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In Rush to Air, CBS Quashed Memo Worries
Washington Post ^ | 09/20/2004 | Howard Kurtz, Michael Dobbs

Posted on 09/18/2004 7:27:43 PM PDT by jhouston

In the early-morning hours of Sept. 8, Dan Rather was preparing to fly to Washington for a crucial interview in the Old Executive Office Building, but torrential rain kept him in New York.

White House communications director Dan Bartlett had agreed to talk to "60 Minutes," but only on condition that the CBS program provide copies of what were being billed as newly unearthed memos indicating that President Bush had received preferential treatment in the National Guard. The papers were hand-delivered at 7:45 a.m. CBS correspondent John Roberts, filling in for Rather, sat down with Bartlett at 11:15.

(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...


TOPICS: Breaking News; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: cbs; cbsnews; forgery; killian; kurtz; michaeldobbs; napalminthemorning; rather; tang
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WP's latest contribution.
1 posted on 09/18/2004 7:27:43 PM PDT by jhouston
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To: jhouston

Rather and CBS now blame the White House. If the White House had just called them liars and forgers they would have never...


2 posted on 09/18/2004 7:29:16 PM PDT by jhouston
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To: jhouston

Dan Rather: "It's raining harder than emails from angry conservatives to the CBS website."


3 posted on 09/18/2004 7:30:14 PM PDT by 12 Gauge Mossberg (I Approved This Posting)
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To: jhouston
Later, Bartlett would explain why he did not challenge the documents with a question: "How am I supposed to verify something that came from a dead man in three hours?"

As us. We did it.

4 posted on 09/18/2004 7:32:16 PM PDT by js1138 (Speedy architect of perfect labyrinths.)
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To: jhouston

It's all Bush's fault!!


5 posted on 09/18/2004 7:33:35 PM PDT by 68skylark
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To: jhouston

bump


6 posted on 09/18/2004 7:34:55 PM PDT by hispanarepublicana (Miss Free Republic High School-1986)
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To: jhouston
Half an hour later, Roberts called "60 Minutes" producer Mary Mapes with word that Bartlett was not challenging the authenticity of the documents. Mapes told her bosses, who were so relieved that they cut from Rather's story an interview with a handwriting expert who had examined the memos.

If anything, this indicates that CBS knew there were problems with the memos and then acted like plaintiffs' trial lawyers when the White House did not object to the memos.

7 posted on 09/18/2004 7:34:56 PM PDT by vbmoneyspender
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To: jhouston
The article is basically an attempt to absolve CBS and Dan Rather from malicious intent. Nice try, but it won't fly.

The article also had a few accidental laugh lines:

Howard said he believed some of the outsiders' questions about superscript and proportionate spacing were "kind of silly."

8 posted on 09/18/2004 7:34:58 PM PDT by EternalHope (Boycott everything French forever. Including their vassal nations.)
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To: jhouston
Mary Mapes had been trying to get her hands on the rumored documents for five years.

Burkett started the rumor and Mapes has been chasing it for 5 years. Finally, he just manufactured the evidence she was looking for. So funny how it all comes full circle.
9 posted on 09/18/2004 7:35:10 PM PDT by counterpunch (The CouNTeRPuNcH Collection - www.counterpunch.us)
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To: 12 Gauge Mossberg

Dan Rather: "Charges and insults are sticking to me tighter than ticks on a hound".


10 posted on 09/18/2004 7:35:14 PM PDT by AngrySpud (Behold, I am The Anti-Crust ... Anti-Hillary)
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To: 68skylark
I found this blog: Blame Bush.
I'm not to up on the blogging scene, but when I came across this one.. well, it stood out in excellence. (I am not connected in any way, just think its worth sharing.) Your post reminded me of it.
11 posted on 09/18/2004 7:38:13 PM PDT by counterpunch (The CouNTeRPuNcH Collection - www.counterpunch.us)
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To: AngrySpud

Rather: This is going to stain my career like......well, you know.


