Notable Quotables - 12/01/1997


Arlington Cemetery Media Frenzy?


"Republicans succeeded in spreading this despicable lie because the press is as addicted to scandal as they are."
- Time columnist Margaret Carlson's "Outrage of the Week" on CNN's Capital Gang, Nov. 22.

"There's been considerable publicity lately about accusations that President Clinton quote, 'perhaps provided burial space at Arlington National Cemetery to major campaign donors,' unquote. Spokesmen for President Clinton flatly and unequivocally denied this today to CBS News and they called it 'a deliberate political smear,' unquote."
- CBS anchor Dan Rather with the totality of broadcast network evening show time devoted to the Arlington story, 17 seconds on the November 21 Evening News.


Defend Yourself, Black Conservative Race Traitor


"Do you never feel like you're being used by white conservatives to lead this thing, that you're the cat's paw?"

"One of your critics says: 'For someone to stand within the ranks and say 'I'm not black,' but use it to destroy his own people, that's the kind we label a traitor.' That's how you're perceived by many people in the black community. 'I'm not black,' says Ward Connerly."

"I get the feeling that you're looking at things through rose-colored glasses. I can see black folks across the country look at him now and saying [sic] what world does this Connerly guy think we're living in?'"
- Some of 60 Minutes correspondent Mike Wallace's questions to Ward Connerly, lead spokesman for California's Proposition 209 outlawing racial preferences in state government, November 9.


Racism on the Decline? Ha!


"You talked about the responsibility of being an African-American woman, and being descendents of slaves. Conservatives are quick to point to you, and people like an indication that ours is a colorblind society. Where do you come down on what is now the popular whipping boy in politics, affirmative action?"
- CBS Public Eye host Bryant Gumbel to Oprah Winfrey, November 19.

"If being racist is no longer acceptable, then how come the schools are in such bad shape, and black kids don't get a good education still and the criminal justice system is filled with young black men?"
- National Public Radio White House correspondent Mara Liasson on Fox News Sunday, November 2.


Today: Only Tough on Authors Who Attack Liberal Heroes


"Best-selling author Kitty Kelley has proven both her courage and her credibility with her no-holds-barred biographies of Frank Sinatra, Elizabeth Taylor, and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Now she's out with her most difficult and explosive book yet. Nancy Reagan: The Unauthorized Biography goes on sale this morning, and already people are running for cover, issuing denials from all around the nation....This book paints a picture of a totally unethical, scheming social climber who lied and faked her way through life. Is that the picture you set out to create?"
- Then-Today co-host Bryant Gumbel beginning a three-day interview with Kitty Kelley, April 8, 1991.


"The book, The Dark Side of Camelot, is out today, but the controversy began earlier this fall when a collection of Hersh's source documents on some of the most titillating topics proved to be fakes. Seymour Hersh, good morning...You handle the legacy of JFK with about as much tenderness as a steamroller. What was your goal with the book?"
- Today co-host Matt Lauer beginning a two-day interview with Seymour Hersh, November 10, 1997.


What Coffee Tapes Prove: Clinton Combines Best of Carter, Reagan


"Flattering fat cats with backstage gossip about world affairs, modestly describing how he tutored Arab leaders on Middle East diplomacy, mournfully confessing the sins of his opponents, striving to dip into the heart of every last soul he meets, Clinton emerges as a consummate persuader, a missionary for his own creed who combines Jimmy Carter's encyclopedic mastery of issues with Ronald Reagan's instinct for translating them into homey words."
- Los Angeles Times staff reporter Richard T. Cooper in an October 18 front-page news story describing what's on the coffee tapes.


Open-Minded Time?


"I don't think there's a bias in the media now the way there used to be....I know that at Time, we're pretty careful to make sure everybody's open-minded, that you're not bringing a political bias to this....I think that our newsroom at Time and the people who write there are open-minded and not Democrats and liberals as the popular perception is."
- Time Managing Editor Walter Isaacson responding to a Fox News poll showing "bias" led the list (with 44 percent) of what the people surveyed believed was the media's "worst problem," November 9 Fox News Sunday.

Reality Check:
"The noises coming from [Rep. Sonny] Bono and many of his fellow Republican signers of House Speaker Newt Gingrich's 'Contract with America' signal a radical shift in Congress' attitude toward environmental issues - a shift that may bode ill for the health of snail darters, spotted owls, and even the human species."
- Time reporter Dick Thompson in a February 27, 1995 story headlined "Congressional Chain-Saw Massacre: If Speaker Newt Gingrich gets his way, the laws protecting air, water and wildlife may be endangered."


Global Warming: 1840 or 1940?


"Scientists delving through 400 years worth of arctic ice and mud have unearthed more evidence pointing to a probable human link to this century's higher temperatures."
- Washington Post reporter Joby Warrick's lead in a November 14 article headlined "Arctic Implicates Humans in Warming."


"An unprecedented warming in the arctic climate, widely blamed on 20th century industrial pollution, actually began in 1840 as a result of natural factors, scientists reported yesterday."
- Toledo Blade reporter Michael Woods opening a story carried by the Washington Times headlined "Global Warming is Nothing New, Detailed New Study of Arctic Finds," same day.


Conservatives Like Excluding Blacks from College


"Did anyone really expect President Clinton to appoint an attorney general for civil rights who agrees with Senator Orrin Hatch on the subject, or to appoint someone who is happy that no blacks were admitted to the University of California? If Hatch won't let [NAACP activist] Bill Lann Lee get to the floor...Clinton should use a recess appointment."
- Time columnist Margaret Carlson on CNN's Capital Gang, November 15.


Che Guevara: Bigger Than Jesus


"He's simultaneously endowed with the humility of an everyman and the larger-than-life presence of a hero...In the proliferation of his image since his death (he'd be 69 today), he's remained an ever-youthful demi-god. Chesucristo, superstar."
- Los Angeles Times art critic Christopher Knight, October 18.


Conservative Views: The "Price" of Freedom of Speech


"For now, Jacoby's columns about homosexuality will be judged case by case. Was his column on Oct. 23 offensive? Yes. Should it have been published? Yes. But it's a high price to pay for freedom of the press."
- Boston Globe Ombudsman Jack Thomas concluding a column condemning conservative Jeff Jacoby's column on liberal gay intolerance for conservatives, November 3.


L. Brent Bozell III, Publisher
Brent H. Baker, Tim Graham; Editors
Eric Darbe, Geoffrey Dickens, Gene Eliasen,
Steve Kaminski, Clay Waters;
Media Analysts
Kristina Sewell, Research Associate
Carey Evans, Circulation Director
Rebecca Hinnershitz; Karen Sanjines; Intern