Notable Quotables - 01/02/1995


Welcome Back

"From the bottom of the income ladder, the prospect of the Republican revolution is chilling, especially because the gap between the rich and the poor has already widened significantly."
- Los Angeles Times Washington reporters James Risen and Elizabeth Shogren, December 18 news story.

"Give you an opportunity to answer the criticism, says 'Dan Rather, if you believe what he has just told you [that conservatives are compassionate as well], you believe that rocks grow, that these', all of this in quotation marks, 'these are hard men who favor those in the country who have wealth and they are there to protect those people, they are not compassionate people.'"
- Rather to Armey, December 1 Evening News.

"They (Republicans) say that none of this is going to increase the deficit even though the government will collect less in taxes, because it will stimulate the economy, because this also applies to things like stocks and bonds, it's not just houses. Most economists say that that's a lot of baloney. That it's not true."
- NBC reporter Mike Jensen on the capital gains tax cut proposal, December 9 Today.

"The election returns start with a stark fact so disturbing that no one in the media wants to state it plainly: The U.S. House of Representatives is now to be led by a world-class demagogue, a talented reactionary in the vengeful tradition Gov. George Wallace and Sen. Joseph McCarthy. Like Wallace before him, Newt Gingrich evokes the nation's boiling anxieties as a rancid populism of `us vs. them,' though he is too shrewd to make the racial resentments explicit. Like Joe McCarthy, Gingrich depicts his adversaries not simply as mistaken in their political views but as sick, traitorous people who are invidiously subverting the national character....We shall soon find out if there is a kinder, gentler Newt lurking beneath the rock. Somehow I doubt it. His hatred seems to be from the heart."
- William Greider, producer of PBS Frontline shows and former Washington Post Assistant Managing Editor, in the December 29, 1994-January, 12, 1995 Rolling Stone.


If Only He Could Be Speaker

"Mario Cuomo seems not so much a defeated warrior these days as he does a liberated philosopher; free to travel the world expressing political views built on practical experience."
- CNN's Brian Jenkins in story on the man who lost his re-election bid, December 8 Inside Politics.


What Isn't Reagan's Fault?

Reagan Buildup at CIA Spawned Current Woes Security Failures Followed Cold War Successes
- Washington Post, December 29


Great Analytical Minds Think Alike

"As a milepost, then, we offer 'How the Gingrich stole Christmas'...

For pianos and parsleys, peanuts and pajamas.

Why he'd even take kiddies away from their mammas.

The Gingrich said things that the Hoos [Democrats] thought were shocking.

He'd take back each present and empty each stocking."
- Charles Osgood, December 11 Sunday Morning.

"Uncle Scrooge: `Tis the season to bash the poor. But is Newt Gingrich's America really that heartless?"
- cover of December 19 Time.

"How the Gingrich Stole Christmas!"
- cover of December 26, 1994/January 2, 1995 Newsweek.


Gumbel's PBS Crusade

"The money we're talking about is negligible. Can we really say that a country that spends $250 billion on its military can't afford one-tenth of one percent of that for its culture?....What about the overriding issue here that if we accept that art and culture are expressions of a civilized society, the lasting expressions of that, why shouldn't government be involved? Why shouldn't it lend a hand?"

Right now the American taxpayer carries a lighter burden than most citizens in other industrialized nations who support their art to a greater extent than we do!"
- "Questions" from Bryant Gumbel to David Keating of the National Taxpayers Union, December 8 Today.


Ultimate Media Insult: Gingrich is the New Reagan

"In outlook, in prescription, and also in his penchant for shaving the truth by the clever manipulation of easily grasped images, Newt Gingrich is Reagan's true heir.....Like Rush, it doesn't seem to matter that a lot of what Newt says is mostly not true. Audiences love it - as they loved Reagan - even when they know that what they're hearing is often baseless. For many who applaud Gingrich and Limbaugh, the catchy rantings are acceptable caricatures of a caricature they already despise - government. Falsity is forgiven because the target of Gingrich's critiques (like Limbaugh's and Reagan's) is deemed worthy of vituperative attack....Gingrich clearly sees his job as acquiring and holding power for as long as possible by any means necessary. Ronald Reagan is surely smiling."
- Time's Michael Kramer, December 19.


So Who Is Really Leading the Charge Against Cutting Spending?

"For the nation's hungry getting help is getting to be more difficult. Across America, many feeding programs are turning people away. One reason: a dramatic drop in federal food subsidies....Advocates worry that if Republicans make good on their threatened budget cuts whatever safety net exists for America's needy, won't exist anymore."
- CBS reporter Randall Pinkston, December 19 Evening News.

"Churches and charities who deal with hunger lashed out against the Republican Contract with America, comparing it to something Ebeneezer Scrooge would have dreamed up....The problem of hunger in Atlanta is getting worse, not better, especially at the downtown Union Mission...Mission officials are worried that cutbacks in federal food programs will bring more hungry people to their door but without the money to feed them
- Reporter Kenley Jones, December 21 Today.


Reagan Revulsion

"Even those of us who felt we were doing a good job at explaining how his economic policies were not going to work used the pictures the White House was having us present. Ronald Reagan in a perfect tableau, a Norman Rockwell view of America, with all white faces in middle America, high school marching bands and balloons. It was a very patriotic view of an untroubled country."
- NBC News reporter Andrea Mitchell on A&E's Investigative Reports: Naked Washington, December 23.

Lesley Stahl: "Here's a guy who fooled most of the people most of the time....He was a person who didn't understand the issues at all, and we know that for a fact. And yet he presented himself as a strong, active person who's pushed around his wife. He presented himself as what he wasn't, and we bought it completely. Lock, stock, and barrel....But it's scary, because he led us off in the wrong direction."
Roger Ailes: "Well, that depends on your politics."
Stahl: "No. I mean, we're suffering, I don't think it is politics, we're suffering from the mistakes he led us off to continue doing despite the evidence that it wasn't working. I'm talking about the economic side."
- Exchange on Straight Forward on the America's Talking channel, October 25.

"The country's politics took a radical right turn in '94. We can read all about it next year after Gingrich seals the $4.5 million deal to publish his book. We'll take in a chapter right after we drop the kids off at the orphanage. But then maybe we'd be better off if we forgot most of what happened in '94. Ronald Reagan has."
- Boston Herald reporter J.M. Lawrence in story reviewing the past year, December 25.


- L. Brent Bozell III; Publisher
- Brent H. Baker, Tim Graham; Editors
- James Forbes, Andrew Gabron, Mark Honig, Steve Kaminski, Gesele Rey, Clay Waters; Media Analysts
- Kathleen Ruff, Circulation Manager;
- Melissa Gordon, Intern