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Brian Williams Story Keeps Growing

Update: Brian Williams has released a statement saying he will take a leave of absence from NBC News for several days:

As Managing Editor of NBC Nightly News, I have decided to take myself off of my daily broadcast for the next several days, and Lester Holt has kindly agreed to sit in for me to allow us to adequately deal with this issue. Upon my return, I will continue my career-long effort to be worthy of the trust of those who place their trust in us.

***

Two days of trending on Twitter is apparently all it takes for NBC News to launch an internal investigation into Brian Williams' mis-telling of his experience on a helicopter of Iraq. [More...]

An NBC News executive not authorized to discuss the matter publicly confirmed that Richard Esposito the head of the news division's investigations unit is overseeing the inquiry.

First, people said his apology was also not factual. Now, questions are being raised about his Katrina Reporting, including a statement in which he said he saw a dead body floating face down from his hotel room and got dysentery from drinking flood water by mistake. Who is challenging his version? The article quotes a single source, a former city health official in New Orleans. That's all it takes to make the news these days.

NBC News sent a memo to employees that didn't sound too encouraging for Williams. It contained no support for Williams, and instead said:

We're working on what the best next steps are — and when we have something to communicate we will of course share it with you.

Will he resign saying he doesn't want to compromise the network's image and he's become a distraction? I wouldn't be surprised. I also think the whole thing is overblown. I would not question a news report he gave next week based on his having exaggerated or even made up a personal experience. What he tells us on air from the studio on the Evening News is scripted and produced by a news team. They are the ones out in the streets doing the leg work and interviews. He may change some words here and there, or decide what stories will be covered that day, but he doesn't write the news, he announces it.

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  • Display: Sort:
    I keep seeing him described (5.00 / 4) (#1)
    by Repack Rider on Fri Feb 06, 2015 at 09:34:47 PM EST
    ...as a liberal-leaning version of whatever the term is for someone who reads a teleprompter with a semblance of sincerity.

    If he's an inch to the left of center, I must be a light year to the left of center.  This is the guy who famously partied with Karl Rove and thought it was a dandy idea to invade Iraq.

    The threshold for being described as a liberal these days is pretty low.

    If you're not a regular on Fox News, ... (none / 0) (#6)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 12:11:22 AM EST
    ... then you're a liberal tool of the lamestream media.

    Parent
    Correct (none / 0) (#8)
    by Slado on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 03:59:35 AM EST
    One reason is according to the Washington Post the majority of journalists are democrats.

    Because journalists are people too this tends to mean that they're reporting leans to the left.  This of course can't always be the case and what I might see has left you might see as middle of the road or even conservative what is factual is that few conservatives are in the mainstream media.

    FOXNews is simply a capitalist response to this reality. They present the news in a way that leans right. Because nobody before them did this it was very easy for them to differentiate themselves and pick up ratings that are sustainable.

    Also they only allow good-looking people to deliver the news (for the most part)  and have much better production value than their competitors.  The cool sound effects and graphics work.  Especially that spaceship that Shepard Smith seems to be flying around on.

    The setting is gather is able to watch all of this and glean from them what the truth is. Too many on the progress of left thank that FOXNews viewers are mindless trolls programmed by Roger Ailes.   If this is true then I'd argue tha just as many on the left are just as equally programmed by the news outlets they consume.  

    Parent

    I have to edit better... (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Slado on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 04:03:36 AM EST
    Last paragraph again, no more talk to text...

    The savy news gatherer is able to watch all of the news outlets and glean the truth from them. Too many on the left think that FOXNews viewers are mindless trolls programmed by Roger Ailes. I'd argue that just as many on the left are equally programmed by the news outlets they consume.

    Parent

    Did you miss the first sentence of (5.00 / 6) (#16)
    by Anne on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 09:26:03 AM EST
    the article you cited?  Here it is for those who didn't take a look:

    A majority of American journalists identify themselves as political independents

    But wait - it gets worse:

    Compared with 2002, the percentage of full-time U.S. journalists who claim to be Democrats has dropped 8 percentage points in 2013 to about 28 percent, moving this figure closer to the overall population percentage of 30 percent, according to a December 12-15, 2013, ABC News/Washington Post national poll of 1,005 adults. This is the lowest percentage of journalists saying they are Democrats since 1971.

    The reporter's conclusion?

    What seems to be happening -- at least in the last decade - -is that journalists are leaving both parties, finding themselves more comfortable as unaffiliateds.

    But congratulations, Slado, you managed to Fox-up one number in a poll so you could make the flip side of that number seem like it represented the rest of the journalists surveyed.

    And this is why (1) I don't watch Fox, and (2) why we'd all be better off being highly skeptical of anything we hear or see without looking below the surface.

    [note: all bold is mine]

    Parent

    Good catch (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by Slado on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 01:13:01 PM EST
    People moving from Democrat to independent does not mean that there are more conservative voices in the nations newsroom but your correct that I got caught linking by headline.

    My point overall is the rise of FoxNews is a reaction to the media bias or perceived bias that many Americans see in the mainstream media.  Nothing else it explains it.

    You're more than welcome to think that people like me who see bias are crazy but nonetheless we see it and having another outlet that leans more in our directions is a nice relief.  

