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Mullings by Rich Galen
A Political Cyber-Column By Rich Galen
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    The 92nd Street Whine

    Monday December 2, 2002

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    • Al Gore and Geraldine Ferraro joined the National Democratic Whine about how Rush Limbaugh, the Fox News Channel, and the Washington Times are just wrecking everything.

    • I appeared on Fox with Mrs. Ferraro, last Tuesday, to debate Al Gore's comment that, "Most of the media [has] been slow to recognize the pervasive impact of this fifth column in their ranks - that is, day after day, injecting the daily Republican talking points into the definition of what's objective as stated by the news media as a whole."

    • Lest you think that Gore's choice of words was accidental, here's how the Merriam-Webster Unabridged defines "fifth column:"
      "A group of secret sympathizers or supporters of an enemy that engage in espionage, sabotage, and other subversive activities within the defense lines or borders of a nation."

    • There has been a curious lack of finger-wagging in the popular press at Gore's accusing legitimate news and opinion outlets of being "secret sympathizers of an enemy."

    • How much howling from the popular press do you suppose we would have heard had Newt Gingrich claimed the NY Times or CBS were engaging in "espionage, sabotage, and subversive activities?"

    • Yes. Correct. A very, very lot of howling, which pretty much makes the case for whether the majority of news outlets in the US are centrist or leftist.

    • To be fair, the New York Times ran an analysis in the Week in Review section yesterday titled, "Fox News Moves From the Margins to the Mainstream." Links to both the NY Times and the NY Observer pieces are available on the Secret Decoder Ring today.

    • For our younger readers, let's review the high point of Mrs. Ferraro's career: As a Member of Congress from New York, she was nominated to run as the Democratic Party's candidate for Vice President with Walter Mondale in 1984.

    • The crack team of Mondale & Ferraro successfully LOST 49 states to the ticket which the mainstream media pretty much believed were uniquely unqualified to run the country, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.

    • In fact, because Mondale lost every state BUT Minnesota against Reagan in 1984, then lost the Senate race IN Minnesota to Norm Coleman last month, he holds the unbreakable record of being the only person in the history of the Republic to have lost elections in all 50 states.

    • As I tried to point out to Mrs. Ferraro; in 1984:
      The Washington Times was only two years old, had little or no advertising, and was far from being viewed as the legitimate - much less major - source of news it is today;

      Rush Limbaugh was hosting a local talk show in Sacramento, California; and,

      The Fox Newschannel would not go on the air for another TWELVE YEARS!

    • On the Fox Fifth Column Network this past Saturday when recounting this to Susan Estridge, I suggested the outcome of the 1984 election could not have been because of a conservative media fifth column, so it must have been "the result of two crappy candidates running a dreadful campaign."

    • Note, please, that I was on Fox with Geraldine Ferraro and Susan Estrich - two women not exactly known for being under the control of vast right-wing conspiracy.

    • Here's a peek at how things work in Washington: Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) traded his announcement that he is going to run for President in 2004 on Meet the Press yesterday, in return for getting the full hour. The benefit for Tim Russert? Every newspaper in the country will mention "Meet" as part of the Kerry story.

    • As a insight to Senator Kerry's thought process, this snippet from "Meet the Press:"
      MR. RUSSERT: Do you think the current administration has pressed the Saudis sufficiently?
      SEN. KERRY: No.
      MR. RUSSERT: What would you do specifically in terms of pressing them more?
      SEN. KERRY: Well, some things, Tim, are not best done in public...

    • Kerry, thus, criticized the Administration but had nothing to offer as an alternative, hiding behind some self-defined notion of "back door diplomacy."

    • It was not a Roger Mudd moment, but neither will the interview jump start the Democratic Party.

    • A GREAT secret decoder ring today! links to the new york observer and new york times articles, a curious set of photos of Senator Kerry from Meet the Press yesterday, a before-and-after Mullfoto of our thanksgiving turkey, and why the title, "92nd Street Whine" is oh-soooo clever.

      --END --
      Copyright © 2002 Richard A. Galen


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