Dennis Prager discussed this New York Time article:
Mr. Bush's new White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives officially opens for business on Feb. 20. The president says religious programs will be judged not on their beliefs but on the results of their work.
"We do not impose any religion," Mr. Bush said at a prayer breakfast on Feb. 1. "We welcome all religion."
The president's assertion may be questioned in the coming days. While established charitable programs, like those run by Catholic Charities and the Salvation Army, are expected to have little trouble winning further government support, it is the smaller programs run by less traditional faiths that are likely to test the president's promise to avoid discriminating on the basis of belief, and the public's acceptance of his approach. Devoting government money to selected religious programs also runs the risk of sparking conflict. Already, one group has tried to prevent another from being allowed to participate.
Dennis Prager says the US Navy should be embarrassed that one of its surfacing subs crashed into a Japanese boat, killing at least twelve people. The US should apologize, fire those responsible and pay stiff reparations.
This is a clear case of dereliction of duty.
DP: I've frequently spoken about how Japan has not taken responsibility for what it did in World War II to Koreans and the Chinese. But Japan is not our model here. Our American higher values should be of taking personal responsibility. It was an easily avoidable disaster.
In the New York Times, Ralph Nader deflected notions that he cost Al Gore the election. Nader says Buchanan cost Bush four states - Wisconsin, Iowa, Oregon and New Mexico. And the Republicans didn't whine as the Democrats did...
Then Prager read from this New York Times Story:
MIAMI, Feb. 15 — From a distance, he is just another retiree limping on arthritic knees along the sun- splashed sidewalks, another man with a small paunch and a solid pension, trying to decide whether to play 18 holes or only 9.
But when people see the face, they point and shout, "Juice!" Men send beers to his table, and young women slip him their telephone numbers. People who were not even born when he was a star running back for the Buffalo Bills in the 1970's, who know him mostly from his marathon televised trial on murder charges, ask to have their picture taken with him.
And when he rolls through his neighborhood in his luxury sport utility vehicle, neighbors in Kendall, a comfortable suburb just south of Miami, smile and wave. They say he is nice, a fine neighbor.
DP: This gives you more reason to understand why I don't have much respect for much of humanity.
Dennis Prager read the following on air:
Neal Gabler writes in Sunday's New York Times:
Yet "Gladiator" and "Traffic" are remarkably similar beneath the surface. They seem to have tapped the same wellsprings of discontent and anxiety in modern America, and deal with the same subject. Only the metaphors used are different.
That subject is a society in the throes of amusing itself to death and the cost of doing so — a subject with obvious relevance to America today. It is no secret Americans are obsessed with entertainment and, if TV viewing is any gauge, probably spend more time distracting themselves from life than engaging in it. Entertainment value is the standard by which things are measured, be it education, politics, or even religion, because it is the surest means for grabbing public attention in a world of stiff competition. We risk being, in the historian Daniel Boorstin's words, the first people "able to make their illusions so vivid, so persuasive, so `realistic' that they can live in them," and, he might have added, most willing to.
"Traffic" and "Gladiator" both operate from the premise that this is a social pathology — one that can be manipulated for financial and political gain, particularly in a society where traditional authority and trust have eroded. Commodus knows he lacks the attributes of a leader, but he is a keen student of human nature, and realizes he can do what he likes as long as he keeps the public amused and distracted. Reversing his father's diktat to cease the games, Commodus runs them continuously, on the principle that people are mesmerized by their illusions. He rules by entertainment.
Seen this way, "Gladiator" is a perfect parable for a society in which illusion has usurped reality. Indeed, the spectators in the Colosseum are no oppressed mass waiting for freedom. No, they are an XFL crowd, enjoying the show and wanting more because it makes them feel alive, makes them feel as if they are part of a community.
While both films focus on the means of distraction, they have similar conceptions of the one institution that can stop the descent and even reverse it: the family. Both suggest that the failure of the family to provide love leads to the search for compensation elsewhere. In "Gladiator," Aurelius withholds his love from Commodus, giving it to Maximus, and Commodus retaliates not only by killing his father but by becoming the sort of emperor his father would have detested. Denied paternal love, Commodus must seek affection elsewhere, from the public, his guards, even his sister.
DP: Hannibal is the top grossing film in America today. Showing that Americans will pay to see the vile. Eminem is nominated for a grammy.
Dennis Prager read from MichaelMedved.com's review:
"No one will remember the plot anyway, but no one will forget the gross-out parts. One character gets his belly ripped open, then is hung out a window over a city square as his bloody intestines spill out of his body. Another character, heavily drugged, has his skull sawed open, and while engaged in trivial conversation over dinner, Lecter cuts out part of his brain, then feeds it to the miserable creature who pronounces it delicious. (This scene is so unspeakably ugly that the actor involved will probably suffer permanent damage to his career: it should prove impossible to watch his work in the future without thinking of him unwittingly eating his own glowing red, exposed brain matter.) Another character, at a moment of crisis, slices off his own left hand with a meat cleaver.
"The producers specifically requested that critics not give away these horrific details—which is why I haven’t revealed who does what to whom. The reason they’re so concerned with the audience feeling surprised by brain-eating and hand-chopping (and, oh yes, feeding day old human brain matter to an eight year old boy) is that without shock value this film is nothing--- an empty, idiotic, implausible, sloppily plotted piece of over-ripe, rotting garbage. References to Dante, moody Florence street scenes, misty visions of the Vanderbilt estate in North Carolina (used here as the home of Mason Verger), and the strains of Bach’s 'Goldberg Variations' (also misused in the first film), don’t provide a redeeming touch of class. All the atmospheric elements of style come across like rouge and perfume on a mutilated, week-old corpse—only adding to the decadent and stomach-churning horror of the thing."
DP: Pay It Forward by contrast was a wonderful film but finished only number 77 among top grossing films worldwide.
We cannot yell at Hollywood if we do not patronize that which is beautiful. My wife and I cried. I shuddered. The acting is extraordinary. I want all Americans to see this film.
In Dallas, they had students doing projects analagous to the good project in this film.
I know that my colleague Michael Medved says that people spend more on G and PG rated films than R rated films.
Gladiator grossed well. It had lots of violence but it was not for violence sake. It was an excellent film about a man who only wants to do good. And fights for it. And only wants to be home with his family. And wants to ennoble Rome.
How Hannibal is R rated and not NC17. It's apparent that only sex can get you an NC17 rating. No amount of violence will get you an NC17.
My wife and I were at a hotel this weekend and we chose "Meet The Parents" first starring Robert DeNiro and Ben Stiller. But watching a pathetic guy being humiliated by a father in law was not funny to me. And we stopped it and watched Pay It Forward.
It's fascinating to me the humor people enjoy.
I found Ben Stiller hilarious in Something About Mary. That was witty, Parents was sadistic.
