Well, I have returned home and can now get back to writing like I am supposed to write! I was out of town all last week and operating from a hotel with spotty internet access. On top of that I was quite busy with work, which had me on a weird schedule working in a different location. But I did enjoy my time there and met quite a few cool folks in Dawsonville, Georgia. I touched on this subject a week or two ago, and I was going to let it rest because when I talked about it them I thought it was nothing more than a bold and outlandish statement from a rogue idiot in the White House (Anita Dunn). But today saw all the top administration officials from the White House hit the Sunday morning media circuit to further their message and attempt to really begin to take down Fox News. It was one thing when a statement was made. It is quite another now that it has become clear that President of the United States thinks the most pressing item on his plate is taking down a media outlet that doesn’t ask how high when he says jump….
As you all recall, this began a week and a half ago with White House Communications Director Anita Dunn trudging on out there in front of the cameras with the White House as her backdrop and stating, “The reality of it is that Fox News often operates almost as either the research arm or the communications arm of the Republican Party. And it is not ideological… what I think is fair to say about Fox, and the way we view it, is that it is more of a wing of the Republican Party.” She added that “[Fox is] widely viewed as a part of the Republican Party: take their talking points and put them on the air, take their opposition research and put it on the air. And that’s fine. But let’s not pretend they’re a news organization like CNN is.” That was all a bit out of line with what I expect from the White House. But again, I figured I would write about it and forget it as my thoughts were that Anita Dunn is an idiot and she would be reeled back in by a President who would know what a dumb move that was.
But alas, I was to be dismayed as I watched the rest of the week see this become one of the lead stories each and every day on nearly all the media outlets. As this was happening I was thinking to myself, “why are the other media outlets, members of the Obama Media Group, continuing this full court press on Fox News?” By the time Saturday rolled around, I was driving back from Georgia thinking about this and deciding that they would only do so with encouragement and push from the White House itself. Sunday morning brought the revelation that I was correct. The White House is, in fact, going to continue to attempt to marginalize and tear down Fox News. Now I am beginning to feel that this is a direct attack on the freedom of the press and on the free speech rights recognized in the Constitution.
My viewing began with Rahm Emanuel, White House Chief of Staff, our famous “never let a good crisis go to waste” ultimate partisan hack. Emanuel appeared on CNN’s State of the Union show with host John King. Emanuel said, “Its not a conflict with Fox News. Our position is that it’s not a news organization so much as it has a perspective, and that is a different take. More importantly, is not have the CNNs and others news organizations basically be led and following Fox News.” Emanuel then went on to claim that the White House is not focused on Fox News. He said, “the concentration of the White House isn’t ‘what is Fox doing,’ it is what it takes to make sure the economy is moving…” He then listed the standard Democrat list of political talking points. What is odd is that Emanuel claims that Fox News is not where the White House is focused, yet that is what the Chief of Staff of the White House was there discussing with CNN on the important Sunday morning talk circuit. And he wasn’t alone.
White House Chief Strategist David Axelrod was simultaneously appearing over on ABC News and having a talk with George Stephanopoulos. Axelrod continued the “Fox is not a news channel” line with the following idiotic rant (transcript written by Stephanopoulos, not me): “The only argument that Anita was making is that they are not really a news organization, if you watch even its not even their commentators, but a lot of their news program. It’s really not news, it’s pushing a point of view and the bigger thing is that other news organizations like yours, ought not to treat them that way. And we’re not going to treat them that way, we’re going to appear on their shows and participate, but understanding that they represent a point of view.”
I was sent a clip from a site called “Newsy” in my email and decided that I would support what appears to me to be a internet news site starting up and attempting to move into the main stream of things (I will actively work to support those who are a viable alternative to the big networks out there who are all in the tank one way or another). I tried for a while to figure out how to put the video directly here. I will continue to research this but couldn’t do it. But what I could do is put the URL here. Go ahead an click it to see their take on this subject. It will open a new window rather than taking you away from this page.
Now for my take. As I said, I initially tried to believe that this was a minor blip. But it is appearing to be more than that. First on Fox News: Fox News is a news organization. They are certainly just as much a news organization as MSNBC, CNN, ABC, CBS, and all the others. What they are not is a follow the leader news organization who simply does what the others do. They are also not a liberal news organization, which all of those others are to one degree or another. Some of the conservative commentary at night is over the top, but no more than the others. Olbermann on his own could be enough to have MSNBC classified as a comedy channel. Maddow is obviously as skewed as O’Reilly. You get the point.
Next on the White House: This is childish bullshit. Bush league at best. The White House is taking a tactic that shows them not ready to lead this country. I would understand if they came out and corrected some false facts or debated some conclusions that they disagreed with. But they instead have decided that they cannot refute the facts so they will instead attempt to destroy the character. It seems to me that this is a larger scale version of the standard Democratic tactic used for most debates today:
- Can’t argue the valid points of the “Teabaggers”? Instead paint them as racists.
- Can’t overcome those pesky facts around global warming? Claim the other camp’s scientists are in bed with big oil.
- Don’t like debating economic principles? Destroy the wealthy through class warfare and inflaming rhetoric.
- Health Care debates not going so well when public finds out what is in the bills? Just say those who oppose it are heartless, crazy, racist, or simply stupid and thus easily influenced by insurance company political wrangling.
- Don’t like the truth being pointed out around your czars, your policies, your agenda, your tactics, and your past? Just tell the world that the news organization refusing to follow the dictates of the Messiah isn’t a news organization.
It is a disgusting tactic. And I see it being pushed everywhere I read on the liberal blogs, comments to articles on liberal media outlets, and even tonight on facebook when one of Mrs. Weapon’s facebook friends attempt to spout off that the “teabaggers” were nothing more than racists (I did offer a kind rebuttal, and an invitation to come and debate it here. I doubt we will be graced with his presence as those on the left with this type of position rarely attempt to engage with those who think for themselves)(see how I made sure that my comment didn’t apply to those from the left here!). And it is high time that those on the left begin to decry these tactics rather than continuing to make excuses for them and trivialize the use of them.
President Obama ran on a platform of little more than hope and change. He didn’t bother to define most of what the hope and change were all about. But I am beginning to see that it wasn’t anything like most thought it would be. He stood up there on inauguration day and said that the time for partisan bickering was past. He campaigned for months saying he was going to bring change to the way things were done in Washington DC. Yet we now watch as the White House engages in perhaps the most vulgar forms of politics as usual. Staunch partisanship. Oppression of opposing viewpoints. Bulldozing legislation through Congress. Turning his back on almost all of the promises he made during the campaign.
I have had enough of the White House acting like a fraternity. They are the “cool kids” who everyone wants to earn the favor of, and the media in general makes a complete ass of themselves slobbering all over Obama and his agenda. It reminds of those girls in college who had no self respect and would throw themselves at the pretty frat boys at a party, then take the walk of shame at 7:00 am to get back to their dorm. ENOUGH. I despised the frat boys and the way they treated people in college, and I am beginning to despise the White House and their treatment of opposing ideas in today’s political arena.
This is not “Change We Can Believe In.” This is not an “end to the childish partisan bickering in Washington DC.” This is a continuation of the same old bullshit that has made Washington DC the most hated place in America. This is Chicago Politics brought to the national level. And I have had enough.
And for the record I think this is going to backfire on Obama and his administration. I think that there are a lot of people who are beginning to see through the facade that was erected throughout the campaign. They are beginning to see that President Obama is not yet ready to lead this country. And he is certainly not prepared to lead it during the difficult times that we have ahead.