This is rather unsightly, and not to mention media incestuous. It comes courtesy of Michael Crowley at The New Republic and it only highlights the media's need to end their utter fascination with picking apart Clinton phrases, or here, Clinton-related phrases. There's an historic campaign unfolding, why don't reporters and pundits just cover that?
The topic was Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin. Crowley noted that the New York Times' Clinton-ologist Patrick Healy had posted this online during a rather goofy IM exchange published in NY mag:
You know what I keep hearing privately from advisers to Hillary? They say, "Why is it our job to blunt Palin's impact? Hillary is not on the ticket. Obama didn't choose her." I don't think it's so much about resentment, it's an honest assessment that Hillary can only do so much in this regard. (And she doesn't want to be blamed if this vote doesn't go Obama's way.)
Note the comments were not sourced and were made privately. Nonetheless, Crowley didn't like the gist and announced, "This really doesn't strike me as a line that Hillary's people should be promoting."
Question: How are Hillary's people "promoting" it if they're discussing it privately? I'm pretty sure her aides are press savvy enough that if their intention was to actually promote that meme, they could do that in the press. To date, they specifically have not. (i.e. If Healy had real sources and real quotes from Clinton aides pushing that theme, he would have published it in the NYTimes.)
Yet Crowley claims they are "promoting" it, based on a second-hand, unsourced IM exchange.
Remember when being a White House correspondent was the ultimate assignment for D.C. reporters, and then it became not so great because reporters ended up trapped inside a controlled bubble with little or no access? Well, time to add campaign trail reporters to that used-to-be-great mix. Now the assignment's like a career trip to purgatory.
Mike Allen and Carrie Budoff Brown at Politico detail how following prez candidates from town to town is pretty much a worthless occupation for journalists these days.
Slate's Jack Shafer says not really. Notes that O'Reilly's claim to Time that in 12 years he's only told six guests to shut up isn't quite accurate.
Malkin's P.O.'d that Gawker published some of the hacked contents from Palin's email account. Gawker notes that Malkin's pretty much an expert on publishing personal info about her foes.
Example No. 74.
For the unfolding, Palin's-emails-got-hacked-story, Drudge posted a screaming red headline, "Secret Service movies in." But the linked story does not report that the Secret Service is investigating. It speculates what the Secret Service should do if it gets involved.
Daily Kos diarist "nailbiter" has more.
Editor & Publisher looks at how actual campaign reporting has made something of a comeback this election cycle.
Naomi Foner at Huffington Post offers up some advice to SNL:
In a time of great political turmoil it seems almost essential that these creative, funny people step up to their responsibility to make people think. They can still be funny. Jon Stewart is funny. Stephen Colbert is funny. That Was The Week That Was was funny. But also relevant. Choose your style. Entertain. SIng. Dance. But stir the pot.
Note that SNL writers said they included Hillary Clinton in last week's Sarah Palin skit because they were more comfortable making fun of both political parties. Cutting edge, eh?
The only reason we ask is that in a New York Observer article about the quickening news cycles and how the more serious work of newspapers no longer drives the debate, Keller mocks the media attention showered all over the McCain camp's phony "lipstick on a pig" attack last week. The Times' executive editor laments how, "The simple-minded silliness of lipstick-on-a-pig filled at least one cable news cycle."
The thing is, according to Nexis, the transparent lipstick controversy was mentioned in at least twelve different Times articles or columns during the last week.
Maybe the Times isn't quite as serious as Keller would like us to believe.