    I know when Obama screws up I will get the story on Fox news. I can't be sure of that if I only read the NYTs or check out CNN.

    However I myself try to read and consume the news from many different outlets because if I only watched FOXNews I wouldn't get the whole story.  In fact I only watch two shows on Fox news. The five and special report with Bret Baer.   I'll occasionally watch O'Reilly just because he makes me giggle.

    But whenever someone links to a Mother Jones or The Nation I read it. Because someone took the trouble to write an article based on what they consider to be the facts so let's see what they have to say. It can't all be a lie.   To just dismiss it because of the source means to me I'm not interested in hearing something that might not agre with my current point of view.

    But to each his own. Fox news and media bias are like abortion, people are just locked into their opinion on this one.


    Parent

    I'd argue that Fox reacted to what it (5.00 / 2) (#46)
    by Anne on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 04:01:51 PM EST
    perceived as liberal bias by creating an outlet that provided just the opposite, and it became popular with people who wanted that take on national and world events.

    There are any number of problems with that, and one of them is that those of us who actually ARE liberal do not view the major "lamestream" networks and cable outlets as providing a particularly liberal take on things.  We find them to be just as lacking in comprehensiveness, and no more proficient at informing the public.

    It may surprise you, in fact, that many of us whom you would consider liberal aren't much more accepting or approving of the so-called liberal media's news products than we are of what Fox is putting out there; neither do a good enough job.

    I can't tell you how many nights my husband has NBC on while I'm making dinner, and I'm providing running commentary on all the things the reporters AREN'T telling him.  Do Fox News viewers do that?  Do you?

    Look, what's bringing Brian Williams down isn't his bias, it's his ego.  He's apparently inserted himself into his own reporting to give that reporting more of an edge that in turn one-ups the competition.  I expect his other stories are being fly-specked for truthiness, as well.

    But here's the thing: failing the ability to witness events for myself, I just want those reporting on them to do the next best thing, and not edit and censor and massage and package their reports for reasons that have nothing to do with informing the viewer.

    That they all do this to some extent means that no one should take anything being reported at face value.  

    Parent

    My comments on Fox (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by Slado on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 11:25:47 PM EST
    Have absolutely zero to do with Williams.  I was just responding to the constant and I Fox bias I see towards links and general news on here.

    In fact I posted yesterday that his whole problem is totally due to his ego.  He couldn't just report the news he had to some how be a part of it.

    The question is why's?.   For me the why is he probably felt at the time that placing him inside the stories more then he really was gave him an edge or one up on his competitors to better tell the story and make him more then just a TelePrompTer reader.

    His undoing has nothing to do with bias because what was his bias towards?  Being there or not there is just a matter of fact.  

    Parent

    You'd be better off raising the issue (none / 0) (#72)
    by Mr Natural on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 01:33:24 PM EST
    of Fox's generally more unbiased coverage of Hillary Clinton's 2008 campaign.  It was a subject of relative amazement here.  Most of the media had devolved into credulous, even drooling, O'Sycophancy.  The Hillary hate was positively palpable.

    Strange times.

    Parent

    I'd argue inverted causality (none / 0) (#18)
    by Mr Natural on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 09:37:48 AM EST
    Any leaning to the left begins with the curiosity that led them into journalism.  The resulting better awareness of and informedness about the generally woeful state of the world and all the human misery encompassed, completes the process.

    Parent
    Not the point of my comment; (5.00 / 4) (#19)
    by Anne on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 09:48:53 AM EST
    I'm not arguing why members of the media are changing their political affiliation - I'm pointing out the dishonesty of Slado's citing that "the majority of journalists are democrats," based on the rest of the article and the underlying polling.

    And explaining that that kind of manipulation of information is what makes outlets like Fox News - or any outlet that engages in it - so dangerous, and that people like Slado are engaging in it as if it's perfectly okay is proof of that.

    In my opinion.

    Parent

    Well, let's see what a liberal source (none / 0) (#20)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 11:46:22 AM EST
    says.

    Like the rest of the country, journalists feel more comfortable identifying themselves as independents rather than shacking up with a particular party. But among journalists who align with one of the two major parties, four in five said they're Democrats.

    Now it can be argued that not all Democrats are liberal. But I think that can be dismissed out of hand and replaced with "not all Democrats are Far Left."

    And going to the graph in the link I find it very interesting that those claiming to be Repub has dropped from 18% in 2002 to 7.1% in 2013. Democrats also had an almost identical loss but the ratio of Demos to Repubs was 4 to 1 in 2013 while the ratio was 2 to 1 in 2002.

    In a war of attrition the Repubs have lost big time.

    So the question is, what is the bias of the Independents? Let's go back to the article.

    Like the rest of the country, journalists feel more comfortable identifying themselves as independents

    And I think that is entirely true. The country has become more liberal in many ways but it has not become more Far Left. If it had then the Repubs could not have smashed the Demos so thoroughly in 2014.

    And with a loss of slightly less than 11% from both parties then influx into the Independent carried with it the bias of the former Demos or Repubs. It can also be noted that with the success of FNC journalists seeking jobs are not going to declare themselves rock solid Democrats. The job loss, particularly among print media, has been huge. You don't interview for a job where you are supposed to be "Fair and Balanced" wearing a button saying "Hill for a Thrill in '16."

