CNN Puts the Moves on Cable TV; Spitzer's New Gig Amounts to a Reward for Bad Behavior

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Byline: Carrie Sheffield, SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES

This just in: Normally reputable CNN has succumbed to ratings pressures and will join the ranks of sensationalistic media outlets that will do anything for attention.

Also disheartening: Kathleen Parker, a Pulitzer Prize-winning conservative columnist, will lend her credibility to Eliot Spitzer, the tarnished and tawdry former governor of New York.

Mrs. Parker and Mr. Spitzer, who resigned after he hired a prostitute despite his earlier prosecution of prostitution rings, will co-host a political talk show this fall in CNN's prime 8 p.m. slot. The gimmick is meant to compete with Fox's Bill O'Reilly and MSNBC's Keith Olbermann, who are trouncing Ted Turner's brainchild.

In its announcement, CNN made no mention of a report from state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo admonishing Mr. Spitzer for using state police to harass his political enemies, a breach far worse than buying the affections of a prostitute. Instead, the network touted his supposed bona fides as the Sheriff of Wall Street.

Though I disagree with Mr. Spitzer's ideology and think his hounding of Wall Street moguls was less about fighting corruption and more about his own political profiteering, I feel for supporters of his creed who surely could find a less distracting crusader to publicize their causes. Regardless of their political stripes, pols who put their personal greed and pleasure ahead of the public interest betray their supporters and obviously do not exhibit the type of judgment worth promoting in prime time.

I witnessed firsthand Mr. Spitzer's campaign to resuscitate his career last fall, when he was a guest lecturer while I was a student at Harvard University. In a stroke of extreme irony, he was brought in by Harvard's Edmond J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics to lecture us on the morality of government intervention in the marketplace.

As a young woman, I was particularly disgusted knowing that the Sheriff of Wall Street believes the female body is a commodity that can be bought and sold (which would he prefer - NASDAQ or Dow Jones indexing?).

This move by CNN should have feminists everywhere livid, but instead, we have liberal ideologues including Terry O'Neill, president of the National Organization for Women, defending Mr. …