The critical consensus on the film: "Pay It Forward has strong performances from Spacey, Hunt, and Osment, but the movie itself is too emotionally manipulative and the ending is bad."
Synopsis: "PAY IT FORWARD is a feel-good family story about a social studies teacher, Eugene Simonet (Kevin Spacey), who challenges his 11-year-old students to come up with an idea that will change the world. Trevor McKinney (Haley Joel Osment) decides to step up to the plate. His idea is a game called "pay it forward." In the game, every time somebody does a favor for you, you "pay it forward" to three other people. Surprisingly, the idea seems to work, helping his teacher to come out of his shell and reveal a dark past, and bringing his mother, Arlene McKinney (Helen Hunt)--who works two jobs to keep their household afloat--new freedom."
DP read from LA Times reviewer Kenneth Turan: "The combination of restrained writing and direction and top-of-the-line acting is enough to make even confirmed agnostics want to believe in this unashamed fairy tale.
"For it's the not inconsiderable accomplishment of "Pay It Forward" to win us over, much against our better judgment, to its sentimental, inspirational brand of fantasy. Difficult as it is for a multimillion-dollar Hollywood movie that bangs the drum for selflessness and idealism to be taken at all seriously, the combination of restrained writing and direction and top-of-the-line acting is enough to make even confirmed agnostics want to believe in this unashamed fairy tale."
DP: It was a courageous ending. It was not a feel good ending. I hated the ending emotionally but when I thought about it, it was exactly the right thing.
It seems that teenagers do not go to movies the same as I do. When I go to a movie, I enter the movie. I take the movie's premises as if I am watching reality. Many teenagers see in movies just technical work. They do not find Hannibal scary because they know it is a movie. They don't take it as a movie. They look at the interesting visual effects of having a man's skull opened up and his brain picked out.
When I watched an XFL game, it was fascinating to watch the excitement on their faces. Many of the fans at sporting events who go crazy... I bet that outside of sports, they have no emotional life.
I remember being at a sports bar and the men were dead until scores came across the screen. They had no animation unless their team would do something. They had lost their identity to their team. What gives them emotion is sport.
The circuses in Rome did not begin with men fighting each other to the death. But when you're addicted to adrenalin, you always need a bigger punch to get you high.
I'm no goody two shoes. I also strongly recommended the sexy film "Stealing Beauty."
When a conservative congressman did not want people to see Schindlers List because of the nudity, I thought the man was a fool.
I'm not against nudity, violence and sex. I am against when they are gratuitous. "Context can transform the most savage visions into high art."
My worry about the low gross for "Pay It Forward" is that Americans are bored by goodness. When you're raised on a diet of people eating people, Pay is boring.
That Erin Brokovich is up for Best Film is a joke. It was enjoyable but it was a cartoon.
Luke says: In his final hour, Dennis Prager discussed the death of race car driver Dale Earnhardt who crashed Sunday in the Daytona 500. Earnhardt had to be cut out of his car.
Is part of the excitement of watching car racing the chance that a driver might die?
Part of the appeal of car racing must be the risks that the drivers take at going at such high speed.
DP has opposed banning boxing though he does support mandatory headgear.
Isn't part of the appeal of boxing the chance that someone might really get hurt? Or is it entirely the art of the jab and the uppercut?
DP: I've never found joy at anything where people's lives were at risk. I have more pain than joy watching tightrope walkers at circuses. Because I'm thinking 'What if they fall?' I don't get excited over people risking death. Clearly I am in a minority.
Why do things that lead to instant death cause people so much joy?
Humans have dark sides that we need to express innocuously.
DP doesn't enjoy hockey fights. He wouldn't even stand at Madison Square Garden when the Rangers got into fights.
On his nationally syndicated radio show, Dennis Prager discussed the following story in today's Los Angeles Times:
From Liz Smith: Sharon Lawrence, of "NYPD Blue" fame, was in Washington for the inauguration, attending the Creative Coalition Ball--a nonpartisan advocacy organization of the arts and entertainment community. In the Feb. 5 issue of People, Lawrence's photo appeared on the same page as President Bush, his daughters and several prominent Republicans.
Since the publication of that photo, Lawrence, a lifelong Democrat who worked for Al Gore, has received hate mail and has been approached on the streets of L.A., irately confronted about "being a Republican." Most disturbing, in a recent business meeting, Lawrence was chilled when a producer said, with heavy emphasis, "I have to ask, are you really a Republican?"
Considerably shaken, Lawrence tells us, "If one is even perceived to be a Republican in Hollywood, there can be an excluding reaction and people genuinely resent you!"
Dennis Prager, who became a Republican in 1992, believes that liberalism is felt through more than thought through. Which is why there are so few liberal talkshow hosts. It's hard to sustain a show based primarily on feelings, especially when non-believers can call in and shred your emoting.
Because liberalism is based on feelings, liberals generally are likely to react with emotion against those who disagree with them.
DP: Nobody hates as much as the liberal. I'm going to ask my friend Sean Hannity and Alan Colmes of FOX TV who gets the most hate mail and death threats.
I just wrote a piece for the national Jewish magazine Moment where I took the revolutionary view that one could be a good Jew and a Republican at the same time.
A Hollywood friend of Luke's writes him: "I have often sat in meetings where Republicans are routinely called Nazis and other such subtle names. Liberal Democrats are by far the most bigoted and close-minded group of people I have ever had to deal with--except perhaps the members of the Aryan Brotherhood. As regular as heartbeats, they make snide remarks about religious Christians, but save their real scorn for "smelly Hasidim." That's the Jewish Hollywood people, naturally. If I told people in the business that I was a conservative Republican, I would have a very difficult time finding work. It would be much easier if I were to say that I was a transsexual who had sex with his pet dog. That they would understand, and probably even admire."
In his second hour, Prager talked about the San Francisco couple who owned these vicious dogs which killed a woman. Prager thought that breed of dogs should not be allowed.
From the San Francisco Chronicle: Crescent City -- The owners of the dog that fatally mauled a San Francisco woman last week took their defense on the road yesterday, holding court with reporters outside the gates of Pelican Bay State Prison.
Marjorie F. Knoller and her husband, Richard Noel, again insisted that they have no idea what prompted Bane, their 120-pound Presa Canario, to grab Diane Whipple by the throat. They said the tragedy has devastated their newly adopted 38-year-old son, who is serving a life sentence at Pelican Bay.
DP: What a crowd. They adopted a white supremacist as their son. Did you hear their answers? Unbelievable.
Marjorie says her dog "is her best bud."
DP: Why all the talk about gun control and no talk about dog control? Three times as many people are sent yearly to hospital emergency rooms with non-fatal wounds from dog bites than from gun shots.
