MoveOn.org informed members today, via email, that CBS has decided to push back an important 60 Minutes piece dealing with the invasion of Iraq until after the November election, saying it would be “inappropriate” to air the piece before the election since it might interfere with the political season.
I had read of the network’s decision a couple of days ago and was angered but hardly surprised. After all, CBS refused to air Child’s Pay several months ago. Child’s Pay was the winning short in MoveOn’s contest “Bush in 30 Seconds” but this apparently meant little to CBS, which cited a policy against running “advocacy” ads. As MoveOn points out, CBS then “turned around and aired millions of dollars worth of ads promoting Bush’s new Medicare plan, which wouldn’t come online for years. It also aired controversial White House ads claiming that drug users supported terrorism.”
Certainly CBS is reeling from it’s recent piece on Bush’s National Guard Service. We all know how much of an effect this story, with it’s questioned documents, has had on CBS, it’s flagship show 60 Minutes and it’s esteemed anchor Dan Rather. Now it’s hard to bring to mind the reasons for the story because suspicion of Bush’s honesty in regard to his simple service responsibilities has been transferred to CBS and “Memogate”. An independent investigation has been mounted by CBS to discover what went wrong with the National Guard report and recommend changes, but the damage may have been done. Various individuals and organizations are mounting campaigns to oust Rather for his “liberal media bias” and even his hometown radio station has dropped his daily news broadcast.
MoveOn thinks CBS might be too timid now to run important news critical of Bush and they may be right. But it behooves those of us who think the media in general has been too accommodating of the Bush White House to speak up. Won’t you please call CBS and tell them what you think of their decision to postpone the 60 Minutes report of new evidence concerning the Invasion of Iraq?
You can reach CBS and it’s parent company, Viacom, at:
Sumner Redstone, Chairman, Viacom
Les Moonves, Chairman of CBS; co-President & co-CEO, Viacom
Andrew Heyward, President, CBS News
(212) 975-3247 or
You can also write to CBS at:
You can reach CBS affiliates, linked at:
Some final points that MoveOn makes may be worthy of consideration:
“CBS’ censorship decisions make its partisanship obvious. But here’s more: CBS is owned by Viacom, and Viacom’s chairman, Sumner Redstone, endorsed President Bush on Thursday, just one day before CBS pulled the 60 Minutes report on Iraq.”
“CBS overwhelmingly favored Republicans in its political giving, and the company spent millions courting the White House to stop FCC reform. According to a well-respected study, CBS News was second only to Fox in failing to correct common misconceptions about the Iraq war which benefited the Bush Administration—for example, the idea that Saddam Hussein was involved with 9/11.”
And CBS is the network that refused to air the miniseries titled The Reagans, “about former President Ronald Reagan which Republican partisans considered insufficiently flattering.”
Myself and MoveOn are just sayin’.