news they hear from supposedly neutral journalists, and therefore those journalists have the potential to do much more damage than obvious right wing extremists.

The implications for national politics have been quite unfortunate to say the least, as even Democratic Congresspersons have felt the need to mover further and further to the right. This is because they must constantly worry that if they alienate the corporate news media they will be ignored, mocked, or attacked.

But Democratic politicians are mocked and attacked by the corporate news media regardless of what they do unless they move so far to the right that they may as well not be Democrats. Therefore, it has often seemed to me that, rather than take the abuse of the corporate media laying down, Democrats may have a better chance of maintaining political viability if they fight back. as I will explain.


Tim Russert

Tim Russert is a case in point, and the best example that I can think of. According to Anthony Lappe and Stephen Marshall in their book True Lies:

As one of Americas most influential, and highest paid broadcast journalists, Russert has interviewed every major political figure in the United States since the early 1980s. With a pugnacious face and a sharp, savvy political intellect, he is often referred to as the ultimate objective, nonpartisan interrogator.

But Russert is anything BUT an objective journalist.

My first awareness of that fact came during the Florida presidential recount of November and December of 2000, which ultimately was resolved when our Supreme Court declared George W. Bush the winner over Al Gore. Gores high point during the Florida recount came when the Florida Supreme Court ruled that there must be a hand recount of all Florida counties (except Palm Beach, Broward and part of Miami-Dade, which had already been hand recounted). With that ruling, almost all knowledgeable observers of the contest, including those in the Bush camp, believed that Al Gore would win the election.

Tim Russerts announcing of that ruling will forever be branded in my mind, and that was the point in time when I suddenly realized who he was. The contempt in his eyes and in his voice was palpable. I dont recall his exact words, but he was obviously enraged that all ballots would now have to be examined to determine the intent of the voter, as Floridas Supreme Court had ruled. I had probably sensed something wrong with him previously, but until that point in time I must have been in denial that this ultimate objective, non-partisan journalist was a fake. It suddenly hit me like a truck, and my wife had to ask me to leave the room as a torrent of abusive words came spewing out of my mouth.


Russerts role in the 2000 election

Confirmation of Russerts political leanings (not that any is needed) come from an incident related by Al Gore to Anthony Lappe, which took place shortly before the 2000 election at the Al Smith dinner, attended by Gore and Bush. Here is Lappes description from his book:

At one point in the evening, Gore explains, Russert approached the candidates. As Gore was closest to him, Russert respectfully shook his hand and then moved on to Bush. Thinking that Gore had turned away, Russert shook Bushs hand and, mischievously, turned over his jacket lapel to reveal a Bush campaign pin hidden under the fold.

Russert was indeed relentless on Bushs behalf during the Florida recount. Prior to Bushs being awarded the presidency, as described by Eric Alterman in What Liberal Media?, Russert referred to Bushs future presidency nineteen times, and he referred to Bush himself as President Elect Bush. On NBC Nightly News on November 8th, Russert said that Gore cant extend it too long, nor can he become a whiner about Florida. He asked Dick Cheney if he thought that Gore was being a sore loser. And when Bushs Florida campaign chairman, Katherine Harris, announced George Bush as the winner of the Florida election, based on the fact that the uncounted ballots hadnt been counted by what she interpreted as the deadline date, Russert announced on his November 26th edition of Meet the Press, He (Bush) has now been declared the official winner of the Florida election and therefore is the forty-third president of the United States.

And he tried, ultimately successfully, to get Gores running mate, Joe Lieberman to make concessions. On Meet the Press during the height of the controversy, as related in Robert Shogans book Bad News:

Russert demanded that Senator Lieberman announce that Gore would give up the fight and accept Bush as the winner if the Florida tribunal upheld an unfavorable lower-circuit court decision against him.

When Lieberman refused to agree, Russert persisted:

But Senator if the Florida Supreme Court rules that the lower-court judge was correct and the hand recount should not be counted, it ends there. The Supreme Court has spoken. Why not accept that decision? Why keep dangling out there future litigation?

Of course, the Florida Supreme Court, in a losing effort to preserve democracy in our country, did NOT rule that the hand recount should not be counted, as Russert was so fervently hoping for.

But then there was the issue of 680 controversial, illegal and probably phony overseas military ballots, which went heavily for Bush. As Eric Alterman describes this situation in his book:

The New York Times reported that the Bush lawyers had failed to present any evidence for legal arguments to allow the ballots. Whats more, a later extensive post-election investigation by the Times found considerable circumstantial evidence for monkey business on these and other overseas ballot by the Republicans. But the echo chamber they created was so strong that Democratic vice-presidential candidate Joe Lieberman felt compelled to concede the issue under pressure Since the number of ballots in question was 680, and Bushs alleged margin of victory turned out to be just 537, this concession alone could conceivably have cost Gore his victory.

Eventually, the efforts of the Bush campaign, Russert, and other journalists paid off, as Lieberman announced directly to Russert on Meet the Press that the Gore/Lieberman campaign would not dispute the counting of those 680 questionable ballots.


Russerts handling of Bush and his administration

Tim Russert has a reputation as a relentless interrogator of politicians, never afraid to ask the tough questions. But anyone who thinks that obviously hasnt seen him interview George W. Bush.

Shortly after chief U.S. weapons inspector David Kay exposed the lie of Iraqi WMDs in February 2004, the White House needed to repair some of the political damage. Bush chose Russert for that purpose. Anthony Lappe describes Russerts interview of Bush on his February 8th, 2004 edition of Meet the Press:

For over an hour, six million viewers were treated to one of the biggest journalistic letdowns of the election year. With so much on the table from the nonexistent WMDs to the Iraqi quagmire to accusations that Bush was AWOL from the National Guard Russert could have hog-tied the president and left him twisting in the wind. Instead, he let him off easy, failing to counter Bushs dodges with obvious follow-up questions.

In that same interview, in response to Russerts asking if he would authorize the release of his military records to settle the question of whether or not Bush was AWOL from the National Guard, Bush answered Yes, absolutely. We did so in 2000, by the way.

Russert, regarded as one of the most well prepared journalists on television, must have known that that was a bald faced lie, as researcher Marty Heldt has previously publicly made clear that his efforts to obtain information on Bushs military records through the Freedom of Information Act had been rejected. But Russert just let that slide.

