Guests: Lawrence O‘Donnell, Anne Kornblut, Gisele Bundchen, Matthew Felling, Paul Waldman, Katrina Szish, Ashlan Gorse
JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST: Tonight: Bill O‘Reilly says liberals are on a jihad to smear Fox News. Is he right about the left? We‘ll find out.
But first: Breaking news, we‘re not winning the war in Iraq. That‘s the word under oath from the man chosen by the president to replace Rummy, a huge flip-flop in Bush administration‘s official line. Plus, a stark warning of how Iraq‘s bloodshed can lead to regional war between Iran, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Iraq and other countries across the Middle East, and a damming admission that George Bush didn‘t give generals the troops they needed to win that war.
To talk about the stunning developments on Capitol Hill, here‘s political analyst Lawrence O‘Donnell—he‘s a frequent contributor to the Huffingtonpost.com—Anne Kornblut from “The New York Times,” and we have MSNBC political analyst Pat Buchanan.
Lawrence, a stunning admission from Bush‘s next secretary of defense that we‘re not winning the war in Iraq. I‘m wondering, is the nominee‘s contradicting of his president in front of the U.S. Senate unprecedented?
LAWRENCE O‘DONNELL, POLITICAL ANALYST: It certainly is in my experience, Joe. I organized a lot of confirmation hearings for the Senate Finance Committee in my years there, and I never heard anything like that. But it‘s what Gates believes and had to say in order to have the incredibly smooth hearing that he did have today and in order to get a unanimous vote out of the committee and certainly get something close to unanimous if not unanimous in the Senate. He had to basically face reality, something no one else representing the administration on the issue of this war has ever really done in...
SCARBOROUGH: But Lawrence, in the closing days of the campaign, this president was saying, basically, We‘re going stay the course. I mean, we also have a man who admitted today what George Bush, what Dick Cheney, what Donald Rumsfeld have never admitted, that America‘s losing in Iraq because the Bush administration didn‘t give the generals enough troops. Now, I find it hard to believe that Mr. Bush pre-approved such testimony.
O‘DONNELL: Well, he pre-approved the choice of Gates, and that‘s the essence of what‘s going on here. You got remember that in the closing days of the campaign, the president of the United States said that Don Rumsfeld was going have this job for the rest of his term. So there‘s a bunch of things that were said in the closing days of the campaign that are no longer operative. And so Gates is going be the one who leads the way for this administration from where it has been to where it has to go.
SCARBOROUGH: Pat Buchanan, is George Bush so weakened tonight that he had to send up a sec def candidate to the Hill that he knew—he knew—was going to undercut him?
PAT BUCHANAN, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: I don‘t believe he knew that this—Gates was going undercut him. What Gates did, Joe, was a very simple, candid statement. Asked point-blank, Are we winning the war, he said, No. And frankly, when the president and the administration say, We got to change strategy and tactics, it‘s quite obvious if you‘re winning the war, you stay with a winning hand. So Bush is constantly...
SCARBOROUGH: But Pat Buchanan, he also admitted that the generals were not given all the troops they needed. That‘s been a battle for over three years now between George Bush and the Secretary of Defense and Democrats in Congress, who believe that they tried to win the war on the cheap.
BUCHANAN: Well, look, they did the war in the opening days. Shinseki said they would need more to occupy the country, and he was knocked down Wolfowitz, now head of the World Bank. But it‘s quite clear, Joe, if they were going not only fight and win the war and hold the country and anticipate an insurgency, they did not have the troops then. They don‘t have them now.
SCARBOROUGH: You know, Pat, you and I had a debate earlier...
SCARBOROUGH: ... I think it was last week, about how the president was standing alone in the world. I want to show you a clip that was played on “The Daily Show” last night that covered the same territory in a different way.
BUCHANAN: All right.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JON STEWART, “THE DAILY SHOW”: At this point, President Bush is getting advice from all corners. The Iraq Study Group will release its finding Wednesday—Jim Baker leading that, another group within the White House examining further options, I believe cases of magic eightballs on their way to Washington by rail.
STEWART: But here‘s the question. Does Bush even care?
TIM RUSSERT, HOST, “MEET THE PRESS”: He is going do it his way, no matter what other people advise. As he said, if it‘s only just his wife and his dog, he is going follow the course that‘s in his mind.
STEWART: And you know what? Between you and me, even Barney thinks he‘s nuts.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: Pat, with his own secretary of defense—and possibly dog—crossing him now, does this president find himself alone in the world on the Iraq war?
BUCHANAN: Let me say what I think, Joe, about Bush. I think Bush knows very well this patient may be dying. But I think he‘s like a doctor who‘s got to keep up hope. He‘s got to come out and he‘s—when he says, We‘re winning the war, I think he‘s like a—again, like doctor talking to the family, like a coach talking to the team who knows they may be going down. He‘s got to maintain the morale. Gates was under an obligation to come up and (INAUDIBLE) Are winning this war, he had to say no because the truth is, Joe, we are not winning it. The enemy isn‘t winning it right now, chaos is winning this thing right now. Muqtada al Sadr is gaining ground, but we are not winning the war. There‘s no doubt about it.
