Theodore's World: Charlie Gibson is the New Dan Rather

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September 14, 2008

Charlie Gibson is the New Dan Rather

L.A. Times rebukes ABC for distorting Palin remarks

Charlie Gibson misquotes governor, assuming she saw U.S. in 'holy war'


The Los Angeles Times was among the news outlets crying foul after ABC's interview yesterday with Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, her first since Sen. John McCain named her his running mate.

The Times took Charlie Gibson to task for distorting statements Palin made about the Iraq war at her former Assemblies of God church in Wasilla, Alaska.

A well-circulated video shows Palin asking the congregation to pray that the nation's leaders would send troops to Iraq "on a task that is from God." But Gibson, apparently getting his information from an Associated Press story, frames the question with the assumption Palin is contending the U.S. was sending troops to Iraq on a mission from God.

"Are we fighting a holy war?" Gibson asked.

Palin disputed the characterization, pointing out she was paraphrasing Abraham Lincoln, who said, "Let us not pray that God is on our side in a war or any other time, but let us pray that we are on God’s side."

The Times said Gibson "went on to take a second part of her comments out of context. Palin had asked the group to pray 'that there is a plan, and that plan is God's plan.'"

But Gibson dropped her reference to praying, the Times said, and instead quoted Palin as saying the war was God's plan.

He asked if she believed the country was sending her son on a task from God.

"I don't know if the task is from God, Charlie," she responded, adding that she was proud of Track for "serving something greater than himself."

New York Times TV critic Alessandra Stanley said that during the interview, Gibson, who "sat back in his chair, impatiently wriggling his foot," had "the skeptical, annoyed tone of a university president who agrees to interview the daughter of a trustee but doesn’t believe she merits admission."

The McCain campaign also criticized ABC's characterization of Palin's statements.

"Gov. Palin's full statement was VERY different from the way Gibson characterized it," McCain spokesman Tucker Bounds said in a prepared statement.

"Gibson cut the quote — where she was clearly asking for the church TO PRAY THAT IT IS a task from God, not asserting that it is a task from God," he said.

"Palin's statement is an incredibly humble statement, a statement that this campaign stands by 100 percent, and a sentiment that any religious American will share," Bounds wrote.

Much was made by many pundits of Palin's apparent inability to recognize the term "Bush Doctrine."

But columnist Dan Froomkin of the Washington Post said he's "not sure anyone is entirely clear on what the Bush Doctrine is at this particular moment."

Mike Rappaport of the blog Right Coast called Gibson's approach "bad form and bad journalism," asking whether she agrees with the doctrine, without defining it. Rappaport pointed to Wikipedia's entry on the Bush Doctrine, which documents that it's a phrase associated with several different foreign policy positions and strategies.

For the rest of the article........... LINK HERE


Wild Thing's comment...........

Gibson should just admit he was acting as a surrogate for Obama. This is media bias at is worst! They tried hard to do a deliberate deception.

To their dissapointment I am sure they still failed at making Sarah look like an airhead. They failed at getting what they wanted... even in the edited interview she still came across as calm, likable and knowledgeable.

And this will not be the end of their dirty tricks. The debates are coming and the emphasis in the debates will be how to destroy McCain and Palin.

Obama is a total coward and so far will not meet McCain in a Townhall meeting. COWARD OBAMA!!!!!!!

If Republican candidates on any level continue to do taped interviews which I am totally against.......then Republican politicians need to go into these interviews with their own video crew. Even if it’s just an Aide with a video camera and they need to document every minute of it. Then when the press pulls this they need to release their own version of the interview. The press has gotten away with this stuff for too long.

Otherwise ONLY do LIVE interviews period!

ABC also not only edited the interview for content, but, they also blatantly edited the visuals by using using jump cuts.

I sent an email off and will put the LINK HERE in case anyone else would like to too.

The show I sent it to was 20/20

....Thank you Mark for sending this to me.

Posted by Wild Thing at September 14, 2008 05:55 AM


He was so pompous! Thinking he was "getting" to her, but she is so clever and quick thinking (come on, she's a hunter for crying out loud) that she whipped his butt!
What is it with journalists now days? Maybe they wanted to be movie stars but lacked the talent? I don't know but they're making me sick to my stomach.
Sarah rocked that interview.

