Patterico's Pontifications


Source: NBC Planned to Edit Billy Bush Out of the “Grab Them by the P***y” Tape”

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 9:30 pm

In piece ostensibly about the Critical Issue of whether Billy Bush can “recover” from laughing at Donald Trump’s piggishness 11 years ago, People Magazine buries the lede, big time. Namely: the network’s original plan was to edit Bush out of the tape:

“They could have released the tape and edited him out,” the source says of the individual that leaked the footage. “That was the plan — they were trying to approve it and then someone leaked it. That’s what Access Hollywood eventually did and they played it … but it was already out,” the source says and adds, “If they wanted to protect him, they could have edited it out which they did on the final Access piece that aired on Friday, but they left it in when it was leaked.”

(According to an NBC spokesperson: “There absolutely was never a consideration by NBC News to edit the tape.”)

Yeah, right.

What is the significance of this? Journalism, not Billy Bush and his future on the awful TODAY Show. If you’d asked 9 out of 10 Americans two weeks ago who Billy Bush was, they probably would have said it’s the president’s brother — you know, the one who makes his own beer. (That’s a joke for the over-40 crowd. Sorry, youngsters.) Nobody cares about Billy Bush. But what they should care about is journalistic standards. I was furiously banging this drum the other day:

Here’s the real thing Billy Bush and NBC News should be apologizing for: holding on to this information for so long.

Think about it. Billy Bush is a host of NBC’s TODAY Show. Let me make this very clear: the TODAY show is part of NBC News. Just to drive the point home, let me quote from NBC Universal’s own Web site:

NBC News is a global leader in news across all broadcast and digital platforms. Its leading and award-winning television news broadcasts include NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, TODAY, Meet the Press and Dateline, as well as primetime specials and breaking news reports.

Got that? What this means, ladies and gentlemen, is that a host of an NBC News program had game-changing information about a major-party candidate for the U.S. presidency and said nothing. Billy Bush knew Donald Trump had talked about sexually assaulting women on a regular basis. What’s more, he had this information since 2005 — meaning he had it since June 2015, when Donald Trump got into the race.

And he said nothing.

With the People Magazine article, we have our first real evidence that the institution of NBC News was trying to hide Bush’s direct involvement in the scandal, until somebody else scooped them. Specifically, NBC News (though they deny it) was planning to cover up the role that one of the hosts of one of their news programs played — in a key bit of news that has upended a U.S. presidential race.

Oh, sure, I hear you saying: TODAY is a crap news show, and Billy Bush is a minor nothing personality on that crap show. All true. To which I say: so what? Most news shows are crap shows. Are we going to now excuse journalistic malfeasance by a “news” organization just because that organization, or one of its shows, happens to be of shoddy quality?

Why, that would be like excusing one of Donald Trump’s lies just because we know that he lies all the time.

Wait a minute . . .

[Cross-posted at RedState.]

72 Responses to “Source: NBC Planned to Edit Billy Bush Out of the “Grab Them by the P***y” Tape””

  1. I see the ghost of Lee Atwater, reaching across the generations and across the bloodlines, avenging the insult to G.H.W.B’s son, screwing not only Trump but also the GOP for failing to anoint the scion.

    nk (dbc370)

  2. Thanksgiving at the Bush house is gonna be interesting.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  3. At least this means that Billy Bush won’t ever run for President, so there’s that silver lining.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  4. I could hear Matt Lauer cackling with delight all the way to Chicago. Comcast still has no reasonable plan of succession.

    By the by – have you noticed how the “You belong in jail.” line is now nowhere to be seen, yet the DJT tape runs unabated?

    I loved all the follow-up interviews on the morning shows with the WJC sex assault victims, as well. Those women were so insightful and strong! Wait. What? There weren’t any exclusive interviews? They’ve been muted again? Huh.

    Ed from SFV (3400a5)

  5. They need to load Billy Bush and Lester Holt in a GM truck with a side-saddle gas tank, and then throw some Astroturf in the back.

    Pinandpuller (3f76b2)

  6. “What is the significance of this? Journalism, not Billy Bush and his future on the awful TODAY Show… With the People Magazine article, we have our first real evidence that the institution of NBC News was trying to hide Bush’s direct involvement in the scandal, until somebody else scooped them.”

    The irony of Patterico citing entertainment pub ‘People’ as a “news source” outing the institution of “NBC News” is not lost.

