Do you remember the pre-2004 election “60 Minutes II” story about President Bush’s military record. The one where it was revealed he fell a bit short of his military obligations while receiving favorable treatment by the Texas Air National Guard. Well, I always thought CBS threw Rather under the proverbial bus pretty quickly given his tenure with CBS. Moreover, others were reporting accurately Bush’s chronic absenteeism and the same basic facts alleged by Rather’s piece. For instance, Amy Goodman & Democracy Now had vetted and supported the story also.  

Rather not backing down filed a $70 million dollar suit against CBS charging that among others things, CBS violated terms of his contract. In his suit Rather says the internal investigation CBS launched to pacify the GOP in the story’s aftermath was well, (no surprise) compromised. Consider this from the NYT.

Using tools unavailable to him as a reporter — including the power of subpoena and the threat of punishment against witnesses who lie under oath — he has unearthed evidence that would seem to support his assertion that CBS intended its investigation, at least in part, to quell Republican criticism of the network.

Now here is the best part brought forth in the discovery process concerning the panel to be used during the internal CBS investigation, apparently they (CBS) were trying to be make sure the investigation was “Fair and Balanced”.

Another memorandum turned over to Mr. Rather’s lawyers by CBS was a long typed list of conservative commentators apparently receiving some preliminary consideration as panel members, including Rush Limbaugh, Matt Drudge, Ann Coulter and Pat Buchanan. At the bottom of that list, someone had scribbled “Roger Ailes,” the founder of Fox News.

The acknowledgment that CBS would even consider the likes of Limbaugh, Coulter and Roger Ailes 🙄 to sit on a panel investigating such an explosive GOP issue would be laughable if it were not so damning. My opinion has always been there is no place for partisan politics when it comes to reporting news thus the decline of the US media over the past decade, decade and a half.  FACTS concerning the credibility of a sitting president such as the “anomalies” associated with Bush’s military record should be reported, and it shouldn’t matter whether Democrat, GOP or whatever else. I have questioned CBS and their slant on the news since Rather left but as evidenced by the documents collected by Rather’s legal team CBS’s problems started way before.

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