RUSH: Let’s start with this Watergate stuff. Get this. This is a story from WBAL TV, Channel 11 in Baltimore. “The former FBI official who revealed himself this week as Deep Throat apparently also leaked information to The Washington Post about two of the biggest stories in Maryland in the 1970s. Post reporter Bob Woodward wrote in Thursday’s paper that Mark Felt told him in the spring of 1972 during the Watergate investigation that the FBI had some information that Vice President Spiro Agnew had received a $2,500 bribe. The tip produced no story, but Agnew resigned in 1973 upon his conviction for income-tax evasion. A Maryland judge found in 1981 that Agnew had accepted kickbacks as Maryland governor. Woodward also said Felt was his source for a 1972 story about the investigation into the wounding of Alabama Gov. George C. Wallace in Laurel. Woodward cited ‘high federal officials’ as saying there was no indication that suspect Arthur Bremer had been hired to shoot Wallace. George Beall, the former U.S. attorney who prosecuted both Agnew and Bremer, said the leaks didn’t hurt either case. He said the reported bribe to Agnew wasn’t substantiated, and the Bremer story eased concerns about a possible conspiracy.” So here you have Deep Throat also leaking information on Agnew. This guy was leaking all over the place. He clearly had a bug on for the Nixon administration, and let’s be honest. They’re portraying this guy as a holier-than-thou devotee of the FBI. The FBI was no Romper Room here when J. Edgar Hoover was running that place. I mean, let’s put it on the table here.
The FBI had its own brand of power structure corruption, shall we say. Hoover had his own ways of getting presidents to tow his own line because he’s out collecting dirt on them. How do you think what’s-his-name, Felt, finds out about this stuff? So the more we learn about this, the more we find out how dirty everybody is in all of this. You know, Felt’s leaking all the time about all kinds of things, including Agnew. There was no cover-up or threat of a cover-up in that case. Sometimes his information was wrong. It just shows that they liked the guy because he was attacking the Nixon crowd, and I also found this little piece from Michael Ledeen, on the Corner, in the Corner, at National Review Online. Ledeen writes: “I sometimes lecture on ‘journalism,’ and much of that talk consists of excerpts from All the President’s Men by Woodward and Bernstein. In that book, they admit to a wide range of unethical and illegal behavior, from tampering with a grand jury to illegally obtaining and using private telephone records (a kind of private Patiot [sic] Act for the Post). Then I read from a section (pp. 184-192) in which they discuss an unhappy event. They had written that grand jury testimony had fingered Haldeman as a conspirator in ‘Watergate’. Ron Ziegler, Nixon’s press secretary, had violently denied it. Woodstein went back to their sources, and concluded they had been deceived. The story was wrong. Then (pg 192): ‘The reporters said (to Bradlee, their editor) they were virtually certain that Sloan must not have given testimony about Haldeman before the grand jury. Woodward suggested writing that much, at least, and acknowledging their error.’
“No way, said Bradlee… ‘Bradlee then turned to his typewriter… after a number of false starts, he issued the following statement: ‘We stand by our story.'” So Bradlee stood by a false story published by Woodward and Bernstein. “And there’s a footnote: ‘He was later to recall: “I issued two statement in that one year…Geez, what options did I really have? …I can remember sitting down at the typewriter and writing about thirty statements and then sort of saying, ‘F**k it, let’s go stand by our boys,'” and Ledeen says, “Which is why I have no heroes in this saga…” So here you have, they admit in their book, All the President’s Men, a wide range of unethical, illegal behavior: Tampering with a grand jury; illegally obtaining and using private phone records, and then not admitting their mistake or error. So you have Woodward and Bernstein admitting that they lied, that they cheated, and they covered up. I mean, what Ben Bradlee did, standing by his boys, was a cover-up. They covered up. Nobody investigates the Post; nobody investigations other media outlets. Oh, no, no, no, no! They’re insulated from what they do to other people. They can go out and destroy anybody they want. You better not try to find out anything about them. They are able to conduct themselves in the same manner in which they try to cite others as unethical or crooked, and then seek to destroy them. Dan Rather was the same thing. It’s just he got caught.
