The Arrogance of Bob Schieffer and the Mainstream Media

Bob Schieffer, chief Washington correspondent for "CBS News" and anchor/moderator of "Face the Nation," works on the lineup at CBS in New York City on Tuesday, April 11, 2006. Mr. Schieffer once served as an Air Force public affairs officer in the 1960s at Travis Air Force Base, Calif. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Scott Wagers)

Deal W. Hudson
June 2, 2015

Bob Schieffer, a reporter at CBS since 1969, is retiring. As a prelude to his valedictory laps, he was interviewed on CBS Morning Show a few days ago.  He addressed the “revolution in the media,” stating the obvious:

“We now don’t know where people get their news, but what we do know is they’re bombarded with information 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

Then, instead of making some sort of nuanced, probing observation about the impact of the Internet on news reporting, Schieffer said,

Most of the information is wrong and some of it is wrong on purpose.

Really? Schieffer doesn’t know where people are getting their information from, but he knows most of it is wrong and some of it, wrong on purpose.

Bob Schieffer, chief Washington correspondent for "CBS News" and anchor/moderator of "Face the Nation," works on the lineup at CBS in New York City on Tuesday, April 11, 2006. Mr. Schieffer once served as an Air Force public affairs officer in the 1960s at Travis Air Force Base, Calif. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Scott Wagers)

Bob Schieffer, chief Washington correspondent for “CBS News.”

I wonder what scholarly study of information Schieffer has in mind? Doesn’t a reporter, first of all, deal with facts, not conjecture?

After all, as Schieffer adds, the solution belongs to “mainstream journalism.” And what does he recommend? Schieffer and his buddies at CBS, NBC, ABC, and CNN must “try to cut through this mall of information and tell people what we think is relevant and what they need to know.”

Really? Schieffer believes the mainstream media should be deciding what is relevant?  That explains why his network, along with the rest, have become also-rans, why they are going out of existence.  Because their understanding of “relevance” is whatever benefits their liberal friends, especially those in the Democratic Party and its ancillary institutions.

The latest and most egregious example of Schieffer’s arrogance was the mainstream media’s coverage of the 2012 Benghazi tragedy. Not only did those networks take their talking points from the State Department and the White House, without asking any questions, they then blacked out the hearings of the House Select Committee on Benghazi two years later.

But these kind of decisions about “relevance” have been going on for so many years watching the “Evening News” is no longer a daily habit for millions of Americans whose parents watched Cronkite on CBS, Brinkley on NBC, and Harry Reasoner or Howard K. Smith on ABC.

The Schieffer generation of “mainstream journalism” blew it — they sold their soul to become disguised advocates for a partisan point of view. As Bob Novak often told me over breakfast at the Army-Navy Club in Washington DC, the kind of news reporting he learned as an Associated Press reporter in the late 50s no longer existed. Novak said he had watched as both youthful and veteran reporters gave up any pretense to objectivity and fairness during the Clinton years and the years that followed.

Schieffer, of course, does not name names of the misinformation sources, but he must have in mind the Drudge Report, the Brietbart News Network, World News Daily, NewsMax, among many others.   And, no doubt, the ratings dominance of Fox News over all the traditional networks has helped to prompt his ungracious exit.

Schieffer comments that the media revolution has turned D.C. “upside down.” He’s right about that because with the loss of trust in “mainstream journalism” the networks have lost control of what Americans think and know about our nation’s politics.  What Schieffer sees as topsy-turvy is really right-side-up, finally.

 

By Deal Hudson

Deal W. Hudson was born November 20, 1949 in Denver, CO, to Emmie and Jack Hudson, both native Texans. Dr. Hudson had an older sister Ruth, and eventually, a younger sister, Elizabeth. Emmie Hudson, Ruth Hudson and Elizabeth Hudson now live in Houston, TX; Jack Hudson passed away some years ago. The late Jack Hudson was a captain for Braniff Airlines in Denver at the time of Dr. Hudson’s birth. Later the family moved to Kansas City when his father joined the Federal Aviation Agency. From Kansas City, the Hudson family moved to Minneapolis, then to Massapequa, NY, and finally to Alexandria, VA, where they first occupied a home overlooking the Potomac River adjacent to the Mount Vernon estate. After a year, the family moved to a home on Tarpon Lane a few houses up the street from the Yacht Haven boat docks. Dr. Hudson attended Mt. Vernon Elementary School from grades 4 to 6 and has a special gratitude for the teaching of Mr. Hoppe who first told him was a ‘smart lad.’ Having moved with his family to Fort Worth, TX in 1960, Dr. Hudson attended William Monnig Junior High and Arlington Heights HS. In high school, Dr. Hudson was captain of the golf team, editor of the literary magazine (Guerdon), and performed the role of Peter in the ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ during his senior year. Dr. Hudson graduated cum laude with a major in philosophy from the University of Texas-Austin in 1971 where his undergraduate advisor was Prof. John Silber. His teachers at the University of Texas included Prof. Louis Mackey and Prof. Larry Caroline. Dr. Hudson minored in both classics and English literature. Dr. Hudson lived in Atlanta from 1974-1989, where he attended Emory University, receiving a Phd from the Graduate Institute for the LIberal Arts. He also taught philosophy at Mercer University in Atlanta from 1980-89. In 1989 Dr. Hudson and his family left Atlanta when he was hired to teach philosophy at Fordham University in the Bronx. Dr. Hudson taught at Fordham, and also part-time at New York University, from 1989 to 1994. Dr. Hudson first came to Atlanta in after graduation from Princeton Theological Seminary (PTS) with an M.Div. While at PTS, Dr. Hudson managed the Baptist Student Union at Princeton University and became its first director. Dr. Hudson also was licensed at a minister in the Southern Baptist Convention at Madison Baptist Church in Madison, NJ. Dr. Hudson’s primary area of study at PTS was the history of Christian doctrine which he pursued with Dr. Karlfried Froelich. In 1984 Dr. Hudson was received in the Catholic Church by Msgr. Richard Lopez, with the special permission of Archbishop Thomas A. Donnellan, at the chapel of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Cancer Home in Atlanta. Dr. Hudson has been married twenty-five years to Theresa Carver Hudson and they have two children, Hannah Clare, 23, and Cyprian Joseph (Chip), 15, adopted from Romania when he was three years old. The Hudson family has lived in Fairfax, VA for more than fifteen years, after having lived five years in Bronxville, NY and a year in Atlanta, GA, where Theresa and Deal were married.

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