According to the Center For Disease Control, 333,000 dog bite injuries are treated a year in emergency rooms. There are about 17 deaths annually from dog bites. That compares to about 100,000 seeking treatment for wounds sustained from guns.
In his third hour, DP discussed the recent discoveries of the gene.
It turns out that we are genetically as complex as a mustard plant and fruit fly.
The statement that we are our genes turns out to not be true. Ninety nine percent of our genes are identical from person to person. So isn't it obvious then that what distinguishes us is not in our physical makeup.
We have a major cultural battle now between those who view the human being as another animal and those who believe that the human being is created in the divine image.
When you read that we have the same genes as animals, you can conclude that we're just another part of the ecosystem or that what distinguishes us is not physical.
DP reads from the New York Times: "This suggests that genes play less of a role in causing disease and many of our other traits than many researchers realized."
DP: I don't know if designer genes are possible. There's probably not a gene for mathematical knowledge or beauty. It might be the protein interactions. I think designer babies is frightening.
I bet that they will never find a gay gene.
Dennis Prager returned from speaking to audiences in Philadelphia and Florida on the state of American life.
On air, Prager spoke against airline deregulation because of the inferior service and small amount of food they gave out.
Then he talked about this story:
From the Philadelphia Inquirer:
MIDDLETOWN - Three Neshaminy High School students face juvenile-court action and possible expulsion from school for allegedly making a sexually explicit videotape inside the school - and showing it to classmates the next day, authorities said yesterday.
The three teens - a 15-year-old boy and two girls ages 15 and 16 - were charged by Middletown Township police with making an obscene video, indecent exposure, open lewdness, and disorderly conduct, said Police Lt. Pat McGinty of Middletown.
"One of the girls was taping the other two having intercourse," McGinty said.
Classmates of the three students said yesterday that the trio proudly demonstrated their video, showing it off with a handheld camcorder the day after it was recorded.
Senior Bob O'Donnell, 18, was among students who viewed parts of the movie. He said the girl who performed in the video showed it off in drama class.
Dennis Prager says: How did the authorities find out? Because the students who made the porn video showed it to their classmates. Look at us have sex. Like, look at us have a cheeseburger. Here I am having a burger. Here I am having sex. Here I am doing my homework. A day in the life of a high school student.
At least the kids weren't caught smoking. They'd have been expelled.
Near the end of the Philadelphia Inquirer article, it says that a used condom was found in the auditorium. The schools understand what's important.
America's secular educators regard teens as animals. The prime concern is to keep them healthy. The message from the sophisticated and secular elite is: We know they're going to have sex anyway, so it might as well be safe. We don't want them to get any STDs. Condoms will be disbursed in room 716...
These students at this upper class suburban high school were doing exactly what they have been taught. How can any secular sex educator say, 'Boy, these students really violated everything we teach them.' They can only say, 'Really. We are proud of ourselves. There aren't going to be any STDs here. They used a condom.'
In this secular approach, sex is a fun act. That's it. And it's never too early to do it so long as you feel that you are ready and that you are safe.
What secular argument can be offered against these students? Why was it wrong? Nobody was coerced. Nobody was drunk. Every secular rule was followed.
According to the article, most of the students have no clue why many of the adults are aghast.
I don't understand why some of the adults are surprised. Did they raise their kids with the notion that the human being is created in God's image? Then why are they surprised?
I wish the Inquirer did a long essay featuring interviews with the high school students.
Remember, you don't show to other kids that which you think will turn them off. The girl had every reason to believe that the other kids would get a kick out of it.
I feel sad. It is sad that you are doing. What a jaded life. You must have little that gives you genuine joy.
We are not allowed to post and teach the Ten Commandments in public school anymore. But all societies need rules. So what rules will there be?
Here are my (Dennis Prager) understanding of the New Ten Commandments:
1. Thou shalt not use tobacco or anything else that is not good for your body.
2. Thou shalt use a condom whenever thou hast sex.
These first two commandments reflect that the overriding value is the health of the body. But what is good for the soul, character and conscience, are non issues. Maybe things for the church and the house. But the real commandments for kids today are what they ingest.
3. Thou shalt esteem thyself.
Self control is second to self esteem. In the past, it was Thou Shalt Control Thyself.
4. Thou shalt not be innocent. It is not cool.
It's the task of public schools to rob kids of innocence as soon as possible. Teach first graders about sexual harassment. Teach kids about AIDS and drugs. First graders have Britney Spears dress up parties.
5. Thou shalt not hear about God or any religious code in school.
Prager just spoke to a Florida public school. Before he went up to speak, a female friend asked him, 'You're not going to advocate God, right?' DP felt terrible. He was an outside speaker that theoretically should be allowed to say what he wants. That he has to worry about getting anybody in trouble if he mentions God is sad.
6. Thou shalt regard your teachers and all other adults as your equals.
7. Thou shalt regard animals as your equals.
8. Thou shalt dress in any way you want in school so as to better express yourself and your sexuality.
9. Thou shalt regard those who advocate sex after marriage as reactionary and regard those who elevate sex between a married man and woman above all other forms of sexual expression as bigoted and hateful.
10. Thou shalt not judge anyone else's behavior unless it violates one of these Ten Commandments.
DP says: Educators will complain about the media's sexual bombardment. They're right. But the secular educators don't do anything to counteract that bombardment. They should teach values, such as abstinence.
Few people doubt that there is far more early sexual behavior today.
I've changed my mind on this. But now I think that coed is a bad idea. I want all our schools to be same sex through high school.
DP tells a caller that it is an easier to be an atheist at a public school than to be a Republican at Princeton.
People don't know what they miss. How many kids are going to say, 'I really miss saying the Pledge of Allegiance.' Or, 'God, I would've been enriched if I had heard Mozart.' Only once you know those things can you know how valuable they are.
Gite from PornStarPalace.com writes: hey luke, The one thing that Denis Prager, Pat Robertson, Rush Limbaugh, and now you, Luke Ford, have in common is they all create a straw boss, i.e. liberalism, secularism, etc. to have something to rail against. They define that entity in their own terms, so to bolster the validity to their arguments. Mostly their definitions are a far cry from reality, as are the attitudes that you project onto, so called, secular educators.
In truth, the secular among us are hardly unified and conspiratorial, such as the Religious Right tell us. To the extent they believe this, it is a total projection. The Religious Right wrote the handbook on conspiracy.
The most common belief of most people, secular or religious, is that high school age people should refrain from sexual interaction; and that is what is taught. It distracts from other activities, like sports and such, that add to the joys of being young. But if they must or choose to be defiant, as is the nature of youth, secular or not; then they should have the information and tools to protect themselves.