12 posted on 09/18/2004 7:39:40 PM PDT by doug from upland (Dan Rather is a journalist like Michael Moore is a pole vaulter.)
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To: js1138
Half an hour later, Roberts called "60 Minutes" producer Mary Mapes with word that Bartlett was not challenging the authenticity of the documents.

I take it Roberts isn't a poker player.

13 posted on 09/18/2004 7:39:46 PM PDT by Howlin (What's the Font Spacing, Kenneth?)
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To: js1138

LOL! Correctamundo!


14 posted on 09/18/2004 7:40:56 PM PDT by rocksblues (Sorry John, we remember and will never forget your treason!)
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To: jhouston

If the documents were hand-delivered, why did the CBS fax header appear on the documents that the White House distributed to the rest of the media?


15 posted on 09/18/2004 7:42:29 PM PDT by ajf0
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To: jhouston
This story has a lot of new details. It's notable because it shows that WP and NYT now have people talking at CBS. It won't be long before they cultivate the same kind of sources at the Kerry campaign.

Of course Howie had to get in a dig in the last couple of sentences. Has to repeat the "but the story is true" line.

16 posted on 09/18/2004 7:42:39 PM PDT by jhouston
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To: jhouston

This is great. Not only is Rather destroyed by this, his groomed lefty replacement Roberts has his hands dirty too. He was an anti-Bush hack out of the same mold as his boss.


17 posted on 09/18/2004 7:43:48 PM PDT by Elvis van Foster
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To: Howlin
I take it Roberts isn't a poker player.

Good response! I thought the same thing. Bush knew these documents were coming. They were prepared to punt and trap CBS back on their own 1 yard line. How mean!

18 posted on 09/18/2004 7:44:22 PM PDT by randita
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To: jhouston

One of the revelations here in the middle of the story is that Rather has known Ben Barnes for 30 years. Many of us suspected Barnes and he were acquaintenances, if not more. And he never revealed this during the program.


19 posted on 09/18/2004 7:44:33 PM PDT by holdonnow
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To: Howlin
I take it Roberts isn't a poker player.

He is pretty good, though, at walking through an open door and then complaining that someone tricked him by not closing it.

20 posted on 09/18/2004 7:45:26 PM PDT by TexasNative2000 (When it's all said and done, someone starts another conversation.......)
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To: js1138
How am I supposed to verify something that came from a dead man in three hours?

Kerry was able to deny the validity of "Unfit for Command" without reading a page of it.

21 posted on 09/18/2004 7:45:40 PM PDT by PeoplesRepublicOfWashington (Kerry fled while good men bled.)
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To: jhouston

BTTT


22 posted on 09/18/2004 7:46:12 PM PDT by Fiddlstix (This Tagline for sale. (Presented by TagLines R US))
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To: jhouston

The good thing about this and the NYT story is that a lot of large metropolitan papers (e.g. Houston Chronicle) subscribe to the WP and NYT services and will reprint these throughout the country tomorrow in the Sunday morning papers.


23 posted on 09/18/2004 7:46:56 PM PDT by jhouston
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To: js1138

We're collectively better at most everything than the WH staff.


24 posted on 09/18/2004 7:48:19 PM PDT by GraniteStateConservative (...He had committed no crime against America so I did not bring him here...-- Worst.President.Ever.)
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To: jhouston

What a bizarre story. Thanks for the post.


25 posted on 09/18/2004 7:48:52 PM PDT by 68skylark
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To: Howlin

Hey, Howard Kurtz and Michael Dobbs, an I know you're lurking -- this is as stupid as the BS that CBS put out last week. It won't fly.

I'm sure that a lit of the trivial details are correct. It has that glossy look and feel of the best fictional journalism, but the underlying thesis is that CBS fully expects to find the real OJ killer.

The problem is that the person or persons that forged the documents are the same people who have been pushing the story for two decades. The documents are fake and the people behind them are proven liars.

Keep it up and the Post will go down the drain with CBS.


