Saturday, 14 June 2008
BERNARD GOLDBERG RECALLS TIM RUSSERT'S POSITION ON "DIVERSITY"
Here, from Brent Baker of www.newsbusters.org, is a terrific
segment from last night's Hannity & Colmes, in which Bernard Goldberg
reminisces about Tim Russert and his understanding of "newsroom diversity":
Goldberg Recalls Russert's Call
for Newsroom Ideological Diversity
Appearing by phone
on Friday's The O'Reilly Factor on FNC, former CBS News correspondent
Bernard Goldberg recalled for fill-in host Laura Ingraham how Tim Russert
recognized there should be more to newsroom diversity than just diversity by
gender and skin tone, that you need ideological diversity. Goldberg, who was
forced out of CBS News after he pointed out their liberal bias, lamented:
I wish his colleagues understood that
part of Tim Russert, too. That he knew that we needed all kinds of people in
journalism because if we didn't have it we were going to get one-sided
Goldberg read aloud to the FNC audience a quote
from Russert contained in an interview featured in Goldberg's 2003 book,
Arrogance: Rescuing America from the
I'm all for hiring women in the
newsroom and minorities in the newsroom -- I'm all for it. It opens up our
eyes and gives us a different perspective. But just as well, let's have people
with military experience. Let's have people from all walks of life. People
from the top echelon schools, but people from junior colleges and the
so-called middling schools -- that's the rich pageantry of America. I'm a
great believer in racial diversity and gender diversity, but you need cultural
diversity, you need ideological diversity. And then he emphasized, Laura:
You need it.
Goldberg's entire recollection from
the Friday, June 13 O'Reilly Factor:
He was one of the good guys. But the
reason he was one of the good guys isn't simply because he knew his beat
better than almost everybody else, he was one of the good guys because he was
fair. He was a blue collar guy who understood America and Americans a lot
better than a lot of other people who work in journalism. One of the things
that he told me -- I did a long interview with him and published an entire --
I didn't want to take snippets out so I published the entire transcript of the
interview. Let me read you a short segment here. This was about the need for
real diversity in the newsroom that goes beyond the kind we have now. He said:
I'm all for hiring women in the
newsroom and minorities in the newsroom -- I'm all for it. It opens up our
eyes and gives us a different perspective. But just as well, let's have
people with military experience. Let's have people from all walks of life.
People from the top echelon schools, but people from junior colleges and the
so-called middling schools -- that's the rich pageantry of America. I'm a
great believer in racial diversity and gender diversity, but you need
cultural diversity, you need ideological diversity. And then he emphasized,
Laura: You need it.
You know, I've spent much of the day listening
to his colleagues say wonderful things about Russert and I'm glad for every
word. But I wish his colleagues understood that part of Tim Russert, too. That
he knew that we needed all kinds of people in journalism because if we didn't
have it we were going to get one-sided journalism. We were going to get people
who brought their biases to the stories. And he didn't. He didn't. He went out
of his way to take a position, to look at a position, and say this is how I
feel about it and that is totally irrelevant. That's what made him as
important as he was. That he was fair.
As the tributes flood in from every newsroom of every network, I can only
hope against hope that they see this as Mr. Russert's true legacy, and then DO
something about it.
Lamentably, however, I do not at all expect this to happen. I believe
them when they talk about their regard for Mr. Russert, who was a remarkable
man. I do not believe they give a damn about what made him that
MORE ON THE END OF FREE SPEECH IN CANADA
Robert Spencer of www.jihadwatch.com
has written an excellent article detailing the end of free speech as we know it
in Canada - and how far the New York Times is willing to go to support the end
of free speech.
Sound ridiculous? I would agree if I didn't know it was true. It
Here are excerpts from Mr. Spencer's article, which you can read in its
entirety by clicking here.
