- The Washington Times - Tuesday, February 19, 2002

Strange choice
"When PBS executives asked themselves the question so many Americans asked after the September 11 attacks what can we do? their answer was obvious: Bill Moyers. We can give America Bill Moyers. Lots of Bill Moyers.
"The Corporation for Public Broadcasting promptly set aside some $440,000 in public funds for 'emergency programming' featuring Moyers and friends. …
"[T]he choice of Moyers to lead a national reflection in the wake of September 11 was strange. Moyers hardly qualifies as … a neutral moderator, respectful of all sides. In recent years, this veteran of the Great Society he began his public life as an aide to President Lyndon Johnson has drifted further to the left, his arguments increasingly strident. By 1991, he was telling interviewer Eric Alterman, 'I find it very hard to have intelligent conversations with people on the right wing because they want to hit first and ask questions later.' …
"No wonder some on Capitol Hill and in public television are incensed at Mitchell's choice of host for the new PBS series. 'Why Moyers?' asks one longtime Republican adviser. 'The only qualification for Moyers in this area is that he keeps comparing conservative Republicans to the Taliban.'"
Stephen F. Hayes, writing on "PBS's Televangelist," in the Feb. 25 issue of the Weekly Standard

Mineta's minions
"The business of screening pasengers at airports has now passed beyond mere comedy into a realm of gibbering lunacy. Under the dogmatic guidance of 'profiling'-obsessed Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta, a doctrine of anti-profiling seems to have taken hold, in which those passengers who are, on any common sense grounds, the least likely to pose a security risk are harassed, abused and insulted.
"Examples abound, but one that particularly caught our eye concerned retired Marine Corps Gen. Joseph J. Foss, 86. At the airport in Phoenix, Gen. Foss was held up for 45 minutes at the airport while security officials deliberated over a potentially dangerous item he was carrying on his person … a Congressional Medal of Honor received … from President Roosevelt in 1943, for exceptional valor in the Pacific. …
"Does anyone think that an 86-year-old retired general and his Congressional Medal of Honor pose any threat? Well, yes the security screeners at America West obviously think so.
"These nitwits … are plainly operating at levels of stupidity, incompetence and mindless political correctness so far beyond the boundaries of reason they should not be allowed anywhere near an airport, nor any other place where large pieces of machinery are present."
From "The Week," in the Feb. 11 issue of National Review

Cultural Alzheimer's
"The war on America's past and the dumbing down of American children … is succeeding. In a recent student survey, 556 seniors, from 55 of the nation's top-rated colleges and universities, were asked 34 questions from a high school course on U.S. history. …
"Only one-third of the college seniors could name the American general at Yorktown. Only 23 percent named Madison as the principal author of the Constitution. The good news 98 percent knew rapper [Snoop Dogg], and 99 percent identified Beavis and Butthead. …
"'The debate about curriculum,' writes [Laura] Schlessinger, 'is a debate about what it means to be an American. What is ultimately at stake is the American future.' But what will America's future be when it is decided by a generation oblivious to American history and suffering from cultural Alzheimer's?"
Patrick J. Buchanan, from his new book, "The Death of the West"

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