Friday, May 13, 2005

CBS Redeems Itself......NOT!

In keeping with its long-standing policy of dishonest reporting, it seems that CBS has once again deliberately misreported the news. No shocker there. Apparently, notwithstanding the shame of the Dan Rather/forged memos debacle, CBS has learned nothing about the importance of objectivity and truthfulness in their reporting of stories. Indeed, it seems as though their political bias is so deeply embedded in their worldview, that they simply cannot help themselves.

According to Kenneth Starr, the excerpts of the interview that he did with Gloria Borger were taken completely out of context, thereby misrepresenting, in a most egregious manner, what he had said concerning the so-called nuclear option.

Ramesh Ponnuru, of National Review online, contacted Mr. Starr to ask him about this issue, and Starr forwarded to him a copy of an e-mail that he had sent to a third party explaining the whole thing. Here is what Mr. Ponnuru wrote about it:

CBS, AP, and other outlets reported earlier this week that Starr had said that getting rid of the judicial filibuster would be a “radical, radical departure from our history and our traditions, and it amounts to an assault on the judicial branch of government.”

This seemed like a very odd thing for Starr to say, so I contacted him.

He forwarded to me an email he had sent to someone else who had asked about this matter:

"In the piece that I have now seen, and which I gather is being lavishly quoted, CBS employed two snippets. The ‘radical departure’ snippet was specifically addressed — although this is not evidenced whatever from the clip — to the practice of invoking judicial philosophy as a grounds for voting against a qualified nominee of integrity and experience. I said in sharp language that that practice was wrong. I contrasted the current practice . . with what occurred during Ruth Ginsburg’s nomination process, as numerous Republicans voted (rightly) to confirm a former ACLU staff lawyer. They disagreed with her positions as a lawyer, but they voted (again, rightly) to confirm her. Why? Because elections, like ideas, have consequences. . . In the interview, I did indeed suggest, and have suggested elsewhere, that caution and prudence be exercised (Burkean that I am) in shifting/modifying rules (that’s the second snippet), but I likewise made clear that the ‘filibuster’ represents an entirely new use (and misuse) of a venerable tradition. . . .

“[O]ur friends are way off base in assuming that the CBS snippets, as used, represent (a) my views, or (b) what I in fact said.”

National Review Corner

Also, for anyone interested in seeing the way CBS slanted this story, here is a link to the transcript of Borger's report, with additional misleading comments by CBS anchor, Bob Schieffer.

CBS News transcript

A word of advice. When using CBS as a source, it would be wise to use a bit of caution before accepting their stories as factual. They are not without an agenda, as evidenced by their propensity to put a liberal spin on their stories of a political nature. It's a most fascinating thing to observe, actually, because I'm sure if you asked them, they would vehemently deny having any bias whatsoever.

Still, there's no doubt that a liberal bias is often evident in their reporting. Is it possible that they are truly unaware of it? I guess that's a legitimate theory, but not having the ability to see into their hearts and minds, it's not a question that I can even begin to answer.