SCARBOROUGH: Well, I think the world knows that. George Bush and Dick Cheney may be the only ones who haven‘t up until now. Anne, let‘s listen to Senator Hillary Clinton asking a question of Secretary Gates from earlier today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON (D), NEW YORK: Can you tell us when and how you came to the conclusion that you expressed in your testimony that we were not winning, a conclusion different from the president‘s?
ROBERT GATES, DEFENSE SECRETARY NOMINEE: Well, I think that, frankly, if the president thought that the current tactics and strategy that we were employing were successful, he wouldn‘t be looking for fresh eyes and looking for new approaches and new tactics in our situation in Iraq.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: Anne, do the latest turn of events in Iraq do more to help Hillary Clinton or her presumptive opponent now, Barack Obama?
ANNE KORNBLUT, “NEW YORK TIMES”: Well, what was interesting about the Gates hearing today is that there was a little something for all of the ‘08 presidential candidates in it. You saw Hillary Clinton really having a stage from which to talk about the Iraq war, to come across as critical of the administration, to really drive that point home. Senator John McCain, who‘s also obviously a frontrunner in the Republican field, had the chance to grill Gates and say, Is the status quo not acceptable? McCain, who, of course, has called for there to be more troops in it.
I think for Hillary, in particular, to your question, we‘ve seen Obama, Senator Obama, really sucking up a lot of the oxygen in the Democratic field recently. This for her was a chance to reclaim that podium and to really talk about her views on the war in Iraq, which are, of course, different from Obama‘s.
SCARBOROUGH: Well, you know, we certainly know that because Barack Obama is going on late night TV telling comedians and Americans that he‘s opposed this war from the beginning. But let me ask you, Anne, you‘re the expert here, four years later, what exactly is Hillary Clinton‘s position on the war when she goes out to Iowa, when she goes to New Hampshire, when she goes to some of these early primary states? When somebody says, Where do you stand on the war, are you for it or against it, what‘s she say?
KORNBLUT: Well, obviously, she has not set foot in either state yet, although she‘s starting to make calls there. What we‘ve heard her start to do—and to be fair to Senator Clinton, she‘s been doing this for some time now—is to emphasize her criticism of how the war was handled. She has not apologized for voting to authorize the war. She‘s not said she regretted it. But she has emphasized that she would have done it differently. She would have given the president—she would have given the U.N. weapons inspectors, rather, more time to go in and look for weapons of mass destruction. Obviously, she does not have the answer that Senator Obama has, which is that he opposed it from the outset, that he had good judgment from the beginning and he stands by that.
What we‘re really starting to see—it‘s so interesting, especially seeing it today with the Gates hearing, tomorrow with the Baker report, is each of these candidates really staking out a distinct position on the war, not a lot of fuzzy territory here.
SCARBOROUGH: You know, Anne, I‘m just wondering, though, since Hillary Clinton does have a nuanced position, and there‘s certainly nothing wrong with that—in fact, we‘ve learned over the past six years, it‘s good to have politicians with nuanced positions. But is that going be enough for the Democratic base, or is she going find herself in the position John Kerry found himself in in 2004, where he was for the war before he was against the war before he was for the war again?
KORNBLUT: That‘s a terrific question that remains to be answered. She is banking on the electorate—the Democratic electorate looking ahead to the general election, saying, You know, we can‘t elect particularly a woman who‘s a Democrat who‘s soft on defense. She has repositioned herself as being tough on defense, and at the same time, critical of the administration. What we don‘t know is whether the Democratic field is going now tilt towards somebody like Obama or even a little bit like Dean in 2004, who was strictly against the war.
SCARBOROUGH: It certainly seems Hillary—you‘re exactly right. I don‘t think a woman can be seen as being weak on defense. You have to be tough on defense. I think she‘s played it exactly right.
But Lawrence, I want to broaden this discussion out briefly and go back to Gates and what he said earlier today. Were you as surprised, as I was, by Gates‘s warnings of an all-out regional war in the Middle East? I mean, this seems to me well beyond the question of whether this is a civil war or not. Now we‘ve got the next secretary of defense talking about a possible regional war between Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Syria. I mean, it‘s getting ugly out there.
O‘DONNELL: It didn‘t surprise me, Joe, because no real look at the situation doesn‘t include that possibility. I also...
SCARBOROUGH: You say no real look at the situation, but this administration‘s look at the situation has not been real of late.
O‘DONNELL: Well, this may be, by the way, one of the new angles that the administration uses as to why we should remain there and why we should maintain a significant military presence without much drawdown. You know, It would be reason number 10 or 12, you know, since we started this thing. But it‘s not an insignificant reason and it‘s a very important point that Gates raised today, and it may be what leads him to be, for some in the Democratic Party, a disappointment. He may use that as the linchpin for why we don‘t draw down troops.
