The Politico has published what may be the longest piece in the publication’s hallowed history. Predictably, it’s an extended whine about how Obama treats the press. Most whine off the record, but Iraq war cheerleader George Packer, at least, doesn’t:
“I don’t think they need to be nice to reporters, but the White House seems to imagine that releasing information is like a tap that can be turned on and off at their whim.”
Well, they don’t have to be nice to reporters. And releasing information is like a tap.
I sympathize with reporters on this, but it’s simple: the George W. Bush administration made you their bitch. Now you’re every administration’s bitch.
Memo to WH press corp:
They treat you like shit, because you are shit.
Respect is earned, not granted.
Grow the fuck up.
My read of that article is that the WHPC is still enamored of “access” and still phobic to “learning the issues,” “investigating,” and “reporting.”
Um…isn’t that basically a clear admission that they’re just stenographers? If the press was doing their job, this wouldn’t be an issue. How about we get some people to actually, I don’t know, do some real journalism and discover things for themselves rather than wait for it to be spoon fed.
OT: anyone seen this cartoon? It pretty much sums up a wet dream of mine. http://www.queenofwands.net/d/20031208.html
They really are stenographers. Memo to journalists: when politicians are withholding information from you, work to find out what it is they’re hiding. For fuck’s sake.
They’ve been every administration’s bitch. It’s what they are. They should suck it up, try to do things differently, or accept their bitchitude and enjoy it a little.
I don’t care that they have stupid and trivial jobs. I care that they complain about them.
Try being unemployed for 2 years, like some of my friends, fuckers.
my gripe about the WH press corps, is that they were a bunch of supine simps for the balance of the Bush/Cheney regime, and that they would only discover their spine once a Democrat took office and overcompensate by returning to the Clinton era rules, where they would function as a megaphone for whatever bullshit faux scandal the right-wing noise machine could gin up.
DougJ, on which point do you sympathize with reporters? Your own response to the Politico Pap seems to indicate that you do not sympathize with them (rightly, IMO).
How about you stop giving equal treatment to idiots like Orly Taitz? How about you do some “investigation”(gasp!)?
Someone tell me the last BIG story the MSM media has broken. I mean Watergate style big. It’s been awhile because they are empty suits, just as empty as the politicians they latch onto like lampreys. I have one ounce of sympathy, and that was wasted making myself a bloody mary to try and drown out the whiny BS.
Maybe the press is so upset that they’ll finally investigate those Obama Administration claims that Iraq has WMD.
Hmm..I seem to be a tad confused. Never mind, pass the sprinkled donuts.
The reason they’re upset is because Democrats are supposed to bend over backwards & jump through hoops to be nice to them. Republicans, manly men all, can & do behave like total jerks & that’s totally acceptable.
Yes, I agree with most of you: journalism these days is certainly not experiencing anything like its finest hour. But it’s also a huge problem that there is one set of rules for Democrats and another set of rules for Republicans.
Look at it this way: if a Democratic president had authorized torture and lied his way into a war of choice, what do you think the press would have had to say about it?
I see your problem right here, Julie.
Now go fuck yourself with a chainsaw and get a real job if you don’t like it. I hear the Marriott is hiring chambermaids.
Someone tell Packer and the rest of the Village to re-watch Stephen Colbert’s brilliant performance at the Press Club Dinner.
They deserve to re-live the shame over and over.
Bill E Pilgrim
In a nutshell.
In another nutshell: Politico is finding things to criticize now that a Democrat is President.
Stop the presses, Politico is a Republican party organ.
@Bill E Pilgrim: Oh, they’re an organ, all right. Or at least run by
OMG … I actually read this. The stupid hurt so bad. One of the reporters had the gall to say that no president had treat the press so badly for 10 years. So I guess Democratic presidents are just mean. Is that the moral?
@Lolis: Republican rule = Daddy’s in charge. Yes sir.
Democratic rule = Moooommmm, do I have to? That’s not fair! All the other reporters get more access!
I like your ideas and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.
don’t give them the attention!
The Moar You Know
Moral: if you suck dick for a living don’t be shocked when people treat you like a whore.
I guess the press is now finding out that everyone knows what they do for a living.
