Here goes the CBS axe

Here goes the CBS axe

: CNN just announced that three execs at CBS — including the top two producers of 60 Minutes II — have been asked to resign and the fourth, Mary Mapes, was fired. Here’s the report at CBS.

: Speaking of Dan — and we’ll be doing a lot of that this week, I suspect — there are some incredible (as in incredibly numbnutty) quotes from him on covering the tsunami in today’s NY Times:

“It’s very difficult, perhaps impossible, from the outside to understand the conflicting undertows that go through you as a journalist,” Mr. Rather said. “Flying out, I’m saying to myself, ‘They’re talking about death tolls that are practically impossible to imagine.’ At the same time, you’re saying to yourself, ‘What a story.’ ”

“There is no place else I’d want to be,” he added. “I literally say a prayer of thanks every day in order to have this work. A story like this is why you get in the business.”

First, the “undertow” reference is about as stupid and insensitive as Jonathan Klein’s “flood the zone” maximalaprop.

But what’s worse is that last line. Let’s play a little word substitution. What he’s saying there is this: The horrendous deaths of more than 150,000 innocent souls is why you get in the business.

Of course, the real reason Dan loves this story is that he hopes it is the story he’s covering as he leaves, not the journalistic scandal he abetted at his own network.

: I was supposed to get that report. I don’t have it yet. CBS starts quoting it before the rest of the world got it:

The action was prompted by the report of an independent panel that concluded that CBS News failed to follow basic journalistic principles in the preparation and reporting of the piece. The panel also said CBS News had compounded that failure with