    But in the final analysis, looking at "all" journalists is not an accurate method of determining bias that can influence the whole country. i.e. The weekly "Podunk News" may be conservative and a strong influence in its home town with a population of 7,000 but it is a fly on an elephant's behind when compared to the NYT.

    Parent

    But you'ver never really (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by jondee on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 12:32:49 PM EST
    been able to define adequately what you mean by "the Far Left" have you, Jim?

    One minute it's obvious moderates like Obama and the next it's scientists who promulgate the world-wide man-made greenhouse gas conspiracy..

    And generally, and so like people like O'Reilly, whose copy you obviously read and then re-word, you've never heard tell of a "Far Right" in America..

    Certainly not amongst the great white brotherhood of the sacred teabag..

    Parent

    You make a good point (2.00 / 1) (#41)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 02:26:41 PM EST
    what is extreme to one is not always extreme to the other but I would opine, a good O'Reily word, that many  people who regularly watch MSNBC and read KOS and MedaiaMatters and comment here have positions that others would describe as Far Left.

    Of course Williams is seen as the Left by the Right. And by the number of people trying to change the subject from his lies to FNC and Reagan, etc., it is evident that he is considered of the Left by them. And yes, some take a more principled stand and want him gone. That many members of the Far Right community would defend O'Reilly is a given.

    BTW - I Googled "far right jimakappj" on TalkLeft and got 498 hits. I think this speaks volumes re your claim of a "conspiracy."

    Parent

    Wow (5.00 / 2) (#42)
    by Yman on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 02:43:15 PM EST
    And by the number of people trying to change the subject from his lies to FNC and Reagan, etc., it is evident that he is considered of the Left by them.

    Try a basic logic course.  Seriously.  The reason people bring up FNC is because conservatives like you overlook their lies on a daily basis, while going after Williams because he's not a winger.  It's the hypocrisy.

    And the number of Google results as evidence again?  Oy.

    Parent

    Pop! Bang! (none / 0) (#45)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 03:32:50 PM EST
    The point is that their motive is to defend Williams. Just as the motive of Far Right minions is to defend Limbaugh. And I'm sure you will remember that I once described Limbaugh as an entertainer who will be around as long as he entertains his audience.

    And Williams, of course, is the subject not FNC or Reagan or anyone else no matter how evileeeee they may be.

    And yes, when the claim is that I never mention Far Right and I Google "far right jimakappj" on TalkLeft the number of hits equals the number of times I have written "far right."

    And to add to the Williams saga, his reporting re Katrina is now coming into play.

    "We'd heard the story of a man killing himself, falling from the upper deck," he said.

    But in an interview last year at Columbia Journalism School, Williams told his NBC predecessor, Tom Brokaw: "We watched, all of us watched, as one man committed suicide."

    Link

    Parent

    Heh (none / 0) (#47)
    by Yman on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 04:16:28 PM EST
    I'm not defending Williams - not sure who you're referring to, but the references to FNC are to point out the hypocrisy of those who sit silently through the multitude of Fox News lies.  They only attack Williams because they think he's not one of their own.

    It's funny.

    BTW - As for you other logic fail, you might want to look at the actual links before you make these ridiculous types of claims:

    And yes, when the claim is that I never mention Far Right and I Google "far right jimakappj" on TalkLeft the number of hits equals the number of times I have written "far right."

    Uh, no, Jim, it does not.  Just because there are Google results which include the three words "far" "right" and "jimakappj" in the same blog article, it doesn't mean you were discussing the "far right".  In case you're still having trouble with the concept, look at the first several links:

    Link 1 - Nope

    Link 2 - Also nope

    Link 3 - Still nothing

    Link 4 - Nada

    Link 5 - Oops!  Still nothing!

    Maybe someone should explain to you how that Google and them internets work ...

    Parent

    The comment was (none / 0) (#57)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 07:38:26 PM EST
    you've never really been able to define adequately what you mean by "the Far Left" have you, Jim?

    I gave you 498 examples of what I meant. Sorry if you don't like them but there they are.

    And it is obvious that Williams is not a Repub or a right winger.

    So many on the Left defends him just, as I noted, many on the Right will defend Limbaugh.

    Why you find this unusual and want to argue about it it is hard to say.

    Parent

    Your words are directly above (5.00 / 1) (#59)
    by Yman on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 08:43:28 PM EST
    BTW - I Googled "far right jimakappj" on TalkLeft and got 498 hits. I think this speaks volumes re your claim of a "conspiracy."

    Then ...

    And yes, when the claim is that I never mention Far Right and I Google "far right jimakappj" on TalkLeft the number of hits equals the number of times I have written "far right."

    Now, it morphs into this

    you've never really been able to define adequately what you mean by "the Far Left" have you, Jim?

    I gave you 498 examples of what I meant. Sorry if you don't like them but there they are.

    So it's not just a logic issue - it's a lack of basic reading skills.  Or you just get so confused by your contradictory claims that you can't keep them straight.

    Parent

    Far Left is a fungible definition (none / 0) (#65)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 09:47:36 AM EST
    In Jims' vocabulary, it would appear.