And in an interview with Dick Cheney shortly after the September 11, 2001 attacks on our country, Cheney tried to explain the pitiful response of his administration to the attacks:

"VICE PRES. CHENEY: Well, the--I suppose the toughest decision was this question of whether or not we would intercept incoming commercial aircraft.
"MR. RUSSERT: And you decided?'
"VICE PRES. CHENEY: We decided to do it. We'd, in effect, put a flying combat air patrol up over the city; F-16s with an AWACS, which is an airborne radar system, and tanker support so they could stay up a long time."

Again, Russert must have known that Cheneys contention that the toughest decision was this question of whether or not we would intercept incoming commercial aircraft was a lie, since fighter jets routinely intercept commercial aircraft under certain designated circumstances (such as hijacked aircraft) without requiring or asking for approval from the White House. But again, Russert made no challenge of that ridiculous assertion by Cheney, and did not even follow up on it.

And in an abject display of his unbounded admiration for George Bush, Russert even asked Laura Bush on his December 23rd, 2001 edition of Meet the Press if she thought that her husband had become president due to divine intervention.


Russerts largely successful attempt to destroy Howard Deans candidacy

In stark contrast to Russerts handling of the Bush administration, his interview with Howard Dean, then frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination, on June 22nd, 2003, showed how he interviews someone when he wants to destroy them politically.

Pulling out a highly partisan analysis of Deans tax plan, Russert asked Dean, Can you honestly go across the country and say, Im going to raise your taxes 4,000 percent or 107 percent and be elected?. Then Russert erroneously informed his viewers that Deans teenage son had been indicted for steeling beer.

And the fatal trap came when Russert asked how many men and women were serving in the U.S. military. When Dean said he didnt know the exact number Russert lectured him, saying that As commander in Chief, you should know that.

An argument then ensued between Dean and Russert on this subject. Though I felt that Dean did a fine job of handling this, I tried to view the exchange through the eyes of a typical undecided American voter, and my conclusion was (later verified, I believe) that Dean was hurt badly by this episode. Indeed, the conventional wisdom was that Dean failed Russerts test, and that Russert cleaned Deans clock. And I do believe that if not for this interview Howard Dean would be President today.

By that I dont mean to criticize Dean. To put it bluntly, he was put in an untenable position. Here was the ultimate unbiased nonpartisan journalist telling him that he was unfit to be president. If he argued too strenuously with Russert about this he might appear to viewers to be belittling the responsibilities of the Presidency. If he argued not strenuously enough he might appear to be conceding that Russert was correct about his unfitness for the Presidency. What could he do?


Someone should publicly confront Tim Russert for the flaming hypocrite that he is

What if Howard Dean had responded to Tim Russerts ridiculous attacks like this?

Tim, I dont need a lecture from a Bush administration shill on my qualification for the presidency. As you might remember, when you asked presidential candidate George Bush in 1999 how many missiles would be in place if a new START II nuclear weapons treaty were signed, Bush had no idea what you were even talking about but you didnt seem to think that that had anything to do with his qualifications to be president.

You criticize my tax plan by quoting from a highly partisan and inept analysis of it. You tell your reviewers erroneously that my son has been indicted for a crime. And now youre telling me that Im not qualified to be president because I dont know the exact number of soldiers currently serving in our military.

I have described for you and your viewers in great detail my foreign and domestic plans for making America a stronger and better country. You can ask me any question you like about my plans for our country, and I will not evade your questions. But if you want to question my fitness for office I suggest that you do so in an honest editorial format, rather than in the guise of a neutral nonpartisan journalist who is supposedly conducting an interview.

Do we have an understanding on that?



What would the consequences of such a response be?

Of course such a response would not be without significant risk. Dean might appear to viewers to be aggressively attacking an unbiased journalist just because he was asked an uncomfortable question. He might be seen as rude or petulant or whiney, as Democrats are so often portrayed by our corporate media. And just as bad, Russert, with or without the help of other journalists (more likely with their help) might attack Dean publicly for such remarks.

But the bottom line is this. Corporate journalists will attack Democrats whether or not they aggressively fight back against the corporate media attack on them. So why not change the rules of the game and expose those corporate shills for what they are? If they want to attack us for that, fine. But theyre doing that anyhow, and I dont believe that they could do a better job of it than they are currently doing. In any event, with an open fight between Democrats and the corporate media, Republicans will have a hard time trying to sound legitimate when they whine about the liberal media.
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grasswire Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 07:18 PM
Response to Original message
1. outstanding work
Paul Begala once said that if just 100 Democrats would send paper letters via U.S. mail to media outlets, there would be a dramatic turnaround in the kind of coverage and commentary America gets.

Unfortunately, to date it has been difficult to organize Democrats to do this particular kind of activism. And move-on.org's orchestrated campaigns are discounted and discarded as "illegitimate" -- springing from the angry fringe.

What to do? How to be heard?

I believe one path is to demand objective coverage through the professional organization of journalists.
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Robbien Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 07:32 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. Isn't it funny that they get hundreds of emails from
the holy roller keyboard brigade of Dobson and the media doesn't say a peep about how they should be discounted. But if a letter writing campaign comes from progressive sites, the first word out of their mouths is that the letters are "tainted".
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jwirr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 12:33 PM
Response to Reply #1
61. Okay so they discount any of our emails from our progressive
sights. Why not give us the email address that needs to be contacted and let us do the emailing from our own email address. That is possibly what the right wing is doing. I would gladly do that. Also I think there are already archives that give the email addresses to Congress and the WH. They want personal then we give them personal.
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hashibabba Donating Member (894 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 05:05 PM
Response to Reply #61
70. Go to:
www.congress.org and find all your representatives. Just look to the left of the page and put in your zip code. You can e-mail (on your own), call or write snail mail.

You can get background on them, cosponsorship status and other facts. You can even go to:

http://www.congress.org/congressorg/mailapp /

and write your letters at once and e-mail them from there.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 05:15 PM
Response to Reply #70
72. Thank you
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Clark2008 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 10:05 PM
Response to Reply #61
84. I think the point is to stop e-mailing and start sending PAPER
letters.