But here’s what the point is, folks: We have Woodward and Bernstein by their own admission in their book lying, engaging in unethical behavior, and covering up mistakes, and today this is being called great journalism. This whole orgy this week has been about, “This is our high point, this is the peak of our mountaintop, this is when we were the best, this is what journalism is meant to be all about. Yes!” This is great journalism, right? Well, if this is great journalism, then this is the standard by which we should measure them. We should assume that journalists are lying, behaving in unethical ways, and covering up their own mistakes. We should assume that that is what great journalism is. They are every bit what we call them and think of them. You know, frankly, I don’t think that Woodward and Bernstein and Bradlee or the mainstream media realizes that the more we learn about Mark Felt and his motives and the Post’s reporting techniques, the more sleazy and disreputable they all look. While they’re out there touting themselves as, “This is great journalism, this is when it was really good, there weren’t any distractions out there like Limbaugh. We were able to go do whatever we wanted to do. If we wanted to destroy a president with phony forged documents from the Texas National Guard, then by God, we could do it and that’s great journalism.” Fine. We will judge them on this basis, ladies and gentlemen. Just that simple.
RUSH: These guys have assumed what Nixon was. They have become what Nixon was. The people in the mainstream press. Let me give you an audio sound bite here to demonstrate it. Dan Rather last night on CNN, the second edition of Larry King Live, a caller called in and said, “Yes, I have a question for Dan Rather. I’d like to know your opinion on the speculation that Mark Felt should have gone to his boss at the FBI or to the president with concerns about the Watergate investigation. You played a major role in investigative journalism, [Gunga Dan.] Is it realistic to even think that?”
RATHER: No, I don’t think he had a choice. I think he took the way that he knew would be most effective. I think the country owes Katherine Graham, Ben Bradlee, Bob Woodward, Carl Bernstein and Mark Felt a debt of gratitude for what they did because I repeat for emphasis this was people believing they were above the Constitution, they were above the law, and they were very nearly pulling it off, and whatever it took to get them — that is, to expose them, to bring it into the sunlight — I don’t think you can applaud enough.
RUSH: “Whatever it took.” Whatever it took? Forged documents! “We know the story’s true. If we can’t prove it, we’ll manufacture the evidence. Whatever it takes; whatever it takes to get them.” The media is granting to themselves unchecked, unboundaried behavior to get the bad guys, and in the process they do what they accuse the bad guys of doing, but let somebody start an investigation of their tactics. “Oh, no, no, no! You can’t do that.” Of course Ben Bradlee, all these people are owed a big debt. Notice that nobody cares to find out what Bill Moyers did, asking the FBI for name checks on Senate staffers of Barry Goldwater, and the legions — the examples here are legion that I could give you of other presidents, other administrations engaging in Nixonian-like behavior. But of course those were Democrats and as such, they were untouchable. Let’s listen to a little bit of Ben Bradlee, the former editor of the Washington Post, who decided to cover up a huge error made by Woodward and Bernstein when they misreported evidence that supposedly had come from grand jury testimony which was leaked, which is illegal. He refused to stand. He, in fact, stood by an error, rather than correct it. Last night, he was — or I guess yesterday — Judy Woodruff, Inside Politics, Judy says, “Here’s something else that Chuck Colson is saying. He says he thinks it’s very sad that Mark Felt broke the trust and the confidence of the president of the United States.”
BRADLEE: Terribly sad? I mean, I’m crying. Why is it sad? I don’t get that. He said Ben — and think for a minute. Where would Felt have gone? He’s — he said he — he saw something wrong in the government, and what should he have done? He can’t — he couldn’t really go to his superior, who was L. Patrick Gray who was busy throwing documents into the Potomac River from the bridge. He couldn’t go to the attorney general, who was on his way to jail himself.
RUSH: You hear the contempt here? The FBI director throwing documents off the bridge? You hear the contempt here? Let’s not forget, ladies and gentlemen, Mark Felt could have resigned publicly and said, “There’s corruption here and I’m not going to be a part of it. I love the FBI too much,” could have gotten the media in on it. But you see the template here is that — that no, no, no. The press has to be the ones to uncover this. You can’t do it internally. You have to come to us. You have to come to us. It’s the only thing he could have done. Rather said it, now Ben Bradlee has said it. The hatred for Nixon is just dripping in this next bite. Judy says, “Let me read you what Colson says. He says, ‘If Felt wanted to talk, he should have revealed it to a grand jury or prosecutor.’ He says, ‘He should have gone to the president himself.’ He said, ‘If the president thinks the FBI is going to investigate him, he’s going to act.’ He said, ‘The president couldn’t have ignored this.'”
