Notable Quotables - 06/04/2007
Gushing Over “Gore 2.0”
Anchor Katie Couric: “He was once called ‘Mr. Stiff.’ Now he’s known as ‘The Goreacle,’ the new Al Gore....Sharyn Alfonsi reports on Gore 2.0.”
Reporter Sharyn Alfonsi: “He spread the word about global warming, and now is changing the political climate. In some polls, Gore is third for the Democratic nomination, and he’s not even a candidate. And he’s come out with another book: The Assault on Reason....knocking the media with one arm and the Bush administration with the other.... The guy who was once the punch line now seems to be in on the joke. He’s just not in the race, at least not yet.”
— CBS Evening News, May 25. (With WMV video/MP3 audio)
“Al Gore — the improbably charismatic, Academy Award-winning, Nobel Prize-nominated environmental prophet with an army of followers and huge reserves of political and cultural capital at his command....[Losing the 2000 election] changed Gore for the better. He dedicated himself to a larger cause, doing everything in his power to sound the alarm about the climate crisis, and that decision helped transform the way Americans think about global warming and carried Gore to a new state of grace....No wonder friends, party elders, moneymen and green leaders are still trying to talk him into running.”
— Time’s Eric Pooley in his May 28 cover story, “The Last Temptation of Al Gore.”
Gore Hit on Bush Not “Partisan”?
“For all its sharply voiced opinions, The Assault on Reason turns out to be less a partisan, election-cycle harangue than a fiercely argued brief about the current Bush White House that is grounded in copiously footnoted citations from newspaper articles, Congressional testimony and commission reports — a brief that is as powerful in making its points about the implications of this administration’s policies as the author’s 2006 book, An Inconvenient Truth, was in making its points about the fallout of global warming.”
— New York Times critic Michiko Kakutani reviewing Al Gore’s new anti-Bush book, May 22.
Can We Blame It All on Bush?
“Mr. President, when did this [global warming] reach, in your view, critical mass, and what does the current administration have to answer for? How much of it, in your view, is their fault?”
— Anchor Brian Williams to former President Bill Clinton in a live interview on the May 16 NBC Nightly News. (With WMV video/MP3 audio)
Daydreaming of President Hillary
George Stephanopoulos: “Everyone remembers that picture, seeing you up at the podium, first female Speaker of the House. Do you ever think what it would be like to be standing at that podium as the first female President of the United States comes up to give the State of the Union?”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi: “Wouldn’t that be exciting to have the woman as the President and a woman as the Speaker of the House?”
— ABC’s This Week, May 20.
Surrendering to Dictator Bush
“The Democratic leadership has agreed to finance the deaths of Americans in a war that has only reduced the security of Americans. The Democratic leadership has given Mr. Bush all that he wanted....That’s what this is for the Democrats, isn’t it? Their ‘Neville Chamberlain moment’ before the Second World War. All that’s missing is the landing at the airport, with the blinkered leader waving a piece of paper which he naively thought would guarantee ‘peace in our time,’ but which his opponent would ignore with deceit. The Democrats have merely streamlined the process. Their piece of paper already says Mr. Bush can ignore it with impunity.”
— Keith Olbermann in a “Special Comment” on MSNBC’s Countdown, May 23.
Host Keith Olbermann: “Why such secrecy — or, at least, out of the public eye — for the signing of this war funding bill? One would think maybe Mr. Bush would have held a parade for it.”
Newsweek’s Jonathan Alter: “Well, on some level, I think he knows that he’s signing the death warrants of young men and women.”
— MSNBC’s Countdown, May 25. (With WMV video/MP3 audio)
AP Slams Vets as Perverts
“Study: Imprisoned military veterans more likely to have sex crime convictions than nonvets”
— Headline of a May 20 Associated Press story by Matt Apuzzo, reporting on a Bureau of Justice Statistics study.
“Male veterans less than half as likely as male non-veterans to be in prison in 2004”
— Headline of the April 29 Bureau of Justice Statistics press release announcing the same study.
Example of Liberal Compassion
“When doctors pronounced the Rev. Jerry Laymon Falwell Sr. dead at 12:40 p.m. EST Tuesday....my first thoughts were not of what to say or write. In fact, my very first thought upon hearing of the Rev. Falwell’s passing was: Good. And I didn’t mean ‘good’ in a oh-good-he’s- gone-home-to-be-with-the-Lord kind of way. I meant ‘good’ as in ‘Ding-dong, the witch is dead.’”
