Thursday, May 25, 2006

Report News, Not Gossip

from Peter Daou at HuffPo

". . .Boy, they're coming fast and furious lately. You swat one down, two more take their place. I'm referring to 'elite' reporters of course, specifically those who've decided that Bush's poll numbers aren't incentive enough to stop belittling and berating Democrats.

Joe Klein, Mark Halperin & co., Elisabeth Bumiller, Patrick Healy, Tim Russert, the list goes on. Joining the crowd is David Broder, who isn't content with Healy's puerile peek into the Clinton bedroom. Broder wants more:

"The article, by Patrick Healy, was anything but unsympathetic. It touched only lightly on the former president's friendship with Canadian politician Belinda Stronach. It documented that despite their busy separate schedules, the Clintons had managed to spend two-thirds of their weekends together during the past 18 months.

The closing anecdote concerned a December fundraiser where Clinton praised his wife and bestowed a kiss on her forehead, after which she recalled their 30 years together and said, "I'm so grateful to you, Bill."

But for all the delicacy of the treatment, the very fact that the Times had sent a reporter out to interview 50 people about the state of the Clintons' marriage and placed the story on the top of Page One was a clear signal -- if any was needed -- that the drama of the Clintons' personal life would be a hot topic if she runs for president."

Mr. Broder, here's an easy question: who determines what is and isn't a hot topic? When cable news nets spend countless hours discussing a missing girl in Aruba, is it a hot topic because the viewers want it or because it's been shoved down their gullets? When Swift Boat liars are given an unlimited forum to smear a decorated vet, was it a hot topic to begin with or does it become one after the fact? And when Patrick Healy decides to dissect the Clinton marriage, was it a hot topic before he wrote it or is it a hot topic now that people like you amplify his filth? . . "

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