As a member of two vindictive cults - Fox News and Scientology - cable news anchor Greta Van Susteren is an absolute pro at channeling rage. Witness the blog post she typed up on the 4th of July holiday. The executive producer of CNN's Anderson Cooper 360 last week called Susteren's On The Record "not a news program. It's missing-person of the day." Hoo-boy. Susteren's 1000-word response swiftly pinned blame for the comments on Cooper, since he should be able to control his producer, then basically called the silver-haired anchor a coddled, commercialized, Katrina-exploiting, polygamy-obsessed pretty boy. Susteren, meanwhile, has a magical law degree that obviates the need for a teleprompter, ever. A breakdown (and partial refutation) of her rant, after the jump.
- Cooper is spendy: "It has been rumored that in one year they spent about 27 million dollars in advertising of Anderson Cooper in their experiment. No network has ever spent that kind of money just to market one person. By the way, the President of CNN told me that Anderson Cooper has a staff of nearly 60. We beat them with our staff…of about 12." Cooper has led in ratings share the past two quarters; Van Susteren is ahead in Nielsen's separate count of total viewers (as opposed to households).
- Cooper is a commercial whore: "hey have even done some rather bizarre (demeaning?) marketing. They have put Anderson Cooper on plastic bags like they are selling breakfast cereal. Here is another example and you decide: CNN sells T shirts of Anderson Cooper not just promoting the show (all networks sell T shirts) but [also of the headline "Anderson Cooper, 'you're not my boo']. Not my boo? yikes…not exactly Walter Cronkite…"
- Cooper exploited Katrina! "You would think with all their marketing that Anderson Cooper was the only one who covered Katrina….we were there, all producers were there, all my colleagues were there…but guess what? so was every one else in every news outlet in the nation!! The fact is that all the other news organizations had the dignity not to try and make a marketing experiment out of a giant catastrophe! Only one anchor wrote a book and thus collected money from Katrina. The rest of us saw the suffering and simply reported it rather than exploit it." Anderson did not write a Katrina book, thank you very much. The dreamy anchor kept a "diary." Totally different.
- Cooper needs a teleprompter, because he didn't go to law school: "Plus, unlike those on the side lines, I am the real thing - I spent 15 years in the criminal courts trying criminal cases and don't get my information from a teleprompter…I get it from both investigation and experience."
- Cooper thinks a lot about multiple wives: "It is true….CNN does polygamy better. I will give that to them - but it is because they have so much more experience with the polygamy story than any other network. They were obsessed with it…night after night after night…even assigning multiple correspondents to the story to report only for Anderson Cooper."
I don't know - that's pretty harsh, even though Cooper's producer did throw down some fighting words. Susteren's response even drew out feelings of kinship with the CNN anchor from right-leaning internet publisher Matt Drudge. Notice how it's not "Cooper," it's "Anderson:"
Do I detect a little wistfulness in that "not my boo" headline, Matt?