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Trashing Ted Turner

Reported by Chrish - January 27, 2005

It was payback time on the Big Story today, 1/26/05, as John Gibson and guest Reese Schonfeld (CNN co-founder) and the graphics department all let Ted have it in response to his comments yesterday. (Ted said, in essence, that FNC's popularity was comparable to Hitler's, and that being bigger doesn't necessarily mean one is right. He also said that Fox has become the propaganda tool for the Bush administration.)

Teasing for the upcoming segment, Gibson said "Has Ted finally gone 'round the bend? Is it a case of sour grapes gone ultra-sour? What's up with the mouth of the south?" For the segment, a dialog with Schonfeld, the major banner was "Ted's Tirade". The following allegations were printed on the bottom third during the interview: June 2002 Turner calls Israeli gov't 'terrorists'; Turner once called Catholic CNN workers 'Jesus freaks'; ...once called Christianity a 'religion for losers'; ...said ten commandments shouldn't prohibit adultery; 1999 Turner urged pope to get with it; Turner once said Italians enjoy committing crimes; ...once said Haitians breed like cats; 1984 said US border needed Iron Curtain. Meanwhile Reese said such things as "it's just another Ted tirade, another episode in the Turner follies". Gibson wondered if he is just upset the CNN is not #1 anymore - is he just angry and jealous?
Reese said , essentially, that Turner is no newsman, but he loved CNN above all else and he is puzzled as to why it is "foundering" and why Fox is doing better.
Reese: "I think he hates the fact that Fox, which is a conservative network, can do better in this country than he ever did..."
Gibson overtalks "We say we're a fair and balanced network."
Reese: "yeh, yeah, but y'know I think conservative is a fair, is a respectful position..."
Gibson "Is CNN a liberal network?"
Reese: "I think that under Ted Turner CNN had many liberal positions but the difference is Ted didn't know how to be effective with his positions; he never got his message across. Maybe that's because the American people didn't want to hear his message."

Gibson went on to speculate that maybe Ted said what he did because former wife Jane Fonda has a "soon-to-be best-seller" coming out, and he just wants some attention. Reese agreed, saying Turner's just a meat-seller now and wants to get his name in the papers.

Comment: I wonder how Bill O'Reilly or Sean Hannity or for that matter their heroes Bush and Cheney etc. etc. would come across if we pulled a few choice invectives, opinions, and idiotic statements out of their past 20 years in public life. This segment, a full five minutes, was meant to kill the messenger by siccing the attack dogs on him, which for Fox viewers equates to disproving what was said. (Think Richard Clarke....)

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