Morning editorial meeting at Politico
Politico founders John Harris and Jim VandeHei haven’t got a clue:
The liberal blogosphere grew in response to Bush. But it is still a movement marked by immaturity and impetuousness — unaccustomed to its own side holding power and the responsibilities and choices that come with that.
“Immaturity and impetuousness”? Yeah, that describes us to a T, unlike mature and patient (and very, very serious) folks like Dick Cheney and Sarah Palin who somehow find their every utterance transcribed in Vandehei’s publication.
(click to continue reading Daily Kos: People say the dumbest things sometimes.)
It’s one thing to criticize liberal bloggers for having unrealistic expectations, given whatever we’re supposed to agree represents “reality” in Washington. I don’t happen to agree with that argument. Many liberal bloggers are advocates and activists. They are supposed to push the White House and Dems in a more liberal direction, even if it doesn’t always pay off. That’s their function as they’ve defined it. But reasonable people can disagree about how realistic the liberal blogosphere’s expectations have been.
However, to make the argument that liberal bloggers have their heads in the sand about Dem losses this fall is just flat out false. All VandeHarris are revealing is that they don’t regularly read liberal blogs — and that they know they can count on the fact that the Beltway insiders who will snicker knowingly about this article don’t read liberal blogs either. And that’s fine: Don’t read them! But please don’t make stuff up about them and call it journalism
(click to continue reading The Plum Line – Politico’s theory: Liberal bloggers don’t care if Dems sustain large losses this fall.)
Today’s big Politico piece, by John Harris and Jim VandeiHei, “Why Obama loses by Winning”, has been rightly dubbed by Jay Rosen as “an instant classic in Church of the Savvy lit.” It truly is a marvel!
It begins with a willful misread-slash-hyperbolic reduction of a “widely read” Eric Alterman column (the authors enable this misread by skillfully denying their readers a link to the Alterman piece, which actually describes the structural conditions that have prevented President Barack Obama from enacting a full-blooded progressive agenda), which in turn allows them to make this silly case that even though Obama has managed to get major pieces of legislation through Congress, his presidency is a failure because it makes bloggers sad.
Naturally, the whole thing is built upon a foundation of anonymous sources. We hear from all the old mainstays: the “top Obama advisor,” the “top White House official,” and another random adviser. Given the fact that Harris and VandeHei claim that the piece is underpinned by “interviews with officials in the administration and on Capitol Hill, and with Democratic operatives around town,” the dearth of sources is pretty glaring.
But here’s where we are. The editors claim that independents are leaving Obama because he “has shown himself to be a big-government liberal.” Mind you, they have already stipulated that Obama has had success enacting his agenda. That agenda included many things that he ran on, like health care reform, financial regulatory reform, winding down the war in Iraq, and prosecuting the war in Afghanistan. You can call that “centrist” or “liberal” if you like, but that’s precisely what those independent voters signed up for in November 2008. So, either these independent voters are addled — and thus unworthy of bellwether status, or there is another dominant factor in the political environment that’s causing them unease.
(click to continue reading Politico: Obama Loses By Winning?.)
yadda yadda. Sad that any intelligent person would even bother reading such a partisan rag as Politico, but then I don’t make my living by fellating the right wing blowhards on Fox either.