26 posted on 09/18/2004 7:50:10 PM PDT by js1138 (Speedy architect of perfect labyrinths.)
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To: jhouston
CBS is behaving just like the Clinton White House during the Lewinsky-Willey-Broaderick scandals -- deny, evade, argue, lie, stonewall, shift blame, act like a victim, then go back to the beginning and start over.
27 posted on 09/18/2004 7:52:02 PM PDT by 68skylark
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To: js1138
As us. We did it.

Not exactly a fair comparison.

If this had been a national security issue, it may have been possible.

This was a political issue and if our President had used government resources to comment on it he would have been guilty of converting government money for his own personal use.

I don't think the intellectual power and speed of the internet has been recognized by anyone but daily participants in the phenomenon.

28 posted on 09/18/2004 7:53:12 PM PDT by CurlyDave
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To: jhouston
"This gave us such a sense of security at that moment that we had the story," Howard said. "We gave the documents to the White House to say, 'Wave us off this if we're wrong.' " But Bartlett said CBS never asked him to verify the memos and that he had neither the time nor the resources to do so.

Wave us off this if we're wrong? If the White house had objected, Dan Rather would have been MORE sure he was on the right track.

29 posted on 09/18/2004 7:54:52 PM PDT by knuthom
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To: jhouston

This must be a confusing time for the MSM -- they don't want to turn on one of their own family, but they don't want to be splashed with all the crap either. Time to choose, fellas!


30 posted on 09/18/2004 7:55:41 PM PDT by 68skylark
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To: jhouston

I love the question at the end about "as CBS been hoaxed." No, CBS fell short of every standard of journalistic integrity that exists.

The "kind of silly" guy is kind of silly. And they talk about Republicans being out of touch?

Finally, I am struck again by the fact that this was a non-story from the git-go. No one would have cared about a young lt who was transitioning out of the Guard missing a physical.


31 posted on 09/18/2004 7:56:27 PM PDT by fightinJAG ("Tell the truth. The Pajama People are watching you.")
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To: jhouston; Howlin


During the Republican National Convention in New York, Rather got a call from Ben Barnes, a onetime Texas lieutenant governor and veteran Democrat who has known the anchor, a former Houston TV reporter, for 30 years. Barnes said he was ready to say before the cameras that he had pulled strings to get Bush a coveted slot in the Texas Guard in 1968. Mapes had long been urging Barnes to tell his story.

On Friday, Sept. 3, the day after the convention ended, Mapes hit pay dirt. She told Howard her source had given her the documents.


Previously CBS told us that Ben Barnes came forward to give his testimony only after CBS has obtained these "documents".

But now we learn that Barnes -- Kerry's Texas campaign co-chair -- was the one who contacted Dan Rather.. a couple days before CBS recieved the documents!

Why is this significant?
Because that means Barnes saw the documents BEFORE CBS did. The source had to have shared the documents with the Kerry campaign first meaning it was the Kerry camoaign itself who most likely was the middle man in the hand off. At the very least the Kerry campaign co-ordinated it.


32 posted on 09/18/2004 7:56:49 PM PDT by counterpunch (The CouNTeRPuNcH Collection - www.counterpunch.us)
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To: doug from upland
"Rather: This is going to stain my career like..."

...like the stain in my drawers."

33 posted on 09/18/2004 7:56:50 PM PDT by mass55th (It's the superscript, stupid!!!!)
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To: jhouston

"So much of this debate has focused on the documents, and no one has really challenged the story. It's been frustrating to us to see all this reduced to a debate over little 'th's."


What is left of the story? What are the allegations? This CBS story is the shoddiest piece of journalism I have EVER SEEN. I cannot believe it. If I was the CEO of a company that were this incompetant I would fire the lot.


34 posted on 09/18/2004 7:57:05 PM PDT by traviskicks (http://www.neoperspectives.com/welfare.htm)
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To: jhouston
After the show, one colleague asked an elated Rather whether he was sure the documents were real. "I have never been more confident of a story in my life," he said.

Bwahahahahahaha.

