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Jason Linkins

Jason Linkins

Posted: May 1, 2008 05:41 PM

Tim Russert Doesn't Want You to Read This

Read More: , Home News

Here is some of the stuff from Arianna Huffington's new book, Right is Wrong, that NBC's Tim Russert has worked himself into a lather over and doesn't want you to read.

On Russert pumping up the panic:

Take Tim Russert, whose July 1, 2007, Meet the Press interview with Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff was about as priapic a display as you're ever likely to see outside of a porno film or the monkey cage at the zoo, with Russert desperately trying to get Chertoff to pump up the panic meter...You could almost hear the blood rushing to his loins--and the palpable sense of deflation when Chertoff refused to stroke his fantasy.

On Russert being the White House's "best format":

In the meantime, the White House adopted its standard operating procedure: farm out the really vile stuff to surrogate sleaze-peddlers while dispatching its press secretary to Meet the Press to take the high road...Tim Russert didn't blink an eye--proving once again why his show is your "best format," as former Cheney communications director Cathie Martin described Meet the Press while testifying during the Libby trial.

On Russert as a purveyor of conventional wisdom:

It's no secret why the arbiters of conventional wisdom get so defensive when these kinds of questions are raised: their opinions helped lead to the war in Iraq, so anytime the conventional wisdom is threatened, they rise in its defense...Exhibit A came during Barack Obama's appearance on Meet the Press on December 30, 2007. Tim Russert, one of the temple guards of conventional wisdom, used one of the classic weapons in its defense: the straw man.

On Russert's "EZ Pass" journalism:

On June 6, 2005, Meet the Press featured Ken Mehlman, then chairman of the Republican National Committee. It was another classic example of why host Tim Russert has become journalism's answer to the EZ Pass, those electronic tags that allow drivers to go through toll booths without having to stop. On the show, Mehlman was allowed to distort, twist, manipulate, obfuscate, and disssemble his way through every stop on the disinformation highway.

You can get the full details in Right Is Wrong.

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