BUCHANAN: Lawrence? Lawrence? I mean, excuse me. Let me add, Joe, General Zinni is taking the same line. He opposed the war, as I did, and he‘s now saying we may need a surge in troops. You‘ve got the Saudi king saying, in effect, You guys pull out, and we‘re going in. You got Hakim, the militant Shia, telling the president, Why aren‘t you delivering better hammer blows?
The impact of all that is if the Americans pull out, the war is really going to get deadly serious and a lot broader. And Lawrence is correct. That, frankly, is one of the stronger arguments for no dramatic pull-out, is that things will be a heck of a lot worse than they are now after we go.
SCARBOROUGH: And Anne, feeding off of what you said earlier in the segment, that also seems to help Senator John McCain, who seems to be standing alone in American politics, claiming we need more troops in Iraq right now. And if we don‘t put more troops in Iraq, then John McCain can say, Watch out, this civil war will become regional.
KORNBLUT: Look, Senator McCain is proving that he is nothing if not an independent-minded maverick on this. He‘s certainly out there on a limb in advocating more troops. But again, it‘s interesting seeing both Senator McCain and Senator Clinton both on the Senate Armed Services Committee, which is obviously going take a hard look at Iraq going forward. Obama, of course, is on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. It‘s giving each of them a platform to talk about this in a different way.
SCARBOROUGH: And they certainly will for the next year-and-a-half. Anne Kornblut, Pat Buchanan, Lawrence O‘Donnell, thanks so much. Pat and Lawrence, stick around because coming up:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE H.W. BUSH, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: ... who showed not merely with words but (INAUDIBLE) actions what a decent...
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: Bush 41 chokes up at a moving speech honoring his son, Jeb. But was he really crying about the job his other son‘s doing? We‘re going talk about George W. and if he‘s ruined politics for the rest of the Bush dynasty. Plus, Bill O‘Reilly‘s demanding an apology from Dan Rather, as the Fox News host seems to accuse a left-wing lynch mob of launching a jihad against him and Fox News. And later: Is CBS selling sex with tonight‘s broadcast of Victoria‘s Secret‘s fashion show? We will ask supermodel Giselle about that and the seedy side of the fashion industry.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BRIT HUME, FOX ANCHOR: ... the men who advised your father are now emerging as critical to you and that your father‘s influence is all over this.
GEORGE WALKER BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Yes.
HUME: What do you say to that?
BUSH: I say that, you know, I‘m the commander-in-chief. I make decisions based upon what I think is best to achieve our objectives.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: The 43rd president, George Bush, continues to downplay the role his father, Bush 41, plays in the current White House. Now, some are suggesting a family rift between father and son. Others blame George for damaging Jeb‘s chances at ever reaching the Oval Office. But one thing is for sure, George H.W. Bush is a man who‘s proud of his sons but also seems to be in despair over the state of events in Washington, D.C.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE H.W. BUSH, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The true measure of a man is how you handle—handle victory and also defeat. So in ‘94, Floridians chose to rehire the governor, but they took note of defeated opponent, who showed not merely with words but by his actions what decent...
BUSH: I can do it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: I can do it. I can do it. He‘s a great man. Everybody that knows him will tell you that, liberal or conservative, Republican or Democrat, will tell you George Bush, Sr., is a great man.
Still with us, Lawrence O‘Donnell. Also with us, Pat Buchanan. And Lawrence, I‘ve just got to ask you, do you really think that George Bush, Sr., was crying about Jeb losing in 1994 or upset about the global crisis that his oldest son finds him in 12 years later?
O‘DONNELL: Well, I‘m going take him at his word, Joe. It looked like an honest moment to me. He said later that when you‘re his age and you start talking about your kids, you get a little misty about it. And I can completely understand that. You know, it‘s not hard for me to crack up with pride about things my daughter has done. She‘s only 12 years old.
But the situation invites some psychiatric examination. I mean, you know, we‘re—this is not the first time we‘ve practiced psychiatry on this show without a license. And he‘s talking about Jeb in that speech. But as he moves into the issue of a man is tested in defeat and he cracks up, you really have to wonder how much George W. is in his mind when he‘s talking about that, especially a son who, in effect, has mounted a policy in many ways in direct defiance and contradiction to what his own father‘s choices were.
SCARBOROUGH: Well, and Lawrence, of course, he selects—he selects a secretary of defense who‘s disastrous, Donald Rumsfeld, a man that George Bush, Sr., absolutely despised. And when journalist Bob Woodward interviewed George W. Bush, and was asking in his book, for “Plan of Attack,” he said the president got very defensive when he asked if he ever went to George H.W. Bush for advice. Bush said, the younger Bush said, “He is the wrong father to appeal to for advice, the wrong father to go to to appeal in terms of strength. There‘s a higher father that I appeal to.”