    Parent
    You see (5.00 / 4) (#52)
    by Ga6thDem on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 06:13:17 PM EST
    your post shows that you are the far right. Like most conservatives you think you're mainstream and the majority agrees with you and you can't believe that you lose presidential elections. Conservatives are so stuck inside that echo chamber that they've been nicknamed the New McGovernicks because they behave the exact same way. Jim, I hate to tell you but you've become exactly what you say you hate.

    Parent
    Oh really? (2.00 / 1) (#58)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 08:02:16 PM EST
    I took a liberal, some would say far left, source and analyzed its contents noting that the trend is away from both parties which is harming the Repubs more than the Demos.

    I note that the country has become more liberal but not far left using the results of the last election as my basis.

    I then conclude that the collapse of the print media has made people cautious about their political beliefs when job hunting and that while the fly over country may be in the hands of conservatives it is obvious that the media centers... NYC, LA/SF, PDX, SEA, ATL and Chicago remain mostly Demo. Look at the election results by urban area. In our part of the world Atlanta, Memphis and Nashville all voted Democratic. Same for NYC, Chicago, LA, SF, Portland and Seattle.

    So what in that is either far left, liberal, conservative or far right??

    Do you disagree that MSNBC, CNN, the network news and Hollywood are not predominately liberal? Note that I differentiate between far left and liberal. Also note that I didn't claim that FNC is not to the right.

    So exactly what in my comment makes me a conservative or far right? Especially when you consider my often repeated positions on gay rights, minority rights, women's right to choose, single payer health care, drug laws reform and capital punishment.

    Parent

    CNN , the network newscasts (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 09:37:51 AM EST
    and Hollywood certainly aren't liberal, they're mainstream and certainly much less biased in that direction than MSNBC.

    And you are pretending to believe that Fox News is "fair and balanced'?  That they don't go towards the right-wing POV?

    Like Judge Judy says, don't pee on our shoes and tell us it's raining.

    Parent

    Why yes, yes they are mainstream (none / 0) (#71)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 01:04:22 PM EST
    as I wrote:

    And I think that is entirely true. The country has become more liberal in many ways but it has not become more Far Left. If it had then the Repubs could not have smashed the Demos so thoroughly in 2014.

    That would cover CNN and Hollywood. And as I wrote directly above.

    Also note that I didn't claim that FNC is not to the right.

    You can have the last. I'm done here.


    Parent

    Actually, the problem (none / 0) (#73)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 03:05:38 PM EST
    in 2014 was voter turn out, not a referendum on political sides, as the Obama 2012 voters didn't turn out which would've made things different.

    As for mainstream, the entities you mention are in it for the money, FNC and MSNBC the exceptions as far as marketing goes, but you continue to invoke the boogeyman of the Far Left without defining it, so I'm not surprised you departed this thread in a huff. 😃

    Parent

    For most on the right (2.00 / 2) (#75)
    by Slado on Mon Feb 09, 2015 at 05:19:14 AM EST
    What you call "mainstream" they see as slanted left.  

    Fox News attempts to be " Fair and Balanced" but if course it isn't.

    What makes one feel that a network is slanted in either direction is usually in the stories they cover and the approach to them.  

    Fox typically will cover stories unflattering to this administration longer then, if at all that becsuse they see ratings when stories lget a snippet of coverage on most networks but Fox covers it extensively.  Then sometimes the big boys do a little more coverage since it's now out there and news worthy.

    Anyway it's all in the eye of the beholder.  Consume it all and you have the smarts to find the truth.

    Parent

    I remember (5.00 / 2) (#78)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Mon Feb 09, 2015 at 06:42:30 AM EST
    Faux News making sh*t up like the "terrorist fist bump", or having people come on to talk about mythical "no-go zones" in some cities in Europe.

    The other networks don't do that, even "Lean Forward" MSNBC, except of course when right-wingers come on Morning Joe, the host and co-host not being libruls of any sort whatsoever.

    You see what you want to see, Slado, like most people do, rather than what's really there when it comes to Faux News.  No surprises there.

    Parent

    Red baiting.. (5.00 / 4) (#24)
    by jondee on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 12:06:56 PM EST
    it never goes out of style..

    Claiming that Fox is "simply a capitalist response" in that context of course implies that Democrats can't be capitalists..

    But lets go with that simplistic, Fox-like formulation: if Fox really is an expression of what capitalism does with information and ideas, what does that say about capitalism?

    Parent

    You know (none / 0) (#12)
    by Ga6thDem on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 08:28:47 AM EST
    the real problem with Fox is not that they are conservative. The real problem with Fox is they are so inaccurate. But all in all who they hurt are conservatives because conservatives take their misinformation as God's own truth. Bobby Jindal is a perfect example of how they make conservatives look like idiots.

    Parent
    Seriously? (none / 0) (#32)
    by Yman on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 01:09:48 PM EST
    FOXNews is simply a capitalist response to this reality.

    Fox - the "capitalist" response to all those non-capitalist reporters/networks.

    Oy.

    Parent

    What I said (none / 0) (#37)
    by Slado on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 01:34:06 PM EST
    And what she said

    The tagline fair and balanced says it all. While of course not true it's simply putting out what the other networks were supposedly selling but not delivering.

    Want a network that's different, one that is fair and balanced? Tune in to FoxNews.

