Ed Driscoll

Airbrushing Their Own

As Red State’s Caleb Howe joked on Twitter today, “Shorter MSNBC: Kennedy was holier than the pope, cooler than Elvis, smarter than Hawking, and possibly the source of all life on earth.”

Or as Chris Matthews was caught saying, “He wanted to be his brother’s brother. And then he turned that torch over last year to Barack Obama…Barack is now the last brother.”

Ed Morrissey asks, “Will anyone in the media call out Matthews for his shameless Obama shilling? I somehow doubt it.”

Sadly, that sort of blind ideology is what we’ve come to expect from Chris; but this remark by MSNBC’s David Shuster, as caught by Mark Finkelstein of Newsbusters, takes the cake:

DAVID SHUSTER: Ted Kennedy, unlike so many politicians of this day, he didn’t dabble in the small stuff, the petty personal attacks: that was not him. And again that’s why I think so many people are feeling so sad, not only for the loss of him but for the loss perhaps of a political era.

No, Kennedy, didn’t dabble in small petty, personal attacks, just big nuclear ones:

“Robert Bork’s America is a land in which women would be forced into back alley abortions, blacks would sit in segregated lunch counters, rogue police could break down citizens’ doors in midnight raids, schoolchildren could not be taught about evolution, writers and artists could be censored at the whim of government, and the doors of the federal courts would be shut on the fingers of million of citizens.” — Sen. Edward Kennedy, floor of the U.S. Senate, 1987.

Of course, it isn’t Ted Kennedy who exclusively gets his halo brightly polished by the MSM when he passes away; Brent Bozell notes that airbrush treatment that the late CBS producer Don Hewitt received from his former employer:

They led the entire CBS Evening News with this story, like it was the death of a pope, and substitute anchor Maggie Rodriguez laid on the praise, super-thick:

“When the telephone rings, chances are you don’t automatically think of Alexander Graham Bell, and when the television news comes on, you don’t think of Don Hewitt. But maybe, at least tonight, you should.”

NBC substitute anchor Lester Holt celebrated the longevity of “60 Minutes” as an “unmatched achievement” that assembled “one of the best teams in the business,” and quoted Tom Brokaw saying “we were all students of his genius.” The story reran in the morning on “Today,” with Matt Lauer saluting Hewitt as a “a giant, I mean, no question about it, and a good guy.”

ABC’s Gibson offered Hewitt only tributes: “He died holding the highest respect of all of us in this business he loved. He was an extraordinary broadcaster.”

It didn’t occur to anyone inside the liberal TV news bubble that to half the country, “60 Minutes” is often synonymous with cheap liberal attack journalism. Even the resident “comedian” Andy Rooney trashed Mel Gibson as someone God regretted creating. None of the networks could locate a single story of Hewitt’s that was controversial, divisive, or inaccurate. No one could recall the shady “unintended acceleration” story on Audi in 1986 that almost bankrupted them, or the shoddy Alar-on-apples scare of 1989.

Thank God the legacy media still exists to provide the sort of thoughtful, nuanced coverage of their peers that’s unavailable from anywhere else.

Update: There’s got to be a morning after