Monday, January 30, 2006

Tim, Quick Question

Why didn't you ask Bill Frist about Ann Coulter calling for the assassination of Justice John Paul Stevens?

Saturday, January 28, 2006

"Russert: At the Feet of the Powerful and Throat of the Weak"

Read Fred Branfman's Huffington Post piece on Russert. Money quote: "Russert's treatment of candidates like Howard Dean contrasts dramatically with the obsequious treatment given those in power. A Cheney or Rumsfeld may be shown a film clip of one of their many lies, and asked to explain. They are then given as much time as they want to expand, amplify and embellish their lies, without interruption, whereupon Russert goes on to another topic. A Dean, however, is pummelled mercilessly."

And of course, we're still waiting for Russert to explain his offensive interview with Barack Obama....

Friday, January 27, 2006

Russert's No Match for Arianna

Arianna Huffington responds to Russert's whining: "NBC News PR Department Gets Down and Dirty..."

And on the Today Show Russert shows his true colors yet again: "This morning the Today Show made a feeble attempt at removing the egg from their face. Tim Russert came on to analyze yesterday's news events and was asked about Couric's interview with Dean and the topic of Abramoff monies going to both parties ... When Lauer asked Russert if indeed the scandal was biparatisan, Russert said yes without flinching." More at C&L.

Russert Feels the Heat, Lashes Out at Arianna Huffington

Months before Open Letter to Tim Russert was launched in response to Russert's racially-tinged interview with Barack Obama, Arianna Huffington was on his case, peeling back the rotten layers of Meet the Press's onion, exposing the gutless GOP shill behind the "serious" journalist.

As Jane Hamsher tells us in a rather colorful post, Russert is cracking:
It's hard to imagine, but I don't think Father Tim thought twice about accepting a gig for which he normally charges $50,000 to $60,000 to give a speech on ethics in the media. We can assume his supporting cast has grown accustomed over the years to stifling their guffaws at his disproportional self-image and didn't tip him off to the absurdity factor. So he was no doubt surprised when Arianna pointed out the obvious: that the man who has done more than anyone to normalize wingnut eliminationist rhetoric in mainstream political discourse, who equipped himself with an inviolable set of principles when it meant covering for pedophilia fantasist Scooter Libby but whipped them off quicker than a pair of whore's panties when it came to Richard Clarke, who still has not explained his extremely dubious role in the whole CIA leak case but feels free to limbo around this awkward fact as he covers the story from week to week, might be a bit challenged giving a lecture on the ethics of anything but most especially the media.

It probably never occurred to him that the little wink-wink, nudge-nudge action with fellow bloviator James Carville last week over Carville's new XM radio sports show was inappropriate due to the fact that Timmeh's son is Carville's co-host and Russert was using precious NBC moments more aptly devoted to, say, the NSA leak case to push his kid's show without bothering to clue the audience in.

But it sure as hell jostled his gated community gravitas when someone pointed it out for him.
Big white bwana man went whimpering to Lloyd Grove at the New York Daily News this morning, resurrecting his rather phantasmagorical 1996 claim that Arianna hired a private detective to follow his wife around. An assertion for which he has no proof other than something he read in an Ed Rollins book (more reliable recitations can be found scratched into the walls of bus station bathrooms), but as a regular practitioner of fact-free journalism this is not a problem for Father Tim.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Read This While You Wait for Russert to Explain Himself

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Atrios Shreds Meet the Press's Weak Response to the Russert/Obama Question

Atrios:

"Here's Meet the Press's response to a viewer who complained about Russert's badgering of Obama about Belafonte:
Thank you for your e-mail.

The Chicago Tribune of December 25, 2005 said the following:
"Harry Belafonte, the entertainer and civil rights activist, corresponds with [Senator] Obama by telephone and e-mail."

The article continues quoting Belafonte as saying:
"I think Sen. Obama is a force...We've seen so many others who have come to high places and have failed so miserably. I think he could be our exception to the rule."

It is sound and fair journalism to ask a political figure about comments made by a prominent supporter. That same standard is consistently applied on Meet the Press. Here are just a few examples: on February 13, 2000, presidential candidate George W. Bush was asked about comments made by Bob Jones; on February 20, 2000, Sen. John McCain was asked about comments made by his political consultant about David Duke; on February 27, 2000, Karl Rove was asked about comments made by Pat Robertson; and on October 3, 2004, Republican Senate candidate Tom Coburn was asked about comments made by Alan Keyes.

Thank you for writing and watching.
Let's run down the list.

Bush was asked about comments made by Bob Jones because he made a speech at BJU.

John McCain was asked about comments made by his political consultant about David Duke because...it was his f__king paid political consultant.

Rove wasn't asked about Pat Robertson's "remarks." Rove was asked about a recorded robocall message which went out to voters in Michigan created by Pat Robertson." More here

Tim Russert, We're Still Waiting

Over 4,000 visitors to this blog want to know why you asked Senator Barack Obama to respond to Harry Belafonte's remarks about George W. Bush. Why? Does Senator Obama have any special connection to Mr. Belafonte that we're not aware of?

Still waiting............

Monday, January 23, 2006

To Tim Russert: Why Did You Ask Senator Obama About Harry Belafonte?

Tim Russert,

This Sunday, you asked Senator Barack Obama to respond to Harry Belafonte's remarks about George W. Bush being a "terrorist." Why?

Why did you ask this question?

Harry Belafonte isn't an elected official, he doesn't speak for Democrats, he doesn't represent Senator Obama, he doesn't represent the Democratic Party, and he is entitled to his own opinion.

And why did you direct this question to Senator Barack Obama in particular? And did you raise the issue of Harry Belafonte's recent comments with any previous guests? And is it true that Colin Powell is the only other person you've ever asked about Harry Belafonte?

We'd appreciate an explanation.

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NOTE: NBC doesn't allow public feedback on its web site. This blog does. Please keep commentary civil, but do let Tim Russert know that you are puzzled by his choice of questions.