Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
Not at NBC
NBC Entertainment President Jeff Zucker (search) says that “60 Minutes” story on President Bush's National Guard service never would have made air at his network. Zucker told the Television Critics Association that it was "shocking" to see "the degree to which responsibility was abdicated on the piece about the president of the United States, six weeks before the election."
Zucker went on to question CBS Anchor Dan Rather's "lack of involvement on a piece like that," and expressed surprise that CBS seemed to have none of the safeguards that NBC put in place after it's own scandal involving a rigged report on unsafe automobiles in 1991.
President Bush's inaugural speech was interrupted by chants from protesters sitting in the front of the crowd, near the podium — a spot usually reserved for VIP's and big supporters of the President.
Turns out, those protesters were from the liberal women's activist group Code Pink (search). How did they get choice seats within shouting distance of the President? They say they got the tickets to the VIP section from Democratic members of congress from California and New York.
President Bush got a mixed international reaction to yesterday’s inauguration speech. Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said the call to freedom was "soaked in blood and smelling of oil."
British Prime Minister Tony Blair (search) agreed with the president that "the best prospect of peaceful co-existence lies in the spread of democracy. But former British foreign secretary Robin Cook wrote of "Fireworks in Washington, despair around the world."
And the Washington Post notes that European newspapers emphasized the religious tone of the speech and questioned how the frequent promises to bring freedom and liberty to the world would be carried out.
Not a Devil Sign
Meanwhile, the president saluted the University of Texas Longhorn Band (search), as it passed the viewing stand in the inaugural parade, with the traditional "Hook'em Horn" sign that Texas fans use. But in some parts of the world, that gesture has an entirely different meaning. It's seen as a salute to the devil. One Norwegian newspaper translated the sign for readers, saying the gesture is merely an expression is just school spirit.
Religion and Rolling Stone
After agreeing to run an ad for a new Bible aimed at young people, Rolling Stone (search) magazine has backed down, backed out, saying they won't publish ads with what the magazine called "religious messages." The advertising for the New International Version (search) of the book talks about finding real truth in the world of “endless media noise and political spin,” adding that “it's written in today's language for today's times and that it makes more sense than ever.” A spokesman for the Bible's publisher says he is surprised and disappointment at Rolling Stone's decision.
— FOX News' Michael Levine contributed to this report