CBS fires Batiste for appearing in anti-war ad

posted at 6:43 pm on May 11, 2007 by Allahpundit

Stupid.

CBS News Vice President, Standards and Special Projects Linda Mason confirmed to me that Batiste was asked to vacate his position.

“When we hire someone as a consultant, we want them to share their expertise with our viewers,” she said. “By putting himself front and center in an anti-Bush ad, the viewer might have the feeling everything he says is anti-Bush. And that doesn’t seem like an analytical approach to the issues we want to discuss.”

He’s been knocking the war publicly for more than a year. Sample quote from April 13, 2006: “I think the current administration repeatedly ignored sound military advice and counsel with respect to the war plans. I think that the principles of war are fundamental, and we violate those at our own peril. And military leaders of all ranks, particularly the senior military, have an obligation in a democracy to say something about it.” He was also one of the group of retired generals that called for Rumsfeld’s resignation at around the same time — on one of CBS’s shows, in fact. If you don’t want your viewers worried about your experts being anti-Bush, don’t hire experts who are famously anti-Bush.

As for the fact that he went so far as to advocate for his position in an ad, that’s actually a point in his favor. The more honest the media is about its biases, the better informed the viewer is about the orientation of the news he’s consuming (which, I’m sure, is the real reason the ad made CBS nervous). If it’s between Batiste and Keith “I’m not a Democrat” Olbermann, give me Batiste any day.

Talking Points Memo notes that CBS hasn’t applied this rule uniformly, either, letting surge supporter Michael O’Hanlon keep his consulting job with the network despite having penned a few pro-surge op-eds in the past. The right-wing media at work.

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And democrats are demanding that the political hack be rehired by CBS.

Capitalist Infidel on May 11, 2007 at 6:48 PM

I think Rathergate really has given CBS a case of the “We dont want burned again” mentality.

They may hate Bush but the dont want the bush haters to push them into making mistakes.

With Katie Couric dragging up the bottom of network news they dont want to go further to the bottom

William Amos on May 11, 2007 at 6:50 PM

Just pen him as a editorial contributor, or ‘critic’, just don’t pen him as ‘a expert un-named source’ which is exactly what he will now become.

Limerick on May 11, 2007 at 6:57 PM

The more honest the media is about its biases, the better informed the viewer is about the orientation of the news he’s consuming

Sure, but these were not the conditions of his contract – which he blatantly violated – huge ethical lapse – enormous and unsubtle.
Such an obvious lack of adherence to ethical standard speaks volumes as to the man’s lack of character. I seriously doubt this is his first excursion into sanctimony.

Stephen M on May 11, 2007 at 6:57 PM

Sure, but these were not the conditions of his contract – which he blatantly violated – huge ethical lapse – enormous and unsubtle.

Explain the ethical lapse to me. What wrong has he committed?

Allahpundit on May 11, 2007 at 7:00 PM

Maybe he did it for the principle of it all…the principle of defeat anyways.

SouthernGent on May 11, 2007 at 7:10 PM

Please leave Keith Olbermann alone….

….it’s not nice to pick on girls.

omnipotent on May 11, 2007 at 7:19 PM

The more honest the media is about its biases, the better informed the viewer is about the orientation of the news he’s consuming…

“We’re not going to tell you the truth, but we will be honest about our lies.”

RedWinged Blackbird on May 11, 2007 at 7:25 PM

Karma!

kevcad on May 11, 2007 at 7:34 PM

Explain the ethical lapse to me. What wrong has he committed?

Remind me not to sign a contract with you!

Contracts in the News and Entertainment world most always contain a ethics and standards clause. Linda Mason,CBS’ News Vice President, Standards and Special Projects, stated Batiste’s appearance in the ad violated of CBS News standards, in which “we ask that people not be involved in advocacy.”

It appears the Gen broke a contractual agreement he had signed with CBS.

ordi on May 11, 2007 at 7:45 PM

Good . . . let him use his own funds to bad mouth his country and his Service.

rplat on May 11, 2007 at 7:47 PM

Talking Points Memo notes that CBS hasn’t applied this rule uniformly, either, letting surge supporter Michael O’Hanlon keep his consulting job with the network despite having penned a few pro-surge op-eds in the past.

Why would they apply the rules fairly Allah?

Theworldisnotenough on May 11, 2007 at 8:57 PM

I don’t think Michael O’Hanlon is employed by CBS. I think he is invited on to discuss different topics. Just as say Al Sharpton, Steve Emerson, Ann Coulter, Rev Jackson etc…

I could be wrong but…

I found this:

Dr. O’Hanlon is an expert in U.S. defense strategy, the use of military force, homeland security and American foreign policy at the Brookings Institution. He is the author and coauthor of numerous books including Protecting the Homeland 2006/2007, with LBJ School Dean James B. Steinberg, Defense Strategy for the Post-Saddam Era, The Future of Arms Control, and Technological Change and the Future of Warfare. Dr. O’Hanlon frequently appears on major television and cable networks including CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN, BBC, and FOX. From 1989-1994 he was an analyst at the Congressional Budget Office. Dr. O’Hanlon received his bachelors, masters, and Ph.D. from Princeton.

http://www.utexas.edu/lbj/webcasts/movie/38/

No Bio I have found says he works for CBS. If he does not work for them they can’t fire him. It appears this is not the same as the Gen as the Gen actually worked for CBS.