BRADLEE: You don’t think he could? I mean, a president [sic] goes to Nixon? Give me a break.
WOODRUFF: You mean Felt could have gone directly.
BRADLEE: It is not realistic.
RUSH: Yeah, it’s not realistic. I guess Woodward coming to Ben Bradlee saying, “You know, we really goofed up here, we made a mistake, we misreported illegal grand jury testimony, we’re going to stand by it.” What else could Woodward have done? Could Woodward have gone to the New York Times? Is that what he should have done? Should he have resigned? Should he have said I’m not going to work this way, we made a mistake, you’re going to cover it up? So the Washington Post is involved in its own cover-up and admitted ethical lapses and so forth. Here’s the final bite. Judy says, “The legacy of Watergate, clearly nobody disagrees that toppling a president, getting this government back on an even keel, critical outcome of this but the other… There is a debate, a bit of…” By the way, we do debate that, Judy. You say, “Nobody disagrees that toppling a president.” A lot of people debate this. But she says, “There’s a bit of a debate that goes on among journalists about whether what Woodward and Bernstein did, on the one hand, people say, ‘Yeah, it led to good vigorous investigative reporting,’ when others say, ‘But it also lead to people who just want to make a name for themselves.’ It led to people like, you know–”
BRADLEE: It wasn’t just Woodward and Bernstein. I mean, they did the lion’s share of the early work, but there was some great reporting done by other newspapers, including the Times, the LA Times, the Globe in Boston, so — so we — we — we’re getting all the credit we need and there are other newspapers who did plenty of things. Second, I — I mean, the anonymous source was essential to it.
RUSH: Yeah. It gave us guys like Stephen Glass; it gave us guys like Jayson Blair. It gave us guys like reporters that have been fired at the Boston Globe, all these anonymous made-up quotes and sources. Yep. I’ll tell you what, if this is the zenith of modern American journalism, Watergate, and what all happened there, we are thus being asked to judge journalism in that way and in that context, and so we’re happy to do so because we have been all along. That’s the dirty little secret. We have always suspected the media. I’m going to tell you something, folks. It is important to note, here they are committing the same kinds of transgressions that they think they need to put other people out of business for, that they seek to destroy. But by Dan Rather’s own admission, “Well, we can do whatever it takes. We are the guardians. We’re the guardians of the Constitution. We’re the guardians of the First Amendment,” and then he went on to say — and I’ve got that bite. He went on to say, when he was being asked about his mistakes on the National Guard story, “Well, journalism is not an exact science.” Of course not! It cannot be “exact,” nor can it be a “science” when your mandate is, “Whatever it takes.”
RUSH: Since I mentioned Dan Rather, we may as well get these other two bites in from Larry King Live last night. This is about the forged document, Bill Burkett, Bush National Guard story. Larry said, “As you reflect, and after seeing the report, what went wrong in your matter of the Air National Guard story? Where along the way did it snap?”
RATHER: The documents were part of a fairly wide array of information that we had. The facts that we presented —
RUSH: Stop the tape! There aren’t any facts. That’s the point! That’s the problem. There aren’t any facts. The only thing of which there is a wide array is paranoid satellite antenna coming out of Dan Rather’s head, thinking that things he’s making up are true. There aren’t any facts. We’ll listen to more of this.
RATHER: — and some of it new information was supported by all kinds of things other than the documents.
RUSH: Stop the tape. Then why did it get retracted? Why did it get apologized for? Where is all of this other detail or material? Where are all kinds of things other than the documents? Where are they? Why all the people involved quit or fired? Here’s more.
RATHER: The panel came forward and what they concluded, among the things they concluded, after months of investigation and spending millions of dollars, they could not determine that the documents were fraudulent.
RUSH: Oh, oh.
RATHER: Important point. Said we don’t know whether the documents are fraudulent or not.