Posted by: Lynn at September 14, 2008 06:19 AM

Journalism is dead, it has been for 35 years or more . Gibson is only now revealing his peacock colors. One only has to look at the line up in the networks to see that all are political hacks some are worse(Olbermann) than the others but like Gibson they are owned by the 'Party'. One of the interesting things about journalism is not the intellect exhibited by some of the past journalists but the lack thereof in the current spectrum, most have the lowest GPA ratings in college, we look at the backgrounds of some and find they were party hacks left over from former political campaigns, failed comedians or just plain sycophants hired by the networks to bolster their ratings, totally lacking in tact, guile, honesty and expertise. Then there are those who have law degrees and teaching credentials, they too have found their niche in the media as 'journalists'. 'Showboat Rivera', Fox's Errol Flynn.:)

Posted by: Jack at September 14, 2008 10:16 AM

Vilmar also posted about some of the original transcript on how ABC left out where Sarah says she meets with heads of state.

Maybe next time, the McCain camp will insist on having their own cameraman there to record the interviews.

Posted by: BobF at September 14, 2008 10:48 AM

The bias of much of the news media is overshadowed only by their vanity. Gibson's interview with Sarah Palin was blatant attack journalism. It was very evident and I think it backfired on Gibson. Palin handled herself very well.

You are right WT. Repubs should not allow taped, edited interviews, only live. I remember one businessman who had his own taping crew when Mike Wallace and 60 Minutes showed up for an interview with him. Mike Wallace then refused to stay, because he was no longer 100% in control and the businessman would have evidence to show if the interview was misedited.

Posted by: TomR at September 14, 2008 11:01 AM

Bret Hume on Fox this Sunday thought Gibson’s production crew was at
the root of the biased interview. He said the last thing Gibson wanted was
to come off looking like a grumpy “old” curmudgeon which he did. My
Problem is with Brian Ross, if this Idiot ever got any thing right it would
be a bloody miracle. When I was in New Zealand this spring I saw a reporter like Ross but one who got the job done with out bias, he is a
BBC investigative Journalist by the name of Louie Theroux He was
inside a US Prison, he walked the yard, went into cells and on one occasion
he asked a prisoner how long he was in for, he came back with 500 years
Plus life, he wasn’t joking!!! Would Ross have had the Cajones to do
that report??? Sure when pig’s fly!!!! thanks for the link!!!

Posted by: Tincan Sailor at September 14, 2008 11:53 AM

Lynn, I agree so much. People used to just bring us the news and when they did an interview it was just questions and answers. Now the meida are treated like celebs and made way too important.Then their agenda and mixed together it has totally gotten out of control. I can't stand how they are. They make total lies and no one calls them on it.

Posted by: Wild Thing at September 14, 2008 12:10 PM

Jack, thanks your right They really get my blood boiling. I watch tons of the political shows and then get so ticked off. Their arrogance too drives me up a wall. haha

Posted by: Wild Thing at September 14, 2008 12:15 PM

The Charlie Gibson ABC News interview with Sarah Palin was obviously a hit piece to promote the election of Barack Obama to be President in November. Asking Sarah Palin "Can you look the country in the eye and say, "I have the experiece to be not just vice president but perhaps president of the United States?"" was a valid question.

However, the real question that Charlie Gibson, ABC News, and the rest of the MSM won't ask is to Barack Hussein Obama. Can you look the country in the eye and say, "I have the experiece to be president of the United States on Day One and here are my accomplishments to support it?"

Bottom line, the focus of the election in Novemeber is not whether Sarah Palin has the experience to be President Day One because John McCain does, but does Barack Obama have the experience Day One as he is the one running to be president. Voters should be reminded of this every day until November 4th.

Posted by: Les at September 14, 2008 12:17 PM

BobF, thank you so much. I just now checked to see if I had a link to Vilmar's blog in my sidebar and was surprised I had not put it there yet. I was so sure it was there. But I just did it now so I really appreciate the link and also to the post he did about this.
It is horrible how they tried so hard to pull a fast one. Either way Sarah did a great job.

Posted by: Wild Thing at September 14, 2008 12:19 PM

Tom, wow thanks for sharing about that. How fantastic that was, I can just see them getting furious about his having his own taping crew. heh heh

Posted by: Wild Thing at September 14, 2008 12:22 PM

Tincan Sailor , that is really interesting. Thank you so much for sharing about that.

Posted by: Wild Thing at September 14, 2008 12:25 PM

Les, good one and I would love for Obama to be pounded on that question every day.

Posted by: Wild Thing at September 14, 2008 12:28 PM

I've found a new hobby. I got a gmail account and then a huffington post account "nobamanation". So far they have published 3 of my comments and censored 8. What a hoot.

Posted by: Duane at September 14, 2008 04:06 PM

Any truth to the rumor that liberals are sooooo open minded that their brains have fallen out?

Posted by: darthcrUSAderworldtour07 at September 14, 2008 05:34 PM

Duane, hahaha that is funny.

Posted by: Wild Thing at September 14, 2008 11:11 PM

Darth, heh heh I think that rumor just has to be true.

Hi Darth good to see you.

Posted by: Wild Thing at September 14, 2008 11:12 PM