I was brought up in a small Midwestern town, serving my teenage years in the '50s. It's population was about 5,000 people and contained 16 churches (the highest such ratio in the country). We began each day in school with prayer and the pledge, and on assembly days, the speaker was usually a preacher or someone else with a moral message. The old maid teachers ruled with an iron will, a stiff wooden ruler, and righteous indignation. And this was in the public school, not the Christian one.
Each class, in both high schools, had 2 or 3 female students go off to stay with a distant relative every year. Sometimes they returned with the baby, and often they did not.
I've spoken with my nephews and nieces and have concluded that the extent of sexual activity is about the same now, as then.
The big difference is that unwanted pregnancies are far less frequent now.
But man, i miss those days, with a girl from the Christian School, in the back seat of my Buick, parked behind the cemetery, caught up in the throws of forbidden passion (they teach them good about ecstasy). Preacher's daughters were the best. I could only wish i had a video camera then.
And tell your pal, Denis, that in the words of the illustrious Commander Cody, I ain't never had too much fun.
Luke says: In his third hour, Dennis Prager talked about the Marc Rich pardon. Everybody is in a tizzy because it is obvious it was because his ex-wife funds the Clintons. It is typical of the Clintons to act that way.
DP: What does it say about our values that people are far more angry about the pardon of Marc Rich for tax evasion than they are for the 16 Puerto Rican terrorists who murdered and maimed people?
Clinton used executive privilege in September of 1999 to grant clemency to 16 members of the FALN (Armed Forces of National Liberation for Puerto Rico). In 1975, they bombed the Frances Tavern in New York, murdering four people and injuring 63. They attacked US government in Puerto Rico. They robbed a West Fargo bank in Hartford, CN. A policeman killed and other maimed.
These terrorists never apologized. They never asked for clemency.
I remember doing a couple of shows on the Puerto Rican terrorists (in September of 1999). I interviewed police officers who knew people who'd died or been maimed by these terrorists. They were pardoned during Hillary Clinton's run for New York's senate seat. And it was a non-event.
For many Americans, tax evasion creates more of a hullaboo than terrorist bombs.
Imagine if your husband was blown to bits by terrorists, and the President of the United States grants the terrorists pardon. Because he wants his wife to win a Senate seat in your state.
There is a generation (folks 13-21) in our country which is seeing dignity in the White House for the first time. Did you know that President Bush has asked that 'Hail to the Chief' not be played for him?
Democrat friends thought I was crazy when I said that I thought George W. Bush was a truly good man.
From George Will's column:
Last week, the Wall Street Journal's Joshua Harris Prager turned an almost 50-year-old rumor into a dispiriting fact. Prager's exemplary journalistic sleuthing demonstrated that baseball's most storied comeback, which culminated in baseball's most famous moment, was assisted by cheating. And the moment -- Bobby Thomson's 1951 home run off Ralph Branca to give the New York Giants a bottom-of-the-ninth, come-from-behind victory over the Brooklyn Dodgers in the final game of a three-game playoff -- may have been so assisted. On Sunday, Thomson admitted he took pilfered information -- but not on that fateful pitch.
Sport is a moral undertaking because it requires of participants, and it schools spectators in the appreciation of, noble things -- courage, grace under pressure, sportsmanship. Sport should be the triumph of character, openly tested, not of technology, surreptitiously employed. The importance of protecting the integrity of competition from the threat of advantages obtained illicitly is underscored by the sense of melancholy, of loss, that baseball fans now feel about the no longer quite so luminous season of 1951.
Prager continued on the abusive black mother who gouged her kids. DP received email from blacks blaming white racism. That DP did not understand how much white hate blacks and how little whites care about black children.
What about the ignoring of the sufferings of blacks in Africa? DP pointed out that the ignoring of the suffering of blacks in the Sudan at the hands of Arab-Muslims comes from American black leaders. The American black community ignores the suffering of blacks in Africa. It is whites who yell about it.
American black leaders, and liberals generally, says DP, only care about black suffering when it is at the hands of whites. When blacks suffer at the hands of blacks, it's a non event.
In his first hour, DP discussed the NY Times magazine article on cloning. More secular nonsense. Even if you clone your child, and create someone with the exact same genetic code, it will still not replace your child, because people are more than their DNA. They have souls.
DP discussed a NY Times article about an abusive black mother. Doctors say they've never seen kids as abused as her. She gouged them. She took her kids across country on Amtrak. Why did nobody protest the condition of her kids? In part, says DP, because they were black and people are scared of being called racist.
In his third hour, Prager praised the First Lady's femine style of dress. Unlike Hillary Clinton who wears pant suits, Laura Bush wears skirt suits. Skirts emphasize femininity. Prager wanted to discuss the philosophy behind women wearing dresses as opposed to pants but his callers wanted to point out that Hillary Clinton had thick ankles and legs which preclude her from wearing dresses.
Dennis Prager returned to the topic of kids engaging in oral sex. He read numerous emails, which he said he read late into the night.
Why this outbreak of kids doing oral sex?
DP suggests: Parents are preoccupied with other things in kids lives.
A close bond between parents and kids is the best defense against kids engaging in premature sex. Particularly if a girl has a loving father who hugs her in a non-sexual way...
What are the kids exposed to? Our sexual bombardment is unprecedented.
MTV is one of the few institutions that has only done harm. They think they can undo it by running 24 hours of hate crime films. Typical of people who lead dissolute lives and think they can cover it by doing social things.
Kids who receive lots of attention and love from their parents are less likely to act out to get attention.
For instance, President Clinton's desire for attention and love is palpable.
In his third hour, Prager interviewed his nephew Joshua Harris Prager who wrote in the 1/31/01 Wall Street Journal:
The Giants were stealing the Dodgers' signs, the finger signals transmitted from catcher to pitcher that determine the pitch to be thrown.
"Stealing signs is nothing to be proud of," says Mr. Thomson, now 77 years old. "Of course, the question is, did I take the signs that day?"
Sixteen players and coaches who appeared on the 1951 Giants are dead. In interviews with all 21 surviving players and the one living coach, many are at last willing to confirm that they executed an elaborate scheme relying on an electrician and a spyglass. And, they say, they stole signs not only during their encounter with the Dodgers, but during home games all through the last 10 weeks of the 1951 season, a period when the Giants appeared to summon mysterious resources of will and talent.
"Every hitter knew what was coming," says 83-year-old Al Gettel, a pitcher on the 1951 Giants roster into August. "Made a big difference."
The Giants husbanded their secret well. Still, Mr. Thomson says, "it's reared its ugly head every once in a while." Indeed, a few times over 50 years, rumors that the 1951 Giants stole signs circulated in the press and sports literature. But they came to nothing. In the 1992 book "The Great Chase: The Dodgers-Giants Pennant Race of 1951," author Harvey Rosenfeld devotes two pages to talk of sign stealing. He concludes the passage with a Dodgers official who said he "believes all this sign-stealing business is total fiction."
