Recently we who watch the Sabbath gasbags and have stayed up too late all week to watch Letterman saw two program hosts retire. The difference between David Letterman and Bob Schieffer is that I will miss much about Letterman. He demonstrated wit and intelligence seasoned with a lot of humor and humbug. It was entertainment. I will not miss Bob Schieffer one tiny bit.
Watching or listening to the end of these programs was generally a waste of time. The Letterman finale was over-loaded with one commercial after another taking advantage of the larger goodbye goodnight program. Bob Schieffer was his usual trying not to show his Republican roots and his and his brother's connections to the Bush clan.
Also irritating was the suggestion that Bob Schieffer had almost invented and determined the format of the Sabbath gasbag shows. He was actually first with nothing and Face the Nation was CBS attempt to emulate or pass NBC Meet the Press. I can remember Lawrence Spivak long before I ever saw the name Bob Schieffer let alone remembered anything he ever said. Wikipedia has the story on both shows.
You might note that Meet the Press has roots that go back dozens of years more than does CBS Face the Nation. Lawrence Spivak and Meet the Press started on Radio in 1945 and was on TV by 1947. Spivak hosted for 28 years until 1975. CBS started Face the Nation in 1954. That show has had several moderators over the years including Bob Schieffer.
The following is the list of moderators for Face the Nation
|Howard K. Smith||1960–1961|
Bob Schieffer gave Sen. John McCain a lot of face time on Face the Nation and as far as I can remember never challenged his BS. Rachel Maddow took time to report his factual and logical errors a year or two ago. Nothing like that from Schieffer who was involved with Bush ball teams in Texas and his brother was an ambassador for Bush. Panderers may extoll his independence, impartiality and integrity. I tend to think he just did a slightly better job of giving the impression he was unbiased while doing his best to slant his questions and the programs subtly in the Republican direction.
I will not miss Bob Schieffer, but every night I look at late night TV, I miss the Letterman option. Of course, I also miss Johnny Carson and Jack Paar for that matter.
*** Stay tuned for perhaps some slightly less biased remembering by me --- Doug Wiken