Saturday, April 29, 2006

Rather Blather in Berkeley

The Dan Rather rehabilitation tour rolled through Berkeley this week with interesting results. In front of an adoring crowd, Rather submitted himself to softball questions by the dean of the journalism school Orville Schell. Rather's nerves and rambling speech betrayed a significantly dimmed star of television news (go here to download the podcast).

Schell: This is a story, that if it had turned out differently, perhaps could have changed the election.
Rather: Well, I didn't think of it that way. That did not go through my head.
Schell: But how could it not have. I mean, it's just before and election
Rather: "It's very important that you know that I'm not the vice president in charge of excuses, and there are no's not an excuse, but it's a fact, I went straight from the Republican convention to cover a major hurricane in Florida. And we had discussed this story before as a possible story, but to say I was busy with other things is not an excuse, but you say well "how could you not have thought of it". I didn't really think about much of it and for that I'm accountable and I should have thought more about it but I didn't. And things moved very quickly, but whether anyone wants to believe it or not, I didn't really think about it in those terms.

Translation: I had recently come from a political convention and I wasn't thinking about politics--that's not an excuse but it's my excuse.


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