CNN touted ex-president Jimmy Carter as a "new cult favorite" and asked if his image was "being rehabilitated" on Monday's The Situation Room. After friendly interviews of Carter and his grandson last week, it might be more accurate to ask if CNN is trying to "rehabilitate" Carter's image.
Liberal historian Douglas Brinkley made the laughably thin case for Carter. "But when you look at the Iran hostage crisis, I mean, Carter eventually negotiated the release of all of those hostages. It cost his political re-election. He could have bombed Tehran during it, and maybe gotten himself re-elected but he didn't," he argued. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Woody Guthrie was an American original who wrote some enduring music and did a lot to publicize the plight of the people of the Dust Bowl. There's just one little inconvenient truth about Guthrie: he ran in Communist circles. Though it's reported that he never officially joined the party, he's quoted as saying that the "the best thing that I did in 1936 was to sign up with the Communist Party." He also wrote 174 columns for the Communist Party's Daily Worker newspaper.
But nary a mention was made of Woody's Communist connections on Morning Joe today. Instead, Mika Brzezinski giggled like a schoolgirl over the numerous, explicit sex scenes contained in a recently-discovered novel that Guthrie wrote, House of Earth. View the video after the jump.
CNN hosts were wowed by President Obama's second inaugural address on Monday afternoon, and the love kept coming on Monday evening when a CNN panel gushed over the "marvelous" and "iconic" address in the vein of Martin Luther King and Lincoln.
"And now he's come along with a statement that firmly addresses a progressive, liberal agenda that's very much in the tradition of King and of Lincoln, and he has rallied his base," said CNN senior political analyst David Gergen. [Video coming soon. Audio here.]
After President Obama's Monday press conference, liberal historian Douglas Brinkley fawned over him on CNN as a "warm and engaging man," pitted against Republicans who "don't want to be in a photo-op with him."
"I don't think we can blame the President for his style. I think it's just another part of this terrible political gridlock we have. President Obama is a warm and engaging man," Brinkley complimented the President. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Liberal historian Douglas Brinkley gushed over President Obama on Thursday's CBS This Morning and Friday's CNN Newsroom, and tried to put the incumbent in the best possible light: "He's [Obama] a very natural person....He's a really warm and genial person. What he has going for him is he exudes family values." Brinkley later asserted to CNN's Suzanne Malveaux that Obama is an "intellectual...he reads all these books about Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt, FDR...he's wonkish, in a sense of detail in history."
Both times, the Rice University professor downplayed the President's "BS-er" smear of his opponent, Mitt Romney, that emerged during his recent Rolling Stone interview of the Democrat by using the veneer of history: "It's another part of 'Romnesia', I suppose. The working man's 'Romnesia' is BS-er....I mean...there's no love between even John F. Kennedy and his own vice president, Lyndon Johnson; let alone Harry Truman, who once said about Eisenhower, he knows no more about politics than a pig knows about Sunday."
Liberal historian Douglas Brinkley sang the praises of the Kennedy family on Monday's CBS This Morning, spotlighting the apparently "very important public service work" of Robert F. Kennedy's children: "It's just remarkable to me how Bobby Kennedy's kids keep making public policy influences." Brinkley also claimed that "the Kennedy name is still very popular, and....we're endlessly fascinated by the family."
The author also played up the Democratic family's Catholic background, without mentioning how several prominent members have dissented from the Church's teachings on abortion and sexuality.
MSNBC’s Wagner Devotes Segment to Hawking New ‘Cronkite’ Book; Fails to Note New Evidence of His Liberal Bias
Liberal historian and biographer Douglas Brinkley is out with a new book about the late Walter Cronkite and in its pages lie plenty of revelations that damage the late anchor's objective journalist "halo," according to media critic Howard Kurtz, who reviewed the book for the Daily Beast. Among other things, Brinkley wrote about how the allegedly Cronkite bugged a committee room at the 1952 Republican convention, how he literally begged liberal Sen. Robert Kennedy to jump into the 1968 presidential race, and how the avuncular family man figure had a penchant for partying at topless bars.
Yet on the May 31 edition of Now with Alex Wagner, neither Brinkley nor Wagner nor anyone else on the panel brought up any of those interesting revelations, focusing instead on such trivialities as how Cronkite, who got his start in the wire service UPI, perfected his on-air news-reading skills. [MP3 audio here; video follows page break] [Related: Read the MRC's Cronkite "Profile in Bias" here]
"Honestly, this is one of those days where you wish you just had the whole hour to play Walter Cronkite clips, bow in adoration, and then talk about the man," Wagner gushed as she opened the segment, going on to say that when she was "very, very little," she would watch Cronkite's Evening News before heading off to bed.
"It is understated to say he was America's television anchor." Wagner insisted.
Of course, that's exactly why Brinkley's new revelations about Cronkite's liberal biases would be germane for discussion on a cable news network, but Wagner and her panel had no use for history, preferring hagiography instead:
ALEX WAGNER, host: I want to read the artistry of Cronkite, or the talent. Cronkite had trained himself -- I should really listen to this -- Cronkite trained himself to speak at a rate of 124 words per minute in a broadcast so that TV viewers could easily absorb the newscast.
Americans typically average about 165 words per minute, and hard-to-understand speakers -- such as myself -- average 200. Blessed with a mellifluous voice, Cronkite slowed the verbiage down like an old muddy river, and TV viewers approved en masse
S.E. CUPP, conservative columnist: That's delicious.
Moments later, Wagner gushed again about Cronkite vis-a-vis his mannerisms and TV image, not his substance as a journalist:
WAGNER: What is amazing is, he understood the theater of television in a way that I think a lot of folks at the time didn't. And you talk in the book about that moment when he's announcing Kennedy's assassination and takes his glasses off, which of course is a seminal moment in TV history.
And you say, "Walter was really in his element," remembered producer Sandy Socolow. He was like an actor in the middle of his performance of a lifetime. It's possible that the scene of him taking off his glasses was consciously staged. Any director would tell you that what Walter did with those glasses, the fidgeting, was a fine prop to convey both human emotion and an air of spontaneity. The performance worked. The proof is in the pudding. Walter's glasses are constantly being replayed. Everybody knows it.
WAGNER: I need a pair of glasses.
CUPP, who wears glasses: I will take notes from that. Work on my timing here.
[amused reactions from rest of the panel]