You are currently browsing the daily archive for October 16, 2009.

Click here to add text
Click here to add text

Let me point out from the start that I am not – and never been a fan of either combatants. I didn’t turn to Fox – not even during the last elections when it seemed to many – more balanced – simply because it wasn’t beholden to Obama, the way other media outfits were.

I always saw  that they were an ideological, RW outlet.

In fact, the first time Obama withheld his patronage of Fox – at the beginning of the the campaign – I took this as an act of courage and considered supporting him. Only later did I figure out that by then, he had NBC and others in his pocket and the Wall Street, Pharma, insurers money – so he could afford this seemingly partisan act. But it did look good during the campaign.

Later, he had a secret summit with Roger Ailes followed by an interview with a supine O’Reilly, in which he said, among other things that he admired Republican ideas such as deregulation. And Fox did give him a break over McCain.

Once in power, the war started – again.

Time chronicled – earlier this month a war on all media opposition

So a new White House strategy has emerged: rather than just giving reporters ammunition to “fact-check” Obama’s many critics, the White House decided it would become a player, issuing biting attacks on those pundits, politicians and outlets that make what the White House believes to be misleading or simply false claims, like the assertion that health-care reform would establish new “sex clinics” in schools. Obama, fresh from his vacation on Martha’s Vineyard, cheered on the effort, telling his aides he wanted to “call ’em out.”

Interesting that Obama was personally cheering this one.

We already know of his decision to snub a Food channel show because the hostess has the same audience as Fox:

“We are going to screw her just like we screwed Fox News.”

So, this is not just war, this is personal. And it’s wrong in many, many ways – some of which I’ll try to count.

Some of them are revealed by John Nichols in his Whiner in Chief piece at the Nation

As for the Obama administration, whether the grumbling is about Republicans on Fox or bloggers in pajamas, there’s a word for what the president and his aides are doing. That word is “whining.” And nothing — no attack by Glenn Beck, no blogger busting about Guantanamo — does more damage to Obama’s credibility or authority than the sense that a popular president is becoming the whiner-in-chief.

Having a bunker mentality with an unprecedented favorable coverage from the media – I guess makes him a whiner.

Indeed, Fox attacked Clinton too – in fact the entire media did so. There were no secret summits, no collusion with other media outfits and no armistices then. It was the reason I admired – at first – Obama going against them in the campaign.

Another reason, as highlighted in the USA Today article is that what is acceptable during the campaign, it is not as a governing body

It’s hard to understand this as a calculated move for a White House that has far bigger things to worry about — Iranian President Ahmadinejad’s nuclear ambitions being just one — than drive-by rants on cable television.

The latest Dunn accusations – that Fox is an arm of the Republican party – is lame for two reasons:

It’s old news, and Obama (not the Democratic party) has at least two media arms that even his base recognize: MSNBC and CNN.

But this is fundamentally wrong because as USA Today points out

There is still a thing called presidential decorum. Sending out a taxpayer-paid partisan to attack a network, and by extension, its viewers, is not presidential. If you want to get in the mud with Glenn Beck, do it on your own dime and time, not ours.

It is more than an affront to decorum. Obama is not attacking here just a network, but like in the case of the Food Channel show, the people watching it. It’s one thing to attack voters in a campaign (bad, but more appropriate), and a totally different one for an elected president to attack his constituents. Whether he likes it or not, because of the democratic system he is now the president of all people – including those who didn’t vote for him. I know he and his fans think getting the presidency is merely an opportunity to pay back opponents

but that’s missing the point that he is in office  TO SERVE THE PEOPLE – all the people of the US, and his power comes from representing us. It’s not bestowed by God to smite his enemies. Like Jr. thought. And like Jr.jr acts.

And another thng: while he is pleasing his base by attacking people who watch Fox, he makes un-holly alliances with pharma et

al for the advertising of his programs. Only the price of this alliance hurts everyone

Not Your Sweetie

October 2009