    Television journalism came of age on November 22, 1963 and began its death march the moment a young Roger Ailes cajoled Nixon to crossover into entertainment and do 5 seconds on Laugh-In in 1968 and Walter Cronkite left his CBS newsroom to play himself for 3 minutes on a fake news set for The Mary Tyler Moore Show in the mid-70’s.

    Revisit the 1976 film, ‘Network.’ Presented as satire then, today it is viewed as prescient. The decline accelerated as media companies were bought up by conglomerates in the early 80’s and management insisted news divisions, then loss leaders, pay their way and become profit centers ‘accountable to Network.’ [Before that, CBS’s Paley often quipped that the profits from one entertainment program, ‘I Love Lucy’ paid for the entire annual operating budget of CBS News.]

    It’s been a race downhill ever since the early ’80s with the fall of the Fairness Doctrine and the rise of cable, then the web, culminating in entertainment programs consumed as news sources: [Access Hollywood, the Daily Show, GMA, Today etc.,]. ‘Journalists’ have agents; just like ‘entertainers.’ And dressing rooms, just like “Ted Baxter.”

    Billy Bush is no more a ‘journalist’ than Ron Burgundy or Kent Brockman… or Nancy O’Dell [although she tried to label herself as one this week to seem legit. Nice try.]

    This isn’t a ‘journalism’ story. It’s a business story.

    Because, television, as ‘Network‘s Arthur Jensen would coo, ‘is a business.’ And to be profitable and survive, it needs fed content 24/7,365.

    Like other outlets, NBC News has been practicing industry incest by crossing news and entertainment platforms for years chasing ratings and revenue. It became routine as cable matured and the web exploded. Now the idiocy of that crossbreeding is beginning to surface. The first expensive blow up was Brian Williams. Now Billy Bush. They both had just inked big buck contracts before they imploded all over the façade of network news ‘integrity.’

    It’s been a misnomer to label ‘Today‘ as a ‘news broadcast,’ too. NBC should know better. If memory serves, Pat Weaver’s concept was to bookend the broadcast day with a morning ‘Today’ show to go with your coffee and the evening, ‘Tonight’ show to send you to sleep. The late Dave Garroway’s buddy at it’s inception was J. Fred Muggs– a chimp. Soft stories bracketed at the top and bottom of the hours with hard news headlines. That’s what it was– and still is, copied by ABC, CBS and now, the cablers.

    The timing of this will be costly to NBC, both in dollars and credibility– but not for long. Sweeps, a stormy election, holidays and football will blur the public memory. But the story behind this business is the effort to protect an entertainment investment from collateral damage.

    “Are we going to now excuse journalistic malfeasance by a “news” organization just because that organization, or one of its shows, happens to be of shoddy quality?”

    Well, ‘Fox and Friends’ has gotten away with that for years. 😉

    “Peace!” – Dave Garroway, original host, ‘Today Show’ signoff, NBC TV, 1952-61

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  7. It will be fun, post-election, for someone to get Billy on record on whether or not holding this information until just the right moment to be released was worth being thrown under the bus by NBC, when their plan to eliminate his digital fingerprints was spoiled by the leaked tape.

    The plan obviously was to damage Trump without damaging Bush, but once the leak occurred, NBC didn’t want to deal with questions of a double-standard. They either had to play down the outrage over Trump’s comments or ditch Billy for laughing at them, and chose the latter option (though I suppose there already could be a quid pro quo in place here, where if Bush takes his punishment and keeps his mouth shut for the next 8-10 months, they’ll find a new job for him at MSNBC or one of the network’s other broadcast properties, or some other media outlet sympathetic to what Bush did will offer him a job after the kerfuffle blows over).

    John (4a719f)

  8. The redemption of the Bush family begins with an embittered and vengeance minded Billy who will remember how easily he was kicked to the curb acting on those impulses.

    urbanleftbehind (0cf89f)

  9. This is how Billy Bush became George Zimmerman’s crime-fighting sidekick.

    Pinandpuller (3f76b2)

  10. how about them cubs, how about brazile giving red queen the answers before hand,

    narciso (d1f714)

  11. the bush klan wasted *way* too much political capital trying to foist jeborah on the american people

    so now they’re trying to rebrand themselves as democrats

    but the george w fiasco – his fundamental unseriousness – his ungodly wasteful spending – his wanton butchery of civilians and our own soldiers

    probably won’t be forgotten soon enough for this rebrand to work

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  12. No… you don’t say.