Please, please do:
June 12, 2008
New York Times isn't
sure that free speech is such a good idea
"Unlike Others, U.S. Defends Freedom to Offend in
Speech," by Adam Liptak in the New York Times, June 12 (thanks to all who sent this in):
VANCOUVER, British Columbia A couple
of years ago, a Canadian magazine published an article arguing that the rise
of Islam threatened Western values. The articles tone was mocking and biting,
but it said nothing that conservative magazines and blogs in the United States
do not say every day without fear of legal reprisal.
The British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal will
soon rule on whether the cover story of the October 23, 2006, issue of
Macleans magazine violated a provincial hate speech law.
Two members of the Canadian Islamic Congress say
the magazine, Macleans, Canadas leading newsweekly, violated a provincial
hate speech law by stirring up hatred against Muslims. They say the magazine
should be forbidden from saying similar things, forced to publish a rebuttal
and made to compensate Muslims for injuring their dignity, feelings and
Does the Canadian Islamic Congress have any
evidence that Steyn's article stirred up hatred against Muslims? Why, no. But
that doesn't seem to matter.
The British Columbia Human Rights
Tribunal, which held five days of hearings on those questions here last week,
will soon rule on whether Macleans violated the law. As spectators lined up
for the afternoon session last week, an argument broke out.
Its hate speech! yelled one man.
Its free speech! yelled another.
In the United States, that debate has been
settled. Under the First Amendment, newspapers and magazines can say what they
like about minorities and religions even false, provocative or hateful
things without legal consequence.
The Macleans article, The Future Belongs to
Islam, was an excerpt from a book by Mark Steyn called America Alone
(Regnery, 2006). The title was fitting: The United States, in its treatment of
hate speech, as in so many other areas of the law, takes a distinctive legal
Canada, England, France, Germany, the Netherlands,
South Africa, Australia and India all have laws or have signed international
conventions banning hate speech. Israel and France forbid the sale of Nazi items
like swastikas and flags. It is a crime to deny the Holocaust in Canada, Germany
These are all foolish laws, including the
Holocaust denial laws. The Holocaust happened, but laws restricting speech, even
speech like this, set a dangerous precedent.
Earlier this month, the actress Brigitte Bardot,
an animal rights activist, was fined $23,000 in France for provoking racial
hatred by criticizing a Muslim ceremony involving the slaughter of sheep.
By contrast, American courts would not stop a
planned march by the American Nazi Party in Skokie, Ill., in 1977, though a
march would have been deeply distressing to the many Holocaust survivors
Six years later, a state court judge in New York
dismissed a libel case brought by several Puerto Rican groups against a
business executive who had called food stamps basically a Puerto Rican
program. The First Amendment, Justice Eve M. Preminger wrote, does not allow
even false statements about racial or ethnic groups to be suppressed or
punished just because they may increase the general level of
The problem here is that true statements about Islam and jihad will be suppressed,
and precisely as Islamic supremacists are pressing forward as never before with
their program of stealth jihad against the West. We are far closer to restrictions on
free speech than most people realize, with even the Times quoting learned
analysts in favor of such restrictions:
The irony of this is that Steyn's book,
which is what this article began by talking about, has not remotely inspired
acts of mass murder and terrorism. Acts of mass murder and terrorism have only
been inspired by words such as those being taught at the Islamic Saudi Academy in Virginia, and yet it is Steyn, not Muslim leaders in Canada who
teach the same things taught in the Islamic Saudi Academy, who is on trial.
Take, for example, these teachers in a Canadian Islamic school: they were suspended, but
not tried. And I wouldn't be in the least surprised if they are back at work
again now, teaching the same things.
Notice how the Times is now judge, jury, and
executioner for Steyn: his article, they say, was "intended to stir up racial
hatred." How do they know what Steyn intended? This omniscience regarding
intentions is a cornerstone of hate speech laws, and it is vehemently absurd.
And what race is Islam again?
The First Amendment is not, of course, absolute.
