|13 January 2000|
"What are you waiting for? You're faster than this.
Don't think you are.
Know you are."
-- Morpheus training Neo, Chapter 15, The Matrix
Steve Case (AOL CEO) and Gerald Levin (Time-Warner CEO) sat down with Jim Lehrer last night on PBS' NewsHour and discussed the Big Deal (on a non-AOLTW-owned station, I might note):
- Newsmakers: Megamerger Masters (RealAudio version) [PBS]
Levin: If [during the NewsHour broadcast] you start talking about a Supreme Court decision or what's happening abroad or in China, at that point, if I want to go and do a little background checking and go into the Net to get some information -
Lehrer: While we're still on the air?
Levin: -- while you're still on the air, excuse me, I don't mean to offend...
Case: Your face would still be on the screen. We'll just add a few little things in the corner. Don't you worry.
Levin: We want people to understand that in business you can have a social commitment because of the things that we do and our own orientation. We'd like to state very clearly, which we have, that this company, put aside its financial size, is going to operate in the public interest. We're going to try and make a better world.
Lehrer: Let me ask you this, Mr. Case: Are you prepared as chairman of this company, to pick up a copy of Time Magazine on a Monday morning and see a story in there that just completely is negative about AOL?
Case: Of course. I'm used to that.
Lehrer: And you're not going to call Levin?
Case: I've seen more negative stories about me and AOL in the past ten years than probably anybody else. I think it goes with the territory. I'll tell you what I think is going to happen ...
I think the coverage of AOL and me is going to get tougher in the Time Warner publications over the next few years because it's like when you're coaching your kid's soccer team, you're less likely to put your kid into play because you want to make sure nobody thinks there is any favoritism. I think people are going to bend over backwards and be more likely to be cynical, more likely to be negative in the Time Warner publications than in anybody else's publication. ...
This is not about trying to have some influence over all these media properties for some kind of self-serving reason.
Levin: ...in the first conversations that Steve and I had, I established as a benchmark the independence of our journalism, regardless of how we were structuring the company. And, you know, he understands that.
Language question: Is there a way to combine the word "American" with something to refer to citizens of the United States alone? I know Canadians in particular and denizens of North and South America in general have on occasion adopted the word for themselves (quite reasonably, I think).
Is "U.S. residents" or "U.S. citizens" the only truly accurate way to refer to "Americans-as-the-term-is-commonly-used"?
This is a little funny. Not very funny, but a little funny (and presumably made up, not 'obtained' by Salon). I wouldn't expect her to agree to anything even close to these sketches:
- Hillary set to do "Saturday Night Live" [Salon]
[Cheri] Oteri as Barbara Walters interviews HRC. Premise is that "Walters" is trying desperately to get the first lady to cry, but HRC won't. "Walters" starts by citing worst passages of Starr Report, then allegations from tabloids, then pictures of dead puppies and kittens, then surreptitiously peeling onions. HRC eventually tears up, but it is revealed that she's only crying because she's in pain, because Mayor Giuliani is hiding underneath her chair, biting her ankle.
"The Ladies' Man"
HRC appears with Tim Meadows as Leon Phelps, the Ladies' Man, who tells the first lady that she is "very, very foxy," much foxier than Monica Lewinsky. He speculates what it would be like to be in an HRC-Lewinsky sandwich, at which point President Clinton pops in and says he'd like a bite, too.
(Note from Lorne: Can we get him for this cameo, also? If not, we'll use [Darrell] Hammond again.)