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Mike Wallace spinning in his grave
by Harry Spencer
Feb 04, 2013 | 2357 views | 2 2 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Veteran newsman and “60 Minutes” outstanding interviewer, the late Mike Wallace, is probably spinning in his grave after the week-ago-Sunday interview of President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that aired on the once venerable program was televised. In that interview Barack and Hillary giggled, smiled and burst into outright laughter at the softball questions that Steve Kroft sent in their direction. One commentator that witnessed the interview said it should have been entitled “Syrupy Minutes.” Even Mike’s son, Chris Wallace, seemed appalled at the innocuous nature of the program.

In essence, the show was a microcosm of what network news has become during the Obama era. The once hard-hitting nightly news, as exemplified by Walter Cronkite and Huntley-Brinkley, has all but disappeared from the airwaves. Even the hard-hitting “Meet the Press” that was anchored by the late Tim Russert has now become a softer and gentler production.

In the Kroft interview, President Obama was as relaxed and happy as when he appeared on “The View,” following his speech at the United Nations. He (Obama) seems to relish such superficial questions as what flavor of ice cream he bought Michelle on their first date and David Letterman’s “How much do you weigh now?”

For her part, Secretary Clinton last Friday handed off a very messy State Department to incoming Secretary John Kerry. It was highlighted by the fact that on the same day that she retired, the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, Turkey was attacked. Also a few days earlier, the U.S. Consulate in Cairo, Egypt was closed due to rioting in the streets. Another hotspot for Kerry is the growing unstable situation in Africa. It will be interesting to see how he (Kerry) is able to deal not only with the situation of America’s prestige deteriorating around the globe but also with the lack of coordination between agencies that she (Clinton) blamed for the messed up handling of the Benghazi incident.

As far as Benghazi is concerned, it was glossed over in the “60 Minutes” interview in scenes destined to disappear under the rug.

During her inquisition appearances before the Congressional Committees, Hillary deftly sidestepped the Benghazi incident and criticized the intelligence community for the creation of the “video” excuse. No one on either the Congressional or Senatorial panel had the temerity to pin her down on her State Department’s lack of oversight on the tragic occurrence. As mentioned before, the hearings featured speechifying by the Republican panelists and near beatification by the Democratic questioners as to her sterling service to the country during the past four years in her role of Secretary of State.

For readers who might like to gain an insight as to how Washington intrigue usually works, I suggest that they avail themselves of a motion picture starring Robert Redford entitled “Three Days of the Condor.”

Remember – nobody died at Watergate.

Harry Spencer is a long-time northern Nevada resident.
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NVCondor
|
February 04, 2013
Is it shocking that Chris Wallace, of Fox News, is appalled by anything our President or Secretary of State said or did? Of course not. He has an agenda to sell.

I do agree with Harry that what passes today for journalism can be pretty poor. Hard hitting or real investigative jounalism is rapidly being replaced by fluff or unsupported or misleading ranting.

Way back then, network news divisions were more independent of their corporate lords. Murrow and Cronkhite had it good. And the public benefitted.

Now, you've got pundits.

Harry, I suggest that you watch your news from other sources than Fox News. Like any good newsman will tell you, multiple sources will give the best story, and ultimately a closer version of the truth.
Harry Spencer
|
February 05, 2013
Since the Steve Kroft interview was on CBS television I had to switch from Fox to CBS in order to watch it.
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