Saturday, July 18, 2009

I suppose this might be wrong...

...but, when the name Walter Cronkite is mentioned, I don't think of his announcement of President Kennedy's assassination. I don't think of his being speechless at man landing on the moon. I don't think of his special report on Vietnam in which he declared the United States was "mired in stalemate." I think of his reaction to the tape Osama bin Laden released to the American media a few days before the November 2004 election:
"I'm a little inclined to think that Karl Rove, the political manager at the White House, who is a very clever man, he probably set up bin Laden to this thing."
That wasn't the first time I thought of him as Walter Crank-ite, either. I remember once upon a time he had a newspaper column, and it ran in the Beaumont Enterprise from time to time. And maybe I shouldn't have been surprised that he was more or less a clone of Bob Herbert, Paul Krugman and the like, but still more often than not I'd skim the column and think, "this man is one of the most respected journalists in the country and he pens this drivel?"