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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Obama plays politics!

The media seems shocked, just shocked that Barack Obama is fund-raising and waging a political campaign.

The venerable New York Times offers the mostly blatantly "well duh" lead in a long time, observing:
In many ways, President Obama’s unilateral shift in immigration policy was a bluntly political move, a play for a key voting bloc in the states that will decide whether he gets another term. But as political moves go, it held the potential for considerable payoff.
Ya think?

But it's all part and parcel of the decline in political journalism, which has been receding at a particularly rapid pace this year. When we are not being treated to explanations of the obvious, we get a steady diet of unchallenged twaddle and claptrap from those who are on the other end of the moves. You know, the Republicans who would like Obama to shut up and go away.

Perhaps even more disconcerting than the rote "he said, he said" brand of reporting that allows lies to stand as equal to facts, is the incivility that is now flowing from alleged members of the Fourth Estate.

How does someone attend a news event without some sort of method to record what he or she observes? Yet we see Neil Munro of the Daily Caller, hands in pocket, no pad or recorder in sight, hurling questions at Obama before he even had a chance to finish his remarks.

When Geraldo Rivera and Fox News diss you for your behavior, you know you have overstepped the bound.

Yet this is what passes for political news coverage these days. Rote dictation and gamesmanship has overtaken a profession once known for providing background and context for the events it records, even it that means calling out statements as bald-faced lies.

Coverage is dictated by the campaigns and real reporters (unlike Munro) eat what's put in front of them without raising a stink. And heaven forfend they actually revisit their stories to examine whether they hold up over time.

I'm still waiting for the story about how Obama lowered gasoline prices.

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