    Want more of the same then stay with the lame stream media.

    It's all a matter of perception and the ratings indicate that FOXNews is doing fine and will for a while.

    Parent

    Not what she said (5.00 / 2) (#44)
    by Yman on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 03:29:02 PM EST
    What you said.

    FOXNews is simply a capitalist response to this reality.

    All of the networks (and reporters) are "capitalists".  Right-wing tools do not have a monopoly on capitalism.

    But, yes - kudos to Ailes for figuring out there was a high percentage of conservatives who like to be hear other conservatives preach to them while they sit in the choir seats and pretend they are being "fair and balanced" - while pretending to be a news organization.

    Parent

    I disagree, Jeralyn. (5.00 / 4) (#3)
    by caseyOR on Fri Feb 06, 2015 at 10:01:38 PM EST
    Williams was acting as a reporter in both Iraq and New Orleans. These alleged lies were part of his reporting on these stories. He won awards for his reporting on Katrina and has been dining out on that Iraq helicopter story for more than a decade now.

    How is this any different from, say, a print journalist who makes up part of a story on which he is reporting?

    Hard as it may be to believe given how far the quality of journalism has fallen,  there are professional standards. Journalists who make stuff up lose their jobs.  

    Maybe because my dad was a newspaper reporter when I was a kid, or because I was a reporter back in the day, I take this kind of thing seriously.

    Honestly, I don't know why ... (none / 0) (#5)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 12:04:23 AM EST
    ... journalists seek to insert themselves as active characters in their own storylines.

    Parent
    Because some are egomaniacs (none / 0) (#10)
    by Slado on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 04:12:34 AM EST
    Where just reporting the news isn't enough. They feel they should use their skills to affect change by being part of the news.  Especially the ones that rise to the level of network anchor.

    Look at Bill O'Reilly for an example of an egomaniac.   He's not a network anchor but he's the king of cable news and he couldn't be any more full himself.  

    You don't get to these positions without this character flaw or at least a part of it.

    We'll do it live!

    This clip always makes me laugh.

    Parent

    Somebody should motor boat his ass outta there (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by Dadler on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 09:04:15 AM EST
    And I would prefer it not be his daughter, but if she is the one who has to say, "Daddy, hit the bricks, you lying prick," then so be it. I love all his sliding around with it. He told the story as harrowingly fabricated as he did for one reason: to make it seem like he too had REALLY been in the sh*t. Classic male ego pumping. Is it really that hard to figure out?

    Juan Cole: I'll take the caviling at Williams (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Mr Natural on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 09:14:14 AM EST
    "seriously - only when they also denounce Reagan and Bush for their much more egregious war service lies and agree that those figures lack credibility and should stop being looked up to."

    Reagan Press Secretary Larry Speakes: (none / 0) (#17)
    by Mr Natural on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 09:27:53 AM EST
    I agree with Cole wholeheartedly (none / 0) (#25)
    by jondee on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 12:24:04 PM EST
    and when Mr Negative Barometer and Nixonian dirty trickster himself Brent Bozell jumps in and immediately starts screaming for Williams head on a platter, I feel even more righteous about it.

    Parent
    Williams "stepping away" for a couple (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by Anne on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 04:52:50 PM EST
    days, and has issued  this statement:

    In the midst of a career spent covering and consuming news, it has become painfully apparent to me that I am presently too much a part of the news, due to my actions.

    As Managing Editor of NBC Nightly News, I have decided to take myself off of my daily broadcast for the next several days, and Lester Holt has kindly agreed to sit in for me to allow us to adequately deal with this issue. Upon my return, I will continue my career-long effort to be worthy of the trust of those who place their trust in us.

    He doesn't anchor the news on the weekends, so I assume this means he will extend his weekend absence into next week.

    From the USA Today article:

    "This has been a difficult few days for all of us at NBC News," NBC News President Deborah Turness said in a staff memo circulated Friday. "Yesterday, Brian and I spoke to the Nightly News team. And this morning at the Editorial Exchange, we both addressed the wider group. Brian apologized once again, and specifically expressed how sorry he is for the impact this has had on all of you and on this proud organization."


    Does this make him (5.00 / 6) (#50)
    by CoralGables on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 05:05:27 PM EST
    the first person punished for lying about Iraq?

    Parent
    Will his indiscretions now (none / 0) (#55)
    by oculus on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 07:21:22 PM EST
    Fall out of the google news top stories and merit ignoring him here?

    Parent
    Gee whiz... (5.00 / 2) (#51)
    by lentinel on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 05:10:46 PM EST
    The man NBC had chosen to sell us a bill of goods on a daily basis has made up a few stories in order to sell them on an image that they can use to sell us on an image that they can use to sell us a war or two.

    It's been a "difficult few days" for these thieves.

    So sad..

    How sadly elitist.
    How the mighty have stumbled.

    What a gigantic crock.

    I love the blurb that he has spent a "career" "covering and consuming news."

    Amazing.

    He has been "consuming news".

    Quite a feat.

    With or without cornflakes.

    We, the pathetic people, have been living the fking news day in and day out. And consuming the cr@p that Williams and his confreres on the boobtube have been indiscriminately dishing out to us.

