Thursday, November 06, 2008


NPR National Political Correspondent and frequent Foxhole Mara Liasson had a lengthy piece on Morning Edition this morning about whether or not President Elect Obama could meet the expectations he has set for himself. With a little help from her friends, she pretty much decides that no, he cannot. Here are a few quotes from her negative, slanted story:
"On the campaign trail (Obama) made it sound easy. The only sacrifice he asked people to make was turning off the lights and checking the air in their tires." Oh really, Mara? Do tell. It seems to me that he not only called for sacrifice, but repeatedly said change "won't be easy."

"On foreign policy the challenges are just as great and the roadmap Obama has laid down is sketchier." Then she brings up the McCain's favorite Biden quote about Obama being "tested," but, of course, not the part about him having "steel in his spine."

"(Obama has) never taken the option of military force off the table, but he's also stated a preference for the soft power of diplomacy, without explaining how he would create the leverage to stop Iran." Pickler? Is that you?
Liasson also checks off the "he's going to have to fight the liberals" box and the he's "inexperienced" box.

You might think I'm getting a little sensitive, but I remember how the press went after Clinton almost immediately after his electino and, according to Booman, Obama's honeymoon is already over. He makes a good case, too.

Here's my eight word argument that Liasson intended to go after Obama in this piece:
  • Norman Ornstein
  • Michael Gerson
  • Bob Kagan
  • Michael O'Hanlon
Those are the only "experts" she spoke to in the piece and they are described, respectively, as
  • "a scholar of Congress at the presidency at the American Enterprise Institute"
  • "a former speechwriter for President Bush"
  • "foreing policy scholar...who supported John McCain"
  • "former Clinton Administration official"
It's going to be a long four years...


Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

9:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shorter Liasson:
"The Obama presidency: A Tragic Failure"

12:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, O'Hanlon was a dick when he came to my post in Iraq last year, along with Pollard and Cordesman on their assessment. Pollard and Cordesman greeted everyone whose views they were soliciting (military and State), O'Hanlon sat aside like the special person he is.

8:55 PM  
Blogger Ralph said...

Realistically, now that Obama has been elected, the blogosphere's actual useful work (as opposed to the cleaning out sewers kind of work), rather than being pretty much finished, has only now just begun. The MSM is a far greater threat to our country than George W. Bush, because it has greater power over the nation's long-term future than any president could ever command. One little reason for that, one reason among dozens, is that the term of office of the networks and their owners is, of course, for life. A president can remain in office only for a puny 8 years!

9:58 PM  
Blogger dah_sab said...

I don't want to sound too Matrix-y here, like "he's the one, trust him." But aside from a few minor missteps in the campaign, Obama's instincts or political advisors or whatever have pretty much anticipated and dealt well with everything that was thrown in their face up to now. This post, much as I agree with its premise and hate Liasson, seems to assume that Obama is about to get blindsided by the press. Surely he and/or his team are well aware of the press's conservative bent and will be expecting to get blasted with both barrels from the outset. And if they expect it then they probably have a plan for dealing with it.

So the real question is what is that plan & will it be effective? Obviously we can only wait & see. But we need to give Obama a bit more credit here, at least until he makes a serious mistake or two. So far he hasn't shown a tendency to be un- or underprepared; quite the opposite, in fact. I look forward to seeing how he deals with the willfully ahistorical coverage of human brainfarts like Liasson & colleagues in the next few months.

2:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I heard that story and had the same thoughts. My only (slight) argument would be that Ornstein is actually a fairly sane AEI guy. He frequently appeared on Al Franken's show, and he seems to be that rarest of beasts - a thoughtful, thinking conservative.

Absolutely agree with you on the rest of your points.

7:09 AM  
Blogger Nitpicker said...

I agree that Ornstein is quite thoughtful, but it still seems odd that Liasson decided to choose only right-wingers and hawks to comment on Obama's coming presidency.

11:33 AM  
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2:04 AM  

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