Nader Crashes the GOP's Bash. Independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader is crashing the Republican National Convention, stopping by Madison Square Garden, giving a flurry of media interviews and offering a running critique of nearly every major policy initiative of the Bush administration. By By Brian Faler. [washingtonpost.com - Politics]
Archives for August, 2004
Hard right is left on the sidelines of GOP convention. At the GOP convention, president Bush's political core stays offstage so cameras don't see and swing voters don't hear. [USATODAY.com Politics - Top Stories]
CNN rejected Log Cabin Republicans ad urging inclusiveness at RNC
Blogger Joshua Micah Marshall has reported on his website, Talking Points Memo, that CNN has refused to run a TV advertisement by the gay Republican group Log Cabin Republicans. The ad, as Marshall described it, advocates "an inclusive, rather than an intolerant Republican party" and concludes with the words "HOPE NOT FEAR." According to Marshall, other channels, including FOX News Channel, have agreed to run the ad -- but CNN has rejected it as "too controversial."
Media Matters for America viewed the ad, and we're guessing the part CNN deemed too controversial is not the clip from a stirring speech by the Great Communicator before a Republican Convention past. Rather, it's likely a photo of gay-basher Fred Phelps, carrying his trademark placards emblazoned with the words "GOD HATES FAGS."
So, to sum up: CNN says Log Cabin Republicans cannot run an ad that accurately depicts signs carried by a publicity-savvy hate-monger. But the network has agreed to run (and give near-constant free airtime to) a series of ads by the group Swift Boat Veterans for Truth that smear Senator John Kerry.
NEW YORK Poor John McCain.
Here's a guy I've always sort of liked, a courageous war hero reduced to carrying water for the Bush campaign. (Related stories:
Moore index page)
So it was Monday night, as I sat in the press section unbeknownst to Sen. McCain when he switched from pro-war convention speaker to film critic. Out of nowhere, he began to attack my movie, Fahrenheit 9/11, calling me a "disingenuous filmmaker." The problem is, he hasn't seen the movie, a fact he later admitted to Chris Matthews on MSNBC.
I know Republicans are mad that my film may have convinced just enough people to tip the balance in this election. Yet with all the serious issues facing our country, and right smack in the middle of an important speech about the need to catch the terrorists and continue the war in Iraq, McCain decided to turn the convention into the Ebert and McCain Show. He claimed that I portrayed Saddam's Iraq as an "oasis of peace."
Some of the 20 million who have seen the film must have wondered, "Did I miss that scene? I knew I shouldn't have gone out for those Goobers." All I can imagine McCain was referring to was a brief cutaway just as President Bush announces the commencement of the bombing of Baghdad on March 19, 2003.
Human-rights groups say thousands of civilians were killed because of our bombing. I thought it would be worthwhile to show some of the faces of Iraqi people who might soon meet their death.
I felt really bad for McCain standing there on the stage. The man wanted to be president. That dream was snuffed out during the 2000 primaries, when George W. Bush's supporters spread nasty rumors about what five and a half years in a North Vietnamese POW camp might have done to McCain's sanity.
Then there were the calls to potential white voters in South Carolina to inform them that McCain had a "black baby." (He and his wife adopted a child from Bangladesh.) The Bush supporters also spread other rumors that questioned McCain's patriotism, even though the man was a decorated war hero while W. chose to oh, let's not get into that again.
Still, McCain has offered to soldier on for Bush. So how does Bush's campaign treat him? It doesn't tell him I might be in the press section, officially credentialed.
It has him say some gibberish about my movie. Everyone then sees me, I start laughing my ball cap off, the crowd goes bananas, and poor McCain must think he said something funny or cool, so he says, "That line was so good, I'll use it again."
Thousands of Republicans turned to me chanting "Four more years." I thought, "That's strange, Republicans are usually good at math, but they're off by a few dozen months. Bush only has two months left." So I held up two fingers to correct their miscalculation. But that just drove them into more of a frenzy.
If you have never had this happen to you, I insist you try it at least once in your life. It is better than an angry mosh pit at a Slayer concert. As a quiet salute to Beavis and Butthead, I held up my index finger and thumb in an "L" the international sign for loser which is what I hope their candidate is about to become.