Now, Pat Buchanan, if your father had been president of the United States, vice president of the United States, ambassador to China, CIA director, ambassador to the United Nations, the head of the Republican National Committee and had actually fought a war against a country that you were about to invade, do you think you‘d be so defensive about picking up the phone and calling your dad and getting advice?
BUCHANAN: I would have flown up to Kennebunkport and sat down with him and said, Dad, here‘s what I‘m thinking of doing. I know you didn‘t do it. Tell me why, and tell me why it‘s not the right thing to do now. And I would have listened to him and had a private conversation, a long, long, long one.
I think what‘s going on here, Joe, is that the first President Bush, senior, is carrying an enormous burden of anguish for his eldest son, George W. And that burden he‘s carrying around with him every day and it gets heavier and heavier because he watches TV and he sees his son pounded and pounded and pounded. And I think when he hit that moment in that speech, when he talked about how you handle yourself in defeat, he wasn‘t talking about the bad time that Jeb did get, dirty tricks in ‘94. It came to his mind how his eldest son is headed for a very, very difficult, if not a failed presidency, and a horrible end.
SCARBOROUGH: And a failed presidency. And again, the tragedy of it all is that he was always just one phone call away from the man who put together the greatest coalition, the greatest wartime coalition...
SCARBOROUGH: ... in the history of the globe. I mean, Bush, Sr., got Syria to fight with us, for God‘s sake, the first time we went into Iraq, and yet his son wouldn‘t pick up the phone and call him.
BUCHANAN: And Bush, Sr., marched up there. He didn‘t even go to Basra. He smashed the army and he stopped after 100 hours of ground warfare, wisely, in my judgment, Joe—wisely, in my judgment...
BUCHANAN: My feeling, though, on this war is—I think George Bush, Sr., would have agreed with me on this war. See, I don‘t think the problem is simply not enough troops for the occupation. I think the idea from the beginning of going in there and going to rebuild and reconstitute and remake and reshape this ancient country based on American ideas was utopian to begin with. And my guess is—it‘s a guess—is that George, Sr., felt the same way.
SCARBOROUGH: You know, Lawrence, the thing that‘s always been the most surprising to me is when you talk to people that are loyal to Bush 41, you talk to the—and by the way, everybody says the same thing about the old man. He adores his sons. His sons adore him right back. But you talk to the people who worked closely with Bush 41 for his 12 years in the White House, there is a palpable anger directed towards his son. They despise—and that‘s—there is not a word more appropriate than “despise.” They despise Bush 43 for what they believe he has done to the Bush dynasty.
O‘DONNELL: Yes, I‘ve heard that, too, Joe, that they‘ve been rolling their eyes at this presidency for years. And I think they‘re also very much surprised that this is the Bush who turned out to be the next Bush president. Many more people had their eyes on Jeb than on George W., and...
SCARBOROUGH: And Jeb is brilliant, a brilliant—a brilliant thinker, a policy wonk and a great governor.
O‘DONNELL: And he would be an obvious frontrunner for the presidency now were it not for what his brother‘s done in this administration. And that could also be something that—that George H.W. Bush was crying about in that speech, that Jeb‘s never going to get his chance because of the way this president has gone, and maybe he feels Jeb deserves the chance even more than George W. did. We‘ll never know that. He‘s obviously a private enough man that he‘s never going to open up his soul...
BUCHANAN: And you know, Joe...
O‘DONNELL: ... to us on those things.
BUCHANAN: Joe, there‘s a clear vacuum, as we‘ve talked about. There is really no startling, outstanding, true conservative running in the field where Giuliani and McCain are way out front. Jeb would be the ideal to fill it, but he cannot fill it now because I think the country simply would not—party wouldn‘t nominate and the country wouldn‘t elect another Bush right now.
SCARBOROUGH: I‘ll tell you what, though. If John McCain gets the nomination, you wait and see. I would be very surprised if people didn‘t talk long and hard about making Jeb Bush vice president for John McCain because if they did that, you could put Florida in the Republican column because people in Florida, Republicans and Democrats alike, have great respect for Jeb Bush and just the remarkable job he‘s done.
Anyway, Lawrence O‘Donnell, Pat Buchanan, thanks so much for being with us. A very, very, I think—just a very moving speech earlier today and from a great man.
Coming up next: Seaworld goes fishing after a killer whale attacks a trainer. Well, David Letterman has an unusual take on the incident, and that‘s coming up in “Must See S.C..” And later: Are left-wing talk show hosts on a jihad against Bill O‘Reilly and Fox News? We‘ll show you why he says they are and how the Fox News host says he‘s going fight back.
SCARBOROUGH: Hey, it‘s time for tonight‘s “Must See S.C.,” some video you just got to see. First up, David Letterman shows us how Seaworld‘s trying to protect its friendly reputation after a trainer was attacked by a killer whale during a stunt show. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yesterday at Seaworld, the beloved killer whale Shamu suddenly dragged his trainer to the bottom of the tank, nearly drowning him. Luckily, the trainer managed to escape, and Shamu was immediately removed from public exhibition, placed in a separate tank away from other animals, inspected by our medical team, sedated, chopped into small, manageable pieces, seasoned with rock salt and garlic, carefully grilled to an internal temperature of 165 degrees, coated in a creamy lemon-pepper dressing, then served to his adoring fans.