RUSH: Be still my beating heart. My God, folks, he thinks they’re still real! Does it occur to anybody? Here we have the CBS News investigative journalist department, the investigative journalism division. Something goes wrong with one of their stories; they can’t investigate it themselves? If they can find all manner of things about Enron, Wal-Mart, Bill Burkett, George Bush, why can’t they find out what went wrong in their own shop? Why does it require an independent commission? Is it because maybe people wouldn’t believe what an internal investigation produced? Yes. What does it say about an investigative journalist who cannot investigate his own work? Because nobody would believe the result. So you have to bring in a lawyer, Richard Thornburg — who, by the way, was also retained by CBS for other things. He can’t produce a report that harms his client. He’d be guilty of malpractice. That’s why there was no bias as part of the report and that’s why we couldn’t conclude anything about the documents. So it was a whitewash, in a way, but it was also kid-glove treatment for the people inside CBS. But we all know they’re forged. Everybody knows it. But here’s the last holdout, Dan Rather, and here’s a bite on that. Larry says, “Are you saying the story might be correct?”
RATHER: Well, I’m saying a prudent person might take that view.
KING: You have that view?
RATHER: Well, I’m saying a prudent person might take that view. Number two, important, the —
RUSH: Wait wait wait wait! Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa! We’re talking about facts here. We’re talking about journalists. Journalists! “A prudent person might take the view that the story’s right.”
“Well, do you have that view, Dan?”
“I’m just saying a prudent person might take that view.”
Isn’t that the kind of answer a president would give you, Dan, in a press conference that you’d launch into him all over him as evading? Isn’t that the kind of an answer that you’d spend two weeks trying to destroy a president over for not being forthcoming? What’s he trying to hide? Why won’t he be forthcoming with us? Here’s the rest of the bite.
RATHER: The story was not — the story was not born of any personal or political bias [sic]. I do hope people will keep in mind that two of the findings were what I just described to you, wasn’t born of personal or political bias, and they could not determine whether the documents were fraudulent or not.
RUSH: Stop the tape a minute. Did anybody hear Larry ask him about that? When people start denying something that hasn’t been asked… Now, I know the allegation has been out there that there was bias in the reporting, but Larry didn’t ask him that because Larry wants him to come back. Someday. Larry didn’t ask him but he’s out there denying it anyway. You always got to be suspicious of that.
RATHER: It’s not a complaint but I do want to point out — and I understand when people write about this story, they often say, “Well, they dealt with fake documents or fraudulent documents.” Let’s just say gently that that’s not known.
RUSH: You know, the obvious thing is, “Come on, Dan. Wake up. I mean, get out of the fog.” It’s not known that they’re forged? Yes, it is. It is! They had their own experts that told them they were forged and they didn’t use them because they wanted the story. They didn’t want the fact known that these were forged. They tried to get away with this because they forgot that their power no longer exists. They don’t have a monopoly anymore. But all that aside, all that aside, we just heard Dan Rather say, in praising Woodward, Bernstein, Felt, Bradlee, et al. “Whatever it takes.” Now, clearly, Dan Rather believes that George Bush didn’t do right at the National Guard. Clearly Dan Rather believes this. Clearly Dan Rather believes that George W. Bush lied and got favoritism type help from his powerful father and was allowed to get away with without going to Vietnam for a cushy job flying jets. Rather believes this, does he not? He believes it. Well, Dan, what happened to “whatever it takes”? If whatever it takes to get somebody you believe is corrupt and lying at the highest levels of power, why don’t you stand behind the forged documents? You’re just doing whatever it takes. Why have to defend the document? Why have to get into an argument about whether documents are forged or not? You believe them, so say, “I know this is true.” Whatever it takes, Dan.
This wouldn’t be the first time that you and your practitioners have used lies and deception and false charges to try to harm people. Why not just follow it up? Follow it through? “Yeah, we forged the documents because we know he’s guilty. And whatever it takes to get powerful people.” Why not just admit, that’s what you’re doing about Watergate. You’re going back 32 years. What’s the Washington Post done for anybody in 32 years but lose subscribers? What are you doing? You have to back 32 years to celebrate the salad days and in the process of celebrating the salad days, we’re told the epitome of great journalism is this? Well, if so, Dan, if that’s the epitome of great journalism, you need to change your tack on this. You need to admit the documents are forged and give yourself credit for doing what you could, whatever it took, to get a corrupt president out of office. And then keep trying. Don’t admit failure. Make up more stuff about Bush. Whatever it takes, Dan.