They're harder to delete in an inbox.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 01:04 PM
Response to Reply #1
62. Thank you -- good points
I think (and hope) that the "angry fringe" is getting more and more difficult to discount, as it becomes larger and larger.
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Robbien Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 07:24 PM
Response to Original message
2. Good rant.
The Democrats run scared every time. As you have pointed out they are damned if they do and damned if they don't, so why not grow a pair and jump in with both feet. They would definately have a chance at something to win if they did but by doing nothing, they lose.

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Mr_Spock Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #2
52. Rant? It read as a well researched essay.
I would not characterize this post as a rant. :shrug:
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Autonomy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 10:55 AM
Response to Reply #2
54. This is not a rant. It's research.
Not sure why everyone wants to categorize while complimenting around here anyway.
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karynnj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 07:36 PM
Response to Original message
4. It's very hard to make the case that Russert destroyed Dean in June 2003
Dean was nearly unknown until that time. After that interview was when he was the hot candidate and was profiled in cover articles in several magazines. I think that was the Dean interview when he gave an excellent response on civil unions - saying if he didn't let gays have basic civil rights he couldn't look himself in the mirror. If this was the interview, I came away more impressed.

I agree that he was hard on Gore. Kerry has always come out well on MTP - but even there the questions were often unfair. Why in the wake of the election was Kerry treated like he was a criminal or a liar when Russert demanded he sign the form to release his service records - when the SBVT were proven liars on many things and Kerry's awards themselves were offical and unchallanged for 35 years. As a public servant for more than 20 years with no hint of scandal, this call to prove his honesty by doing what no other candidate has ever been asked to do was uncalled for. Not to mention after Kerry did and the record was exactly what he said it was, Russert didn't even mention it the next time Kerry was on.
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Stinky The Clown Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 08:00 PM
Response to Reply #4
6. There's no doubt in **my** mind they destroyed Dean candidacy
And others as well.

They used 'the scream' to great advatage to paint a caricature of an honest man who had an honest, populous message. I was not a Dean supporter, but his marginalization was bad for our party and bad for our country. And monumentally unfair and a direct result of media bias or media's willingness to do what 'the campaign' tells them to do ..... 'the campaign' being the supporters of the RW corporofascists.

Similarly, as pointed out in the OP, they destroyed other candidates as well. Kerry's dismal campaign ending was as much the result of the media as any other damned thing that's been cited. Gore was grossly mischaracterized as wooden and continually 'reinventing' (as if, somehow, adjusting to changing conditions is a flaw). Calrk was marginalized before he even got started,a nd surely after he started to gain some traction. Did anyone see much of Edwards during the campaign? I didn't think so.

The media is baised against us and that is, quite simply, the fact.

So, to your question about Dean in June of 2003 ..... yes, they did.
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karynnj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 08:34 PM
Response to Reply #6
9. I agree with you on most points
Edited on Sun May-21-06 08:49 PM by karynnj
I think that there is a level of courtesy extended to Republicans, not extended to Democrats. The questioning is almost always more intense. In a way, when Republicans are questioned on anything - it's different enough that their are threads here commenting on it. (like when McCain was questioned before he went to Liberty University.)

I agree they were really hard and unfair to Dean in 2004 - What I was questioning was specifically the summer 2003 Dean interview - which I remember as Dean impressing me. I knew a little about Dean, we go to Vt each summer for a week and I remember he was one of the people who helped on the health care issue with the Clintons. So, I already had a positive view of him.

I do think the press was very biased towards both Kerry and Gore. Clark, when he first came out got almost "knight in shining armor" treatment. I think in his case, this set expectations way too high for someone who never ran before - and any errors he made were magnified. (No more than any other Democrats though.)

I think the height of the bias was that they gave credibility to the SBVT well after it lie after lie were proved. Even by showing no outrage at the purple band aids they signaled that Kerry deserved this lack of respect.
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True Bleu Donating Member (27 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 10:55 PM
Response to Reply #9
25. Russert's tone with Democrats is VERY DIFFERENT
from the kiss-ass tone he adopts with Republicans. It's so nice to see that others notice this pathetic pandering.
Why nail just Russert on this? Is Matthews just so much worse that he's not worthy of a mention? I watched Matthews
hammer Gore's presidential campaign every night in 2000. I was stunned that Matthew's campaigning for
Bush went unchecked by so many.

Russert and Matthews would be nowhere without their republican ass-kissing and the first democrat that
has the cajones to call either of them out on this deserve to be "the decider-in-chief".
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karynnj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 11:48 PM
Response to Reply #25
31. Well I don't know if I can hold you to this statement
Edited on Sun May-21-06 11:49 PM by karynnj
"Russert and Matthews would be nowhere without their republican ass-kissing and the first democrat that
has the cajones to call either of them out on this deserve to be "the decider-in-chief".

But last January, after the most recent Bin Laden tapes came out. Matthews, among others, started making comments that OBL sounded like the Democrats. A certain Senator was returning from a Senate trip to India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Jordan, Israel and Iraq. He issued a statement that called Matthews on his comments. Pointing out that rather than saying OBL sounded like the Democrats they should question why Bush hadn't captured him - so we wouldn't have these tapes.

He than wrote the first diary he ever wrote on Dkos on this very issues - with many links on everything said about capturing OBL and really calling out Matthews. The Dkos thread - ended up being split in two because in total there were well over 1000 posts.

Hint: the Senator is very tall, has silver hair, was the Democratic nominee in 2004.


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rfranklin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 06:56 AM
Response to Reply #25
41. If we operated like the Republicans there would be a concerted effort...
and I mean like the Philharmonic, to destroy these shills. It would start on the internet, and then there would be the usual Matt Drudge and Michelle Malkin attacks, and Rush Limbaugh and Hannity frothing, and then the MSM would pick it up, and then the attack dogs in Congress. They would shock and awe and have every yahoo in America repeating and believing their attacks on a left-leaning journalist.
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True Bleu Donating Member (27 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 07:51 PM
Response to Reply #41
81. If democrats attacked with an equal and opposite force
there would be war. Republicans always count on dems backing down.
They fight with intimidation and threats.
Its great that Kerry showed some spine and called out Matthews. But Kerry needed
to do that EVERY NIGHT during '06. Example-SWIFTBOAT.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 03:41 PM
Response to Reply #25
67. I agree that Matthews is as bad as Russert and that Russert is far from
Edited on Mon May-22-06 03:41 PM by Time for change
the only one who should be nailed on this (Though I think that he is very close if not at the top of the list, largely because he does such a good job of fooling lots of people into thinking that he is unbiased and nonpartisan.)

