Tuesday, February 24, 2009

This love affair is getting a bit sloppy

Hey - you two! Get a room, will you?

It's one thing when the love affair between the national newspaper press and President Obama glosses over his lack of experience and accomplishments enough to get the guy elected. But it's quite another when they resort to the most obvious lipstick-on-the-pig front-page propagandizing to keep his savior status up-to-date.

President Obama had a big week. He got his spending bill through - the biggest single spending bill in the history of the world. His young administration has been a flurry of activity, figuring out how to deal with all sorts of big problems: the banking mess, mortgage holder bailout, etc.

The markets want nothing to do with it. Every Obama success has been met with another big drop in the indexes. We are at a 12 year low.

Yesterday, Obama turned his focus to .... Deficit Reduction! And the markets plunged again.

So what is the headline and story on the front page of The Funny Paper today? (Story written by the NYT.)

"The markets look to DC and no news is bad news."

Excuse me? THAT's the problem? Not enough news out of DC?

The article tries to tell us that the markets are plunging because Obama doesn't yet have his plan in place to bail out the banks: "Analysts say that the draining cycle of losses, rebounds and more losses would probably continue until the government offered a detailed plan to bail out the banks or the economy showed some signs of stabilization."

In other words: the markets are waiting for the saviour to save us. Poppycock. It couldn't be that the markets are reacting negatively to what Obama has done so far. No, that wouldn't validate the saviour narrative. It has to be that the markets are waiting with baited breath for the saviour to save us.

And I love the whole "analysts say" device. Right, an analyst probably said that. And another analyst probably said:

"The markets are reacting to the growing evidence that the Obama administration is making things up as they go along, with no clear idea of how to deal with the banking crisis. The plunge yesterday was brought on by the abrupt contradiction of calling for a move toward a balanced budget just days after a trillion dollar stimulus bill. Analysts say such a confusing and contradictory shift in rhetoric suggests a lack of a clear organizing principle behind the administration's efforts."

But THAT analyst obviously doesn't buy into the "Obama-as-savior" narrative, so he went unquoted.


OregonGuy said...

Hey, Kremer,

Knock off the put-downs on government. Instead, focus on all the things that government does well.

There's...uh...well, there's...

Anonymous said...

I think the markets are run by a bunch of whining little girls that get all huffy when things don't go exactly the way they think they should. ;)

Anonymous said...

Oregon Guy,

So, you don't think our military, police, and fire departments work very well?

It's impressive how the Oregon DMV has streamlined the registration process over the years. In the metro area you can renew your registration at the DEQ testing station, and I've had excellent service when I've had to deal with the DMV in the last decade or so.

People who get their electricity from government-run utilities pay much less than those who get it from privately-owned utilities.

The Post Office will take your letter today, and deliver it to just about anywhere in the country for less than half a dollar, and it usually takes less than three days.

Those are just a few examples.

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:58,

If you are using the DMV as an example of good government services, then I am sorry to tell you; You have mistakenly re-enforced OregonGuy's point.

With all the law's definitions of abuse, the DEQ has to be in violation in several areas. I have had an absurd experience every time I've been at the DMV.

Anonymous said...

This is very unrelated, but I think it clearly represents the level of intelligence we're dealing with at the Oregonian

Here it is - fresh off Oregonlive.com:

"For months, Rocky has spent his days at the end of a tether in the backyard of his owners' Enumclaw home.

"A big dog, 14-year-old Rocky has been tied fast to a backyard fence, his paws beating a path in the only area he could reach, what King County Animal Control Sgt. David Morris called classic signs of a chained dog."

No Kidding?

Anonymous said...

As an Oregonian, the last thing I want the government spending money on is volcano monitoring! If Hood is going to blow, I don't want to know about it!

Anonymous said...

No, Anonymous 4:54, you don't understand--private industry will monitor the volcanoes.

Me said...

I monitor Mt. Hood every time Friday while skiing.

I I don't come back you'll know something went horribly wrong and it may have beeen an eruption.

Anonymous said...

Rob, did you respond with "get a room" when you read this from Rich Lowry about Sarah Palin:

"I'm sure I'm not the only male in America who, when Palin dropped her first wink, sat up a little straighter on the couch and said, 'Hey, I think she just winked at me.' And her smile. By the end, when she clearly knew she was doing well, it was so sparkling it was almost mesmerizing. It sent little starbursts through the screen and ricocheting around the living rooms of America. This is a quality that can't be learned; it's either something you have or you don't, and man, she's got it."

"Little starbursts"?

Seriously, can you find any media coverage like that about Obama?

Rob Kremer said...

First of all, anon, Rich Lowry is a commentator. That is completely different.

Second, yes, I can easily find the same kind of things concerning Obama, which came from a supposedly neutral news guy - Chris Mathews. "I get a chill runnning up my leg."

But in the larger picture - are you REALLY going to maintain that Sarah Palin's treatment by the media was as favorably biased as Barack Obama's?

Really? Ok then.

Anonymous said...


Sarah got the media treatment she deserved--she clearly was and is not well-versed on national issues

Politicians on both sides of the aisle benefit or suffer from biased media coverage. Remember the "Teflon President"?

The difference is that the bulk of the whining about media bias comes from the right.

Bill O'Reilly, Lars Larson, and Mary Starrett all had mainstream media jobs in Portland. Does that mean that Portland media has a conservative bias?

Anonymous said...

Speaking of the Teflon President, how many news stories after his administration mention the 29 administration officials convicted of crimes committed during his administration? That doesn't include people like Oliver North, who got off on a "technicality", or Casper Weinberger, who was pardoned before trial.

And how many stories about Reagan mention that his administration sold arms to Saddam Hussein's Iraq and to Iran? While they were at war with each other?

How come there were no complaints from the right about media bias when the media were cheerleading the run-up to the Iraq war?

Why no complaints about the bias of "embedded" reporters?

Anonymous said...

'cause that would involve "perspective".

Anonymous said...

How many "libersl media" outlets pointed out during the 1984 election that unemployment was higher in every year of the Reagan than during every year of the Carter administration? Not many, that for sure.

How many "liberal media" outlets have consistently pointed out that unemployment went UP after the Reagan and Bush tax cuts, and DOWN after the Clinton tax hike?

Anonymous said...

I wish I had kept the Reagan Christmas card my parents sent in 1980. Let me tell you, that was at least as much "President as Savior" as anything about Obama.

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