But then, so is pretty much the entire existence of Politico.
Did Packer cite passages in history books where it says that Ron Ziegler gave Woodward and Bernstein everything they needed to take down Nixon during Watergate?
@stevie314159: If the Repubs regain the house, the press will awaken and blame the mess in Iraq on Obama. Let the impeachments begin.
I wonder it those employees of Al Jazeera whose offices were subject to repeated missile strikes from Bush’s Pentagon would agree?
What the article doesn’t talk about is the fact that many of them are writing books about Obama and/or his administration and want greater face time and access so that they can get unique tidbits for their books so they can make a ton of money. They’re also looking for face time on tv, those politico guys appear on lots of shows. Look at Chuck Todd, he appears on various shows on MSNBC on a daily basis plus he has his own show.So very easily opinion and facts become conflated and the news becomes a he-said she-said story, instead of just plain facts.
Wait a minute. When the President actually held press conferences, during which they asked off topic questions like about the Gates affair, they complained he was eating up network time.
You see what I’m saying about the media?
“I’m not shit. I’m champagne! and you’re shit! And you’ll always be shit! (sobs, runs off to kill self)”
The White House Press Corps is Jon Lovitz’s character, Andy, in Happiness.
Learn it. Love it. Use it.
DougJ, this wasn’t a whine. This was a warning.
Everyone knows that the Republicans have a good chance of taking back the house and Issa just got a Bush mole at SEC to push this Goldman controversy investigation. Imagine if he had subpoena power? And imagine if the press decided to play up his part of the story and ignore the WH? Imagine if Obama got the Clinton treatment?
That’s what they’re threatening and that’s what this was all about; that the Democrats won’t have total control come January and the White House has no good will to bank for the Republican shit storm to come.
These assholes have a list: notice the political appointees that won’t talk. They don’t give names; but they’re there and if a scandal erupts won’t that be sad.
These people aren’t fools. They totally abdicated their responsibility to inform the public during the health care debate; that’s why the president is so contemptuous of them.
kommrade reproductive vigor
Wow. If there were a way to convert the idiocy in that one sentence to energy it could light up NYC for a year.
I do hope I get to see Gibbs’ face when the WATBs claim his refusal to do their jobs for them is a violation of their 1st Am. rights.
I am still really bothered by how personal they make this. Part of the problem was that the Bush White House played them very adroitly and personally and individually. We all saw it. The Bush Team stroked them, and drew them in based on an astute and cynical read of each media personality’s ambitions. It was very much a team effort, the relationship between Bush and the press, it excluded the public, and it was really wrong.
I find it so hard to hear them bitch about “access”. We saw how easily they were played by “access”. They were broadcasting whatever Cheney planted. What’s the public benefit to access if it comes with a complete suspension of ethics and critical thinking? They’re going to have to earn credibility. The Bush Years damaged that, and they haven’t addressed it.
“But… but… we’re only supposed to be the bitches of nice White Republicans!”
The WH press corpse doesn’t do anything a trained parrot couldn’t do [squaaak! some people say! some people say! Drudge bait! squaaak!]. Hey, but look at that plumage – beautiful bird, the Norwegian Blue.
[email protected]: Shouldn’t you refer to ‘the media’ in the first-person plural, as opposed to the third-person plural?
OT. The CEO of the Crayola company thanks teabaggers for giving Crayola an incredible year, and rewards them by offering a complimentary package of ‘freedom colors’ markers.
No wonder the media promotes the Teabaggers so much. They have the same modus operandi: Ignore Republican bad behavior, project said bad behavior on Democrats, and RAAAAAAAAAAAAAGE over perceived injustices perpetrated against them by the phantom Liberal Tyranny.
God, fuck them all.
Maybe Obama should start giving each press person his/her own personal insulting, putdown nickname & then they will feel special again.
That, to me, is professional. Notice the “we”, and the lack of any reference to her personally.
Now they’ve got an additional credibility problem, because they’ve all but announced they’re pissed off and they’re embarking on a vendetta. Was that smart? Not in terms of Obama, but in terms of their public credibility?
“We in the press dislike Obama, and here is our ‘bill of particulars'”. Great. Way to discredit your own work.
