Wow: Even Frank Rich Sees Pro-Obama "Hagiography"
The media's pro-Obama love affair is so obvious, even overdramatic liberal columnist Frank Rich thinks his colleages are overdoing it. In his latest Sunday column, "Enough With the 100 Days Already," Rich briefly empathized with conservatives who think the press is pro-Obama:
Believe it or not, there are Americans who have a "very negative" opinion of Barack Obama (13 percent,in the Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll). Some are even angry at him (10 percent, New York Times/CBS News). As the First 100 Days hoopla started to jump the shark last week, I tried, as an experiment in empathy, to see the world through their eyes.
It was difficult at first, butan interviewwith the official White House photographer, Pete Souza, on CNN, pushed me over the edge. Souza was showing all those beguiling behind-the-scenes pictures that, though government issued, were more or less passed off as journalism by virtually every news outlet in the land.
Inevitably we got to The Dog. "I want to show this picture because I find this to be a fascinating picture," said the CNN anchor John King, who found almost every picture fascinating. "The president running down the hall with his new jogging partner there, Bo." What, he asked Souza, is it like "to add this to the diversity of your work at the White House?"
I'll leave the photographer's answer to your imagination. But for a second, anyway, I could imagine what it's like to be among the Limbaugh-Cheney deadenders who loathe Obama. Those who feel the whole world is against them. Those who think the press corps is in the tank. Those so sickened by the fawning that they'd throw a brick through the television screen if the Bush-Cheney economy had left them with enough money to buy a new set.
Rich actually used the word "hagiographers" to describe some of the pro-Obama media coverage, referring to "report cards" issued by Time editor Mark Halperin that were subject to some serious grade inflation:
All those great report cards! Trying to stand out in this over-caffeinated throng of hagiographers, a Time punditsprinkled his evaluations with A-pluses. One of them was for Michelle Obama, whoseapproval ratingis even higher than her husband's. Hard to believe that just a year ago some of the same commentators werequestioning her pride in America, and that Christopher Hitchens,writing in Slate, was seriously arguing thather 1985 Princeton thesislinked her by association to the views of Stokely Carmichael and Louis Farrakhan.