Luke says: Josh Prager also wrote a story on Boston Red Sox third baseman Bill Buckner who muffed a ground ball and stopped the Sox from winning a World Series.
Dennis Prager recieved an email from a psychiatrist who spoke to an affluent high school. And he found out that 13 year olds were having oral sex. The psychiatrist said this was not good, but his supervisor said that what was not good was telling kids that oral sex at their age was not good.
So the shrink asked Prager for advice.
DP said: Kids having oral sex. You remove the mystery of the opposite sex. Dennis thought as a kid, 'What will it be like to be with a girl one day?' That's good.
With oral sex at 13, there's no dating, no flirting. There's nothing to look forward to. It jades them.
DP: I've seen the difference in the faces of kids who grow up in affluent secular sophisticated places and those raised in a sheltering religious environment.
What do you fear more? Your kids smoking or engaging in oral sex?
The secular elites view children as soulless machines who need to have healthy bodies.
The TV show "Temptation Island" presents hollow people with great bodies.
TV is the enemy of children.
In his second hour, Prager interviewed economist Jordan Goodman from MoneyAnswers.com. He recommended the site DebtReliefOnline.com., 800-779-4499.
In the third hour, DP talked about a school that suspended an eight year old boy for playfully pointing a chicken leg at a teacher and saying pow, pow. Prager has contempt for these "zero tolerance" policies.
A female caller related a story about a boy who had repeated nightmares until a counselor said he should be allowed to play with guns. Two days later, the nightmares left. The boy simply needed to feel that he could protect himself.
DP says we should allow boys to be boys, and play with toy guns. It is critical that people allow themselves ways to express their dark sides innocuously. We need to let the steam out because we are all pressure cookers. And if the steam is not allowed out innocuously, it will come out destructively.
DP began the show with a blistering 30 minute debate with law professor Alan Dershowitz who hardly let Prager get a word in edgewise. It's disappointing how liberals like Dershowitz don't address the subtlety and nuance of Prager's points.
Dershowitz just published a column blasting Bush for having ministers at his inauguration who made blessings in the name of Jesus Christ. Der... says that excludes non-Christians. Prager said he wasn't bothered, and DP didn't think religious Jews would worry about this.
In his second hour, DP tackled the left's battle in Britain to ban fox hunting. Yet the left also wants untrammelled access to abortion.
By trashing the White House, the Clinton people acted out. That's what children do. They act out. We've had children in the White House the last eight years.
President Clinton was more raised by the 1960s than he was by a father. Remember the motto from the '60s? Don't trust anyone over 30. So what do '60s generation people do when they pass 30? They keep acting as though they are under 30.
That's why Al Gore doesn't know who he is, and had to hire Naomi Wolf as a consultant to teach him how to be an Alpha Male.
Dennis Prager said he's not talked about Clinton the past eight years, aside from the time Clinton lied to the American people over Monica Lewinsky. DP says he avoided talking about Clinton so as to not alienate the liberal portions of his audience.
Prager fools himself. He talked about Clinton plenty and his utter contempt for Clinton was obvious in his tone.
Prager avoids talking about many issues to avoid alienating large segments of his audience. If he was really honest, he would talk more about the problems in black and hispanic male life, and the other obstacles in having a multi-ethnic society.
Washington Post columnist William Raspberry writes in his column: "If I were in the White House, I might want to identify the people responsible for the more malicious damage and expose them individually to the public scorn they deserve. But Bush's no-prosecution decision is both more elegant and more gracious. If this is a class war, then it's the Bush people who are displaying all the class."
Prager's friend Stephen Marmer, who teaches psychiatry at UCLA, notices a generational change in his patients. It used to be that their primary complaint was guilt. Now it is narcissism.
Narcissists can't love. They can't have close friends, because they are their own closest friend. Clinton was a typical narcissist - love me. Love me.
Prager saw in his college years how leftist students were obsessed with taking moral sounding positions. While leading personally dissolute lives, they felt driven to take political positions that sound very moral.
Hollywood is the center of narcissism. But how do you look yourself in the mirror while being so self absorbed - you take great liberal positions. Sound very moral. No discrimination against blacks, homosexuals, etc...
Look at Bill Clinton and Ted Kennedy and Hugh Hefner - they're big supporters of feminist causes. Yet in they're personal lives, they're tawdry.
In Prager's second hour, he interviewed Dr. Sally Satel, author of the new book "PC M.D." Buy it here from Amazon.com.
Amazon.com says: From one of the most outspoken critics of the American health-care system, a searing account of how the wholesale intrusion of political correctness into medicine is creating a toxic system of medical care.
Drawing on a wealth of information, much of it never before revealed, PC, M.D. documents for the first time what happens when the tenets of political correctness-including victimology, multiculturalism, and the rejection of fixed truths and individual autonomy-are allowed to enter the fortress of medicine. Consider these examples:
1. A professor at the Harvard School of Public Health teaches her students that racial discrimination causes high blood pressure among blacks-an unsubstantiated and dangerous "truth"
2. Nationwide, consumer-survivors preach against involuntary commitment of the severely mentally ill, arguing for their "right" not to be treated
3. Baltimore's Commissioner of Health proposes distributing heroin to addicts, claiming they are too oppressed to help themselves
The consequences of putting politics before health are far-reaching, argues Sally Satel. Patients are the ultimate victims of these disturbing trends. Meanwhile, PC medicine diverts taxpayer money that could be better spent delivering health care, providing proven therapies, and rigorously investigating new ones. PC, M.D. is a powerful wake-up call to the medical profession and to patients.
Sally Satel, M.D., a psychiatrist, is a lecturer at Yale University School of Medicine. Her articles have been published in The New Republic, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and other publications. She lives in Washington, D.C.
Dennis Prager has been away for ten days in Thailand and northern Australia. What do you expect he would talk about when he came home?
Yes, DP was predictable. First, a paean to the benefits of going on vacation. How it helps one gain perspective. Then a paean to the benefits of travel, particularly foreign travel. It helps one overcome provincialism. It broadens and deepens you.
Then about how much he enjoyed his cruise. How much he loves Australia even though Darwin was very hot.
Then Prager complained about American airline deregulation. How it's reduced the quality of service, which is so superior on these nationally owned airlines he's recently flown on. Prager was particularly hard on United (now employee owned) and Northwest.
And a complaint with all the posters he saw in Sydney about health and condom use. The western world is obsessed with the wrong things - not right and wrong, morality, holiness and nobility. But rather, second hand smoke and condoms and other secondary matters.
Then a moral dilemma from his trip. While cruising in Thailand, groups of dark boys would paddle out to the ship and then dive for money and fruit that white passengers threw overboard. Prager didn't throw anything overboard because he thought it would demean the boys to dive for it. But the boys liked it, and they liked the fruit and money, and in the end, Prager admitted that he was wrong. That the boys need for the goodies outweighed considerations about their dignity.
