|A couple of good gets from Howard Kurtz' column today, which is mostly a sendup to Air America radio hostess Stephanie Miller. There's also a good run on actual conservative criticism of Fox News -- namely Neil Cavuto, who put in the bravura kiss-ass performance of the year with his groopiefied interview last week with President Bush. Even that psycho Michael Savage pulled Cavuto's card over the journalism-light interview this weekend. Anyway, back to Kurtz:
Alter vs. Ailes
Newsweek's Jonathan Alter took a satirical swipe at Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes in the magazine, writing that if Watergate happened today, the "former Nixon media adviser" would ban the word in favor of the logo "Assault on the Presidency."
Now Alter writes on HuffingtonPost.com that "Mr.-Dish-It-Out apparently can't take it. . . . I heard that his stooges were out peddling a story to the press that I was guilty of a conflict-of-interest and should have disclosed in my column that I twice unsuccessfully sought employment at Fox News and now do part-time work under contract to NBC News and MSNBC." Ailes, he says, "assumes his adversaries are patsies who will be easily cowed into silence."
Ailes says Alter asked him for a commentator's job several years ago but balked at being identified as a liberal when Ailes told him "I can't pretend you're a straight journalist." He says that he was just a 28-year-old aide in Richard Nixon's 1968 campaign with "no editorial input" and that in his nine years at Fox, "I've never deleted a word, a phrase, a story." Unlike Newsweek and the Koran incident, he adds, Fox hasn't just done a major retraction.
Alter reminded Ailes in a letter that the column was satire, asking if he really believed "that MSNBC -- which apparently can take a joke better than Fox -- would pose as its question-of-the-day: 'Firebombing Brookings: Good Idea or Not?'"
And apparently, the White House's corporate Global Warming Report Doctor has resigned:
"A former oil industry lobbyist who changed government reports on global warming has resigned in a long-planned departure, the White House said Saturday," reports the AP.
"Philip Cooney, who was chief of staff of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, left Friday, two days after it was revealed that he had edited administration reports on climate change in 2002 and 2003.
"His departure was 'completely unrelated' to the disclosure, White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said."
But of course!