Jewish World Review May 26, 2005/ 17 Iyar,
What left-wing P.B.S. bias?
Bill Moyers, the lamented, demented former host of the PBS program "Now With Bill Moyers," referred to the American-led war in Iraq as doing "to the people of Baghdad what bin Laden did to us."
He called American flag pins "a little metallic icon of patriotism" comparable to Mao's Little Red Book being displayed on every Communist Party official's desk in China. This is silly. The metallic icons of patriotism that Mao used to keep the masses in line were considerably longer and sharper, and were usually applied to the back by a fellow "comrade."
Moyers denounced Condoleezza Rice for her ineptness in not preventing the 9/11 attack, despite a clearly worded memo stating: "Bin Laden determined to attack the United States." In other breaking news: Waitress in L.A. Determined to Become Actress. As Condi said, "I don't think you, frankly, had to have that report to know that bin Laden would like to attack the United States."
In his lengthy diatribe against Rice, Moyers said she had cried wolf, intentionally misleading "America and the world about the case for invading Iraq." Apparently Rice had said Iraq was "a part of the war on terror" on the grounds that Saddam was: (1) supporting terrorists, (2) a weapons of mass destruction threat and (3) "a tremendous barrier to change in the Middle East."
But as regular viewers of PBS know, in fact, we invaded Iraq for oil.
Yes, precisely. That's why U.S. forces seized Iraq's oil fields right after Baghdad fell, confiscated their vast oil reserves, and now we can buy all the gasoline we want here at home for just pennies a gallon any time we want. Sorry, we what? Folks, my switchboard is completely lit up and this isn't even a radio show.
Moyers responded to the 2002 midterm elections in which Republicans bucked history by gaining seats in both the House and the Senate by warning Americans of the coming Rapture: "(I)f you like G-d in government, get ready for the Rapture." As Moyers described the horror that was to come: "That agenda includes the power of the state to force pregnant women to surrender control over their own lives."
I'm pretty sure even the harshest anti-abortion laws would only prevent a woman from killing her baby, not send her to a slave labor camp. But with his broadcast career crashing down around him, Moyers took a brave stand against the internment of pregnant women.
Moyers also said the agenda of the coming theocracy "includes using the taxing power to transfer wealth from working people to the rich." (And we'd appreciate it if you poor people would fold the bills a little more neatly before mailing them in next time.)
As the extra little cherry on top, all Moyers' nut conspiracy theories were being broadcast on PBS, subsidized by the U.S. taxpayer. Not only that, but Moyers takes a cut of every video of his show sold, and he has family members on the payroll. Let's see now: a corrupt, partisan demagogue and his family caught feeding at the taxpayers' trough. Let's just hope he never took a free golfing trip to Scotland!
When Ken Tomlinson, chair of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, suggested that PBS was maybe a smidgen left of center, Moyers began his lengthy public nervous breakdown. Already well-known as an insufferable jerk, it turns out Moyers is also a crazy megalomaniac, too.
In a recent speech to the National Conference on Media Reform a conference dedicated to increasing liberal representation in the media from 94.6 percent to 99.8 percent Moyers responded to his critics by reading from his fan mail, reading favorable news articles about himself, and comparing himself to Jesus Christ or, as he put it, "one of our boys." If it were possible that he actually believed in G-d, PBS would be doing a special report on Moyers after a remark like that.
He said his critics were "obsessed with control, using the government to threaten and intimidate" almost as control-obsessed as 45 senators trying to tell 55 senators which judicial nominees are acceptable. The threat is: Provide balanced programming or stop expecting subsidies from the U.S. taxpayer.
Moyers also noted that his critics were the ones behind the bin Laden-like attack on Iraq in order "to make sure Ahmed Chalabi winds up controlling Iraq's oil." (And that's why gasoline is so cheap!) Yep, it's all right there on the Project for a New American Century's agenda: (1) invade Iraq, (2) somehow get Bill Moyers' PBS show canceled, (3) invade Syria, (4) invade Iran...
According to Moyers, the reason these right-wing radicals focused on him despite the fan mail he gets to say nothing of favorable write-ups in the mainstream media is that he "didn't play by the conventional rules of Beltway journalism." (That and the giant piece of tinfoil on his head.)
These contemptible "rules of Beltway journalism" apparently consist of reporters completely ignoring important conspiracy theories regularly featured on Moyers' program and instead functioning as "government stenographers" as Moyers called one reporter for The New York Times, no less.
Moyers did live by one rule of old-media journalism: He believed he should not need viewers to have a TV show. During fund-raising drives, scores of local PBS affiliates would drop Moyers' program for fear of driving away donors. Let me say that I personally believe this was a mistake. Moyers' show was the one PBS program that made the pledge drives seem interesting.
But the absence of an audience is no concern for liberals. After all, Air America is still on air. How about making George Soros pay Moyers' salary? Then at least he'd have a little less money to spend on wrecking the country. Hey maybe that's what Moyers meant about the Republican government transferring money from working people to the rich.
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