In his final hour, Prager inveighed against the cheering for Superbowl MVP Ray Lewis, the Baltimore Ravens linebacker who played a role in a double murder in Atlanta a year ago.
An Orthodox Jew describes his experience working for John Ashcroft:
Critics imply that Ashcroft, because of his strong Christian beliefs, is intolerant of Jews. Actually, he's more than tolerant; he's downright philo-Semitic. Ashcroft was born to a gentile family in a predominantly Jewish Chicago neighborhood. His mother served as a Shabbos goy, turning ovens on and off as needed (a practice many Jews found charming when practiced by a young Colin Powell--but then Powell is African American and pro-choice). Ashcroft's father even took a mezuzah with the family when they moved from Chicago to Springfield, Missouri, where he kept it affixed to his doorpost until his death, in 1995. Ashcroft, I'd wager, knows more about Judaism than half the Jewish members of the Senate.
I listened to nationally syndicated talkshow host Dennis Prager this morning who made these points about the Jesse Jackson love child controversy:
Imagine if the same thing happened to Clarence Thomas. He'd be called a hypocrite, as was done to Bruce Hirschenson and Newt Gingrich. Hirschenson, who never took public positions against the sex industry, while single attended a strip show and this cost him his 1992 Senate race against Barbara Boxer.
Name one liberal who's been called a hypocrite. Because liberals have no personal standards of behavior, you can't be called a hypocrite.
This is why so many people in Hollywood are liberals. You can lead a narcissistic selfish life but take moral sounding positions in the public sphere. Liberalism frequently works as a cover for selfish private behavior. 'Because I have the right stand on the environment, gay rights, abortion, etc, therefore I am a good person.' Thus liberals can't be called hypocrites for lousy personal behavior.
What about Carl Rowen and Rosie O'Donnell, liberals who condemned the private ownership of guns, but used them themselves?
People say about Bill Clinton, ok, he's not a great guy. He has no moral credibility. But he has political credibility. The economy's great.
Reverend Jackson's career depends on his moral credibility. Clinton's did not.
From Drudgereport.com: Clinton administration officials were bracing for yet another photograph, obtained by the ENQUIRER, which pictures Jesse Jackson, the pregnant mistress, President Bill Clinton, and RAINBOW COALITION executives smiling in the Oval Office.
Michael Medved writes in the Jnaury 9, 2001 USA Today:
In every religious tradition, we hold marriage sacred -- not sexual attachments, or even non-marital "commitments," between single adults. By definition, the couples who participate in Temptation Island already are involved in a sexual relationship outside of marriage. If the show leads them to participate in an additional sexual relationship outside of marriage, or even a substitute relationship, the process may not prove honorable or uplifting, but why is it especially "horrible" or "debaucherous?"
Since the 1960s, baby boomers have challenged this traditional understanding. As pop poetess Joni Mitchell crooned in her ballad, My Old Man: "We don't need no piece of paper from the city hall/keepin' us tied and true." Many Hollywood celebrities (including Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell, Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins, and so forth) choose to live under this new dispensation. They produce children and share lives, but make a solemn point of avoiding matrimony. Outside the entertainment industry, many ordinary Americans uphold the same idea: Almost a third of all American births now occur out of wedlock. The common substitution of the terms "partner" or "significant other" for the old words "husband," "wife" or "spouse," demonstrates the tendency we now have to obliterate the distinction between marriage and non-marital relationships.
The honchos at Fox, perpetrators of Temptation Island, unmistakably recognize this fresh fascination with the old institution of matrimony. For all of its cheesiness and superficiality, Fox's notorious Who Wants to Marry a Multi- Millionaire? still traded on an old-fashioned belief in marriage magic. The five nervous finalists, each decked out in traditional wedding gowns, seemed to nourish the forlorn, girlish hope that in that transforming "I do" moment the purportedly wealthy Rick Rockwell might just be the answer to their hopes and prayers.
Luke: I listened to Dennis Prager who noted the emptiness of the people in the show. They're all TV characters in the way they speak. They're attractive but shallow. Everything is cool.
And what sort of lowlifes would volunteer to try to break up a relationship? Probably most of them would do it too even if the four couples were married.
If this is truly what Americans in their late 20s are like, this is pathetic.
DP noted the lack of masculinity in the men. The men on the show had to make their case for staying on the island, so many did stripteases. This is not generally considered sexy, but rather gross and stupid. They're exposing themselves.
The guys tried to pursuade by telling the ladies, hey, we will have fun baby.
Reform Rabbi Kenneth Rosenman (of Temple Shalom in Dallas) writes USA Today: Medved's theology is firmly rooted in a previous era. Sacredness inheres in relationships, not in the blessings given at the time of a marriage ceremony. Can we not understand that a very long-term friendship is a sacred relationship? Or the commitment of two people of the same sex who are prohibited from being legally married, but whose relationship exhibits all of the emotional and interpersonal ties that characterize a heterosexual relationship? Is this not also entitled to be called holy? Or a parent-child relationship? There are many kinds of relationships and many kinds of sacredness. Medved errs in reserving the quality of holiness only for heterosexual marriage. It is a theological assertion with which many of us would quarrel.
Dennis Prager's show has never been better.
He spent his first 30 minutes blasting the Los Angeles Times for excising two sentences from a George Will column that mentioned that President Clinton was probably a rapist. DP points out again how liberal and biased the LA Times and the major news media are. They don't mind running Paul Conrad cartoons portraying George Bush in a Klu Klux Klan outfit.
The next 30 minutes went to debating airline deregulation. DP wants more regulation. He says service has dramatically declined. DP doesn't trust big business or the government or any entity with inordinate power.
The last hour discussed the increase in school hours across the nation. To Prager's brain, this makes sense. It reduces juvenile delinquency, disciplines kids, increases test scores and the economy. His heart feels that this is a bad idea - it stifles creativity and reduces the spare time of kids to pursue their own interests. DP increasingly supports home schooling.
DP says the Congressional Black Caucus damages America. A black female congresswoman representing the Caucus said over the weekend "no justice, no peace," repeating Maxine Waters chant from the LA Riots days.
The CBC was alone in Congress in refusing the recognize the Electoral College victory of Bush. Prager played soundbites of angry CBC members claiming that Bush stole Florida's 25 electoral votes. The CBCers sounded like morons.
DP says that Democrats who attack Attorney General designate John Ashcroft as a racist are doing something evil. While it is legitimate to question Ashcroft's nomination, there's nothing racist in Ashcroft's record. John may have been wrong in opposing the nomination of that black judge in Mississippi, Ronny White, but it was not done on racist grounds.