Like I said I could be wrong but….

ordi on May 11, 2007 at 9:27 PM

I found this ad via Gateway Pundit.

General Wesley Clark made an ad for the same far-left organization. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfkqC_etID8

General Clark was then and still works for Fox News.

ordi on May 11, 2007 at 9:44 PM

ordi,

Now why did you have to go and mention the name of He Who SHould Not Be Named. Now I am going to have to explain why I am saying #$%&@ and $&*@!! at the computer. Heh.

major john on May 11, 2007 at 10:01 PM

The blogosphere is having an impact. Five years ago they would not have fired him for doing exactly the same thing. They decided they wanted to avoid the heat.

Maxx on May 11, 2007 at 10:27 PM

..the viewer might have the feeling everything he says is anti-Bush.

Ya think?!

BacaDog on May 11, 2007 at 10:33 PM

I am sorry Major John. Yes I feel pretty much the same about him. IMHO, he has betrayed all who have served this great country.

ordi on May 11, 2007 at 10:43 PM

As of 11:40PM EST there were a total of 206 signitures. Let me move out of the way for the avalanche.
Muuuuwwwwwaaaaahhahahahahahahahhaaaahahahaaaaa

auspatriotman on May 11, 2007 at 11:38 PM

I suspect firing him for a contractual breech ends up being a whole lot cheaper than firing him for vapidity, don’t you?

JM Hanes on May 11, 2007 at 11:51 PM

William Amos on May 11, 2007 at 6:50 PM

I agree with Mr. Amos on this one. This was a case of CBS doing “damage control” — preemptively.

georgej on May 12, 2007 at 3:42 AM

“When we hire someone as a consultant, we want them to share their expertise with our viewers,” she said. “By putting himself front and center in an anti-Bush ad, the viewer might have the feeling everything he says is anti-Bush. And that doesn’t seem like an analytical approach to the issues we want to discuss.”

Oh, please. CBS hired him because he was anti-Bush and would skew everything about the war against the administration. CBS was hoping that people too busy to actually think about what they are seeing on the MSM would be swayed by an “unbiased” general’s spin against the war.

Now that Batiste has done an anti-war ad, CBS can longer trick people and so they reluctantly have to fire him.

januarius on May 12, 2007 at 8:30 AM

I am willing to give CBS a pass on this one, not an atta-boy but a pass. Hopefully their lack of viewership and public perception of bias reporting has initiated an internal inspection of their entire operation. I am probably day dreaming but free enterprise will dictate changes when needed.

Wade on May 12, 2007 at 9:33 AM

Listen to Uncle Jimbo. YAY! Uncle Jimbo.

Stephen M on May 12, 2007 at 12:07 PM

Batiste and Clark are my heros. CBS should be fired. What the MSM media firing an anti-war general. You must love it.

If people in the government would have spoke up before march 2003, we would not be here. Many did and Bush fired them. Bush has ignored every piece of advice and done the opposite. There is a long list of Generals that have come out with criticism of Bush and Rumsfeld after they retired. Why?

They are liars? This is Rather-gate? Please. Why do you want to stay in Iraq. OH NO Mushroom cloud and the end of the world and civilization will happen if we leave? (fear mongers) That is stupid fight them there or fight them here BS. News FLASH, they can come here today. What is the Al Qaeda Navy and Air force coming across the ocean? All we are doing now is making it easy for them to kill americans.

What will happen? We will rebuild the military, project strength all over the world, not 90% in Iraq. The other minor un-important thing is the GOP will be a permanent minority party for the next 10 or 20 years, and deserves to be for corruption, incompetence and hubris. No one believes the GOP can protect America better. That lie and fear mongering no longer works according to polls.

Bush wants to stay because if the war is “surging” till Jan 2009 he can say, “Hey we where winning when I left”, its the Dems fault for “surrendering”. Surrender my a$$. They can have it. The only thing worth anything is the OIL in the ground, the main reasons we attacked and invaded, I mean WMD’s. Why we are not sucking every drop of oil out of Iraq between now and when we withdraw (at least a year and half from now) I don’t know. We should take it. If we left today it would be over $1 trillion in short term cost. Future cost for all the wounded and aftermath? Who knows. At this rate America will be bankrupt by 2013 and China will own us.

I know you are worried about the Iraq people getting killed. Liar. You don’t care and the american people don’t care. Before 9/11 most people did not know where Iraq was, what Sunni and Shiite where and what Saddam had done in the 80′s and early 90′s. After desert storm, out of mind. There is no good option: stay forever or leave and see what happens. We can hope Iraq routes al qaeda out. Iran will not rule Iraq either. This is pie in the sky therories. They have been wrong 100% of the time why are they going to right now. It does not matter. The Iraq people need to work it out, we are done.

God Bless these patriots and shame on you that call American heros “traitor”, “cowards” (john murtha). I love Bush, we need to listen to the Generals. He has ignored them for 5 years.

The real reason to stay is to save political face for Bush’s “legacy” and the GOP future power. Does Bush get a library like all presidents? I say he decline that to pay for the war. Besides Library, Bush? Really

gmcjetpilot on May 12, 2007 at 10:22 PM