Here is a recent post that I did concerning Matthews:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 04:08 AM
Response to Reply #9
39. On the subject of Clark and Russert
That's another thing I could have included in this OP, but it was long enough as it was.

I think Russert treated Clark as bad as he treated Dean.

Not being able to thing of anything else to bring Clark down with, Russert tried to get him to repudiate Michael Moore, who was supporting him. When Clark refused to repudiate him Russert kept after him like a pitbull. I believe he even lectured him that it was irresponsible not to repudiate Moore. :grr:
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Clark2008 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 10:18 PM
Response to Reply #9
85. He was the "knight in shining armor" until he started out-raising
Dean AND he was from the South AND he was military - he COULD garner tons of swing votes.

So, suddenly and swiftly, the media refused to report on him. After he got back from testifying at the Hague against Milosevic, the media did not allow him a peep. Hell, they refused to acknowledge he'd won Oklahoma for a week - just in time to turn their eyes to Tennessee and Virginia, denying him momentum in those two red states, both of which he would have had a chance to flip in the general election.

I also believe the media did a number on Dean. They placed such a high-powered media magnifying glass on him that he could only combust (for the record, I know he didn't really yell - I was using the metaphor of a magnifying glass on paper to create a fire).

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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 09:44 PM
Response to Reply #4
18. My recollection is that when Russert pummeled Dean regarding the fact that
he was unable to cite the exact number of U.S. soldiers currently in the military, that Dean was the Democratic frontrunner at the time. Of course, it's possible that my memory has failed me on that score, but it feels like a vivid memory to me. Also, another item that supports my memory on this is that Russert would have had no need to pummel Dean like that if he was a virtual unknown.

Anyhow, either your memory or mine is wrong on whether Dean was a frontrunner vs. a virtual unknown at the time of his June 2003 interview with Russert OR I am confusing this interview with a later interview, where Russert pummeled Dean even worse than he did during this interview -- at a time when Dean really was the frontrunner.

I'd really like to know, but I'm not sure how to resolve this.
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karynnj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 10:02 PM
Response to Reply #18
19. I may be wrong on Dean not being the frontrunner in June, I know he was in
August.

I am not sure if it was the same interview I saw - as I said the main thing I remembered was the straight forward, very good answer on civil unions. (essentially that it was the right thing to do and he wanted to be able to look himself in the mirror). It was the first major Dean interview I saw - it could have been earlier than the June one.

If the interview was in June, it didn't destroy him as he was very strong in August - December. He was the front runner through at least November, 2003 - possibly as late as very early 2004. So, it's possible if there was an interview that hurt him it was later.

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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 10:33 PM
Response to Reply #19
23. I agree that it didn't destroy him immediately
But I believe that it weakened him substantially, so that when other events came together later on, including attacks from some of his Democratic challengers, his campaign collapsed.

I can't prove that. It's just my opinion.
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IChing Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 07:41 PM
Response to Original message
5. Nominated ... There is enough tv footage of him to put together a
devastating review of his bullshit and circulate it on the web,
till it finally came back and bit him in the face.
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DeepModem Mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 08:01 PM
Response to Original message
7. Excellent post -- thank you!
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Gabi Hayes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 08:10 PM
Response to Original message
8. If you're talking about dem politicians, the answer is too easy:
Edited on Sun May-21-06 08:10 PM by Gabi Hayes


great post, btw
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blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 08:37 PM
Response to Original message
10. I would send a $1000.00 to the first Dem lawmaker to call Ru$$ert out for
the GOP hitman he is. Jack Welch OWNS Ru$$ert's ass and his loyalty.
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Stinky The Clown Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 08:51 PM
Response to Reply #10
11. Welch famously made that statement to a media group one time ....
how he 'turned' Russert and Matthews.

I used to have the link, but no longer can find it.
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blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 09:48 AM
Response to Reply #11
49. I have noticed that alot of "little" stories like that have disappeared
in recent years. We know we read them and discussed them when they first came out, but somehow they go missing. I just don't believe inconvenient stories disppearing is merely coincidental.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 10:19 AM
Response to Reply #11
51. I had never heard about that but here it is
http://www.laweekly.com/index.php?option=com_lawcontent...

...the legendary Jack Welch, was a rabid right-winger who boasted openly about helping turn former liberals Chris Matthews and Tim Russert into neocons. (And Los Angeles Representative Henry Waxman is still waiting for GE to turn over those in-house tapes that would prove once and for all whether Welch, in 2000, ordered his network and cable stations to reverse course and call the election for Bush instead of Gore.)


And here is the story of how Welch used Russert and others to influence the 2000 election. Great story! : "How Tim Russert became Karl Rove's bitch"

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2006/5/8/13191/83603

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progressoid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 09:09 PM
Response to Original message
12. Gonna have to read this later...
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DaveT Donating Member (447 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 09:11 PM
Response to Original message
13. Great essay.
It is not so much how the Democratic politicians cope with the slant of the post-Telecommunications Act corporate media, it is how we, the people, react to it.

I am relatively optimistic about our short term and intermediate term prospects for rolling back the furthest extremities of Bushism. But the longer term project must be to establish an alternative to the "mainstream" communications industry.

The most frustrating thing for me as a lurker and occasional poster on DU is how many voices persist in whining about how the mainstream media is too "cowardly" to "do its job" or, worse, persist in pining for the day when some new political leader or catch-phrase or group of memes is going to turn the tide.

Never.

We have to view Russert and the rest of the sponsors of the political show as the enemy. They are paid liars who live upper middle class and upper class lifestyles precisely because they have "wised up" and "grown up." In Tim Russert's hyper-cynical social circle, liberals are, by definition, losers. They have chosen to go with the corporate flow for the obvious reason that if they do not, they will be out here in the blogosphere, trying to scratch together a living, like a normal human being.

And some other mug will assume the chair on MTP.

As the original post cogently notes, the Big Media have always been friendly to Big Money and the Power Structure, with plenty of overlap.

The difference since 1996 is that the media companies are no longer just friendly to the Power Structure -- they ARE the power structure in the information age.