Seaworld. Don‘t screw with us.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: That‘ll do it. And finally, Jon Stewart asks a question all of the mainstream news magazines want to know the answer to: Will President Bush take anybody‘s advice on the war in Iraq?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JON STEWART, HOST, “THE DAILY SHOW”: Does he care? It‘s a hot topic.
This week‘s “Time” magazine writes about, “Why Bush Will Listen.” “Newsweek” asks, “Will Bush Listen?” Also weighing in, “Mad” magazine, “What? Me listen?” And the influential “Yoda Weekly” with, “Listen, Bush Will.”
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: Coming up, is there a vast left-wing conspiracy against Bill O‘Reilly and FOX News? Why the FOX News host says Dan Rather and other so-called liberal anchors are on a jihad against him and FOX.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GISELE BUNDCHEN, MODEL: There‘s a lot of people wearing a lot less in music videos. And we‘re just walking around doing nothing like humping or crazy things like that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: None of that here. Victoria‘s Secret supermodel Gisele on the fashion shows that many say are too hot for TV. We‘re going to be talking to her about that. And why sex, drugs, and rock and roll seem to be so popular in the modeling world.
SCARBOROUGH: Coming up, the seedy side of modeling exposed. Victoria‘s Secret Gisele tells us how she avoided the seedy side of modeling, while others have fallen prey to drugs, sex and rock stars. That story and much more, just minutes away.
But first, Bill O‘Reilly under attack. The FOX News anchor claiming there‘s a left-wing smear machine that‘s out to try to take him and FOX News down. And tonight, he‘s demanding an apology from one of the men he says is responsible. That‘s former CBS newsman Dan Rather.
Now, O‘Reilly lashed out against Rather for this claim that he made on the Bill Maher show.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAN RATHER, HOST, “DAN RATHER REPORTS”: I think it‘s fair to say, Bill—in fact, I know it is—that FOX News operates in at least a somewhat different way than every other news organization that I know, that they have their talking points. In other words, somebody in the hierarchy, whether this is Roger Ailes, who runs the place, or not, we know that they get talking points from the White House. And they can say, “Well, we don‘t always take those talking points.” But I think it‘s pretty clear that they had wished the election had gone another way.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: And, of course, Bill O‘Reilly came out swinging on his show in response to Dan Rather‘s claim, demanding the former CBS newsman apologize.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL O‘REILLY, FOX NEWS HOST: Mr. Rather‘s assertions are nonsense, untrue, seriously dopey. I‘ve been here from the beginning and have never seen White House talking points, and I don‘t know anyone else who‘s seen one either. I asked senior management and if they have ever seen a White House talking points. No one had.
So we called Dan Rather to ask for some documentation. He‘s on the road, but said he‘d come on the “Factor” next week to explain. Can‘t wait.
If Dan Rather has evidence of White House dictums coming to FOX News employees, he needs to display that evidence. We are awaiting his appearance.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: So is there a vast left-wing conspiracy against FOX News and Bill O‘Reilly? Here now is Matthew Felling. He‘s media director for the Center for Media and Public Affairs. And Paul Waldman, he‘s a senior fellow at the media watchdog group, Media Matters.
And, Paul, let me start with you, because we didn‘t have the clip there, but on his radio show, I believe Bill O‘Reilly did say that members of the left-wing press, the mainstream media, were out to get him and were out to get FOX News. Is that the case?
PAUL WALDMAN, MEDIA MATTERS FOR AMERICA: Well, you know, O‘Reilly seems to be growing increasingly paranoid. We‘ve seen this in things that he says on his shows. We‘ve seen in his book he believes that there are people who are out to get him and that his family is not safe.
But, you know, regardless of what‘s on FOX‘s fax machine, the fact is that they are the one network that will consistently parrot the White House line, really no matter what it is, whether it‘s...
SCARBOROUGH: Well, you say that, but are there actually talking points that FOX News people get delivered to them?
WALDMAN: Well, like I said, I really have no idea. But you can find lots of examples where they‘re, in some cases, the only one who are saying what the White House wants them to say.
Let me give you an example. Back in 2001, the White House decided that they weren‘t going to use the phrase “suicide bombings” anymore. They were going to call them “homicide bombings.” It didn‘t really make any sense, because every bombing that kills someone is a homicide bombing. What‘s distinctive about a suicide bombing is the suicide.
There were only two news organizations in America who actually decided to adopt that language. One of them was FOX News, and the other one was the “New York Post,” which is also owned by Rupert Murdoch, who owns FOX News. It‘s things like that...
SCARBOROUGH: We know, Matthew Felling, though, there are also, though, obviously cable news programs that tilt far left. Is there anything wrong with FOX News trying to attract conservative viewers?