    And we don't get paid millions of dollars for doing so either.

    I marvel at the way they are spinning this into a Williams the tragic figure scenario instead of something that gives us a glimmer of a glimpse into the way that these corrupt media outlets function as the right hands of the repressive war machine that actually runs things.

    Parent

    This goes a long way to capturing my reaction (5.00 / 2) (#60)
    by ruffian on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 09:10:49 PM EST
    to this whole thing.

    Williams has seemed to me like one of the more smug examples of the breed of overpriced 'faces' of the networks spoon-feeding us the corporate BS.

    Maybe now he has time for that Meet The Press gig.

    Parent

    This is a gigantico effort to (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by oculus on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 07:22:38 PM EST
    remember Hillary Clinton's similar lapse.

    But she wasn't a news reader/anchor (none / 0) (#66)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 09:52:00 AM EST
    when that happened, was she? Bit of a difference there, Imthink

    Parent
    You must require more honesty from (3.50 / 2) (#67)
    by oculus on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 10:52:26 AM EST
    TV newscaster than from a Presidential hopeful.

    Parent
    She said that she misspoke (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 11:57:44 AM EST
    after it came out.

    (Reuters) - Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said on Tuesday she made a mistake when she claimed she had come under sniper fire during a trip to Bosnia in 1996 while she was first lady.

    In a speech in Washington and in several interviews last week Clinton described how she and her daughter, Chelsea, ran for cover under hostile fire shortly after her plane landed in Tuzla, Bosnia.

    Several news outlets disputed the claim and a video of the trip, showed Clinton walking from the plane, accompanied by her daughter. They were greeted by a young girl in a small ceremony on the tarmac and there was no sign of tension or any danger.

    "I did make a mistake in talking about it, you know, the last time and recently," Clinton told reporters in Pennsylvania where she was campaigning before the state's April 22 primary. She said she had a "different memory" about the landing.

    "So I made a mistake. That happens. It proves I'm human, which, you know, for some people, is a revelation."

    When someone makes a mistake and then apologizes for it when it has been brought to their attention, I still consider them honest.

    Apparently, you don't.

    Parent

    Do you must expect less of her? (none / 0) (#77)
    by Wile ECoyote on Mon Feb 09, 2015 at 05:56:18 AM EST
    Politicians sometimes (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Tue Feb 10, 2015 at 06:39:34 AM EST
    Aren't the truthiest people in the world, but she owed up to her mistake and admitted she was wrong.  I don't see how the two cases are the same, and I doubt our canine friend does, either.

    Parent
    This doesn't seem complicated to me (5.00 / 4) (#70)
    by Peter G on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 12:08:52 PM EST
    If a journalist - prominent newscaster or otherwise - is publicly revealed either to be a liar or to be in a psychological state where s/he confabulates key aspects of his/her past experiences, then s/he no longer has the personal characteristics necessary to do the job. Time to retire or be fired, whether the untruth was stated deliberately or not.

    Is Williams on his way out? (none / 0) (#80)
    by caseyOR on Mon Feb 09, 2015 at 01:00:08 PM EST
    New and unnamed sources are saying that NBC brass will show Brian Williams the door by the end of next week.

    Take that with as many grains of salt as you deem necessary.

    Speaking for myself, I am a bit surprised at how quickly NBC has turned on Williams. He has been quite profitable for the network. And it is not like NBC, or any other network, places a premium on journalistic standards or even truth in reporting.

    Parent

    And I think it's the profitability factor (none / 0) (#81)
    by Anne on Mon Feb 09, 2015 at 01:07:48 PM EST
    going forward that is what may sink Williams, so would not be surprised if we don't see him return to the anchor post.

    Parent
    Chopper pilot contacted NBC a decade ago (5.00 / 2) (#74)
    by Mr Natural on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 07:10:36 PM EST
    about inaccuracies in Williams' accounts of the episode.

    Helus said he never heard back from MSNBC or NBC.

    Should have called (5.00 / 2) (#76)
    by Slado on Mon Feb 09, 2015 at 05:20:33 AM EST
    Fox News

    Parent
    Okay, that's funny (none / 0) (#79)
    by sj on Mon Feb 09, 2015 at 12:11:54 PM EST
    Not sure if you meant it to be or not, but it's pretty funny.

    Parent
    Humor was intent (none / 0) (#83)
    by Slado on Mon Feb 09, 2015 at 11:58:42 PM EST
    :)

    Parent
    It worked (none / 0) (#87)
    by sj on Tue Feb 10, 2015 at 11:07:11 AM EST
    :)

    Parent
    It doesn't matter if all he's doing is (none / 0) (#2)
    by Anne on Fri Feb 06, 2015 at 10:00:55 PM EST
    reading from a teleprompter or doing intros to the stories others are reporting, the reality is that he's the face of the news - his credibility is all he has.

    It's beginning to look like he was embellishing and confabulating to make his stories more interesting; the question is, why?  Did he want to be more of the story than he was?  Did he think it would make him more than just a pretty face?

    Who knows?  But I think he may be done.  They pay him way too much money to risk viewers changing the channel.  NBC has a pretty deep bench - they won't have any trouble replacing him.

