8:01: There he is, and it’s getting a little less shocking to see our President walk out purposefully without it looking like an effort.
8:02: Right out of the gate, it’s “fuck you” press corps. Obama is leaping over them straight to us.
8:03: Barack Obama is a no-nonsense motherfucker. There’s no goofy winks at reporters. In fact, now that we’ve moved from homeowners to toxic assets inside of two minutes, the Rude Pundit’s pretty sure that Obama thinks we’re a lot smarter than we actually are. Hey, thanks for the compliment, but slow down there, Slim.
8:05: This is why we elected him and it’s what the Congress needs to get its tiny little heads around: because we trust that he understands all this shit, the interconnectedness of all the issues, the vast betrayals of the middle and working class by the moneyed class. We want him to take care of it, go be a leader, and leave us alone for a little while. 2010 ain’t that far.
8:07: But the media, of course, doesn’t want that. They tell us reductive shit like “more authority” for some government official without context so that it sounds way more outrageous than it actually is.
8:23: The Rude Pundit’s glad the reporters are pressing Obama. Because that’s what they should fucking do. But any one of these fuckers who sat with their thumbs up their asses while Bush lied to their faces should be whipped out of DC and sent back to reporting on the new Tempe, AZ, fried prairie dog stand.
The Rude Pundit
Amen: This is why we elected him.
Chuck Todd/NBC wanted to know when the president will demand more sacrifice from the American people. It’s hard to know what to say to this. Obama kindly reminded Chuck of the sacrifices Americans are already making. Stick to election coverage, Chuck.
Ed Henry/CNN asked why Obama took his time to comment on the AIG bonuses. Nice smack-down by the Prez: “Well, it took a couple of days because I like to know what I’m talking about before I speak.”
Then there was the Washington Times and Fox, respectively, on cell-stem research (the fetuses scheduled to be thrown in the garbage anyways – duh) and something or other about a “global currency” – which Hilzoy traced to the demented Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, Republican of Minnesota.
Basically, the reporters just seemed fundamentally out of touch and Obama kept having to reel them into the real world, one the viewing public might recognize. Afterward, the pundits seemed, if possible, even more out of touch.
Alex Castellanos/CNN actually said he was watching a man who realized he would be a one-term president. Okayyyyy.
I just can’t wait for the public opinion polls on this one, so I can, once again, watch CNN’s “best political team on television” eat their usual crow.
Last word goes to Joe Klein:
But most of the anger we see and hear comes from people who are paid to be angry, on cue, on cable television–as opposed to people with actual grievances. Suddenly, the White House press corps goes barking mad over the AIG Bonuses. It is said that the bonuses are an aspect of the bust that the “public” can understand; in truth, the bonuses are an aspect of the bust that reporters can understand. Suddenly, the Obama Administration has a “crisis.” The President has to go on television and act as if he’s angry, even though he knows these bonuses are the tiniest outcropping of outrageousness. (I mean, AIG insured mortgage-backed instruments that any qualified CPA could have seen were as solid as a soap bubble and thereby came close to bringing down the world’s financial system–that’s outrageous.)
If you want to be angry about something, get pissed at a media culture that goes berserk about bonuses one week and forgets all about them the next. And be worried, quite worried, about a society for whom anger is a form of entertainment.