Thread: CBS blew it
09-20-2004, 02:15 PM #1
CBS blew it
CBS: Bush documents can't be verified
'We shouldn't have used them,' executive statesMSNBC staff and news service reports
NEW YORK - CBS on Monday said it cannot vouch for the authenticity of documents used to support a "60 Minutes" story about President Bush's Vietnam-era National Guard service after several experts denounced them as fakes.
The network said that while it was "deliberately misled," it was wrong to go on the air with a story that it could not substantiate.
"Based on what we know now, CBS News can't prove the documents are authentic," CBS President Andrew Heyward said in a statement. "We shouldn't have used them. That was a mistake, which we deeply regret. Nothing is more important to us than our credibility and keeping faith with the millions of people who count on us for fair, accurate, reliable and independent reporting. We will continue to work tirelessly to be worthy of that trust."
'Full confidence' initially
The statement began with this explanation of events:
"'60 Minutes Wednesday' had full confidence in the original report or it would not have aired. However, in the wake of serious and disturbing questions that came up after the broadcast, CBS News has done extensive additional reporting in an effort to confirm the documents' authenticity. That included an interview featured on last week's edition of '60 Minutes Wednesday' with Marian Carr Knox, secretary to the late Lt. Col. Jerry Killian, the officer named as the author of the documents; the interview with Bill Burkett to be seen tonight; and a further review of the forensic evidence on both sides of the debate."
CBS said Burkett, a retired National Guard lieutenant colonel, had provided the documents. In a press release accompanying Heyward's statement, CBS said that Burkett "also admits that he deliberately misled the CBS News producer working on the report, giving her a false account of the documents' origins to protect a promise of confidentiality to the actual source."
The documents were said to be written by Killian, indicating he was being pressured to “sugarcoat” the performance ratings of a young Bush, then the son of a Texas congressman, and that Bush failed to follow orders to take a physical. Killian died in 1984.
Rather issues own statement
CBS also said it was commissioning an independent review of the incident, and will announce the names of the people conducting the review shortly.
The announcement was a major blow to the credibility of CBS News and its chief anchor, Dan Rather, who reported the story.
In his own statement Monday, Rather said:
"I no longer have the confidence in these documents that would allow us to continue vouching for them journalistically. I find we have been misled on the key question of how our source for the documents came into possession of these papers. That, combined with some of the questions that have been raised in public and in the press, leads me to a point where — if I knew then what I know now — I would not have gone ahead with the story as it was aired, and I certainly would not have used the documents in question.
"But we did use the documents. We made a mistake in judgment, and for that I am sorry. It was an error that was made, however, in good faith and in the spirit of trying to carry on a CBS News tradition of investigative reporting without fear or favoritism."
Almost immediately after the Sept. 8 story aired, document experts questioned memos purportedly written by Bush’s late squadron leader, saying they appeared to have been created on a computer and not a typewriter that was in use during the 1970s.
CBS strongly defended its story, and it wasn’t until a week later — after the military leader’s former secretary said she believed the memos were fake — did the news division admit they were questionable.
09-20-2004, 02:19 PM #2
So much for integrity in journalism. Rather is a kook anyway.
09-20-2004, 02:42 PM #3AR-Hall of Famer / Retired
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now does anyone have a doubt that most of the mainline media is a shill for the DNC? I didnt think so
09-20-2004, 02:49 PM #4Originally Posted by CYCLEON
09-20-2004, 02:49 PM #5
I never had a doubt that ANY media is a shill for some political party. there is no media organization which speaks soley the unbiased truth. This doesnt surprise me one bit
09-20-2004, 02:57 PM #6
Some facts regarding favoritism and the fact GW violated a direct order did come out.......the documents were factually correct......even if they were recreated......
more correct than GW and his WMDs in IRAQ......
09-20-2004, 03:02 PM #7Originally Posted by Badgerman
You are telling me GW was treated favorably while in the ANG? No way! We can all agree on this.
It's a fact that GW disobeyed lawfull orders? Other than these memo-gate papers, how can you make that claim?
09-20-2004, 03:03 PM #8Originally Posted by sin
Because they knew the documents didn't have any factual basis before they used them as evidence. And they would not have admited anything unless they were called out on it, which they were. This would have looked worse if someone else had come out and said "CBS can't back this up" than if CBS did it.....then its an apology. They could have been hammered on this big time. CBS only apologized to appear honest.
They lied and they got caught.
09-20-2004, 03:05 PM #9Originally Posted by UrbanLegend
09-20-2004, 03:06 PM #10Originally Posted by UrbanLegend
09-20-2004, 03:11 PM #11Originally Posted by sin
Yeah, ratings. They want people to tune in to see a controversial story about Bush. You are speculating too fyi........They most likely didn't think anyone would challenge their credibility to this extent. Again, speculation, but thats all either of us can do with where you are taking this..........
Surly you have a hard time believing that this was just a "mistake." Because its not like the news would research anything before putting it on the air, now would they........yet thats the only explanation for what has happened here, assuming CBS wasn't intentionally lying on some level......Because when actual research was done, it turned out to be false, so either CBS is incredibly stupid, or they lied.
Last edited by UrbanLegend; 09-20-2004 at 03:18 PM.
09-20-2004, 03:55 PM #12
The corporate mainstream media is a crock. Of course some of you will denounce this CBS deal as you're watching Fox News.
09-20-2004, 04:14 PM #13Originally Posted by saboudian
Television media is one thing, and Fox certainly puts its slant on things. The news that you get on your doorstep in the morning is really where there is a leftist spin. Most, if not all, of the spin is on socialy liberal issues, which I agree with, so I don't get too bent out of shape.
09-20-2004, 04:20 PM #14Originally Posted by inheritmylife
09-20-2004, 06:50 PM #15
"Everything on that screen is a **** lie."
Something my father told me at a young age that I've never forgot.
09-20-2004, 07:21 PM #16Originally Posted by UrbanLegend
09-20-2004, 07:56 PM #17Originally Posted by sin
However, I am at this point willing to believe that you likely are correct, that CBS was just stupid. At the same time, I also think there is a very good chance that they were just lying and got caught. Odds are we will never know for sure......
Last edited by UrbanLegend; 09-20-2004 at 08:12 PM.
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