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Jack Cafferty: CNN’s Resident Carny

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Howard Kurtz takes notes of the antics of CNN’s Jack Cafferty this morning, writing in part:

Jack Cafferty, CNN’s resident curmudgeon, is drawing some flak for his rhetorical bombshells.

In a typical rant, Cafferty, a New York local anchor for two decades who now delivers his short bursts on “The Situation Room,” said of the Bush administration: “Who cares if the Patriot Act gets renewed? Want to abuse our civil liberties — just do it! Who cares about the Geneva conventions? Want to torture prisoners — just do it! Who cares about rules concerning the identity of CIA agents? Want to reveal the name of a covert operative — just do it!”….

And when Dick Cheney, after his hunting accident, granted an interview to Fox’s Brit Hume, Cafferty said it “didn’t exactly represent a profile in courage for the vice president to wander over there to the F-word network.” (“Get your mind out of the gutter,” he says now. “The F-word is Fox.”)

Responds Fox spokeswoman Irena Briganti: “Jack is about as unstable as CNN’s programming lineup — nobody pays much attention to his incoherent ramblings.”

Cafferty’s cutting remarks have made him a hero to some on the left.

Kurtz notes that the Cafferty schtick depends upon Cafferty announcing a question and then selecting e-mails to read in response. It isn’t reporting. it isn’t analysis. But it allows Cafferty to turn red and say dumb things, which the lefties love.

Thus does CNN attempt to rebuild its ratings. The folks at FNC love Cafferty in the way NFL clubs love aging and rusty third string quarterbacks being called upon by their opponents.

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