Tuesday, September 26, 2006

CNN's Moos Mocks Clinton

Jeanne Moos usually does those frivolous little segments to humor-up the news for CNN. The sort of "human interest" pieces that fluff and smooth, silly news segments as filler or to soften a harder news story. She makes news into less substantive events. So, it was surprising to see Moos covering the important ambush of Bill Clinton by the smirking Chris Wallace and the fact-laden information on Bin Laden. She has one of those distinctive "amusing" voices better suited to "news" about people doing wacky things or making bloopers, not casually discussing the most wanted terrorist in the world.

CNN correspondent Moos carved out a niche in broadcast journalism with her off-beat, thoughtful reporting on the quirkier aspects of life in the 1990s. In her reports, entitled "Making the MOOSt of It," which debuted in 1995, Moos has examined subjects ranging from the uncanny characteristics of automobile air fresheners to the pains of pantyhose runs.

Moos says of her career: "I'm kind of a creative writer, and the quirky material allows you to be more creative. I've come to hate doing the hard-news story. Now I do stories about the life of a traffic cone, odd stuff like that."

So, Jeanne's creative "take" on the Clinton/Wallace interview is out of place and insulting to our intelligence.She questions people on the street, asking if they thought Clinton was acting, (yes, they're ALL acting, said one man) and did they remember the "last time Clinton wagged his finger"...the interviewees didn't but Jeanne was happy to remind them and show a clip of Clinton denying he had sexual relations with that woman. What a disgusting low blow from CNN and Moos. What the hell did that have to do with Clinton setting the lying record straight about Bin Laden? Marginalization. Clinton was "The one doing the HITTING", Moos said of the time Clinton tapped on Wallace's clipboard. Hitting? Then she aired clips of right wing talk radio personnel ridiculing Clinton, some man I've never seen before doing a poor impersonation of Clinton calling people Holmes, and making a mockery of the incident. Clinton seemed to "boil" she said, but whittled it down to Clinton's socks, "No one told him to pull up his socks" and giving "anchors" Heidi Collins and Tony Harris a chance to further discuss the color of Clinton's "alabaster skin". Move over Fox, CNN wants to join you in the cesspool. The Marginalizing Media.

Related Posts:
Olbermann/Clinton /Wallace
Think Progress:Transcript Clinton/Wallace

Moos Transcript --->


COLLINS: Political blogs buzzing today about President Clinton's finger-jabbing interview with FOX News.

Here now, CNN's Jeanne Moos.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Technically, Bill Clinton's page never actually got purple, but he did seem to boil.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Took off the gloves.

DIANE SAWYER, ABC NEWS ANCHOR: The kind of smack down with FOX News.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. He looked like he was going to kick some (EXPLETIVE DELETED).

MOOS: At least they never had to bleep the former president.

BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You did FOX's bidding on this show. You did your nice little conservative hit job on me.

MOOS: But it was Bill Clinton doing the hitting, or at least the jabbing at FOX's Chris Wallace.

CLINTON: I want to know how many people of the Bush administration you asked this question of.

MOOS: it was the talk of the tube from YouTube to Imus.

DON IMUS, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Could have been in a barn.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Chris Wallace should have smacked him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If Chris had any (EXPLETIVE DELETED), he would have said just keep your hands to yourself there powder puff.

MOOS: And it was all because Chris Wallace questioned whether Bill Clinton had done enough to get Osama bin Laden.

CLINTON: No. Because I didn't get him.


CLINTON: But I tried. That's the difference in me and some.

MOOS (on camera): Did you think he was acting or really mad?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh no, I think he was mad and I think he was justified.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bill Clinton, of course he's acting. They're all actors.

MOOS (voice-over): It didn't take long for comedians to act.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: FOX is saying my response was calculated. Well, who do you think you're dealing with Holmes? I'm the pope of charisma. I've got 70 I.Q. points on Chris Wallace.

MOOS: And then there was the smirk factor.

CLINTON: And you've got that little smirk on your face, you think you're so clever.

MOOS: Chris Wallace's own colleagues on FOX kidded him about the smirk.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just don't smirk. Stop your smirking, buddy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well Wallace, you're unflappable. Good job.

MOOS: And Wallace himself noted, "the president said I had a smirk. Actually, it was sheer wonder at what I was witnessing."

In addition to finger jabbing, there was finger wagging.

CLINTON: They ridicule me for trying.

MOOS (on camera): I want to take you back to the last time Bill Clinton famously wagged his finger. Remember that?


CLINTON: I did not have sexual relations with that woman.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, right, right.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Which is not all he was wagging.

MOOS (voice-over): And as if all that wagging wasn't enough, writer Nora Ephron blogged on the "Huffington Post." "What surprised me most about the Clinton meltdown was that no one told him to pull up his socks."

She's right. Look at all that exposed skin for an interviewer to get under.

Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.


COLLINS: You've got to love Jeanne Moos.

HARRIS: Wow. A little alabaster skin there, huh? That's not a good look.

Sorry. Sorry, Heidi.

COLLINS: You could see more of Jeanne Moos' unique perspective weekdays -- you threw me off.

HARRIS: Sorry.

COLLINS: In "THE SITUATION ROOM." That's coming up today, and Monday through Friday, always, 4:00 p.m. Eastern, again at prime time, 7:00 Eastern.

HARRIS: Clogging in Kentucky. That's a segue for you, huh? And homeland security dollars. The link? Well, a powerful figure on Capitol Hill.

That story in the NEWSROOM.

You're watching CNN, the most trusted name in news.


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