Notable Quotables - 01/23/1989
Reagan and Blacks
"But Lee, blacks
have looked at the past eight years and seen this administration retreat from
civil rights, retreat from affirmative action, make South Africa no priority,
continue to see a greater disparity economically between blacks and whites,
foster a spirit of racism that hasn't been seen in 20 plus years. What makes
you think blacks are going to say, okay, these [Republicans] are going to
break with what used to be?"
- Question from Bryant Gumbel to RNC Chairman Lee Atwater on NBC's Today, January 19.
"We had heard that
he was going to ask for the politics of inclusion, and indeed he did. A new
activism, a new engagement in the lives of others, a yearning for greater
tolerance. It's funny, he started out actually giving praise to Ronald Reagan
and yet the 20 minutes of the speech is basically a rejection of everything
that the Reagan years had been about."
- NBC's Bryant Gumbel after Bush speech.
"But certain times
with George Bush there seems to be an irrelevancy, or he gets something wrong.
We pointed out yesterday he referred to Benjamin Harrison dying of pneumonia
after a chilly inauguration day, and of course it was William Tyler Harrison
- NBC's John Cochran on William Henry Harrison.
"I'd have Dan
Rather read the news in a chair attached to a dunk tank. There'd be an 800
number for viewers to try calling, and the right random combination of digits
would drop him in the water."
- Late Night with David Letterman head writer Steve O'Donnell on how to boost Rather's ratings. From January 23 Newsweek.
"The report says
disciplinary action would have been recommended if Meese were still Attorney
General. The real impact of the report is as a reminder of the ethical
problems that plagued the Reagan years, a reminder that comes in the final
week of is administration."
- Anthony Collings on CNN PrimeNews, January 17.
that major controversies that have arisen at the school under Allison's
administration-over such matters as awarding a public service medal to Edwin
Meese, former U.S. Attorney General, and bargaining university offices for
major donations-represented a series of wrong judgments on questions of
principle 'that I would not like to see repeated.'"
- Harvard University President Derek Bok on Kennedy School Government head Graham Allison. From the December 27 Boston Globe.
"A story on Page
One of The New York Times almost automatically ensures further
attention from other media....For many media executives, everywhere, Page One
of the Times is the barometer of what's truly important to the
- Los Angeles Times media reporter David Shaw in a recent article.
"I was a, call it a
victim of school prayer as a kid, and I certainly would not wish that on other
- Ed Asner on John McLaughlin's One on One, January 1.
ultraconservative, Bennett served as Ronald Reagan's political lightning rod,
and campaigned for massive cuts in federal spending on education, a fiscal
approach that concerns many in Congress."
- Reporter Jim Miklaszewski on NBC Nightly News, January 12.
[society not making medical care a right] changes, the racial gap in health
care will continue, and thousands will keep getting sicker more often and
dying sooner than they should."
- Bob Faw on the January 16 CBS Evening News.
"Does it say anywhere on any document, on any piece of paper that a
President has got to talk to reporters?"
Sam Donaldson: "Absolutely not, but I think it, it doesn't do anyone any good if a President doesn't let people know what he's doing and thinking, assuming he is thinking...Before you know it he'll go on to Bitburg, he'll sell arms to the Ayatollah, he'll do things that are nutty."
- from NBC's Late Night with David Letterman, January 12.
historians are going to be totally baffled by how the American people fell in
love with this man and followed him the way we did."
- CBS News White House reporter Lesley Stahl on NBC's Later with Bob Costas, January 11.
"I think there's a
question mark on the domestic policy: I think he left an uncaring society....a
government that was not as concerned."
- UPI White House reporter Helen Thomas on CBS News Nightwatch, December 30.
"Now, it was
Rosalyn Carter who said that he makes people feel comfortable about their
- Jack Nelson on Nightwatch, December 30.
obsesson with freedom abroad was not matched by any sense of justice at home
for millions of Americans,and it is his lack of appreciation for the issues of
equality, his failure to lead the nation toward healing in that area, is
indeed also a part of his legacy and an unfortunate part. There are more
people in poverty in this country today, and I don't believe their morale was
built by Ronald Reagan. There are more homeless people in the streets of
America today than there were when he came to office, a shame of the
- Oakland Tribune Publisher Robert Maynard on ABC's This Week with David Brinkley, January 15.
"Thus, Mr. Reagan
proposes curbing handouts to rich farmers, selling Amtrak and other government
'assets' (most of which lose money), limiting Medicare to a 9 percent rise,
ending the legal services boondoggle, laying to rest the archaic Interstate
Commerce Commission and stopping Small Business Administration loans to
hustlers who fail to repay them. Will such sensible steps be taken? Of course
not. In each case, the merry recipients will rise up and cry the western
civilization will come to a crashing end if their benefits are touched. And
the TV networks will do their bit, finding one old woman somewhere who would
be discomfited and thus discrediting all spending restraint with the word
- B.J. Cutler, Editor in Chief of Scripps Howard Newspapers, in a column appearing in The Washington Times, January 12.
- L. Brent
Bozell III; Publisher
- Brent H. Baker, Tim Graham; Editors
- Jim Heiser, Stewart Verdery, Dorothy Warner; Media Analysts
- Allison Dyer; Administrative Assistant