In his second hour, Prager discussed the call of a nine-year old girl to a computer talk show.
DP remarked: * The girl never said thank you.
* The girl ended her computer related call by saying 'The Backstreet Boys suck."
* The hosts, not only did not admonish her about her language, they then proceeded to discuss the merits of her remark. Do the Backstreet Boys suck?
DP says adults must act like adults, and correct children who use inappropriate language. If he had used such language as a kid, adults would've corrected him. But today, adults fear acting like adults. They fear to correct kids on bad behavior and speech.
The Press Enterprise Riverside
By Bob Sokolsky
Religion remains my number one love," Prager says. "And I think I will now have the freedom to invoke religious ideas and apply them to current events. I think I will have greater freedom to mention God, not in a proselytizing manner, but in a sense of who I am."
He then quickly adds that he is not accusing KABC of ever denying him that right. "But there was an understanding that certain things may not appeal to the demographics they were reaching for. They considered it a turnoff to younger listeners." Prager says his new syndicator, the Salem Radio Network, does not feel that way and will be more receptive to his ideas.
And while reluctant to speak about his former ABC/Disney employers, he does confirm their announcement that he left when they insisted he do a local rather than a syndicated radio show. "I didn't understand their preoccupation with that, but it was their call to make," Prager says. "Still, I don't think I have one listener who would be annoyed to know I also had a listener in Albany." He also says he doesn't understand the KABC adversity to syndicated programming, especially since its higher rated talk rival, KFI (640 AM) "rides in on the backs of Laura (Schlessinger) and Rush (Limbaugh)."
On the other hand, he sees no typical Dennis Prager fan and laughingly recalls a street encounter "with a guy pierced and tattooed everywhere" who approached him and proclaimed his love for the show. "I mentioned that over the air and all these other tattooed people started calling in to say they loved the show, too."
In his first hour, Prager asked if you ever learned something that you wish you hadn't? For instance, that your spouse had an affair. DP discussed the problem in Great Britain where the National Health Service confused sperm, so that many women were impregnated with someone else's sperm.
Prager's third hour: You learn intimacy early. if you don't, it becomes a life long problem. You have to learn to express yourself emotionally and you have to learn emotional intimacy and you have to practice it. Men in particular often aren't taught to express emotions...and it is very hard to develop this later. Similar to a love of classical music or even religion... If you don't develop certain things early, it is very hard to develop them later. Parents today are raising children who will be emotionally retarded. They will be relationship retarded. Because they don't pursue activities that form bonds.
If parents don't make time for their kids, emotional ties wither and die. Parents are overscheduling kids' lives with activities and this does not leave time for developing bonds.
DP rejoiced that Bush did not micromanage his court jousts with Gore. That Bush did not bother to listen to the Supreme Court hearings.
DP read from Colin Powell's acceptance speech - that there are no limits to minority achievement.
Powell's message won't be repeated often, because the more that blacks believe this, the less likely they will be to be Democrats. More hispanics and blacks have Republican values than Democratic ones, but because they're told how many limitations are on their abilities, that minorities need the Democrats. Just the stuff that Jesse Jackson fears - a black hero to say the opposite of what he does.
DP: The Democratic Party has paralyzed millions of Americans. Saying that without big government help, you can't succeed.
ChrisDnld replies to SingleMom on the Prager List: If Prager failed to note the single voice crying in the wind on this, then he deserves to be called on it. The far more important point is what Brokaw DIDN'T say, and that was that Kerry's voice WAS a VAST anomaly. And so, if Prager was not 100% totally correct, his sentiment remains over 99% true, and equally troubling irrespective. This means that one in about 50 Democratic Senators came out on this. (..forget the Democratic House..)
This is the weakness of the Liberal Elite at their finest. Rather than Brokaw being far more disturbed by the Democratic Party's DEAFENING SILENCE OVERALL on this disgusting Ad, he was only annoyed that, technically, ONE Senator HAD actually condemned it, so TECHNICALLY Prager was either lying or negligent.
Well. Example #342 of CLASSIC "forrest for the trees" Liberalism. On Brokaw's hypersensitivity, it is one thing to nitpick the neighbor whilst simultaneously ignoring the elephant in one's own living room, but quite another for YOU or anyone else to assume that Tom Brokaw IS or IS NOT whatever he represents himself to be, JUST BECAUSE HE SAYS SO. It didn't work for me at 12, and it shouldn't for an adult today.
All current TV anchors are largely liberal, and there are few in America who suspect or claim otherwise. Straw polls for the last few elections have shown that those who work in the broadcast/print media vote like 85%-3% Democratic -Republican. I have never heard a cogent response to that shameful statistic.
Like the Liberal tolerance for minority racism, it goes unchallenged and largely unacknowledged. Brokaw is certainly a "liberal", or one who sympathizes more with the Left than the Right, and who is far more likely to condemn and find fault with the Right than the Left. That is what one sees when one listens to any national anchor for any period of time. So, if Brokaw resents the "liberal" label, he is allowed to.
But that doesn't affect reality either way. The problem is that this bias becomes, for many of our public, what they come to consider "proper thinking", what they come to see as what the "educated" believe. These liberal sentiments become, after being insinuated into public discourse night after night, no longer opinions but New Baseline Assumptions. This is a quite but powerful cultural force that Prager (and many others) fears. To deny Prager's specifics but totally ignore the gist is to be willfully pointless.
Finally, more than anything, it makes me laugh heartily to see Brokaw, so revered by the rest of the Liberal Elite, running screaming from the very label THEY THEMSELVES wear with such pride and gross smugness. I mean, would Bill Buckley attack someone in print who had, in print, called him a spokesman for "the Right"?? I suspect he'd send the man a fine cigar..
SingleMom replies: With reference to Kerry, the so called "single voice" - The god you slavishly worship, Mr Lover of Truth, Dennis Prager lied to support his position - and got caught and was publicly admonished. Additionally, an appearance on a nationally televised political discussion broadcast, "Crossfire" by Kerry is hardly "crying in the wind"!(Chris - Did I just catch you in a lie and publicly admonish you? It sure feels like I did - and I think I like it!)
With reference to Brokaw - The god you slavishly worship, Mr Lover of Truth, Dennis Prager lied to support his position - and got caught and was publicly admonished.
Sgil replies: It's some odd world you live in S'mommy. It's amazing how many times you repeated the lie -- that makes you the liar, not poor CD. It was Brokaw who was caught, not DP. Brokaw's explanation was long-winded bunk. Not surpriseing to see you love that kinda stuff.
