Notable Quotables - 04/15/1991
The Parade of Reagan Cliches
"What the country
did not need was the surfeit of feel-good illusions Reagan sold so
successfully. Every politician peddles hope in bright ribbons. The saddest and
scariest conclusion one takes from this book is that Reagan fully believed his
spiels even at their most outlandish. That gut sincerity and his actor's
skills let him ring up record sales in the '80s. Paying the bills is America's
hellish task in the '90s and perhaps beyond."
- Time Deputy Washington Bureau Chief Laurence Barrett reviewing Lou Cannon's Reagan book, April 15.
"We went through a
trance with a mesmerizing leader and enjoyed the moment. You remember it was
good morning again, morning again in America, and the sun was always coming
up. No dark clouds, live for the moment, don't worry about the debts, don't
worry about tomorrow, don't worry about paying them off, don't worry about the
long-term future. And I think that's the legacy....I don't think I said the
most lawless. I think the record is the worst since the Harding years and
that's probably saying about the same thing."
- Former Washington Post editor Haynes Johnson on his Reagan book, March 12 Today.
"China Sees a
Greater Role For Free Market in 1990's"
- New York Times, March 26
sings praises of socialism"
- Washington Times, same day
Remembering Lee Atwater
attacked politics the way he attacked life: with maximum force. He had a
vicious streak. He hurt people."
- ABC reporter John Martin on World News Tonight, March 29.
"[Lee Atwater] was
a scoundrel, one of the darkest figures to dominate our recent politics, a man
with a comprehensively cynical view of his fellow creatures....He made it in
the most improbable way, learning to dress at Brooks Brothers and keep his
funky white trash wickedness too....In running campaigns that played on racial
divisions, he was something worse than bigot; he was a man who pretended to be
a bigot in hope that it would sell."
- Washington Post op-ed by reporter Marjorie Williams, March 30.
danger for Bush is that he could go overboard in exploiting his gulf triumph,
possibly by lapsing into the mudslinging over patriotism that characterized
his 1988 campaign."
- Matthew Cooper and Kenneth T. Walsh in the March 25 U.S. News & World Report.
Failure of Intelligence?
Investigate U.S. Intelligence on Iraq: Hearings Will Review Apparent
- Washington Post, March 18
Agencies Triumphed In Gulf War Despite Some Weak Spots"
- Wall Street Journal, same day
often had horrible stories to tell, many Kuwaitis were enthusiastic about
sharing their thoughts and experiences with [reporter Michael] Kramer. 'We
journalists,' he said, 'are considered liberators as much as the troops
- Robert L. Miller's "From the Publisher" column, March 18 Time.
Rape? It's Reagan's Fault
believe that for every rape reported, ten to twenty may go unreported. And if
the actual rate of rape in the United States is rising, they say, there may be
a number of reasons. One is the nationwide explosion of drug abuse....The
economic squeeze on middle-class men in the '80s may have also fostered a
climate of frustration and violence, experts say."
- CNN reporter Brian Jenkins, March 22.
Women Win Despite Conservatives
"The court said the
laws against sex discrimination mean what they say. From a court perceived in
some quarters as increasingly hostile to civil rights, today's ruling is being
viewed as a remarkable victory for women."
- ABC's Tim O'Brien on the fetal protection decision, March 20 World News Tonight.
Democracy Causes Poverty
"Lines might be
long, freedoms might be few, but one thing the state guaranteed was security
from the cradle to the grave...But with the novel forces of democratization,
decentralization, and freer expression came the hard truths of poverty,
dislocation, crime, ethnic hatred and the erosion of the state's omnipotence.
Beggars and cripples emerged from the shadows, the injured and humiliated took
to venting their grievances in the streets, and ever-worsening shortages
pushed masses over the threshold of poverty."
- New York Times reporter Serge Schmemann on the Soviet Union, March 13.
Troops Fought for Gun Control
"Not all the city's
homicide victims were pursuing as noble a mission as the troops were, though
the casualties in both theaters were loosely united through a common goal: gun
- New York Times reporter Sam Roberts on those murdered in New York City during the war, March 28.
status in the world is smudged and complicated by the realities of its long,
slow rot at home....Neither political nor economic realities give hope that
the nation's social problems - homelessness, health care, crime, drugs, a
decline in industrial competitiveness, and so on - are going to be conquered
soon, or even seriously addressed. At least not by government. The nation has
the money, but not the political will."
- Time Senior Writer Lance Morrow, March 18.
"For many blacks,
U.S. successes in the Gulf only magnify failures here at home. As defense
spending has escalated during the Reagan and Bush years, there has been
diminishing support for programs that help economically deprived
Americans....Years of neglect of social services programs has left many black
- CNN Special Assignment reporter John Camp on the CNN Evening News, March 4.
The Only Solution
"There are all
these other health issues, and your Administration always says we can't throw
money at it. But the only solution to solving these unbelievably painful
things to watch, poor children, children who die before the age of one,
children getting measles again, is money....It takes money to educate, it
takes nurses to give them the vaccinations...It just takes money."
- Lesley Stahl on Face the Nation, March 31.
Couldn't Have Said It Better
demonstrated the self-destructive narcissism that seems always to engulf us
when assembled en masse. Their highly publicized efforts to transform petty
professional jealousies and minor inconveniences into great issues of
constitutional law were absurd. It is difficult to persuade skeptical and not
entirely ignorant publics that 48-hour delays n the publication of feature
stories on female truck drivers or mess hall crews from Montana threaten the
nation's survival and the 'people's right to know.'"
- Washington Post ombudsman Richard Harwood, March 10.
- L. Brent Bozell III;
- Brent H. Baker, Tim Graham; Editors
- Brant Clifton, Nicholas Damask, Steve Kaminski, Marian Kelley, Tim Lamer; Media Analysts
- Jennifer Hardebeck; Circulation Manager