— Chicago Sun-Times columnist Cathleen Falsani in her May 18 piece, “Sigh of relief over Falwell death.”
Not on Charlie’s Newscast
“After word arrived Tuesday afternoon that Jerry Falwell had suffered a fatal heart attack, Charlie Gibson was determined not to lead his newscast with the preacher’s death. ‘It lends importance to a figure whose legacy contained a lot of positives and a lot of negatives,’ says the ABC anchor.”
— As reported by Washington Post media writer Howard Kurtz, May 17. Both CBS and NBC led their evening newscasts with word of Falwell’s passing.
Al Franken, “Harvard Smart”
Reporter Jamie Gangel: “What some people may not know, [Democratic Senate candidate Al] Franken is smart, Harvard smart. A math whiz who aced the SATs and, it turns out, not bad at geography, either.”
Al Franken, doodling: “It’s a circus trick. I can draw all 48 contiguous states from memory in about two minutes.”
Gangel: “But Franken knows in the end he’ll need substance to win over Minnesota voters....A lot of people think Franken can win this race. Meredith.”
Co-host Meredith Vieira: “He’s definitely smart enough.”
— NBC’s Today, May 29.
Don’t Tease the Breck Girl
Anchor Contessa Brewer: “Let’s talk about Mike Huckabee, because last night he sort of had the humorous line of the night. I know a lot of people are talking about it.”
Chris Matthews: “That was set piece though. He brought that in with him....They waste our time with these set pieces....It’s embarrassing to everybody when they do these jokes....It’s hokie panokie. It’s Mickey Mouse. So what? And what a stupid thing. What did it have to do — John Edwards paid the price for his haircut weeks ago, to bring that up in front of that audience was pandering. Let’s face it.”
— Exchange on MSNBC Live, May 16, discussing Huckabee’s quip that “We’ve had a Congress that spent money like John Edwards at a beauty shop.” (With WMV video/MP3 audio)
Slamming Rush’s “Minstrel Show”
Matt Lauer: “He [Rush Limbaugh] makes a living poking fun at Democrats but now some think he has gone a little too far in taking on Senator Barack Obama....”
Reporter Michael Okwu: “Weeks before the Imus controversy, Rush Limbaugh started airing this ditty about Senator Barack Obama:”
Song parody: “Barack the Magic Negro lives in D.C.”
Okwu: “Which lead some to wonder, has Limbaugh been getting a free pass?...”
Paul Waldman, Media Matters for America: “This is basically the radio equivalent of a black-faced, minstrel show. You’re going back to Amos and Andy and all of those, kind of, racist shows in the past.”
Okwu: “For his part, Obama says he doesn’t listen to Limbaugh but says being targeted is part of being a politician....Legitimate political satire or something darker?”
— NBC’s Today, May 21. Limbaugh’s parody was inspired by a black writer who used the term in a March 19 Los Angeles Times op-ed, “Obama the Magic Negro.”
Flushing to the Sound of Rush
“Our winner: Comedian Rush Limbaugh complaining today that the liberal media, particularly MSNBC, never actually listens to him while he’s on the air....I happen to know he said all this because today I was actually listening to him while he was on the air, while I was at ABC Radio in New York where I do The Dan Patrick Show from, listening from the perfect venue where they pipe in the comedian’s show and you can’t turn it off — the toilet! Comedian Rush Limbaugh, today’s Worst Person in the World!”
— MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann, May 22 Countdown. (With WMV video/MP3 audio)
Rosie: We’re the Real Terrorists
“I just want to say something. 655,000 Iraqi civilians are dead. Who are the terrorists?...If you were in Iraq, and the other country, the United States, the richest in the world, invaded your country and killed 655,000 of your citizens, what would you call us?”
— Rosie O’Donnell on ABC’s The View, May 17. (With WMV video/MP3 audio)
Rosie O’Donnell: “It’s interesting that the network you support takes such joy in twisting my words and distorting them. I do not think our American troops are terrorists....”
Elisabeth Hasselbeck: “But when you pose that question, what is the answer? Who are the terrorists?”
O’Donnell: “...I didn’t say it. You know who said it? Those crappy cable shows said it. The ones Elisabeth watches. Those shows.”
— Exchange on ABC’s The View, May 21.
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