I confess to getting very frustrated that more progressives do not understand this shift in decisive political power within the corporate elite.
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grasswire Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 09:20 PM
Response to Reply #13
14. well said
What is your opinion of directly protesting to news outlets?
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DaveT Donating Member (447 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 09:38 PM
Response to Reply #14
17. Every now and then
Edited on Sun May-21-06 09:40 PM by DaveT
I post this idea on the internet:


We should organize a huge protest where thousands of people bring an old TV set to throw at the door of the TV station.


The premise comes from the opening shot of SCTV, that brilliant satirical show from the 80s that featured John Candy, Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara, Dave Thomas, Martin Short, Andrea Martin and Joe Flaherty.


As guerrilla theater it would pose some very serious tactical problems for the media companies and the police. Technically, it is littering. Or maybe they would concoct some environmental hazard theory for arresting people.

Neither of those images would play very well for our adversaries, calling attention to their power, which they would prefer to remain invisible.

The underlying message of the protest should also embrace a wider contempt for television in general. It would have a great populist appeal, in my opinion.



Obviously, we have a long way to go before we could have organizational consensus for such an undignified campaign. I'd love to see any lesser protest catch on -- but I really do think we should put organizing energy into directly confronting GE, Murdoch, Viacom, Disney, Time-Warner and Clear Channel.

These corporations are the new "Masters of the Universe" and it is vital that progressives recognize this new reality.

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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 11:58 PM
Response to Reply #13
32. Excellent points
The corporate media IS the enemy. We and the Democratic Party have to recognize that. And once that fact is recognized we need to find a way to combat it.
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kittenpants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 09:24 PM
Response to Original message
15. great catalogue of Russert's bias
Also, last week he said nothing as Newt Gingrich lied AGAIN about a connection between Saddam Hussein and 9/11. Then this week his guests were 3 republicans, no democrats.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 04:36 PM
Response to Reply #15
69. Thank you - I think I hit only a very small portion of them
If I would have tried to get the majority of them, I would have had to write a book rather than a post.
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spooky3 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 09:35 PM
Response to Original message
16. Huffingtonpost.com has tracked Timmy's performance for a long
time and drawn the same conclusions you have. See also mediamatters.org--you can search for references to Russert and check out their study of the overrepresentation of RW and conservative guests on Sunday morning talk shows such as his.
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depakid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 10:08 PM
Response to Original message
20. Russert comes across like a weasel
Edited on Sun May-21-06 10:09 PM by depakid
And the first Dems to stand up and tell him straight (even rudely) where he can put his insinuations is going to gain A LOT of populist mileage. People are just itching for it- and Russert is just the right person to blindside with a rebuke.

And my guess is that not too far down the line someone's going give it to him- and that person will instantly become a rising star....
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Golden Raisin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 10:16 PM
Response to Reply #20
21. An insult to weasels!
I'd love to see Russ Feingold go up against Russert.
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tinfoilinfor2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 11:14 PM
Response to Reply #20
26. I agree.
I would love to see the dem that goes on MTP and when he is being sabotaged, starts questioning Russert; about his methods, about his leanings, about his past record. Complete with transcripts with Timmy's words outlined in yellow.

I can maybe see Barack Obama doing it. Obama is very clever and quick witted, and Russert is a little scattered when interviewing people of color. I don't think he interacts with them very often.
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True Bleu Donating Member (27 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 11:18 PM
Response to Reply #20
27. Where is that so-called rising star who won't kiss up to corporate media
and will speak up to Russert types? It would generate HUGE ratings the same way that Dean
surged in '02...He was a breath of fresh air who was unprepared for how corporate media would stop at nothing to snuff out
his voice. I think that media pigs are eating freely from the trough. They've been made fat and happy by this administration
and Russert is the perfect face for it.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 06:03 PM
Response to Reply #20
73. That would be great!
I can hardly wait to see it. Maybe Feingold.
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MessiahRp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 10:18 PM
Response to Original message
22. Terrific post!
If only Dems would fight back against these so called non-partisan Right Wing hacks (especially Russert and Matthews).... :sigh:

Rp
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Adenoid_Hynkel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 10:50 PM
Response to Original message
24. not to mention his coxiness with Limbaugh
and his constant cry of "Rush isn't really extreme-have you ever listened to his show?"

and rush is constantly a guest on russert's election coverage
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PinkyisBlue Donating Member (617 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 11:21 PM
Response to Original message
28. I hate Tim Russert.
I saw his "interview" with Pelosi a couple of weeks ago and was disgusted by him. He was rude and arrogant, and it was so obvious he was trying to get her to confirm that week's Republican talking points. To her credit, she came off as well-spoken and knowledgeable and was in clear contrast to the loud, bullying, red-faced Russert. Also, she didn't give him what he wanted.

I wouldn't be surprised if the RNC operatives play a major role in writing the questions Russert asks his guests. Everyone has to stick to the party playbook, after all; they've got to get out their agenda. Also, why should Repubs spend some of their campaign funds on paid advertising when they can promote themselves free of charge on these talk shows?

I'd like to see Timmy, Rush and Bill (for starters)go on a quail-hunting trip with Dick Cheney. They could have a picnic lunch, drink a few beers and...... It might give Rush a legitimate reason to abuse oxycontin.
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LostInAnomie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 11:34 PM
Response to Original message
29. What about targeting one network?
An all out Democratic boycott of all networks by our Senators and Congressmen except for one. Only one network is allowed to have access to anyone and only if they are willing to offer us favorable terms. No quotes, no sound bites, nothing for the other networks. Without access to one side of the political spectrum the networks would probably be willing to set up conditions favorable to our message just to get an interview.
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Appalachian_American Donating Member (199 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 02:09 AM
Response to Reply #29
37. I was just thinking that the major Dems should boycott Russert.
One way to neutralize him would be to make him irrelevant. They might as well redirect their time and energy to Fox.

