Blasting 'Ugly' 'Fear Talk' on Syria; Bashing Ted Cruz as 'Un-American'

Vol. 28, No. 23

Blasting GOP’s “Extreme,” “Ugly” “Fear Talk” on Syria

“The collective freak-out is on....Sometimes in the fog of terror, we forget what we believe in. We as individuals and collectively sometimes, we follow extreme forces within our own political system towards self-destruction....We cannot resort to the tactics of the barbarians....We must not let the rhetoric of potential and political extremists among us lead us to self-destruction.”
— Fox News anchor Shepard Smith on his November 16 Shepard Smith Reporting, discussing those who oppose more Syrian refugees coming into the U.S.

Anchor Lester Holt: “Heightened fears in the U.S. over Syrian refugees in the wake of the Paris attacks led the House to approve a bill today that would virtually halt all Syrian refugees from coming into the U.S. As NBC’s Andrea Mitchell shows us, the Republican frontrunners drummed up the fear talk today to a new level.”
Correspondent Andrea Mitchell: “Today, the fear about Syrian refugees got ugly on the campaign trail....”
NBC Nightly News, November 19.

“House passes bill that could limit Syrian refugees. Statue of Liberty bows head in anguish.”
— Tweet from CNN global affairs correspondent Elise Labott, November 19. Labott later apologized and was suspended for two weeks.

Bashing Ted Cruz as “Un-American” for Syrian Response

“Presidential candidate Ted Cruz told ABC News today that he is pushing legislation to ban any Syrian refugees who are Muslim from coming into the United States....[To Cruz] You don’t think it’s un-American to say, only Christians, no Muslims?”
— Chief White House correspondent Jon Karl on ABC’s World News Tonight, November 17.


Mika Blames “Hateful” and “Stupid” Republicans

Co-host Joe Scarborough: “These governors have no legal–”
Co-host Mika Brzezinski: “Are tapping into hatred!”
Scarborough: “–these governors have no legal authority to stop refugees from coming into the states....They’re just being stupid. And it’s irrelevant.”
Brzezinski: “Okay, they’re being incredibly stupid and hateful, and I think destructive to the process, unless you think governors are irrelevant, and senators, and congressmen who have gone on television all day yesterday saying, ‘No Syrians in my district.’ It’s disgusting. Are you kidding me? Come on, it’s reprehensible.”
— MSNBC’s Morning Joe, November 17.

Not Sure If Cruz and Rubio Are Really Hispanic

“Is he [Ted Cruz] trying to insinuate that Marco Rubio, a fellow Spanish surname, I’m not sure the right word is Hispanic for them, because they are Cuban nationals or whatever, or come from Cuba. But, is he [Cruz] going to insinuate that he [Rubio] is still basically for what he [Cruz] calls amnesty?”
— MSNBC’s Hardball anchor Chris Matthews discussing the ethnicity of Republican presidential candidates Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, November 11.

Ex-ABC Anchor Exonerates Hillary: Nothing to E-Mails

“I don’t think there’s anything to Benghazi and I don’t think there’s anything to the e-mails. And I agree with Bernie Sanders: I’m sick of hearing about them...Politically, I think he was right. I don’t think there’s anything to this.”
— Former ABC World News and Good Morning America anchor Charlie Gibson on Hillary Clinton, during the 5pm EST hour of the online Good Morning America: 40 for 40, November 18.

Stop “Blowing Chalk Dust” in Obama’s Face

“On your first day as Speaker, you said you were going to wipe the slate clean. And then in your very first news conference, you said the President has, quote, ‘proven himself untrustworthy on immigration.’ That’s not wiping the slate clean. That’s blowing chalk dust in the President’s face.”
CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan on 60 Minutes, November 15.

Barack Obama = Nelson Mandela

“I think it [fighting climate change] is part of his four, five legacy pieces he’s going to be campaigning on the rest of his life....That and the opening in Cuba and health care, a lot of it a part of who he wants to be around the world: the next Mandela....I think he’s going to live in New York as a launching pad for a world figure. That’s my theory of Obama.”
— MSNBC’s Chris Matthews on the November 9 Hardball.


Debate Moderator to GOPers: Which Democrat Do You “Admire” Most?

“To do the things you’re talking about, that you’re all talking about, getting things done in Washington, you have to work with the other side. So, a question: Who in Congress do you most admire on the Democratic side? I need one name from each of you.”
Wall Street Journal Washington bureau chief and 7pm undercard Fox Business Network debate co-moderator Gerald Seib to Republican candidates, November 10.

But Democratic Debate Moderator Not Liberal Enough

“John Dickerson has essentially said the Republican language of blaming ‘radical Islam’ is correct. Disappointing in a moderator.”
— MSNBC analyst Joan Walsh tweeting about CBS Democratic debate moderator John Dickerson, November 14.

MSNBC Attacks Republican “Radicals” and “Cuckoo” Economics...