    Colonel Haiku (f8bfb8)

  13. If Bush had reported every bit of off color banter that went on from celebrities, athletes, politicians… male and female, no one would ever talk to him at all.

    Megyn Kelly went on the Howard Stern show NSFW
    I wonder went on off camera. Because usually people let their hair down and tease and banter.
    Kelly is a good looking woman who seems to usually carry herself well, but the media she is part of is full of big hypocrites.
    Politics is full of huge hypocrites and we will find out that several GOP who have backed away from Trump have the proverbial log in their own eye.
    Hillary is a hypocrite and so are her media protectors. She known as a foul mouthed aggressive woman who likes to drink and get loud.
    The media has seen this side of her, and somewhere there are tapes. at least some audio, but her media protectors will scour the bowels of NBC for crap on Donald while holding back the stuff on Hillary they have recorded on their cellphones

    steveg (5508fb)

  14. how about them cubs

    It helped that San Francisco’s weather was the same as Chicago’s yesterday and, coupled with the fact that Wrigleyville is right next to Boys’ Town, they felt like they were playing at home. But that was astonishingly superior pitching by the Giants.

    nk (dbc370)

  15. Though if you are Trump partisan, wouldn’t you want a Dodgers World Series championship, if only for the inevitable Cholo/Sur riot?

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  16. And that should be the non-issue discussion in a Presidential race. “Mr. Trump, whom are you rooting for?” “Mrs. Clinton, whom are you rooting for?” Not “locker room talk” or “bimbo shaming”.
    That’s just plain degenerate. Any candidate who opens the door to that kind of talk should not be a candidate in the first place.

    nk (dbc370)

  17. The analogue to: abort (e.g. selective-child, one-child), repent. twice or more, natural born killer.

    and class diversity is judgement by “color of skin” (i.e. racism, sexism, etc.)

    “=” is congruence or selective or politically profitable exclusion

    redistributive change is trickle-up poverty

    Obamacare is a health penalty tax

    progressive wars are social justice adventures in mass abortion, sodomy, and rape

    is thoughtcrimes, even exposure of abortion chambers, class diversitists, insourcing/outsourcing, monopoly and monopolistic practices, anti-native factions, emigration reform (e.g. refugee crises), social justice adventurists (e.g. progressive wars), “=” exclusion, Slut Walkers (e.g. humanitarian pornographers, interns with “benefits”, reproductive prostitutes), sexual revolution!, crucification.

    The state-established Church is Pro-Choice (i.e. selective law, selective rights, selective science) with a quasi-religious/moral philosophy received from gods in the twilight zone a.k.a. penumbra, interpreted by liberal judges, and defended by progressives, liberals, and overlapping interests.

    Whether it is abortion chambers (e.g. final solution), Planned Parenthood (i.e. clinical cannibalism), and other anti-human and dysfunctional behaviors, or the progressive slope, liberalism (i.e. unprincipled, degenerative ideology) defies and survives exposure.

    n.n (ccdf6c)

  18. you’re skirting the issue, you may have to vote for deutscher of the 13th rule after all,

    narciso (d1f714)

  19. Trump exposed women, including: interns with “benefits”, porn stars, gold diggers, celebrity groupies, who ask for liberal, undignified treatment. The conflation of reporting, orientation and behavior is its own exposure of the the left, right, center nexus of special and peculiar interests.

    n.n (ccdf6c)

  20. I couldn’t stand more than a few minutes of the apprentice, at a time, but you can turn that off,
    red queen’s policies will be everpresent, and yet she will be unaccountable,

    narciso (d1f714)

  21. Nope. I addressed the issue squarely. Neither one of those slimes should be on a Presidential ballot, and the fact that they are reflects very badly on the state of our society. And my nostrils are not sensitive enough to detect which turd smells sweeter.

    nk (dbc370)

  22. I doubt that a spectrograph could tell them apart.

    nk (dbc370)

  23. And where’s SPECTRE when we need it? 😉

    nk (dbc370)

  24. the previous instance, we had a candidate who had walked out on his crippled first wife, who had stood by his long internment, to marry a beer heiress, who apocryphally he regarded with almost as much contempt, and he demonstrated the same toward his runningmate, in 2008,

    narciso (d1f714)

  25. the dauphin daughter is the front for spectre or quantum, if one avoids copywright issues,

    narciso (d1f714)

  26. I blame Reagan. He set the precedent that a divorced man could run for President, doubling down on JFK — an Irishman! in the White House.

    nk (dbc370)

  27. And remember: the LA Times still has the Obama-Rashid Khalidi “i hate jews” palestinian video

    jb (c3b5b1)

  28. well nelson rockefeller might have been the first, but he might have had a very short term in office,

    narciso (d1f714)

  29. There was never more than one copy of this video and Billy Bush had it in his possession from day one. He admitted it. Why would he leave multiple copies to be found? It’s a Bush family hit against Trump and they knew they couldn’t leave out Billy. That would be a dead giveaway. So Billy agreed to be sacrificed.

