While watching some television news not too long ago, I began getting angry about all the negative coverage about America's war in Iraq, even though during the recent election an estimated 70 percent of Iraqis turned out to vote. It got me to thinking about Spiro Agnew and I told myself, “You know, Spiro Agnew was right.”
Before he left office in disgrace in 1973, Vice President Agnew had spoken out, in many ways gallantly, against the media and how they covered news in this country. The Vietnam War was still going on during Nixon and Agnew's first term and John Kerry, Jane Fonda and the other liberal hippie types were marching in the streets blaming America for the ills in the world.
The mainstream media seemed to be enjoying it. After a major speech President Nixon gave about Vietnam policy in 1969, there was the usual “analysis” by network commentators (there was no Fox News or CNN back then).on all three major networks. It was the speech where Nixon said there was a “great silent majority” of Americans who were still backing our service people in Vietnam. Afterward, it didn't seem like many of those commentators had much good to say about the Nixon speech.
For Agnew, that was the last straw. Shortly after Nixon's speech, Agnew gave a speech in Des Moines, Iowa, about network news coverage and overall news coverage in general. Surprisingly, the three major networks (NBC, CBS, ABC) carried his speech live. I watched it live on NBC.