35 posted on 09/18/2004 7:57:23 PM PDT by savedbygrace
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To: jhouston

Yeah they rushed alright. FOUR YEARS trying to get this sorry story off the ground. More a desparation move by the libs supporting media. Good Work DAN
The post should stop trying to cover for a thoughtful (clearly stupid) and calculated move by CBS


36 posted on 09/18/2004 7:57:24 PM PDT by rod1
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To: knuthom
Exactly -- you nailed it. Everything they say no is just after-the-fact nonsense. They're trying to get their guilty backsides out of the mess they willingly fell into. So we get spin, lies and evasions.
37 posted on 09/18/2004 7:57:34 PM PDT by 68skylark
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To: jhouston
As the days begin to blur for Josh Howard, he embraces the same logic: "So much of this debate has focused on the documents, and no one has really challenged the story. It's been frustrating to us to see all this reduced to a debate over little 'th's."

The memos are forgeries...get over it! The real story is why is CBS continuing to stand behind their story when no intellegent person in the country believes the memos are real. The real story is that CBS will continue to stand behind the story so they won't have to reveal their source, which would undoubtedly lead back to the DemocRATS.

38 posted on 09/18/2004 7:57:55 PM PDT by AlaskaErik
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To: traviskicks

It seems CBS is trying to blame the whitehouse.... UNBELIEVEABLE!


39 posted on 09/18/2004 7:58:39 PM PDT by traviskicks (http://www.neoperspectives.com/welfare.htm)
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To: PeoplesRepublicOfWashington
Kerry was able to deny the validity of "Unfit for Command" without reading a page of it.

And we saw how well that worked.

At some point the MSM is going to learn that, "No comment" from this White House means "Nice Rope. Would you like to borrow a chair?"

40 posted on 09/18/2004 7:59:49 PM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (There is no Chaos. Only very complicated Order. (Presenting Lady Snuggles of the Lethal Yew in PJ's!)
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To: counterpunch

How can you be sure he saw them first?


41 posted on 09/18/2004 8:00:17 PM PDT by Howlin (What's the Font Spacing, Kenneth?)
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To: rod1
Yeah they rushed alright. FOUR YEARS trying to get this sorry story off the ground.

Yeah. They've been obsessed with bringing down the president for year. Their obsession blinded them to the truth, and caused them to ruin themselves. It would be like Greek tragedy if it wasn't so petty and pathetic.

42 posted on 09/18/2004 8:00:58 PM PDT by 68skylark
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To: TexasNative2000
The Dano-saur at DNCBS is calling for The President “answer the charges”, and prove that he wasn’t AWOL or defy a direct order to take a physical 35 years ago. Now it is time for Dan Rather-criminal to answer his questions. Why did you knowingly use obviously forged documents to bring charges against President Bush? Why did you try to defraud the American People with your false charges? Who was the source of your forged documents. Until he answers these questions he is guilty of forgery and defrauding the American Public.

In a day when docu-fiction is the rule and the Dirty Rat Michael Mooron is the standard bearer for the Stone-age press then we will play by their rules. Dan Rather is guilty until he can prove himself innocent and in this case it is very likely true. If Kitty Kelly can drudge up sludge with no proof from 30 years ago then we have more than enough proof to consider Dan Rather-guilty. This was the co-ordinated attack from the DNC to damage our President for the Yaaaawn Kerry campaign.

Forging military documents is a criminal offense although someone as powerful as Rather won’t be convicted like one of us would. This was a powerful man using the power of the Mainstream media and the clout of 60 Minutes to topple a government. 60 Minutes was the foundation of investigative TV and has 30 years of distinguished journalism behind it. Unfortunately we got a glimpse into how honest that journalism is. This was the rule rather than the exception as we got a glimpse of their sources, especially the anonymous variety. This time his hatred and desparation made him go off the abyss and into the complete fabrication of evidence. How could he not notice the Kinko’s Fax return line??? Nice that they whited that out before they put it on their Webpage which added 15 mins to Howlin & Co exposure!

If Dino-Dan thinks that W should answer questions from false evidence then Dan needs to answer questions about why he used forged evidence. His charges have absolutely no substance but these charges are valid. So Dan, why did you put these forged documents and signatures of a dead Military Officer on your news program??