    Jcurtis (ad2808)

  30. I find it a convenient squirrel, she enabled a rapist to get away, and may actually be married to one, this is why I call them the borgias,

    narciso (d1f714)

  31. tarnak farms was as obvious a target as abbottabad,

    narciso (d1f714)

  32. Also, it wasn’t released at the optimal time. That would have been two weeks out, not a month. The Bushes wanted to give Trump time to bow out. Leftist Clinton allies would have given it to Fox news to break.

    Jcurtis (ad2808)

  33. maybe, but it’s still a large squirrel, sammeh will come along on a saddle, any moment now,

    narciso (d1f714)

  34. I said it first, jcurtis.

    But are we certain that Billy had the only copy? That would make it proof beyond a reasonable doubt (that it is the Bushes “Atwatering” Trump).

    nk (dbc370)

  35. the top men don’t do atwater any more it’s the dr. evil and norma desmond shiv in the solar plexus,

    narciso (d1f714)

  36. You know who lies a lot? And whom other very important and medium important and just workaday slobs in the media lie for a lot?

    That would be Mrs. Clinton. In fact, withholding ammo for late in the game was part of that protection squad activity.

    SarahW (3164f0)

  37. He’s an orange goofus. She is a criminal who will continue to weaponize the apparatus of government against you, and all her perceived enemies. She covers and excuses (referring to some lame apology of bill’s) actual flippin’ rape.

    SarahW (3164f0)

  38. If you vote for Hillary because “respect for women” then you are lying for her too.

    SarahW (3164f0)

  39. SarahW, it’s a dream come true for Democrats. Trumph is a walking, talking, tweeting distraction.

    So no one is talking about what HRC has done. Nobody.

    It’s all Trump, all the time.

    It could not have worked out better for the Left.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  40. Had they aired this stuff when Trump announced his bid, Hillary wouldn’t be winning the election right now. That’s not some crazy twist of fate.

    Dustin (ba94b2)

  41. and they never do, simon, remember how the shutdown was a distraction re cruz, because the press would really drill down on obamacare, all of the major media, academia, corporation they are all in red queen’s basket,

    narciso (d1f714)

  42. honestly it’s like groundhog day, and you’re playing the part of stephen tobolowsky,

    narciso (d1f714)

  43. “But what they should care about is journalistic standards.”

    I can’t seem to find an ANSI listing for journalism. There’s nothing in the ISO or ASTM or IEC either. It’s as if ‘journalistic standards’ don’t exist or are more properly identified using the taxonomy applicable to unicorns and chimeras.

    Rick Ballard (b9de6e)

  44. @27- I blame Reagan.

    I blame Hollywood.

    If the SOB had been awarded an Oscar(c) for King’s Row he’d never have left town.

    “Randy, Randy – Where’s the rest of me…?” – Drake McHugh [Ronald Reagan] ‘King’s Row’ 1942

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  45. NK, I don’t really know how their video equipment works but it wasn’t a live feed, it was being recorded onto tape and once Billy got the tape, how would there be other tapes? Was video recorded onto a hard drive back then and you can just make a copy of it when you want it? Even if that was the case, it doesn’t seem like something you’d let remain in the archives if you’re Billy Bush.

    Jcurtis (ad2808)

  46. Not sure what the point was of your link, narciso
    Rumbling from the propaganda megaphone that egads the political divide means people are even deluded into thinking that the settled science of climate change doesn’t exist…

    One can’t tell any more what is proposed as truth, sarcasm, or cynical truthful anti-sarcasm snark.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  47. What will have really been important a week from now??
    Who knows, with terrorists armed with cruise missiles…

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  48. Jcurtis,

    Is it likely Billy Bush engineered the release of this tape on orders from his extended family? Or is it more likely that far left NBC decision-makers got this tape months ago and then hired Billy in August 2016 with the express intention of releasing the tape a few weeks later, also sacrificing Billy to make it look like NBC wasn’t involved?

    You see a conspiracy but I think you’ve latched onto the wrong conspiracy.