    Brian Williams Job Title (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Jim in St Louis on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 02:57:27 AM EST
    Is anchor and managing editor I've seen it said several times that he is just reading the news, but he is the Managing Editor. He reviews, selects, and approves everything that NBC puts on the air.

    Like a lot of the others here, I skip on all TV news- but its important to have facts straight.

    Parent

    Yeah... (none / 0) (#49)
    by lentinel on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 04:57:55 PM EST
    I'm sure that he deeply reviews all the swill that is placed before him, investigates each story thoroughly, inspects detail, interviews principles to determine veracity, before he reads the sh-t that finally appears on the teleprompter.

    Hah!

    in a pig's ocular orifice.

    He's nothing but a front man.
    A carnival barker.
    A shill.

    Someone they selected to bring us into the tent to sell us a bunch of bullsh-t.... whether it is a new brand of soap, or a new war.

    So he stays... or he goes.

    We will continue to get only the news they deem newsworthy, and only in a manner that suits their corporate-governmental-industrial-miliary-complex sponsors.

    Parent

    Agreed. Brian Williams (5.00 / 3) (#21)
    by KeysDan on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 11:46:32 AM EST
    is a successful example of the network transforming a newsreader into a celebrity newsmaker.  The newsreader becomes a personality, providing eyewitness and inside scoops.

    On location at Istanbul, with the Blue Mosque as backdrop, gives so much more credibility and believability about events in Damascus.   Having survived the helicopter downing in Iraq brings unquestioned brilliance to assessments of progress in Kabul.

    All part of the theater of what was once news.  But, that production is closed for Williams--time to give him the hook so that he can be replaced by a fresh and keen observer of the teleprompter.  In two-weeks, it will be Williams who?  And,  it will be stay tuned for "Dakota Androgen" for breaking news at 11.

    Parent

    a fresh and keen observer of the teleprompter (none / 0) (#27)
    by Mr Natural on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 12:35:07 PM EST
    That's a great line, keysdan.

    It says everything.

    Parent

    I did notice that the loudest voice (none / 0) (#4)
    by Mr Natural on Fri Feb 06, 2015 at 11:27:05 PM EST
    re the French Quarter floater story was former FEMA director, Michael "Heckuva job, Brownie" Brown.  He's been waiting a long time to get back at the media after being embarrassed out of a job.

    And there was water around his hotel, at the edge of the Quarter.

    I don't watch news anymore.  Like Repack said, looking sincere is what they do.  Sometimes they mix it up and look concerned.

    Parent

    They do look sincere while (none / 0) (#43)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 02:48:27 PM EST
    describing what they want you to see. And like you and Repack, I don't watch much network news but do watch some.

    But even the Internet is guilty. In the linked to picture Williams is standing in water that is about 4" deep. And while someone could be purposely drowned in it I don't see how anyone could float by his hotel.

    Of course it is all in perception and misdirection. If the audience perceives a flood then a claim of seeing a dead body floating by his hotel room is accepted. What a skeptic would do is ask:

    "You're a reporter with all kinds of other reporters with all kinds of equipment around you...Why didn't you take a picture?"

    Parent

    He was on last night (none / 0) (#11)
    by Slado on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 04:16:39 AM EST
    I bet their ratings were up. I tuned in simply to see if he would still be on the air.

    I didn't see the beginning of the broadcast so I don't know if he addressed the issue on air again or not.  I think NBC is attempting to just move past this. Unfortunately for them there is always more to the story than what we first learn.

    It will be interesting to see if he is on again tonight.

    What is it about Iraq (none / 0) (#13)
    by Ga6thDem on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 08:34:58 AM EST
    that has spawned millions of lies and fake stories? We had the fake Jessica story and then we had the fake story about the football player. Sorry I've forgotten all the names. To me this is just another one in the many many lies that surrounded Iraq.

    Tillman happened in Afghanistan (none / 0) (#30)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 01:01:34 PM EST
    Both the Lynch and Tillman "stories" were created via pressure from the Bush administration.  We have clear evidence in both situations that the White House requested hero stories to be narrated by the military command.  I think there was even a PR film team involved in the creation of Jessica Lynch's story if I remember correctly.

    Parent
    I don't think the Bush administration (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 01:07:26 PM EST
    Even felt they were being dishonest either, it was their duty to turn spotlighted soldiers into heroes.  It feeds the war machine too, but I think they were and still are so deluded they cannot comprehend that they requested the committing of a sort of fraud.

    Parent
    Thanks (5.00 / 2) (#40)
    by Ga6thDem on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 02:15:02 PM EST
    I couldn't remember. Williams obviously made these stories up himself but yet again, here we are YEARS later finding out the truth like those same stories.

    And anybody who thinks Williams is a liberal really did not watch him back in the 1990's when he was on CNBC.

    Parent

    I haven't watched regular network news in years (none / 0) (#22)
    by McBain on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 11:51:51 AM EST
    Is Williams any good? I don't watch much regular network TV anymore.  Can someone tell me how NBC, CBS, ABC compare with the big three cable news networks? Last night Bill Maher said that regular network news sucks because it's only a few minutes of actual news with too many fluff pieces.  

    With cable and Internet news (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 12:38:23 PM EST
    does anyone under 75 watch network newscasts for news?  I'm 63 and I haven't watched a network newscast in 20 years.