Shannon writes on the Prager List: Prager, a petulant petty tribalist quagmired in group-think polemicism is going in the only direction that this maddening minimalist mindset can possibly take him. Like a turd flushing down the toilet, Prager's circles of thought get ever smaller, and ever more eccentric. "Erotically in love with truth," my arse... Prager's truths are carved solidly from the extent of his own vision, which ends precariously at the end of his upturned nose. This farcically deadpan, self aggrandizing religionist clown becomes a more monumental buffoon each and every time his "wisdom" is granted a larger audience than the talk radio cud chewers that constitute the bulk of his clientele.
SingleMom replies: Well put Shannon. Prager becomes more and more disturbed. He lies publicly in the Wall Street Journal, for crissakes, in a failed attempt to support his unbalanced point of view. This chicanery is matched only by his frequent referencing of University studies that support his bias while at the same time attacking all Universities as the home of the evil liberal "Ay-leet". There's a reason he landed at KIEV....
How, exactly, with the emphasis on the word EXACTLY, was Brokaw caught? Prager lied about Senator Kerry and about Brokaw. I'm sure Prager attempted and will continue to attempt to save face by parsing his lies. DP was caught, unequivocally, lieing about the Democratic response to the NAACP political commercial and twisting Brokaw's words. I wonder if Prager will sue the 2 honorable gentleman who publically called him a liar in print in the Wall Street Journal. We know that he is not adverse to legal actions as he has shown in his litigation against Luke vis-a-vis dennisprager.net. If Prager did not lie in the Wall Street Journal piece will he sue those who have called him a liar with supportive evidence? Doubt it. But what would you expect from a divorced defender of marriage? Honesty????
Let's recap - The god you slavishly worship, Mr Lover of Truth, Dennis Prager lied to support his position - and got caught and was publicly admonished.
Shannon writes: Soggy sure. I have taken Prager ideas and concepts and blasted the living crap out of them in this very forum. Take for example Prager's "concept" that men who opt not to circumcise their sons are more likely to molest them. Or...It's a good thing the dinsoaurs died, otherwise we wouldn't have oil. (Bwwwwaaaaahhhhhhhhhaaaaaaaahhhhaaaaa!) Or that cutting down rainforest to plant crops is a noble endevor, since it actually helps reduce carbon monoxide levels. I have even read the unhappy man's astonishingly mediocre book on happiness. My criticisms of Prager are spot bollock on. He is all that I say he is...an angry man with an ever shrinking circle of influence and an ever expanding surrounding of perceived enemies. He speaks often these days of being at war with the forces of [his] darkness. This is Prager-L...What better forum to document the man's demise and error?
Tom Brokaw published this letter to the Wall Street Journal, rebutting Prager's comments.
DP had pointed out that Brokaw had used the word "we" on election night to describe Al Gore's chances. DP pointed out that this slip was an example of how the news media overwhelmingly favored the Democrats.
DP wrote in the WSJ 11/30/00: "We have watched in silence as the leading news media have become indistinguishable from liberal spokespeople, to the extent that NBC news anchor Tom Brokaw actually said "we are ahead" when speaking about Democratic electoral gains on election night."
I Am No One's 'Spokesman'
Tom Brokaw from NBC News writes: After almost 20 years in this job -- and 20 more covering politics from Omaha to Atlanta, from Ronald Reagan in California to Richard Nixon in the White House -- I have grown accustomed to the dark suspicions from the left and the right that I am the handmaiden of one or the other.
To some degree I am amused because I have close professional relationships with most of the major candidates, strategists and operatives across the political spectrum based on what I am confident is mutual respect. From time to time they all have a complaint about real or perceived slights and misrepresentations. I take the call and we almost always arrive at a satisfactory resolution.
This campaign and the long-running post-election melodrama are no exceptions. I talk daily to representatives of both candidates to gather information and to hear their points of view.
Not once has any low-, middle- or high-level representative of either campaign even suggested I was tilting coverage or personal remarks one way or the other.
So I was startled to read Dennis Prager's assertion that I am indistinguishable from liberal spokespeople, a claim he bases on what he said was a quote from me on election night as I remarked on Democratic Party electoral gains. Mr. Prager quoted me as saying, "We are ahead" ("An Open Letter to Democrats," editorial page, Nov. 30).
We did an exhaustive search of the transcript for that long night and early morning. On several occasions I said, "We're getting ahead of ourselves here," referring to NBC News, or, "We're showing [either Gore or Bush] ahead . . ." but there is no utterance by me in the transcript in word or in tone that would support Mr. Prager's claim.
When we called him to get his source, a courtesy he failed to extend to me, he said it was not "We are ahead." That was his mistake. Instead, he meant to cite a phrase I uttered at a time when returns were coming in a rush from the industrial Midwest. Mr. Prager heard me say, "But the critical states that we still have to win."
Turns out he took one bungled sentence out of 10 hours of live, ad libbed election night play by play to construct his thesis. I know because we looked it up and listened to the tape again. It came as I was using the pronoun "we" to refer to NBC News, as in "we're going to color in the map . . . those states that are in red are Texas Governor George Bush's states." Then I began describing states won by Vice President Gore, including, erroneously at that point, Florida. I was keeping my eye on the critical states of the industrial Midwest when I was interrupted in my earpiece with the news that we were projecting Gore the winner in Michigan.
So this is how it came out: "But the critical states that we still have to win . . . we have just made a projection in the state of Michigan."
For Mr. Prager to convert me into a spokesman for liberal causes based on such as obviously dishonest interpretation on his part qualifies him for the Oliver Stone Hall of Fame.
I have gone to some lengths to refute these careless, indeed, reckless charges because I know your pages are read carefully and I do not intend to become part of some self-perpetuating myth.
Luke says: DP, in his second hour, replied to Brokaw's letter. In my view, Prager makes a far more persuasive and honest case.
A letter to the WSJ replying to Prager's essay:
"You ironically brandish about the label of divisiveness when you lie and say that no Democrat offered a condemnation of the offensive NAACP ad. You do not bother to research your claim, which is shattered by Senator Bob Kerry of Nebraska, when, on October 25th's "Crossfire" he said of the very same ad, "it's racially divisive and offensive and take it off the air." I will afford you the opportunity to be as reasoned and fair as Senator Kerry, and ask you to condemn Robert Novak's hateful comments on that same program on November 28, when he claimed that New Yorkers were not "real Americans."
George Bush has a better-than-even chance of leaving this election the legitimate victor. But do not think that you share in his victory. For you have revealed yourself to be a man who cares only about the civil rights of those you agree with, who only condemns smear campaigns when they are directed towards his allies. Worst of all, you have lied to smear your opponents. I do not know if you did not come across the comments of Senator Kerry because of gross negligence in your research or if you were aware of them and simply hoped that no one would be man enough to call you a liar. Neither is excusable. Your level of partisan blindness to truth is the real loser in this election. You and your kind on both sides of the ideological spectrum have been publicly unmasked and America is disgusted by you. You will continue with your spinning for the rest of your days. But thankfully, we no longer take you seriously."