    DRJ (15874d)

  49. 52, on that note, and I wonder if Narciso had a long #2 because he is usually on top of this type of news:

    urbanleftbehind (847a06)

  50. Of course tapes could be copied in 2005. That’s how we bought and rented music and movies. I was dubbing cassettes and VHS tapes in the ’80s. You need either a two-deck machine or two single-deck machines and an AV cable.

    nk (dbc370)

  51. Per rushbo,
    Billy bush was to be edited out of it before the release before the debate,
    But someone wanted to wait because hurricane coverage was taking up broadcast time,
    But somebody else didn’t want to wait and went ahead and released it without the planned editing

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  52. Per rushbo,
    Yes, they had it months ago
    Planned for optimal impact

    No matter who the Republican was,
    They would have been trashed as well

    We told the trumpers who said that Cruz would be slammed for “being Canadian” that trump would get slammed by stuff as well
    We told you so

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  53. Clotho: We could make this guy a Canadian or disgusting, degenerate pervert.
    Lachesis: Canadian.
    Atropos: Canadian.

    nk (dbc370)

  54. DRJ, they are going out of their way to limit the Bush family involvement and NBC’s culpability. They’re doing exactly what they have to do to achieve it.

    Think about it. If you start with the premise that Bush had the tape and NBC and the Bushes wanted to release it as an October surprise to help Hillary and destroy Trump, and then you try to create a cover up to limit the culpability of those players, you would write the exact script that is playing out. Billy has to alert them recently, Billy has to be “punished” for not telling them earlier, Billy has to appear inconsolable about all this. But the problem they have with the whole cover up is they have to claim the tape they released wasn’t Bush’s. Bush wasn’t gonna let that be copied and archived in the vaults of Access Hollywood.

    Jcurtis (ad2808)

  55. 56, they were never gonna edit out Billy Bush. Try to conceal that it was a Bush giving the interview and expect no one will ask where the rest of it is for context? And then have it drop like a bomb that it was a Bush? At that point there’s no question that the Bush family was behind it. Billy knew he was gonna be sacrificed all along. I don’t think he’s gonna starve. He probably wrote the cover up script.

    Jcurtis (ad2808)

  56. You know who else very much wants Trump to be the next President? The Russsians.

    I wonder why.

    nk (dbc370)

  57. DRJ, if your theory was correct, then it would be a crazy coincidence that Billy started talking about it at the Olympics and he would deny he said anything about it and then NBC would be exposed for the crime, but he won’t say that because he has to honor NBC’s alibi ( recent discovery ) just like NBC has to honor Bush’s alibi ( that it wasn’t his tape ). Mutually assured destruction of the Bushes and NBC so the agreement will be honored.

    Jcurtis (ad2808)

  58. Kevin M (25bbee) — 10/11/2016 @ 10:29 pm

    No, it will not be interesting to them. That family is great in imagination, unlike yours, which boggles. This is a case of Princes and paupers.

    felipe (023cc9)

  59. NBC is still paying off the Clintons for greasing the merger with Comcast. Chelsea’s $27,000 per minute (I said minute!) job with NBC was only a pittance.

    nk (dbc370)

  60. narciso (d1f714) — 10/12/2016 @ 5:14 am

    Ouch! Too bad insults are only felt, in so much, as they are understood.

    felipe (023cc9)

  61. nk (dbc370) — 10/12/2016 @ 3:38 pm

    Think of it as earnest money.

    felipe (023cc9)

  62. 61, why wonder? The Democrats are all about putting al qaeda strongholds in the Russian sphere and at their doorstep. Do you think Russia hasn’t figured out that the Democrat party is allied with al qaeda and ISIS, in fact created them? and the Republicans are enemies of al qaeda and ISIS except for McCain and a couple others. That doesn’t mean Putin is a good guy who can be trusted. It merely answers your question.

    Jcurtis (ad2808)

  63. MD in Philly (f9371b) — 10/12/2016 @ 2:49 pm

    Doc, I am pretty sure that when things don’t make sense, it is partisan politics in action.

    felipe (023cc9)

  64. Jcurtis. sit down before you hurt yourself.

    felipe (023cc9)

  65. By the way, one last prediction for the final act of the cover up script that hasn’t happened yet: Bush will claim he made a duplicate off the master tape and left the master tape in the Access Hollywood archives.

    When that happens, you’ll think I’m some sort of witch, but no, the script writes itself.

    Jcurtis (ad2808)

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