MATTHEW FELLING, THE CENTER FOR MEDIA AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS: Well, there‘s nothing wrong with FOX trying to attract conservative viewers. And I would even appreciate what they think they are doing more if they said, “Listen, we are not ‘fair and balanced‘ necessarily, but what we are trying to do is balance out the media, because we see the other side as being more left.”
But to call themselves “fair and balanced” is just incorrect. And I remember the memo that Paul was talking about with regards to homicide and suicide bombers.
And let‘s not forget. I think it was two or three weeks ago there was an internal memo or what was considered an “editorial note” from John Moody going out to the entire news staff, where he said, the day after Election Day, “Let‘s be on the lookout for news stories that show that terrorists are happy about the Democrats taking over Capitol Hill.”
Now you can say it certainly wasn‘t a White House memo, but if it‘s a FOX News memo that is friendly to the White House, I think that Dan Rather might have gone a little bit too far by saying it‘s a White House memo. But when it‘s something extremely friendly, I think that, to use Dan Rather‘s phrase, Bill O‘Reilly has a worst chance of getting an apology than a hedgehog trying to catch the sunset on a summer day, or something like that.
SCARBOROUGH: Yes, exactly. Whatever, one of those Dan Ratherisms. But, you know, Bill O‘Reilly didn‘t just stop at Dan Rather. He also went after others that he says have it out for him and FOX News.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL O‘REILLY, FOX NEWS HOST: The far left in America is on a jihad to smear FOX News. They hate us for a variety of reasons. The primary one is that we give traditional and conservative opinion parity with liberal opinion. Most other national news agencies tilt heavily left.
So, day after day, the far-left loons demean, defame, and attempt to damage the FOX News Channel. We ignore most of this because we continue to dominate the cable news ratings and don‘t want to waste time on idiocy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: Matthew and Paul, Matthew or Paul, do either of you deny that many people on the left of America‘s popular culture despise FOX News? I mean, O‘Reilly‘s right: The left, a lot of liberals, really do hate O‘Reilly. They really do hate Sean Hannity. They really do hate Roger Ailes. They really do hate FOX News.
FELLING: Joe, did you listen to what Bill O‘Reilly‘s saying? He‘s saying, “We don‘t defame these loons.” Well, case made. I mean, he‘s calling these people loons. And if it‘s Tuesday, which it is, he must be taking on the liberal media, because Monday is for Hollywood and Wednesday is for secular progressives.
SCARBOROUGH: But that‘s part of the war, though, isn‘t it, Matthew? I mean, again, that proves my point, though. I mean, O‘Reilly goes after the far left, calls them loons, but people on the far left call O‘Reilly just as bad a thing, right?
FELLING: Well, when you see the sort of things that he does and he writes books on, and then you see the way he carries himself on in personal life, and you see the things that—he has shifting standards and shifting goalposts, it‘s very difficult to pin Bill O‘Reilly down on one certain thing, except for the fact that he‘s always a victim.
SCARBOROUGH: Wait, hold on a second, Matthew. It‘s hard to pin you down on this. It‘s a very easy answer: Does the left hate Bill O‘Reilly and FOX News? And if you just say yes, we‘ll move on, because they do, and you know it.
WALDMAN: Well, who are you talking about when you say...
FELLING: Almost all the media hates Bill O‘Reilly, because he‘s the lead dog. He‘s the number-one rated guy, and everybody wants to take him down.
SCARBOROUGH: OK, now, Bill O‘Reilly and FOX News has been hit from all sides on the issue of bias. Take a look at the clip from “The Daily Show” where Jon Stewart goes after O‘Reilly and his trip to Gitmo.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEWART: O‘Reilly was there to refute the prison‘s critics who clearly don‘t understand the situation down there.
O‘REILLY: The Guantanamo controversy is easy to define. The Bush administration sees the 460 detainees as prisoners of war. The liberal press and some human rights groups believe they are criminals entitled to due process.
STEWART: It‘s simple, you stupid (bleep). The Bush administration sees them as prisoners of war, and liberal commies see it otherwise. Oh, I‘m sorry. Condoleezza Rice, you had something to say?
CONDOLEEZZA RICE, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: These people at Guantanamo are unlawful combatants. That is, they‘re not prisoners of war.
STEWART: Methinks Bill O‘Reilly needs to pay closer attention to what the White House wants him to say.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: Paul Waldman, why does everybody on the left like laughing and attacking Bill O‘Reilly and FOX News so much?
WALDMAN: Well, you know, Matthew‘s right that he‘s the most prominent person among those right-wing broadcasters. But, you know, one of the things that so—that I think irritates people is that they‘re always professing that they‘re fair and balanced, that everyone else is biased and they‘re the only ones who are fair.
But, you know, when he starts talking about people who are smearing and defaming him, you know that you‘re about to enter a fact-free zone. He never brings up any facts about that. He claims that he has parity between liberals and conservatives on his show, but we know that‘s not the case.