I, too, used to be a Russert fan until I came here and began to understand the finer details of his bias. I picked up on Matthews on my own, but I do believe that he seems to be making an effort to be tough on both sides. However, I was recently watching Norah O'Donnell sub for Matthews and she is a complete hack for the republicans. She was interviewing Howard Dean and her tone of voice and the way she actually seemed to spit out "Democrats" completely turned me off. I rewound several times and watched the sneer of her mouth as she was questioning Dean and it completely turned me off. I will never watch her in anything again. Al Franken would be a more bipartisan reporter than O'Donnell.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 06:23 PM
Response to Reply #29
74. Rather than boycott them, my preference would be to stand up to them
The bottom line, if I may use a sports metaphor that is probably too civil for the current situation, is that Democrats typically respond to the corporate media as if they are the referees rather than their primary opponents. They are NOT the referees, or at least they SHOULD NOT be the referees. And when Democrats treat them with the respect that is warranted of referees it gives the impression to the voting public that they are indeed the referees.
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ladym55 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-21-06 11:44 PM
Response to Original message
30. Tim is insidious
I was one of those folks who USED to think Tim Russert WAS objective--and I wasn't reading the DU postings regularly then. So I remember clearly when I figured out what a ring-wing corporate shill he was. He was interviewed about the big Cheney-created flap over the two-line piece in Newsweek about our soldiers desecrating the Koran. Tim said with a straight face that Newsweek should APOLOGIZE for the piece because it wasn't verified and had caused increased insurgency activity in Iraq. I went ballastic. I thought you lying sleazeball. First, I'm SURE the insurgents stay up nights reading Newsweek... Then I thought how can Tim NOT know about this?? When Newsweek published the story about the Koran, Truthout had been posting articles from European papers on the same topic for weeks. Like we didn't KNOW this in the US??? Sure. I am now a rabid opponent of Russert--I tell EVERYONE who will listen (and some who won't) what a slime he is.

I, too, am SO sick and tired of watching solid Democratic candidates sneared at and trashed by so-called "unbiased" media sources. Their lame images STICK and affect the average joe voter who really never bothers to educate himself about little things like issues.

:mad:
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newyawker99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 01:09 PM
Response to Reply #30
63. Hi ladym55!!
Welcome to DU!! :toast:
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 06:41 PM
Response to Reply #30
75.  Yeah, they really do stick - and those like Russert, who put on such a
show of being real "journalists", are the most effective.

Dems have to do something to pierce through the myth that these people are real journalists. Even merely planting that thought in the minds of millions of viewers would do a lot of good IMO.
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mortlefaucheur Donating Member (141 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 12:09 AM
Response to Original message
33.  Opposition Research is in order,
the same as performed by each political party on each other, and as was done to Rather by the Repukes.
Turnabout is fair-play, and long over due for RW propagandists and spinmeisters.
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tomreedtoon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 12:27 AM
Response to Original message
34. It's the Telecommunications Act, stupid(s)!
It simply must be a priority for Democrats and progressives to overturn the changes caused by the Act, and to return to the principles of trust-busting. In fact, the limits of the 1960's made for a very diverse broadcast spectrum and should be reinstated.

No entity should own more than five TV stations and ten radio stations, and to retain ownership of those, each station should be made to prove that they provide equal time for response to broadcast editorials and contribute several hours of programming per week to community issues. It used to be that broadcasters had to convene community leaders to decide what those issues were, and to develop programs that would address those needs. That needs to be resumed. (And by the way, television newscasts should not be considered as community programming; they are profit-making enterprises.)

As long as an entity like Clear Channel can own most of the radio stations in the US, and as long as individual broadcasting stations are not required to serve the public, there will never be diversity of opinion or a fair chance for progressive viewpoints to be heard.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 01:28 AM
Response to Reply #34
36. I agree - That should be one major objective
in a multi-pronged plan to get our news media back on track.

The Telecommunications Act has to be THE major reason that we're in this predicament, so it should naturally be a major target for us.
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cyclezealot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 04:06 AM
Response to Reply #34
38. What is so dam ironic. A Democrat did this to us.
Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich..Little late now. WIth Congress in the other camp for as long as the eye can see. Think they are gonna change it. Other principal that destroyed the news in the US...Reagan undoing the "Fairness Doctrine" in the 80's. First year of Clinton's term, Rep. Markey tried to overturn the Fairness Doctrine's undoing. Seems, Repukes in the Senate fillibustered it.
And wonder why FOx's Murdock would hold a fundraiser for Hillary.???!
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 12:08 PM
Response to Reply #38
59. I've never understood why Clinton signed this law
Did he not understand the consequences of it?

I think that that is the worst thing he did as President.
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Joe Chi Minh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 07:35 PM
Response to Reply #59
79. As is clear from Hillary's autobiography, both she and Bill knew
Edited on Mon May-22-06 07:37 PM by KCabotDullesMarxIII
that the Republicans (qua military industrial complex and whole panoply of State: Pentagon, FBI, CIA State Department) could be nice ..... or they could be not nice.... Longevity has its merits, as MLK once observed.

In other words, it was precisely because he did know how important it was to his enemies...
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bobthedrummer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 12:31 AM
Response to Original message
35. Here's a link to a MSM ownership guide
Who Owns What
(maintained by Aaron Moore PhD)
http://www.cjr.org/tools/owners/
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Disturbed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 05:58 AM
Response to Reply #35
40. Russert and Mathews are RW Shills.
Instead of boycotting their shows Dem Senators and Reps should develope some interview skills. Dems should not allow themelves to be put on the defensive. They should ignore the bait and go on the offensive and not allow these RW shills to interupt and badger them.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 06:46 PM
Response to Reply #40
76. I agree absolutely
But I think that they already have the skills.

They just have to develop the mindset that says it's ok to put those skills into action. As it is now they think that they have to let shills like Russert define for them what is acceptable. With an attitude like that, they'll never break out of that cycle.
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fearthem Donating Member (573 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 06:57 AM
Response to Original message
42. Bullies are less likely to attack if they know you'll respond in kind!
And we should all send NBC a note on Russert, sponsors to change the tide, as such campaigns have worked in the past and it's better than doing nothing -- there needs to be a major response, as Huffington Post does.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 07:35 AM
Response to Reply #42
43. Do you know how to coordinate and format such a response?
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fearthem Donating Member (573 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 11:01 AM
Response to Reply #43
56. No experience, other than my regular, personal emails to MSNBC, NBC.
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fearthem Donating Member (573 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 11:11 AM
Response to Reply #43
57. p.s. I have seen the addresses of advertisers, cable news...
networks listed here and elsewhere providing the opportunity to easily "click" to send a comment; as easy to do as clicking to vote in a poll I would think. Many here have entered a call for action in that fashion. Pressure has been made on advertisers in the past, with success, i.e., the made-for-tv documentary on Kerry by Sinclair that was widely boycotted through political blogs. "The squeaky wheel..."
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Vinnie From Indy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 08:05 AM
Response to Original message
44. Democrats HAVE TO CHALLENGE THE BIAS IN THE MEDIA!
Edited on Mon May-22-06 08:05 AM by Vinnie From Indy
Another poster is exactly right when they observe that the situation with Russert and the rest of the BushCo leaning media WILL NOT CHANGE ON IT'S OWN.

