One trivial point - Rather was noticed about a year before for his coverage of a hurricane or other weather event. His controversial scoop on Kennedy - he was I think the first to say on air that Kennedy was dead - solidified it.
The main criticism I have is that you focus on personalities rather than money. Cronkite and his generation were essentially news men (and women) which was the source of their strength. When Cronkite took over CBS news it was a 15 minute segment thrown in as a public affairs product or a public service. When 60 Minutes came along the networds discovered that news wasn't a "loss leader" and could be profitable. It was cheaper to produce than a "show" and could actually get ratings. That is when news became "news and information" and began the slide toward what it is today. Had Cronkite not been part of a brand he would have remained more like John Cameron Swayze on the old Camel Cavalcade of News and not "Uncle Walter" a brand positioned and defended by CBS.Comment Posted By Jim On 18.07.2009 @ 11:40
Who says soccer is unpopular?
AYSO anyone? It has been a growing sport in America for decades and still is. Most young people play or have played.
It is not very telegenic by normal American sport standards, but that doesn't mean millions don't watch.Comment Posted By Jim On 28.06.2009 @ 14:35
Molestation frequently rises to the level of rape.Comment Posted By Jim On 26.06.2009 @ 11:31
I see Stogie is a dedicated Custer hater and probably won't let facts get in the way. However,here goes, Custer fought in the Civil War from Day One, being present at First Manassas and was promoted based on ability. He fought the confederates when they were not on their last legs in the Gettysburg campaign and many others. He was a ruthless soldier fighting a ruthless enemy in a hard fought war. Kind of like the war he lost his life in. He had the respect of his enemies such as Rosser. Sheridan esteemed him highly. Dandy, yes, lightweight no. Rick is right, you can dislike him,because he had many faults, but base the dislike on the facts.Comment Posted By Jim On 26.06.2009 @ 00:13
Very Nice Post.
But there are a few things to disagree over.
First, I haven't checked it but I am pretty sure it was Sherman, not Sheridan who fathered the "only good Indians" quote - and it may be out of context.
As for Custer's character I think it is really a veiled PC argument to get into a discussion of his character and whether he was "good" or not. He wouldn't fit in today and that may be good or bad. He has been called "The American Murat" because of his impetuousness and that quality would not survive in the modern army. I can't picture his skill set in WWII. Patton is close - but under better control.
As for LBH and his "underestimating" the Indians his "racism" and his "disobediance" of Terry's "Orders" I hold a contrary position. I find Custer was roughly 25% responsible for the debacle. One, The fact is that no one in the United States government thought it important to be able to talk to the Sioux in their own language even though they had been identified as the dominant tribe in the region as early as the Lewis and Clark Expedition. Thus, no one had any idea what they wanted, what their demands were and how many there were in the Bighorn Valley. Custer knew some sign language but had to depend on white officers interpreting through Indian allies hostile to the Sioux. Custer can hardly be faulted because the State Department and the War Department didn't have native speaking translators. Or any sense that it was needed. Or any real idea of who the Sioux were.
Two, the ridiciculous brevet system coupled with nepotism destroyed the fighting quality of the regiment. It was top heavy with officers all of whom had been Civil War generals. Benteen had been a colonel whose promotion to general had been disallowed by war's end. Cramming Sturgis (the absent colonel in chief) Custer, Reno and Benteen into the same regiment (all downgraded generals) was the fault of congress and small military appropriations. It is very hard for men who have held high command to command together. Worse,Custer was allowed to fill the regiment with friends and even relatives. Two brothers and a brother-in-law were killed at LBH. The deadly monotony of frontier posts made divisions in the regiment poisonous. An up or out system would have had Custer either in charge of the campaign (Terry's job) or retired on half-pay.
Three, Custer was chosen above all officers in the army precisely because Sheridan knew he was the most aggressive officer available and Terry gave him orders that allowed his aggressive nature full reign. This was done because it was, despite Fetterman and Grattan, Army DOCTRINE that natives would run from the army as soon as troops arrived in force.
Number three is the real cause of the defeat and is why I feel Custer is scapegoated. No one thought for one minute the Indians might stand and fight so the possibility was never considered.
So what is Custer's personal responsibility for the debacle?
There were a few minutes around Medicine Tail Coulee while he waited for Benteen and Reno when he needed to assess the situation, realize the danger he was in and then retreat. Pure and simple, he waited too long. Some think he was "betrayed" by Reno and Beenteen, others think he was afraid they had run into trouble and was staying to try and rescue them. Whatever the facts are his aggressiveness made sure he kept looking for a ford and seeking to attack and thus lost the whole command - whose doom had actually been sealed by lack of intel, rigid doctrine, poorly conceived orders and a system that subverted discipline.Comment Posted By Jim On 25.06.2009 @ 11:21
I would add Lancaster vs Matthau in the Kentuckian - whip vs barehands
Tyrone Power vs Rathbone in the Mark of Zorro and
ALL of the fight scenes in Ferrer's Cyrano de Bergerac.Comment Posted By Jim On 15.06.2009 @ 15:29
Americans desperately WANT ro believe the "reform" candidate lost the election by theft. And how much real reform are you going to get out of a hand-picked candidate vetted by the theocracy before he runs? Our wishful thinking holds that Iran is a ntaion of people just like us who really want democracy, don't accept terrorism, don't want the Bomb, hate the current regime and can live side by side with Jews. The thought of tens of millions of Muslim zealots who have hated the US and all it stands for since 1979 is too ugly to think about so we rationalize. I don't think there is much nuance to "Death to the Great Satan."Comment Posted By Jim On 15.06.2009 @ 12:02
GO BECK! Your whining is just more proof he's on track.Comment Posted By Jim On 8.04.2009 @ 11:50
If Rick Santelli had any shred of courage he would rant about the illegal seizure of WAMU, but why should he upset his boys at JP Morgan.Comment Posted By Jim On 21.02.2009 @ 23:39
Thanks. I often forget how easy it is to check the source these days. Before flying off the handle and accepting another persons opinion at face value. I am glad this site usually remains pretty civil.Comment Posted By Jim On 27.01.2009 @ 02:29