March 22, 2006

Bill Beutel, 1930-2006

beutel2.184.jpg Quintessential white newsguy Bill Beutel died a couple of days ago. Though I've repressed it, I apparently went through a phase of watching the local news. Here's something I wrote for the New York Press's 1995 Best of Manhattan issue.

Best Local News Anchor
Bill Beutel, Channel 7 Eyewitness News
Among a cadre of young, blow-dried, energetic local anchors, Bill Beutel stands out simply for having grey hair. Beutel is old, but not in any distinguished, or even avuncular way. He's just old in the way that he knows he'll never have a better job than this and really couldn't care less. (unlike his competitors who often seem to be auditioning for network jobs or at least their own daytime talkshows). Local news is notoriously news-free, so no one anchor is going to provide better coverage than another. What Beutel does offer that no one else can is his campy 60-second editorials at the very end of the early news. If the chosen topic is humorous (a celebrity scandal not involving murder, say), Beutel gets a twinkle in his eye and launches into a few lines of satirical, flowing rhyme. He clearly thinks he's being wry but a better word is loopy. If the topic is serious, the twinkle and rhyme is forsaken for a blank stare and excessive alliteration on the order of Right now, Rwanda's wretched refugees require real relief. No one can drive home the seriousness of a crisis quite like Beutel. The best editorials frequently come on Fridays, when Beutel rounds up the news of the week in one breath. Sue Simmons can jump in and out of the closet as much as she wants—she'll never be as entertaining as this.

Posted by Daniel Radosh


I have not lived in the tri-state area in over a decade, and I stopped watching the local news long before I left. But I can still picture Bill Beutel and Sue Simmons at the anchor desk, yammering on in the background while I do my homework before dinner. Hearing about Beutel's death made me feel weirdly nostalgic; it made me wonder what other childhood memories I'm carrying around, just waiting to be triggered. I got the same strange shiver the first time I saw Chuck Scarborough do a bit for the national news.


I was lucky enough to catch the last couple of years of Beutel's tenure. It really freaked me out. Sometimes, in that last year, I couldn't watch. He was old. Not real old but tv old and he played the part. He got a little forgetful. After every sizable gaffe he'd disappear for a few days. His editorials got slower and choppier and shorter. It was uncanny in a way you just don't expect local news to be. Sue Simmons? Chuck Scarborough? Mr. G? Ira Joe Fisher? Storm Fields? Sam Champion? Rosanna Sciotto? They're all just names without a face. But Beutel I will never forget. He really freaked me out.

I can't believe Liz Cho beat Lori Stokes for hottest local anchor.

As a transplanted NYer now living in LA, I fondly recall Bill Beutel for his steady and calm demeanor. He is not someone I have thought out in a long time, but when I saw the obit, I felt a bit of sadness, like an old neighbor passed.

Rest in peace Bill Beutel and thank you!

You must have been remembering Beutel and Simmons at their respective rival news desks, Anon, since they never worked together. Anyway, Bill Beutel seemed like a nice-enough guy, a class act and all that. Sad to see him go. (But I'll really lose it when Chuck kicks off.)

It is well known that sue simmons is a lesbian.She admitted as much in a response to a question from Tom Arnold as she interviewed him on Live at Five,(July'94). What is not well known,however,is that Ms simmons is PROFOUNDLY Anti-Semitic,and a Anti-White racist as well!(This,even though her mother was white.Which makes her a racist-absurd)! In the summer of '91 she was interviewed by the Village Voice.In that interview she expressed her admiration for Professor leonard jeffries.jeffries was a notorious Anti-White,Anti-Semitic Professor in charge of the black studies dept.at City College in Harlem.(Check his Bio on Wikipedia).Amongst his many racist teachings were these gems:"Jews financed and contolled the slave trade"."Whites are inherantly inferior ice people who are violent and cruel,while blacks are sun people who are compassionate and peaceful"."Jews control Hollywood to promote the subservience of blacks in the modern day".(jeffries was subsequently fired.And rightly so)! In the Voice article,Ms simmons openly agreed with the racist views of jeffries,and she added a few of her own.She even blasted her own employers,(WNBC-TV),for not hiring more black,on-air personalities,which was a LIE! Also,shortly after the Voice article,Ms simmons was interviewed on a local radio show hosted by Joy Behar(77WABC).And,in response to a direct question from a caller:"Do you really believe that the Jews controll Hollywood"?,Ms simmons replied"Oh,yes.I do"! She should have been FIRED long ago! FYI.

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