The press are whiny, for sure. But, it does seem from all accounts that Obama really does not like the press mainly due to the concentration on frivolity, the failure to report the truth and the obsession with who’s up and who’s down. That, by the way, has nothing to do with a free press and everything to do with Obama wanting the best for his country. It only makes me like him more as he’s demonstrating that he’s by far the most serious politician in the world today.
See the thing that really gets their goat is, a WH house press conference is supposed to be like the movie The Untouchables in which each reporter can get in touch with his inner Eliot Ness (the poor guy from Fox who pulled the short straw has to be the Sean Connery-esque supporting character, cruelly gunned down by goons and crawling across the floor to the sound of opera music as his life bleeds away).
But noooooo, the WH has to go and ruin it all by having Obama stand on the wrong side of the podium. That is supposed to be them up there in front of all the cameras, basking in the bright lights, while Obama tosses them answers carefully chosen to show how sharp and insightfull and full of intrepidnessidity they are. After all, that’s how Woodward and Bernstein did it. It’s so unfaiiiiirrrrrr!
I have to say, though, he better fix it.
Remember what they did to Gore? They essentially took him down. He sighed, he “invented the internet”, no one liked him. Except all those people who voted for him, despite the high school lunch room clique smear job.
He’s pissed about the health care coverage. Stimulus wasn’t flat-out lies, but health care was. My problem is everyone should be pissed about the health care coverage. It sucked.
I think this could all be solved by Obama giving them condescending nicknames. They really seemed to like that.
Time to re-issue Mark Hertsgaard’s book — yet again.
WATB. That is what the Washington press corps has become.
Julie Mason shouldn’t be allowed on the grounds of the White House. She can write her smears from home.
@AhabTRuler: I don’t work for the networks anymore. I “downgraded” to local free newspaper…which actually may be an upgrade.
exactly. Everyone should be pissed off about the coverage of healthcare (and really about pretty much everything else).
Everyone is pissed about it. At least everyone who cares about reality is pissed about it. So, rather than owning up to their mistakes and recognizing their own failures, a lot of these people are compounding them by lashing out and blaming others. It’s a spiral of suckitude, which looks like it’s not going to reverse course anytime soon.
Two words for Miss Whiny 2010: Jeff Gannon.
Put that in your fucking pipe and smoke it.
comrade scott's agenda of rage
The convienient thing Politico leaves out is how individual Press Secretaries deal with the press. The WH Press weenies universally found Tony Snow to be the worst of the lot because he wasn’t accessible, didn’t answer basic requests, etc. They loved Dana whatshername because she was accessible. But hey, we here at Politico don’t want to put any actual context onto this story, we have a meme to push and this is it.
Despite who Julie Mason works for, her reporting in the pages of the Examiner is pretty straight forward reporting that certainly doesn’t have the wingnuttery the editorial page has. Back when when she worked for the Houston Chronicle, her online “blog” was more snarky than anything else.
I understand that they have a job to do and that they feel bad when they are shut out. I agree that they deserve it in this case, but I can see why they get pissed about it.
@gbear: That’s 64 brilliant colors of awesome. :)
There were exceptions. I was just flabbergasted by the reaction of media when all those polls came out, where no one understood health care. The whole theme was “Obama didn’t sell this effectively”. The theme of today’s Politico rant is “Obama controls the message, and limits access”.
That’s what happens when he’s charged with “sales” and they won’t report any objective facts, or refute anything. It’s all “sales”. Do they blame him?
The funniest part of the whole thing to me is that health care could be an absolute abomination. There COULD BE death panels in there. No one would know. No one who raised it would have any credibility anyway, if it were TRUE.
I could stick anything into legislation. Republicans are sure to chase something shiny, and the press are sure to follow them.
How many electrons were killed to produce a 22,700 word article that states the obvious? Did they run out of ideas at the story desk?
Yes indeed it did. But the more it sucked, the more Drudge links it got. Mission accomplished!
Big Dog is on CSPAN at the Peterson Foundation. The tap is full on.