As for McCain, he had to beg the mob to be silent and listen to the rest of his speech. He must have wondered why a party that promises to protect us from terrorists booed my name more loudly than Saddam's or Osama's. Actually, no one mentioned the "O" name Monday night because, well, that would acknowledge that they have failed to find him.
Perhaps that is why Bush told Today anchor Matt Lauer that we can't win the war against terrorism. Perhaps that is why they were more mad at me than the bad guys. I'm much easier to remove.
Maybe I'll call up McCain and treat him to a movie down the block, one I know he will enjoy, considering he agreed that I was right when Chris Matthews said a main point of my movie is that "war is often fought by people without power."
If he will join me at the movies, he'll see brave soldiers like himself face the camera and tell the truth to the American people about what is going on in a place called Iraq.
Convention opening night comparison: FOX's live speech coverage of Republicans almost doubled that of Dems.
CNN aired five more minutes of live primetime speech coverage on the first night of the RNC than it aired on the first night of the DNC. MSNBC aired 17 minutes more of the RNC speeches than of the DNC speeches.
FOX News Channel devoted 65 of its 74 minutes of live speech coverage to major speakers, airing speeches by both Senator John McCain (R-AZ) (25 minutes) and former New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani (40 minutes) in their entirety. On the first night of the DNC, the network devoted just 40 minutes to major speakers -- airing only former President Bill Clinton's speech (24 minutes) and Senator Hillary Clinton's (D-NY) introduction of him (11.5 minutes) in their entirety. It aired only 45 seconds of former Vice President Al Gore's speech and just four minutes of former President Jimmy Carter's speech.
On the opening night of the RNC, FOX aired live coverage of speeches by September 11 victims' family members Deena Burnett, Debra Burlingame, and Tara Stackpole. Yet on the first night of the DNC, the network did not air any of a speech by Haleema Salie, whose pregnant daughter and son-in-law were on one of the planes that crashed into the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. CNN and MSNBC did show Salie's speech.
Finally, mediabistro.com's TVNewser weblog noted that while FOX aired the national anthem live during the RNC, the network did not air it during the DNC.
WaPo: Giuliani Charges Lack Context. Former New York mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani made a number of specific attacks based on statements allegedly made by Democratic presidential nominee John F. Kerry in his speech to the Republican National Convention Monday night. But Giuliani's description of those comments often lacked context. By By Glenn Kessler.
For example, Giuliani said: "In October of 2003, he told an Arab American institute in Detroit that a security barrier separating Israel from the Palestinian territories was a barrier to peace. Okay. Then a few months later, he took exactly the opposite position."
The context: When Kerry made his statement about a "barrier to peace," he was referring to, as he put it, the "Israeli government's decision to build the barrier off of the Green Line [the de facto boundary between Israel and the West Bank] -- cutting deep into Palestinian areas."
Kerry's stance was similar to the position taken by President Bush a few months earlier, in July 2003, when he said in the Rose Garden: "I think the wall is a problem, and I discussed this with [Israeli Prime Minister] Ariel Sharon.
A) We need a strong military and we need to lead strong alliances. And then, with confidence and determination, we will be able to tell the terrorists: You will lose and we will win. The future doesn't belong to fear; it belongs to freedom.
B) "I don't think you can win it. But I think you can create conditions so that the -- those who use terror as a tool are -- less acceptable in parts of the world."
a) John Kerry
b) George Bush
If you got it right, congratulations. What would the Republican Noise machine have said if John Kerry said that we couldn't win the war on terror?
In a landmark June 1, 2002, speech at the United States Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., President Bush quoted former secretary of State general George C. Marshall to explain what is now known as the Bush doctrine an unflinching, pre-emptive war against terrorism in response to the Sept. 11 attacks.
"Those who say it is better to be feared have to answer a difficult question: How can you be safe when the world hates you?" O'Hanlon asks.
If political conventions are designed to showcase a candidate's biggest asset, then George W. Bush's will revolve around one thing: 9/11. Ever since Republicans chose New York - an overwhelmingly Democratic city in a state certain to back John Kerry - as their convention site, it has been clear that the memory of the 9/11 attacks would be central to the president's reelection effort.
"We have a clear vision on how to win the war on terror and bring peace to the world."
-- George W. Bush
July 30th 2004.
"I don’t think you can win [the war on terror]. But I think you can create conditions so that the — those who use terror as a tool are — less acceptable in parts of the world.”-- George W. Bush
Aug. 29th, 2004.