General of Electric & the US Presidency
brian carroll <email@example.com>
Tue, 31 Jul 2001 15:46:14 -0800
this story has been inaccessible all day but finally got a hold of
it online and then the 'send to colleague' button was inoperable.
but, alas, the point of this post is not to bait the hunger for
a grand conspiracy, though some might, but to make the connection
not inferred in this article, which focusses on the connection
between NBC television and the Presidential Elections, and not
General Electric's special interests and the outcome of the
election, given the trillion dollar economics involved, in
everything from airplanes megamergers (and electronics) to
energy production (utilities, generators, meters, lights)
to the local and national TV stations. some might remember
that the EU voted down Bush's and Welsch's pet project to
combine GE and Honeywell for reasons that baffle those in
the United Statesian worldview. the following is another
ideological supplement to support the view that energy and
its relations have broad influence, and to a certain extent
steer the ship of state, without public representation...
~e.org (educational, fair-use of copyright.)
NBC's Lack, Rep. Waxman Clashing
By Ted Hearn
7/31/2001 12:21:00 AM
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Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) wants NBC News to surrender to him
alleged in-house NBC videotapes that reportedly show
presidential-election-night interference with news operations by
General Electric Co. chairman and CEO Jack Welch in support of
then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush.
GE, one of the largest industrial conglomerates in the world, is the
corporate parent of NBC, which owns a national TV network, multiple
local TV stations and a stable of cable networks. Like many major
news outlets, NBC News called last November's presidential race for
Republican Bush over Democrat Al Gore, even though the contest wasn't
decided by the U.S. Supreme Court until more than one month later in
NBC president and CEO Andrew Lack has repeatedly denied the Welch
allegation, both in sworn House testimony Feb. 14 and in two letters
to Waxman subsequent to his House Energy and Commerce appearance. But
Waxman has kept pressing Lack and complaining that his denials have
In raising the Welch matter at the House hearing, Waxman said he was
aware of rumors -- perhaps recorded on videotape by NBC promotional
and advertising personnel -- that Welch made statements suggesting
that he wanted NBC News to call the race for Bush.
In a Feb. 16 follow-up letter to Lack, Waxman provided additional
details surrounding the Welch 'rumor' that Waxman said he hoped
turned out to be nothing more than an 'urban myth.'
For instance, Waxman said he heard of two NBC videotapes 'that would
either prove or debunk the allegation.' He said one tape is 'said to
be in the closet of Frank Raddis, NBC's East Coast head of
advertising and promotion,' and it captures NBC decision-desk events
on election night in a comprehensive manner with high picture quality.
Waxman said he was aware of a second tape shot in 'high 8' with a
hand-held camera by Steve Fastook or John Larrouso. Waxman did not
identify these individuals as NBC employees.
'This tape is reportedly not as comprehensive as the first tape, but
it shows Mr. Welch pressuring the desk to call the election for
George W. Bush,' Waxman told Lack in the Feb. 16 letter.
Waxman also recounted for Lack the substance of three rumors that
showed 'inappropriate interference' by Welch, according to Waxman's
unnamed rumor providers.
Welch, Waxman said, 'reportedly cheered when things appeared to favor
George W. Bush and hissed when they appeared to favor Al Gore.' Welch
also told someone at the NBC decision desk: 'What would I have to
give you to call the race for Bush?'
But Waxman said the most serious allegation he knew of was that Welch
was 'responsible for giving the order to call the election for George
For his part, Lack has told Waxman more than once that Welch in no
way interfered with NBC News' election-night coverage. He added that
because Welch was totally uninvolved, there were no videotapes that
would either support or refute his claim.
I was there and in charge. It just didn't happen. So there can be no
videotape showing that it did,' Lack said in a Feb. 22 reply to
Waxman. Lack was president of NBC News, but he became president and
CEO of NBC in May.
Although Waxman said he was reassured by Lack's general denials, he
complained that Lack did not specifically address his questions about
the two tapes.
'I asked you a simple, direct question, and you responded with an
artful and transparent rhetorical evasion,' Waxman said in a March 15
letter to Lack. 'Instead of providing me with that information, you
responded with syllogistic reasoning: Mr. Welch did not interfere,
therefore, `there can be no videotape showing' he interfered.'
Taking one more swipe at Lack, Waxman concluded: 'I am confident that
reporters in your own news division would consider your Feb. 22
response wholly inadequate if it were provided by a government
official in response to a journalist's question.'
The Waxman-Lack dispute could come to a head Tuesday. In a July 11
letter to Lack, Waxman requested that NBC review his questions a
second time and report its finding by July 31. An NBC source was
checking whether Lack would have anything more to say to Waxman by
In his House testimony, Lack called the Welch story a 'dopey rumor'
that was untrue and claimed he was unaware if the videotapes existed.
Lack acknowledged that Welch visited NBC News on election night and
if a videotape of Welch's appearance existed, Waxman 'was certainly
welcome to the tape.'
But Lack has backed away from that promise of furnishing the video.
In his April 20 letter to Waxman, Lack said, 'It would be highly
inappropriate for us to share any such tapes with the government.'
Waxman replied that the videotapes he seeks are not protected by the
First Amendment because they do not involve newsgathering or intrude
on editorial decision making.
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electromagnetism / infrastructure / civilization