This is what happens when 95% of the Stone-age press worships at the feet of moral relitivists like bull clinton. The art of “spin”, or lies as it was called pre-clinton becomes varying degrees of lying. GW has the truth on his side just as the Swifties do. Yaaaawn Tax & Kerry and DNCBS only have lies on their side and must hide from the issues. In comes this mudslinging story and the high risk phony documents that are scrutinized by the Inter-news. The evidence gets blown away in a matter of minutes and the fraud is exposed to the entire world. It’s a new day and the Fathers of Freedom would be proud.

Dano-saur Rather-guilty can resign and DNCBS can apologize to the country for their criminal activity but it won’t matter. The Stone-age press has exposed itself for the Rat spokesman that it is and will never be believed again. They can pretend to be more balanced but whenever they use their well worn phrases, “sources inside the .....” ears will hear “false documents” and a huge mountain of salt will be added. For Dan, he needs to take his own advice and, “answer the charges!” In the Michael Mooron, Kitty Katty world, your found guilty unless you can prove yourself innocent!

Pray for W and The Truth

43 posted on 09/18/2004 8:01:29 PM PDT by bray (Nam Vets Rock!!)
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To: jhouston
After the show, one colleague asked an elated Rather whether he was sure the documents were real. "I have never been more confident of a story in my life," he said.

Well, Dan, weren't you confident of the story reported on Jan. 20, 2001 that George Bush was sworn into office as the 43rd President?

44 posted on 09/18/2004 8:01:50 PM PDT by doug from upland (Dan Rather is a journalist like Michael Moore is a pole vaulter.)
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To: jhouston
"Since leaving the Guard, Burkett has run a ranch near Abilene, Tex., and been active in local Democratic politics, posting messages on the Internet urging other Democrats to wage "war" against Republican "dirty tricks." He has told reporters that he suffered from depression and had a nervous breakdown after the military declined to treat him for a tropical disease he contracted while on assignment in Panama."

A nervous breakdown? Is that a current diagnonis? I don't think I've heard that term in almost 30 years.

45 posted on 09/18/2004 8:03:57 PM PDT by A Citizen Reporter
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To: jhouston

Michael Dobbs is one of the top journalists in the MSM, in my opinion. But he writes so factually and lawyer-like that it leaves it to the reader to decide how to interpret the result. Which is normally good, but this stuff is so over the top that I wish some of the incredolousnes that he must have felt as a journalist on witnessing the piss poor journalism of CBS has come out more in his story. I want someone to slam these guys as hard as they deserve it. In print.


46 posted on 09/18/2004 8:04:19 PM PDT by traviskicks (http://www.neoperspectives.com/welfare.htm)
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To: jhouston
The next stop was Texas. Rather was in Florida, so CBS chartered a plane to get him to Austin.

They complain that they can't afford to do in-depth investigative journalism, but they can afford to charter a jet for Gunga Dan.

47 posted on 09/18/2004 8:04:24 PM PDT by Brandon
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To: jhouston

CBS sent a Canadian disc jocky...


48 posted on 09/18/2004 8:04:29 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (and a German brass band will play)
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To: counterpunch
Yep, the dates all kind of fit together with burketts phone conversations with max cleland when max told him to "get hold of somebody at DNC"

next thing ya know old sleazy barnes comes slithering out from under his rock like a horny horn toad to get hold of his good old buddy Danny RAT=ther

VERY interesting
49 posted on 09/18/2004 8:06:29 PM PDT by Wild_Bill_8881 (If ya can't dazzle 'em with brilliance, baffle 'em with BS)
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To: vbmoneyspender
If anything, this indicates that CBS knew there were problems with the memos and then acted like plaintiffs' trial lawyers when the White House did not object to the memos.

Yes, exactly. And, absence of comment from the WH is what they rely on to persist with the story that the documents are "Forgeries, but accurate."

The original plan anticipated an objection from the WH, based on the substance (not on the forensics), but once there was no substantive complaint from the WH, there was no need to air the part of the story that supported the documents' authenticity.

50 posted on 09/18/2004 8:08:35 PM PDT by Cboldt
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