Ann Coulter again suggested that New York Times staff members should be "executed" over the paper's reports on the National Security Agency's warrantless domestic eavesdropping program and a Treasury Department program designed to track international financial transactions for terrorist activity.
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On the July 12 edition of The Jon Caldara Show on Denver radio station KOA, right-wing pundit Ann Coulter again suggested that New York Times staff members should be "executed." Referring to the Times' decision to report on the National Security Agency's warrantless domestic eavesdropping program and a Treasury Department program designed to track international financial transactions for terrorist activity, Coulter declared that the Times had done "something that could have gotten them executed, certainly did get the Rosenbergs executed." As Media Matters for America noted, Coulter agreed with radio host Melanie Morgan's assertion that if New York Times executive editor Bill Keller were convicted of treason she "would have no problem with him being sent to the gas chamber," writing in her nationally syndicated July 12 column that she would prefer Keller face " a firing squad, but I'm open to a debate on the method of execution."
Noting that The Wall Street Journal and Los Angeles Times each also printed a story about the bank monitoring program on the same day as the Times, Coulter added "I have no problem with prosecuting them for treason either." Further blasting the Times for publishing the story, Coulter said on the newspaper's purported mindset: "[A]s with all insane liberals' ideas, they seem to think they can keep the consequences of their insanity limited to the outer boroughs of New York. It won't affect Manhattanites when the nuke hits." Coulter also defended McCarthyism, stating: "[L]iberals always do this. When they're committing treason, they always scream about how they're being persecuted. They did it with Joe McCarthy while they were sheltering Soviet spies."
From the July 12 edition of The Jon Caldara Show:
COULTER: I mean, for one thing, as I've mentioned here and there in a column, what is going to happen to The New York Times? As I wrote in this week's column, Ronald Reagan called Nixon after December 1972; Nixon was president then, Reagan [California] governor. After Reagan had seen Walter Cronkite's report on CBS News on the Vietnam War, Reagan called Nixon to say that if this were World War II circumstances, CBS News would be prosecuted for treason. This quote is also in my book Treason, by the way. Can you imagine --
CALDARA: Do you have a book for sale? I didn't know that.
COULTER: No, this is one that isn't for sale, but it's a magnificent book. Well, it is for sale --
CALDARA: It is for sale.
COULTER: -- all my books are for sale. But it's not the book that I'm supposed to be hawking right now --
CALDARA: Currently pimping, yes.
COULTER: -- I'm just mentioning it because it's relevant to the topic at hand, The New York Times' treason. Thus, the aptly titled of my book -- title of my book is Treason. And do you think there is any possibility any action will be taken against The New York Times for something that could have gotten them executed, certainly did get the Rosenbergs executed?
CALDARA: Of course not.
COULTER: Well, OK. That's why I'm saying I don't think Bush has --
CALDARA: Bring it back to 1985 for me. There was a Times columnist who went after Reagan. It was Tony Lewis.
COULTER: Ah, yes, whom I quote in this week's column.
CALDARA: You do indeed. And in fact, that's why I brought it up. See, that's what is known as a subtle plug. Just jump right in there.
COULTER: Part of the theme of this week's column, in addition to continuing the drumbeat for a treason trial against the Times, is how liberals always do this. When they're committing treason, they always scream about how they're being persecuted. They did it with Joe McCarthy while they were sheltering Soviet spies: "Oh, we're being persecuted! McCarthyism! If you mention that you like Russian vodka, you'll be investigated in this country!" That was said by a Soviet spy, now proved by Venona papers, also in my book Treason. Nixon and Anthony Lewis, in his column back in the 80s, complained that -- oh, sorry, this was Reagan.
COULTER: Of course, Nixon was supposed to be so brutal to the press, so horribly, horribly brutal. And yet, he didn't prosecute Jane Fonda for treason. And then Ronald Reagan, and Anthony Lewis complaining about "Oh, Nixon, he is trying to intimidate us, trying to intimidate us." You know, I read the Times back then, and I don't recall noticing any intimidation on the part of the press. And now we're getting it again with the New York Times -- you know, having a drop-off box at the New York Times building for, you know, for classified top-secret programs.
CALDARA: For those people who might not be following this all that closely, it's not that you're hacked off at the Times because they spin every story; that's not it. You're not going after them because they make up stories. You're not going after them for treason because their editorial page is written in Cuba. You're going at them very specifically because they're giving out, shall we say it, trade secrets.
COULTER: Right. They're revealing classified programs that will unquestionably help Al Qaeda, help terrorists launch another attack on New York or on America someplace. The irony of this is that New York is certainly one of the very likely targets. And they are in New York. But as with all insane liberals' ideas, they seem to think they can keep the consequences of their insanity limited to the outer boroughs of New York. It won't affect Manhattanites when the nuke hits. And this latest one, I mean, they've done it before. They did it with the NSA spying program, but this latest one is particularly outrageous. There's no -- there's no news value in how we are tracking terrorists in this particular case. This is a top-secret program. When you have 9-11 commissioners -- I mean, forget the president and the Bush administration pleading with the Times not to run this. How about both 9-11 commissioners, who are not exactly ferocious hawks, and even Jack Murtha, who wants to pull troops out of Iraq in the middle of a war -- even Murtha asked the Times not to print this, and yet the Times goes right ahead.
CALDARA: The Times is doing something very, very smart, by the way. The first couple of stories, they went out all on their own, so it was very easy to beat up just the Times. Now they realize that there is safety in numbers, and that they are sharing stories with other newspapers, including, of all newspapers, The Wall Street Journal. I mean, explain this one to me.
COULTER: And by the way, I don't know the details of who printed what when, but I've heard liberals, you know, their big talking point seems to be, "Well, what about the LA Times? And what about The Wall Street Journal?" I have no problem with prosecuting them for treason either. Right? Whatever the facts are, fine, but I'll let the prosecutors and the jury and the judge deal with that. The point is, we know what the Times is up to because they have a pattern of conduct here. And it's especially -- I mean, as I said in last week's column, what if the Rosenbergs, Julius and Ethel, instead of passing secrets about our nuclear program at Los Alamos, instead of passing it secretly to Soviet agents, instead of that, they just, you know, printed up a newsletter and published it in their newsletter? Would that have immunized them from a treason prosecution?