    Parent
    I'm older than you are, (5.00 / 3) (#36)
    by Zorba on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 01:30:19 PM EST
    and I don't watch network news, or cable news, either.
    I get my news from the Internet, newspapers (actual paper newspapers), and radio- NPR and the BBC.
    I'm old enough to miss Edward R. Murrow.  And Walter Cronkite.  And Huntley and Brinkley.

    Parent
    I'm so old we only had (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by fishcamp on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 07:34:26 AM EST
    Newsreel  at the movie theaters.  I was eight years old when TV first came to Portland with yellow Zenith screens and rabbit ears.

    Parent
    I used to like (none / 0) (#38)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 01:42:39 PM EST
    the PBS news hour when it was still the two founders but I haven't seen it in years.

    Parent
    I watched Aaron Brown cover 9/11 (none / 0) (#39)
    by Mr Natural on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 02:07:21 PM EST
    He got canned for some reason, probably not pretty enough or dynamic appearing or sounding enough for the new world order.

    Parent
    When we have some incoming bad weather (none / 0) (#29)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 12:55:22 PM EST
    I watch, that's it.  

    Parent
    That's local I assume (none / 0) (#33)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 01:10:11 PM EST
    I record the local daily so I can ff to the weather report.  I meant the big three talkers.

    Parent
    Then count me out :) (none / 0) (#35)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 01:16:14 PM EST
    Brian Williams is not any more significant to me than any other reporter.  I never thought he was more credible or authoritative, I think I have a healthy distrust of all news reporting since the drumming of the Iraq War and the initial live reports of the SCOTUS ruling on ACA :)

    Parent
    Agreed (none / 0) (#53)
    by Repack Rider on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 06:13:43 PM EST
    Of course I read blogs, but I always try to get to the original stories on any particular issue.

    My DKos UID# is 207 out of over a million members now.

    The reason I became interested in DailyKos was that I noticed it was a more accurate source of information than anything on TV.  Television is limited by time; there is only so much depth that can be given to any story (unless of course it is a missing airliner, which got more scrutiny than the invasion of Iraq).  Electrons are cheaper than air time, and DKos covers things in depth.  There are now a million eyes and ears  with access to that voice of the public.

    When DKos busted Colin Powell for lying to the UN before he even finished the speech, TV was over for me.

    DKos beat the NY Times to the story that the WMD in Iraq were a complete fabrication chosen to sell an elective war by about three years.  FNC hasn't discovered that YET.

    Parent

    In my neck of the woods, (none / 0) (#63)
    by MO Blue on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 09:07:59 AM EST
    most of the people I know watch network newscasts for their news. People in the 20 - 30 range might get it via the net but most everyone else gets it via TV.

    Some watch Fox. All I have to do is listen to them repeating the latest misinformation to know what is currently on that channel. They have the talking points down pat.

    Others refuse to watch Fox but still get their news from TV.

    Parent

    I watch network news because (5.00 / 2) (#54)
    by caseyOR on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 06:26:05 PM EST
    I have never wanted to fork over the cash to Comcast. I watch NBC Nightly News or CBS.

    The news broadcast that Williams anchors is the most watched of the network news broadcasts. One could make the claim that leading in network news is nothing to brag about, but the Nightly News is a big player at NBC. This Williams scandal or kerfuffle of whatever it is, is not good for NBC. They have invested quite a bit of money in Brian Williams. He is paid $10 million a year, and NBC just renewed his contract.

    Williams had an NBC news crew with him in Iraq. They were with him in whichever Chinook he was in. They knew the real story. They have known all these years. Williams told this story many times including on Letterman in 2013. Why did no one on that crew speak up? Tell the truth?

    That there were other NBC employees with Williams in Iraq makes me think that NBC knew the truth all along.

    Parent

    Mixed feelings (none / 0) (#23)
    by Jack203 on Sat Feb 07, 2015 at 12:04:11 PM EST
    I always had the feeling BW was an extremely arrogant guy.  Maybe the way he tried to skirt the line of serious news anchorman and comedic persona.   As a "newsreader", I wasn't particular impressed. I watch Scott Pelley.

    I have mixed feeling about this though.  If may be harsh if he is canned, but probably for the best.  The media in this country needs to do better, especially investigative reporting.  If someone as powerful as Brian Williams can be fired over a something this small (a slight exaggeration)...well that says something then.

    It says something even more telling... (5.00 / 1) (#68)
    by Mr Natural on Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 11:06:10 AM EST
    ... that news anchors are considered powerful.

    In this world, Crap Artists control the high ground, in the media and in politics.

    Parent

    Tonight on CNN (none / 0) (#82)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Feb 09, 2015 at 11:00:05 PM EST
    Discussions about his past news reports all being under the microscope now.  More individuals questioning his Katrina reporting.  I think he's done.

    He's toast (none / 0) (#84)
    by Slado on Tue Feb 10, 2015 at 05:33:29 AM EST
    Here is just one of many new revelations of fibs and exaggerated stories being revealed today.

    For me he's a guy that got cheating on his wife. This wasn't the first time.

    Parent

    Cheese toast... (none / 0) (#86)
    by fishcamp on Tue Feb 10, 2015 at 06:57:53 AM EST