The Supreme Court has said that the government may ban fighting words or
threats. Punishments may be enhanced for violent crimes prompted by racial
hatred. And private institutions, including universities and employers, are
not subject to the First Amendment, which restricts only government
But merely saying hateful things about
minorities, even with the intent to cause their members distress and to
generate contempt and loathing, is protected by the First
Here comes more sly smearing of Steyn, this time
equating his work with the KKK:
In 1969, for instance, the Supreme
Court unanimously overturned the conviction of a leader of a Ku Klux Klan
group under an Ohio statute that banned the advocacy of terrorism. The Klan
leader, Clarence Brandenburg, had urged his followers at a rally to send the
Jews back to Israel, to bury blacks, though he did not call them that, and
to consider revengeance against politicians and judges who were
unsympathetic to whites.
In his opening statement in the Canadian
magazine case, a lawyer representing the Muslim plaintiffs aggrieved by the
Macleans article pleaded with a three-member panel of the tribunal to declare
that the article subjected his clients to hatred and ridicule and to force
the magazine to publish a response.
You are the only thing between racist, hateful,
contemptuous Islamophobic and irresponsible journalism, and law-abiding
Canadian citizens, the lawyer, Faisal Joseph, told the tribunal.
In response, the lawyer for Macleans, Roger D.
McConchie, all but called the proceeding a sham.
Innocent intent is not a defense, Mr.
McConchie said in a bitter criticism of the British Columbia law on hate
speech. Nor is truth. Nor is fair comment on true facts. Publication in the
public interest and for the public benefit is not a defense. Opinion expressed
in good faith is not a defense. Responsible journalism is not a
He is right, and that is why the British Columbia
law is so pernicious.
If we don't wake people up, it could be too late
before anyone even realizes. Call me alarmist, call me hysterical, but it only
took six months for Adolf Hitler to dismantle the Weimar Republic and impose a
dictatorship. Huey Long is said to have remarked, "Fascism will come to America,
but likely under another name, perhaps anti-fascism." Now we are seeing just
that: the anti-jihadists are called fascists, and are being silenced in fascist
fashion, in the name of anti-fascism. It's time to wake up. Please, try to wake
someone up today.
THE SUPREME COURT: MCCAIN'S ULTIMATE WEDGE ISSUE?
When we were in high school, we had (what we thought was) a funny
little saying about girls: "Beauty is only skin deep. But ugly?
It's right to the bone" It's the kind of sarcastic, impolitic humor high
school kids engage in. (Parenthetically, I also recall a couple that the girls
used to say about boys, which I can't even post here).
There is somewhat of a parallel to this saying when it comes to policy
decisions. The elected President can say one thing, then change gears and say
something else. But a Supreme Court decision? That is what it
is, it stands and there's nowhere you can go to change it except back to the
For months we have talked about what issue might supersede all others in the
2008 campaign. Among the contenders have been John McCain's age, Barack
Obama's color and Hillary Clinton's plumbing.
Then we have had John McCain's political apostacy on several issues which turns off some conservative voters, and
Barack Obama's church and other associations which turn off some Jews and
Obviously, there's plenty to choose from.
But I wonder if the single most important issue that emerges in the campaign
is who gets to replace the next several Supreme Court justices.
This week, in a split decision (5-4), the Supreme Court gave habeus
corpus rights to enemy combatants held at Guantamo. The left has hailed this as
a wonderful return to constitutionality. The right is appalled by
the conferring of rights to enemies of the state who were trying to kill
our soldiers and who never have had habeus corpus rights before.
The next president is likely to replace at least two Supreme Court
justices: John Paul Stevens, who is 88 years old, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg,
who is 75 years old and stricken with cancer. There maybe others as well,
but those are the two most likely prospects.
Both of these justices are hardline liberal/leftist in their decisions. If Barack Obama is replacing them
it will probably be with similarly hardline leftist judges. If John McCain is replacing
them it will probably be with judges who, at the very least, are
more centrist and most likely are conservative.