And it‘s not the case across cable news. You know, before, Joe, you said something about how there are liberal shows on cable news, too. Well, I can only think of one, and that‘s Keith Olbermann‘s. Every single other host that I know of is either a neutral person, like Wolf Blitzer, or is a conservative. There are probably five or six or maybe even more conservatives for every liberal who has their own show on cable news.
So I think that‘s something that has also irritated liberals a lot, that they feel like they turn on cable, and you see conservative host after conservative host. And some of them are more responsible than others, and some of them are demagogues and some of them aren‘t, but the fact is that it seems to be awfully hard for a liberal to get their own show on cable. But you have, you know, every week seems to bring another right-wing radio host who gets his own show.
SCARBOROUGH: But I‘ll tell you what, though...
FELLING: And let‘s not forget...
SCARBOROUGH: If you look at Keith Olbermann‘s success—and Keith will tell you that he doesn‘t consider himself to be a liberal, but he says that the events of the past three years have certainly got people on the far left and the moderate left of the political gambit watching his show more because he‘s upset by what‘s going on.
But at the same time, Matthew, I just—I feel compelled at this point to circle back around and talk about what Bill O‘Reilly has been saying about my network. Here‘s a guy that claims everybody is out to get him and everybody‘s attacking him, and, yet, let me play you what Bill O‘Reilly said about NBC News for stating what, my gosh, is the obvious, that we are, in fact in a civil war. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
O‘REILLY: NBC News has declared that there is, indeed, a civil war in Iraq. Now, that‘s not shocking, because NBC is the most aggressive anti-Bush network these days, as they have made a calculated effort to woo left-wing viewers.
The question is: Is NBC wrong about Iraq? The answer is: Yes. Of course, the American media is not helping anyone by oversimplifying the situation and rooting for the USA to lose in Iraq. And that is what some media people are doing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: All right, Matthew, so here we have a guy who claims that he‘s being unfairly beaten up, for some—I think some pretty general thing that Dan Rather said on Bill Maher‘s show. And then he attacks NBC News and claims we want the other side to win. We want America to lose.
Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. Is this why Bill O‘Reilly finds himself attacked so much by the mainstream media?
FELLING: Yes, I think, if he‘s going to equate NBC News, as he did last week, with basically Al Jazeera and the evil far left, and the terrorists, and the evildoers, and then he wants to play victim and he wants to start the Bill O‘Reilly 2006 apology tour, where he‘s going to stop by David Letterman for an apology, stop by Dan Rather, then he‘s trying to play it both ways.
SCARBOROUGH: He certainly is. The guy is king of the hill right now, the king of the cable hill. I think I‘d just focus on my own show and stop attacking other networks.
Anyway, thank you, Matthew Felling. Thank you, Paul Waldman. Greatly appreciate both of you being here.
Coming up next, sex, drugs and clothes. Supermodel Gisele with what really happens off the catwalk.
And later, Jamie Foxx breaks a Tinseltown taboo by publicly mocking Oprah and her special relationship with gal pal, Gayle. The full scoop, coming up in “Hollyweird.”
SCARBOROUGH: While millions are preparing to tune into Victoria‘s Secret‘s fashion show tonight, it is no secret to most that there‘s a seedy side to modeling. Who could forget about how Kate Moss faced drug allegations after pictures surfaced of her snorting cocaine? And some super-skinny models were actually banned from the runways of Spain and Italy this summer, as the industry fought reports of eating disorders and drug use.
We have the inside story on the dark side of modeling and tonight‘s big Victoria‘s Secret fashion show from supermodel Gisele Bundchen.
SCARBOROUGH: Talk about, if you will, the modeling world. Of course, you hear all these stories about Kate Moss, and everybody loves to tell stories about sex, drugs, rock stars, everything in the modeling world. But you came from a small town and have become a supermodel. What has it been like for you, and how have you been able to keep your head about yourself, while you‘ve really, you know, shot to international fame?
GISELE BUNDCHEN, MODEL: I‘m so lucky, you know. I‘m very fortunate because I have an amazing family, and I think that‘s the most important thing. When you have a very strong base, you know, it makes everything easier in your life.
You know, my parents have been married for 35 years. I have six sisters. I‘m very, very close to my family. I was raised very, you know, with freedom, but, you know, with a lot of values and a lot of, like—so, for me, like, in the business, like, I was always very professional. I never, like—you know, I‘ve been working since I was 14 years old. And to me, it was always about, like, making the best I could. And that‘s all I could be. And I never, like, kind of got caught up in the whole, like, drugs, sex, rock and roll kind of lifestyle.
SCARBOROUGH: Are you surprised by what a phenomenon, not only the catalog and the stores, but this fashion show has become?
BUNDCHEN: It‘s a fun show. I mean, there‘s nothing like it in television. I mean, it‘s once a year. And for women to watch, for men to watch, you know, there‘s always performances. They had Mary J. Blige. They had Sting. They had a bunch of different artists perform, so it‘s not really just a fashion show. It‘s more like I would say like a—I like to say like a Broadway show or something like that, because you have, you know, always a performer.