It would seem obvious that Dems need to formulate a strategy to marginalize these guys by making THEM part of the discussion. Russert and others HAVE TO BE CALLED OUT AS SHILLS PUBLICLY! Their credibility has to be attacked at every turn. Their shilling HAS to be made a story. The Dems need a few outrageous verbal bomb throwers to continually attack, attack, attack.
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KittyWampus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 08:30 AM
Response to Reply #44
45. Calling Them Shills Directly Is Exactly The Wrong Thing To Do. Question
their journalistic credentials, their command of the facts, their objectivity.

But if you call a Mediawhore a GOP Shill directly, they'll just smugly say "and the GOP base think I'm too liberal" and make it into a he-said/seh-said.

No, it's better for Democrats to use rejoinders such as:

"If you'd done your research properly"
"A well-informed journalist would realise"
"If you took the time to look at this objectively"
"Well, contrary to the GOP talking points you've just thrown out"
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Vinnie From Indy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 09:24 AM
Response to Reply #45
47. There are several ways to skin a cat!
My extremely general proposal does not advocate a mindless program of will-nilly attacks on the bias of the usual suspects in the media. There are numerous avenues that could be considered to achieve the goal of marginalizing the worst offendors in the media without having blowback on our candidates. Open your mind and don't assume that a proposal like this has to be Lucy and Charlie Brown with the football. There is absolutely NOTHING that should compel the Left to keep making the same mistakes or set themselves up to get hammered. For example, the attacks on the media could be done using surrogates and designated point men. The point is that folks like Russert and others have to be made to understand that they will have to pay a price for their blatant shilling. I am certainly not advocating a headlong run into a brick wall.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 09:51 AM
Response to Reply #45
50. I agree with you to a large extent - but I agree with Vinnie too, as he
clarifies what he meant in post 47.

I agree that Dems need to be very careful about harsh criticisms of the CM, making sure that they're on solid grounds before shooting from the hip.

But I also feel that there are circumstances when very harsh responses against the CM are warranted -- such as the hypothetical response by Dean to Russert that I postulate in my OP. That is a case of a response to a ridiculous and mean spirited attack by the CM, and I believe that a harsh response would be warranted and I believe politically effective as well.

The bottom line, if I may use a sports metaphor that is probably too civil for the current situation, is that Democrats typically respond to the corporate media as if they are the referees rather than their primary opponents. They are NOT the referees, or at least they SHOULD NOT be the referees. And when Democrats treat them with the respect that is warranted of referees it gives the impression to the voting public that they are indeed the referees.
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KittyWampus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 10:33 AM
Response to Reply #50
53. I like your analogy about referees. How Dems treat them as such when
they are in league with the opposition.

But all in all, if Democrats did learn to address the Mediawhores as you/we suggest, it would be a great opportunity!
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Dr Fate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-23-06 01:19 PM
Response to Reply #45
90. Well done- I agree- be pointed & specific. n/t
n/t
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ananda Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 08:53 AM
Response to Original message
46. I boycott those shows.
I won't watch the rightwing media, period.

Of course, that means I won't be sending them any letters.

However, that's prolly a good thing because all they care
about is ratings, and a letter would prove I watch the show.

Sue
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RedEarth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 09:42 AM
Response to Original message
48. Terrific
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theboss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 10:57 AM
Response to Original message
55. I like Russert
I liked Schiefert more, but Russert always had better guests.
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fearthem Donating Member (573 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 11:13 AM
Response to Reply #55
58. Have you noticed his guests are heavily skewed to the right???
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 02:54 PM
Response to Reply #55
66. But what do you think of his actions that are described in the OP?
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DirtyDawg Donating Member (594 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 12:09 PM
Response to Original message
60. Seems to me...
...that the media's attack on Howard started about the time he, Dean, mentioned that one of the first things he would do as President would be to see about reversing the Communications Act that did away with restrictions on media ownership, along with the 'equal time rule'. These guys went after him big time. No way they were going to risk this guy messin' with their money machine.

I've also felt that democratic officials - elected or otherwise - need to stop blindly trying to respond to obviously loaded questions with what inevitably will end up being a lame answer. Pull a Jon Stewart on them - I don't mean calling them pricks, but push back. Give 'em an 'I'm not gonna be your monkey here'...or an 'I'll answer that one after I hear you ask anything remotely as challenging to one of your 'Republican' right wing guests.' Or even Howard's lame-ass appearance on TDS when Jon made light of Dean's use of a door-knocker that listed the legislative and issue priorities the dems have published - claiming that the Dems had no plan - he, Howard, should have said, 'Jon, the reason that the public seems to think that we have no plan is that people like you - yes, even the fake-news ones, haven't done your homework and bothered to read the materials and the programs that we have already published. And furthermore, I'm looking forward to your asking you next Republican guest if their failures - and I believe that includes every initiative that they've attempted, at home or abroad - were indeed part of a plan or simply incompetence, or both.'...yeah, that's what I'd like to see.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 06:54 PM
Response to Reply #60
77. I think that Dean crossed the line drawn by the corporate media in other
ways as well. For example, they didn't like him talking about the problem of poverty in this country -- that stimulates "class warfare"

I definitely agree with you regarding the need for more aggressive responses with these guys - except that I wouldn't put Jon Stewart in that camp. He's definitely our friend. If and when he asks loaded questions like that, he's doing it to give us a chance to put things in perspective - IMO.
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DirtyDawg Donating Member (594 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-23-06 12:36 AM
Response to Reply #77
86. Precisely my point...
Jon Stewart made fun of Dean's and the DNC's efforts on his recent appearance and instead of Howard coming back with a pointed, aggressive response, he laughed along with him. Not what we need, particularly with our friends.
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wvspaz Donating Member (6 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 01:13 PM
Response to Original message
64. I think the best way to let the MSM know we're onto them is to refuse to..
to buy ANYTHING advertised on the FAKE news shows. And don't just refuse to buy the products, send a letter or email to the manufacturer to make sure they know you will not be buying their products, and why.
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Martin Eden Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 01:57 PM
Response to Original message
65. I remember when Russert interviewed Rumsfeld in 2004
This was when the shit was beginning to hit the fan over the lack of WMD and questions were being raised about the administration's use of intelligence. Before the interview I said to my wife that Russert is a partisan hack if he doesn't grill Rumsfeld on the Pentagon's Office of Special Plans and how it stovepiped cherry-picked intelligence.