@NobodySpecial: Really? Someone from the Washington Examiner made that statement? What a joke. A ridiculously rightwing rag whining that the Democratic President isn’t nice to them. Maybe Michelle Malkin should give that lady a lesson in the virtues of taking personal responsibility for one’s attitudes and behaviors.
While I think of it, maybe Michelle Malkin could have a home accident with a granite countertop.
Bill E Pilgrim
OT, it looks like the signs and portents point to the GOP dropping the filibuster on finance reform.
I guess those “Republicans blocking efforts to regulate those assholes you saw on TV yesterday” headlines today made a few GOPers nervous. As opposed to this, which strikes me as pure elephant dung:
“Massive Democrat”? Hey now, did you ever see Henry Hyde? I mean, be fair.
“The White House wants their friend to be in the pool and we don’t know what recourse we have,” [Washington Examiner’s Julie] Mason later told POLITICO. “It’s just completely unfair to the press corps and flies in the face of the concept of a free press.”
-Try doing your job, you stupid bitch.
The White House knows you’re not their friend.
poor dears. maybe a nice long long lie-down far far away from those bright lights might be best for them. we know how they get if they’re over-tired. if they won’t go quietly for their nap, feel free to use the manacles and chains to keep them there. (their teddy has a matching set of manacles and their binky is in the upper left cupboard on the left.)
thank you. i was just about to add the same.
@DougJ: Is their basic complaint that they are being shut out or that they are not being treated seriously? I refuse to give Politico the click to find out, but the tone of the bits quoted in the main post and the comments suggests to me that the press corps is feeling more dissed than ignored.
Translation: WH Press admits it was friends with Bush, and gave him less contentious coverage.
That never happened when Bush was President. Karl Rove was the height of fairness and civility.
It’s a combination of dissed and ignored, I’d say.
Obama: Do your damned jobs!
Press: (whining) But we don’t wannaaaaaaaaa
Oh, look. At the beginning of Obama’s term, Julie Mason tweeted that it was “hard to retain much after a 60-minute Gibbs WH briefing.”
So it’s the Annie Hall joke, I guess? “Yeah, I know; and such small portions.”
@Nick: And remember when he held press conferences and reporters complained about how boring it all was?
I’m not reading the link, but I honestly don’t know what the media wants. There are various initiatives being pushed, and it’s all above board. There don’t seem to any brewing scandals that demand administration stonewalling, etc. I really don’t see what the issue is. What substantive questions is Obama dodging? Anything like, “Why did you really get us into a war? Are we really torturing people? Who did you meet with before writing the energy bill? Did you really gather information from phone records of millions of Americans?”
Which reminds me, the New York Times fucking sat on the telecom story until after the Bush/Kerry election. So fuck them all in the ear.
And, yes, I know Obama is doing the same thing Bush did re: the police state, but it doesn’t seem like he’s pretending he’s not, and as he’s continuing policies, not initiating them, it’s not such a big news story (unless, of course, the Republicans want it to be).
James K. Polk, Esq.
Reporters with hurt fee-fees, what a scoop!
When, in the course of human events, …
@Bill E Pilgrim:
That’s how it’s done. The Republicans seem to be experts at playing the parliamentary game to grind the Senate to a halt and otherwise derail legislation.
But every time somebody manages to get their shenanigans into the open and make headlines out of it, they back down.
Somebody is doing a good job of getting our side of the message out there. This isn’t the first time we won a battle of the headlines this year.
Wow. If you go to “The Arena” at the bottom of the Politico link, you will see that article completely savaged in three-paragraph essay after three-paragraph essay.
Fitting that the moderator started the whole shebang off with the crap of ‘Obama is under 50 constantly, is the country missing Bush? Is Obama really just doing Bush’s dirty work? Or maybe the country really needs another Bush back!’
@James K. Polk, Esq.: It’s true. The funny thing is that I wish I could sympathize. It would be better for me if I thought the press was on my side and that I could be on theirs. But that’s not the reality, so let’s not pretend it is.
What it comes down to is this: If you want to be nothing more than a gossipy asshole, then be a gossipy asshole. And be proud of it. But you can’t be a gossipy asshole and then wonder why people don’t want to be your friend. Nobody wants a gossipy asshole for a friend. Except for other gossipy assholes, that is. Hence the reason that the press and the GOP get along so very well.