“But they were living in cloud cuckoo land when you actually look at the economics....It’s not even supply side economics. It’s right-wing cuckoo economics. And they’re all essentially talking about economics in ways that are out of touch, not only with political reality, but with what would happen with this country if their plans were enacted....They are radicals who want, you know, radical change in the American system.”
— MSNBC analyst Jonathan Alter appearing on The Last Word With Lawrence O’Donnell to comment on economic plans offered by Republican presidential candidates, November 10.

...But MSNBC Isn’t “Partisan”

“I think the mainstream media is biased but not in any partisan way. I think there are certain biases we have. We have bias towards spectacle. We have bias towards someone just blew something up.”
— MSNBC’s All In anchor Chris Hayes appearing on Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, November 11.

Exposing the “Myth” of the “Self-Made” Man

“The greatest lie in American history is the myth of the self-made person. Nobody makes themselves. We’re all shaped by communities, by people who struggled and sacrificed for us, by governments that offer safety nets....Ben Carson is able to say, ‘I was saved by Jesus and hard work.’ That allows him to reject a safety net. That allows him to push back against the expansion of a welfare state. That allows him to resist tax cuts for the middle class and poor and tax hikes for the wealthy.”
— CNN political commentator Marc Lamont Hill on the November 8 CNN Newsroom.

Snowden Missed Out on NYT “Back Massage”

Host Charlie Rose: “Suppose Edward Snowden had gotten on the phone to you?”
New York Times executive editor Dean Baquet: “I would have met him anywhere. I would have given him a back massage. I would have done whatever he wanted....I think Edward Snowden’s revelations were really important to an international debate and I wish they had been in The New York Times first.”
— Exchange on the November 9 Charlie Rose on PBS.

Katie Rues: Job of Abortionist Now “Harder Than Ever”

“The [undercover] videos inflamed already passionate critics, making it harder than ever for the organization to do its job. How tough is it to find clinicians who are willing to work at Planned Parenthood clinics and what kinds of challenges do they face?”
— Yahoo! global news anchor Katie Couric to Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards, November 10.

NYT: “Ultraconservative” “Hard-Liners” Skew GOP

“Polls consistently show hard-liners’ views on immigration, climate change and some social issues are not shared by the majority of self-identified Republicans. But the people who tune in daily to [syndicated radio host Steve] Deace and his ultraconservative peers are also the ones most likely to vote and to follow closely the politicians they elect.”
New York Times correspondent Jackie Calmes writing for the November 8 New York Times Magazine.


Movie Director Smears Cops as “Murderers”

“When I see murder, I cannot stand by. And I have to call the murdered the murdered and I have to call the murderers the murderers.”
— Director Quentin Tarantino speaking about alleged police brutality at a rally in New York City, October 24.

Using Fictional ’70s Cop Shows to Prove Violent Police in 2015

“If you got into a scuffle with a cop and you wanted to punch him, all right? In today’s world, you’d just be shot for that. I mean, absolutely shot. I mean, if you grabbed their baton, you’d be shot....Now, when we were kids in the ’70s and we watched Adam-12, they got into fights all the time, and they didn’t just take out the guns and shoot people. When you watched The Rookies, they got into fights all the time, but if they just actually took out a gun and shot the hippie, we would have said, ‘Whoa, what’s going on?’”
— Filmmaker Quentin Tarantino appearing on HBO’s Real Time With Bill Maher, November 6, to cite fictional 1970s TV shows as evidence that police in 2015 are more violent.

Current GOPers Make Ronald Reagan “Look Like Abbie Hoffman”

“Generally, this field I feel, makes...Ronald Reagan look like Abbie Hoffman and Herman Cain look like Winston Churchill. But there were some competing voices from Rand Paul and Kasich was certainly agitated and seemed to try and, you know, bring the clown car under control, I thought.”
— Former West Wing actor Bradley Whitford on a post-debate edition of MSNBC’s Hardball, November 10.

Don’t Call a Socialist a Socialist

“Bernie Sanders is sounding an alarm that’s been around for 100 years....Labels are so incendiary. They use communist and socialist. The one percent that have the money are calling him a socialist. And we’re a fairly socialist government already. I’m hoping somebody listens to him. We need it.”
— Actor Dick Van Dyke talking about Bernie Sanders on the October 23 edition of PBS’s Tavis Smiley.

Actor Cheers Obama’s “Very Favorable” Legacy

“I think his legacy will be looked upon, maybe not right now, but in years to come, I think it will be looked upon very favorably because of what he was able to do with the healthcare initiative, ObamaCare.”
Breaking Bad star Bryan Cranston in an interview with The Hill published November 11.

PUBLISHER: L. Brent Bozell III
EDITORS: Brent H. Baker, Rich Noyes, Tim Graham
NEWS ANALYSTS: Scott Whitlock, Kyle Drennen, Matthew Balan, Jeffrey Meyer and Curtis Houck
INTERN: Michael McKinney