Tags: The | Damage | Has | Been | Done | CBS

The Damage Has Been Done to CBS

Wednesday, 15 September 2004 12:00 AM

It's not surprising that Dan Rather and company are digging in their heels and sticking by their fairly shaky story, that the documents are real. Forget the reporting done by the Dallas Morning News suggesting that one of the key figures in the documents had actually retired months before the date on the memo. Never mind that the Washington Post, certainly no conservative news outlet, has produced convincing evidence that the documents are phony.

No, what matters most is that the damage has been done. CBS and "60 Minutes" have suffered a substantive and effective body blow. Even fans of the venerable news program from CBS are realizing that the bloom is off the rose. It looks as if CBS blew it and, willing or not, became an accomplice to those who desperately want to attack our president and hurt his re-election chances.

Seeing video of the CBS studios on the cable news networks as this story continues to unfold is quite satisfying. For once, the reporters and journalists become the story and the scrutiny goes from the targets of a smear campaign to the actual network itself. It's about time.

Whether Dan Rather is willing to admit it or not, his career has been tarnished and his reputation as a Republican-bashing liberal journalist confirmed, at least in the minds of millions and millions of Americans.

But the real winner in all this is President Bush. As John Kerry continues to drop in the polls, this controversy is coming at a dreadful time for the Democratic nominee. After all, the agenda here seems pretty obvious: Smear Bush in order to capture votes for Kerry. This doesn't sit well with a lot of voters, especially those who are undecided.

It's one thing to realize that the man who claimed to have pulled strings in order to put Bush into the Guard in the first place is a partisan Democrat who has given thousands of dollars to left-wing politicians. It's quite another to think that a TV network actually conspired with pro-Kerry forces to produce forged documents in order to make its shoddy case.

So don't get mad. Enjoy the moment. The damage has already been done.

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It's not surprising that Dan Rather and company are digging in their heels and sticking by their fairly shaky story, that the documents are real.Forget the reporting done by the Dallas Morning News suggesting that one of the key figures in the documents had...
The,Damage,Has,Been,Done,CBS
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2004-00-15
Wednesday, 15 September 2004 12:00 AM
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