I don’t sympathize with these reporters at all. Press and politicians shouldn’t have a friendly nor antagonistic relationship. It should be built on business.
A reporter’s job is to dig for facts. So dig. Stop asking to be thrown a bone.
liberty60(Veteran, Great War of Yankee Aggression)
Slightly off topic, but re: whining-
Centrist Republicans warn that Reid’s tough tactics may backfire…
WTF? CENTRIST Republicans?
There hasn’t been such an animal since Bob Dole could still get it up and Jack Kemp was in football shape.
And backfire? What, Olympia Snowe might not cooperate?
The White House press corps sounds like a prison inmate who’s just been traded to another gangleader for a pack of smokes, and now whines about the insultingly low quality of the cigarettes for which they got sold.
liberty60(Veteran, Great War of Yankee Aggression)
Woodward: “I called the WH press secretary and asked him about this break-in at the Watergate Hotel. He said they didn’t know anything about it.”
Bernstein: “Damn, I guess that’s it then. Hey, y’know Trisha Nixon might be getting married? D’ya think we could wrangle invites?”
Woodward: “Hmm, maybe if I did a book called “Nixon At War: Man Of Churchillian Resolve” or something…
@Kryptik: That introduction to the comments threw me. It was so unrelated, I thought maybe I had gone to the wrong page. I eventually decided it was just a web hiccup — wrong comment put in the wrong thread. It didn’t occur to me that it was written and put there on purpose. But I’m not a regular Politico reader…
Can I ask those WATB’s at Politico for my click back? Because they, and the associated WATBs in the WHPC need to DIAF.
After 8 years of carrying water on issues from WMDs, Libby, Wiretapping, torture, millions of lost email, corruption, etc. I think the WH Press Corp should simply be happy that the public is too misinformed to have them drawn and quartered like they deserve.
Maybe this White House treats them like crap because they don’t trust them. And you know what?! They’re right not to.
These people all act like they’re writing for the political version of US Weekly. Its all gossip, horseraces, he said/she said BS.
DO YOUR EFFING JOB and maybe you’ll be treated better.
No one cares that the social secretary didn’t put the “right” people on the guest list for some fancy dinner! We care about whether we went to war on a lie, or what will happen to the millions without health insurance. Government is up to its eyeballs in decisions that literally cause people to live or die and none of these people seem to be able to think past the cocktail parties.
So, if I’m reading it correctly, George Packer’s complaint is that the White House won’t do reporters’ jobs for them?
I bet Mr. Packer also thinks of himself as a “journalist” without even a trace of irony.
Considering the majority of comments that Politico gets on their site (from the non-professionals and sorts like in the Arena here), it seems to fit perfectly in. Long as you recognize that Politico is about as bi-partisan as Olympia Snowe.
That Anonymous Guy
It’s interesting inside baseball stuff if you’re in the journalism or PR business, but for everyone else, it comes off as introspective, navel-gazing whining to spend so much ink complaining about how Gibbs & Co. are mean to you. I suspect there are at least 100,000 unemployed reporters who would be more than happy to swap places (and paychecks) with anyone in the White House press room if the price was that Rahm would scream at them once in awhile.
Perhaps a prominent member of the WH press corps should’ve bought Obama some doughnuts during the ’08 campaign. We could’ve avoided all of this unpleasantness right there.
“Iraq war cheerleader” George Packer.
I like the modifier but wish it were used consistently, as in “Iraq war cheerleader” John Cole. Or “Iraq war cheerleader” Rahm Emmanuel. Or “Iraq war cheerleader” Matt Yglesias.
And this all is leading up to the WHPC Dinner this weekend. With bonus Sunday morning quarterbacking from Scarboro and Mika.
licensed to kill time
Well, I’m not going to Politico to read that link, but from what folks here are saying it sounds like reporters talking about themselves again. I wish they could figure out that they are supposed to cover the story, not be the story, but you know what they say about wishes and beggars and horses…
It’s not just that they’re Obama’s “bitch”, it’s that they’re catty bitches that belong on a reality show, not in a newsroom.