Of course, the OSP was never mentioned.
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Turn CO Blue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 04:01 PM
Response to Original message
68. See also "Russert Watch" on HuffingtonPost every Sunday
Where a blogger skewers Timmeh for his lack of journalistic fairness and/or follow-up questions after every edition of MTP.

Here's the one about yesterday's show:
<http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rachel-sklar/russert-watc... >
(snip)
If it's Sunday, it's "Meet The Republicans" - that's how I felt when I saw that Tim's guests this week would be Condoleeza Rice - again - and two Republicans to debate immigration. Roll out the red carpet, Tim, and hand over the floor - for who better to do damage control for a damaged, damaging administration than the hyper-articulate, camera-ready Condi?
And who better to discuss immigration than Republicans, clearly the only stakeholders in the debate?
(end of snip)

--------------------------------------------------------
If only we could get the Dem interviewees to skewer him like you do in your post, and as Arianna and Rachel do!
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 07:02 PM
Response to Reply #68
78. I'll bet he's afraid to have Feingold on his show
I'd love to see that.
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Turn CO Blue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 09:01 PM
Response to Reply #78
82. Timmeh is only interested in his GE profit-sharing program
When he sold his soul, he really sold out. If he did have Feingold on, you can bet that MTP will have a staff working full time on research to get Timmeh prepared. Then he will ask unrelated, unfair, hijacking questions - anything to stay off-topic from the real issues. I could see Timmeh asking Feingold about the marital stuff and for his insight on being a Jew. Ugh. Something stupid like that. GE Timmeh only plays stupid and passive when interviewing neo-cons for his masters.
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Donkeykick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 05:06 PM
Response to Original message
71. That would be great!
Lou Dobbs also does a great job!
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lilypad_567 Donating Member (70 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 07:47 PM
Response to Original message
80. okay, let conduct interview
Dem's: hello mr. tim russet, how are you?
TR: i fine, okay lets get to the point. as you can see, there have been a lot of controversies in the news lately about the bush administration, one of them concerning the terrorist spying on al quidas, that live in the USA, and the democrats are against the spying because they don't want george bush to protect american from terriost, but i want to know what is your opinion on that?
Dem's:will, tim, you are famous for being a nonpartisan journalist, and i will try to answer your question as best as i can, and as we all know, the bush administration is famous for following the laws, and never giving us any false or misinformation about the liberation of iraq, who the republican are calling the iraqi, evil people on the radio/talk show, because the USA troop, who don't have aqutic supplies, are torturing the locals and there is a rise of insurgents, to ensure and protect democracies in iraq, these evil iraqi, as you often heard so much on the radio/talk show, are doing really will, but the point is that you want to know my opinion on the spying, which you can do by going to court, and which the forefather thought was so important that is why there was a fourth amendment to protect american citizen from unlawful searches without a court order, and during the cold war, where communist was living among us law abiding citizen, who believe in the constitution, fisa was created so that the president can spy on the american people, and the current president who was quoted, "you know i don't email however, and there is a good reason for that, i don't want people reading my personal stuff," and he was also quoted that, "every time you talk about wiretapping, that require a court order," i just thought that george bush should stick to what he is saying by going to court, otherwise george bush, a law abiding citizen, who put his hand on the bible and swear to god that he will protect and fellow the Constitution, is commiting a crime and he is a hypocrite because he goes against what he is saying.
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goforit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 09:34 PM
Response to Original message
83. Case and point...March on Washington? NO! March on The Media and
The Corporations and The false prophets of Evangelical institutions.

V
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Voltaire99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-23-06 05:05 AM
Response to Original message
87. Why fight back? There's no margin in it.
Even when Dems are infuriating to us in the Netroots, the corporate contributions keep coming. The reason is precisely because Dems don't fight back. Being of good odor to money requires silence and dutifulness. Wouldn't want to offend some big donor or miss out a NASCAR fan, somewhere, who'll vote for you.

That's why elected Dems have been so useful to Bushism--alternately like deer in the headlights or useful idiots marching gladly to war. Their bread isn't buttered by resistance or opposition. Those are playtime activities for dreamers on message boards. Big boys and girls get huge paychecks for obedience: ask Hillary what her take will be from her Rupert Murdoch/FOX News fundraiser. When's the last time you saw her on TV "fighting back"?

If you are looking for leaders who'll stand up to the likes of little bright-eyed runts like Russert, look outside the duopoly. Or demand better representation from your party: stop supporting whatever lackluster plastic idiot it rolls out for you to rubberstamp at election time. It's up to you, finally, not to the pols; they're only going to be as good as is demanded of them. Start demanding.
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-23-06 09:21 AM
Response to Reply #87
88. I believe that there are very many Congressional Democrats who
would very much like to see their party back in power, and who believe that their purpose in Congress is to serve their country. Those are the Democrats to whom the ideas in my OP were directed.

Yet I believe that the good majority of even those Democrats have not adequately considered the need to fight back against Bush administration shills like Tim Russert. That is at this time a very much "outside the box" idea.

I believe that those kinds of actions could radically change the dynamics of the relationships between the corporate media and the Democratic Party, and that those dynamics very much need to be changed. They just don't know it yet.

Anyhow, that's my opinion.
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emcguffie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-23-06 01:02 PM
Response to Original message
89. The whole thing is "tainted".
And letter writing won't make much difference, because since the deregulation of the media, the media are "owned" lock, stock and barrel by corporations, aren't they? And with Knight Ridder going down the tubes, it's as plain as the nose on our faces that any media outlets that maintain any objectivity will eventually be taken down by conservative interests.

Given that, there is no way public pressure can make these outlets change their behavior. Perhaps we can force them to try to "appear" to be a little more balanced, yes, throw us a bone once in a while. But that is all they will do -- and we are helpless and shut out, until we find a way around them. We cannot go through them, we cannot go over them, we have to go around them.

We have to build our own media, an alternative media, one they cannot take away from us. And since they are now taking away the internet, we had better hurry.
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