Another example of how the wheels are coming off of the media complex.
When it comes to politics we can all agree on what some of the sexier stories in the nation’s capital are concerning — Cabinet Appointments! With the recent announcement of Pete Buttigieg as Joe Biden’s pick for Secretary of Transportation the press has been all aflutter. How anyone can get worked up in a lather about a politician tabbed to join a swamp feature in D.C. is a mystery, but our professionals in the press corps are positively swooning.
To start we have this helpful collage from Sam Mintz at Politico.
— Sam Mintz (@samjmintz) December 15, 2020
Well now, that sure is a whole lot of transportating that Pete has been involved in! He certainly looks to be the man for the job! We will allow Sam some leeway here, as he is — we swear — Politico’s ‘’Transportation Reporter’’. One day we hope to be a big enough outlet to have dedicated reporters for every federal office.
Then there is NPR. The outfit that boldly proclaimed last month they would sternly refuse to look into the Hunter Biden controversy found ample resources to look into Mayor Pete’s qualifications for his new appointment.
He said he has “a personal love of transportation,” recounting 1,000-mile-long train trips on Amtrak while in college, and said he proposed to his now-husband, Chasten, in an airport terminal. “Don’t let anyone tell you O’Hare isn’t romantic,” he joked.
Uh…huh. I conducted a term search, just in case I missed anything, and no — there seem to be no uses of any variation of the word ‘’qualified’’ in the NPR piece. Just a few names who had not been selected by Biden — John Porcari who was Deputy Secretary as the U.S. Department of Transportation after being the head of DOT for the state of Maryland; David Kim who has been at USDOT for 8 years and had formerly headed California’s state transportation; Sarah Feinberg who is a 4 year veteran of USDOT and previously was the head of Transit Authority of New York City.
But Pete digs trains and proposed in a terminal! Based on these parameters serving as feasibility of service I can state with confidence my personal love of bourbon and my memories of time spent at gun ranges means I can expect to be nominated head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms.
That gushy love story sure has strummed heartbeats in the media, however.
Pete Buttigieg: "Travel in my mind is is synonymous with growth, with adventure, even love. So much so that I proposed to my husband Chasten in an airport terminal. Don't let anybody tell you that O'Hare isn't romantic."
— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) December 16, 2020
Not to be outdone in the Harlequin-style of reporting, The Washington Post conducted a deep dive into Mayor Pete’s love life, as well as conducting a lengthy exploration on the romanticism of air travel. As I was following down this avenue with writer Lisa Bonos I kept checking for signs of a rest stop where I could purchase a map and return to reality.
Um, guys, you’re supposed to be writing news, not Hallmark film scripts.
— Write Girl Problems (@WriteGrlProbs) December 17, 2020
Again, there was a notable lack of discussion on Pete being in possession of any discernible skill set for the job. I am certain my noting this makes me a hateful partisan, and possibly homophobic.
Let us recall in 2016 when Trump began naming folks for offices and the likes of Betsy DeVoss was scorched in the press, not because of a vacant resume but because she held a favorable opinion on private schools. Now the same press corps falls over themselves in praise for a man, citing his biggest accomplishment was riding Amtrak, something that certainly had to turn the train-loving Joe Biden’s head.
D.C. communications operative Ellen Carmichael summed it all up succinctly.
Republicans couldn’t pay to get this kind of softball coverage, and Democrats never would have to. https://t.co/JmLHZiGYsQ
— Ellen Carmichael (@ellencarmichael) December 17, 2020