You have the models in these lingerie and stuff, but it‘s not your typical, you know, bras and panties. It is bras and panties, but it‘s like, you know, there‘s themes. You know, they have like set changes, amazing production that goes behind this whole thing, you know?
This time we had sets, seven set changes, and there was like each—there was like different segments, so there was like the ice princess, the Scottish woman. It‘s very, like, kind of like a fantasy world. You know, this is what Victoria‘s Secret is about.
SCARBOROUGH: Talk about, though, the marketing of Victoria‘s Secret. You had said that it was for men and women, they could both enjoy it. But I would guess this is one fashion show that men are a little more interested in than usual, right?
BUNDCHEN: Maybe. I‘m not a man...
BUNDCHEN: ... so I can‘t speak for men. I can only speak for myself.
I‘m interested in it, because I think it‘s nice to see pretty beautiful lingerie. And it‘s not very bad to watch Justin Timberlake perform, either.
SCARBOROUGH: Has there been any time that you know of in the past six years where Victoria‘s Secret was told to take a little bit of spice out of their fashion show for CBS, since you went primetime and you went a major network? Did you all have to tone things down a little bit this year?
BUNDCHEN: I actually think—you know, do you ever MTV‘s videos or something like that? I mean, I have to say something to you: I watch MTV, because I like to see what songs I want to buy or whatever. I have never seen anything more racy than that.
I mean, you have these women humping things and they‘re like wearing like no clothes on. I mean, any music video is pretty much a lot more sexual in that way than I think the Victoria‘s Secret fashion show.
SCARBOROUGH: We don‘t allow that sort of thing on cable news, do we? I want to thank Gisele. “Hollyweird” is next, and we‘re talking about how Jamie Foxx outs Oprah? Stick around.
SCARBOROUGH: Hey, don‘t slip on the red carpet. It‘s time for “Hollyweird.”
First up, “The New York Daily News” is reporting that Jamie Foxx actually poked fun at Oprah and her gal pal, Gayle King, while performing at a recent event. Here now to talk about it, making her triumphant return to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY, “US Weekly‘s” Katrina Szish.
We‘ve missed you.
KATRINA SZISH, “US WEEKLY”: I‘ve missed you, too.
SCARBOROUGH: And Ashlan Gorse from “Life and Style Weekly.” Ashlan, we always miss you.
ASHLAN GORSE, “LIFE AND STYLE WEEKLY”: Thank you.
SCARBOROUGH: Jamie Foxx—actually, let‘s start with you, Katrina. Jamie Foxx, sort of a gutsy move here, suggesting something between Oprah and her girl.
SZISH: I think it is interesting. And I say, “Go Jamie.” I think it‘s hilarious what he did. I mean, listen, he‘s a funny guy. He‘s a comedian. He was on stage. He was performing. And he was poking fun at something that has been in the headlines that we‘ve all been talking about. Everyone‘s been speculating about.
And I think it would be unfortunate if he would apologize or take this joke back, because Oprah deserves to be made fun of, just like everybody else, whether or not it isn‘t true. And I think if she does protest, she protests too much.
SCARBOROUGH: Do you think Oprah will forgive Jamie Foxx?
SZISH: I think, if she doesn‘t, then Oprah needs to learn how to just relax a little bit. Everybody in Hollywood gets made fun of. Hence, “Hollyweird.” And it only means that people love her.
SCARBOROUGH: OK. And, Ashlan, of course, somebody that always gets made fun of for BlackBerry usage, Lindsay Lohan. But this time, Lindsay‘s telling “Elle” magazine she likes to date other people‘s boyfriends. Is it time for Britney and Paris and others to run for the hills?
GORSE: Well, you know what? Lindsay is a man-eater, and she‘s proud of it. She came out in this magazine article and said, “I like men that I can‘t get, and usually they‘re my friend‘s boyfriends.” So she already stole Paris‘ boyfriend, Stavros. And, you know, the only thing I‘m just waiting for is for her to steal K-Fed. That would be great, so I hope she does that to Britney.
SCARBOROUGH: That would be awesome. And finally, Katrina, Will Smith says he loves Tom Cruise but will never be a Scientologist. Talk about it.
SZISH: I‘m so proud of Will Smith. He‘s coming out and actually being a regular guy, like we all hoped he was. And he said, “Listen, I‘m friends with Tom. We‘ve talked about Scientology. It‘s just not for me. I‘m not doing it, but that doesn‘t mean we‘re still not going to be friends.”
SCARBOROUGH: All right. And I hope you all will still be my friends, despite the fact we had a shortened “Hollyweird” tonight.
SZISH: No problem.
SCARBOROUGH: We‘ll see you again. Thanks for coming back, Katrina Szish. Thank you, Ashlan Gorse. We‘ll see you tomorrow in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.
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