It is a virtual certainty that if Mr. Stevens and Ms. Ginsburg were replaced by two
McCain selections this decision would not have gone the same way.
Here, courtesy of an excerpt from an
article in yesterday's London Financial Times, is John McCain's view of
the court's decision:
John McCain on Friday described the decision by the Supreme Court to allow Guantnamo Bay prisoners to challenge their
detention in US courts as one of the worst decisions in the history of this
The Republican presidential candidate said he
agreed with the four dissenting justices on the nine-member court that foreign
fighters held at the detention camp were not entitled to the rights of US
He criticised Barack Obama, his Democratic opponent, for supporting the
decision and said it highlighted the importance of nominating conservative
judges to the Supreme Court. His remarks represented a hardening of his position
from his more moderate initial response to the ruling on Thursday, signalling a
strategic decision by the McCain campaign to make it an election issue.
Mr McCains stance appeared designed to demonstrate his toughness on national
security, while casting Mr Obama as soft on terrorists. It also looked
calculated to spark debate on the future of the Supreme Court one of the most
important election issues for many conservative voters.
Will Mr. McCain use this as an ongoing theme of his campaign? Will he demonstrate the differences between
a McCain and Obama presidency by featuring it? Will Mr. McCain's position
on Supreme Court justices bring in some of the conservatives his maverick
views have alienated, the ones who might consider Libertarian candidate Bob Barr
instead of him?
I don't know the answer to these questions any more than you do. But it
seems to me that the prospects for this being the ultimate wedge issue of 2008
are pretty strong.
MUGABE'S END GAME
As Zimbabwe's people starve in the streets and what few assets it has left
are spent on the lifestyles of robert mugabe and his thugs, the UN looks on with
detached indifference. The African Union does exactly the same.
These are the people who lecture the United States on international affairs and who
attack us on how little we give in humanitarian aid (which, in reality, is vastly
more than they do).
But what about the election that mugabe lost? Isn't he forced
to turn over what shreds and pickings are left to the opposition?
Truthfully, did you ever have even 1% expectation that he would?
If so, read this story from MSNBC news services and lose that last percent:
HARARE, Zimbabwe - President
Robert Mugabe vowed on Saturday that the opposition Movement for Democratic
Change would never rule Zimbabwe, adding he was prepared to fight.
"We shall never, never accept anything
that smells of a delivered parcel of what they call the MDC ... that is not
going to happen. We are prepared to fight for it if we lose it in the same way
that our forefathers lost it," Mugabe said referring to British colonial
Opposition leader Morgan
Tsvangirai, rights groups and Western powers accuse Mugabe of unleashing a
brutal campaign, including using police to harass opponents, to win a
presidential run-off vote scheduled for June 27.
Mugabe and his ZANU-PF lost
presidential and parliamentary elections on March 29.
second ballot, however, is required because Tsvangirai fell short of the
majority needed to win the presidency outright. He says 66 of his followers
have been killed since the March poll.
police on Saturday brought the Zimbabwe opposition's second-in-command to
Reporters watched as Tendai
Biti, handcuffed and appearing tense, was brought into Justice Ben
secretary-general of the MDC, was arrested upon returning to Zimbabwe from
neighboring South Africa on Thursday.
Police say he faces a
treason charge, which can carry the death penalty.
Where is the rest of the world? Where are they
hiding? Where are the troops to insure democracy? Where is the food
and clothing so desperately needed by Zimbabweans, whose great "crime" is
existing within the borders of this mugable-created hell on earth?
Zimababwe has gone from being the breadbasket of Africa to one of its most
despicable cesspools and graveyards. And the UN and African Union are too
busy lecturing the United States on how we should behave to do a thing about it.
I'm not a religious man, but if there is such a thing as eternal punishment
let it be visited upon robert mugabe. And his enablers in the world