According to Sun-Times columnist and long-time Chicago journalist, Carol Marin, journalists at Barack Obama news conferences have come to realize that Obama has pre-picked those journalists whom he will allow to ask him questions at the conference and many of them now “don’t even bother raising” their hands to be called upon.
One wonders why journalists are allowing this corralling of the press? Would they have allowed George W. Bush to pre-pick journalists like that? Would they meekly sit by and allow themselves to be systematically ignored, their freedom to ask questions silenced by any Republican? Would journalists so eagerly vie with one another for the favor of Bush like they are Obama’s?
For her part, it seems that Carol Marin is starting to wonder at the “bizarro world” that is being invented by the pliant and smitten Obama loving press corps.
As ferociously as we march like villagers with torches against Blagojevich, we have been, in the true spirit of the Bizarro universe, the polar opposite with the president-elect. Deferential, eager to please, prepared to keep a careful distance.
The Obama news conferences tell that story, making one yearn for the return of the always-irritating Sam Donaldson to awaken the slumbering press to the notion that decorum isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
The press corps, most of us, don’t even bother raising our hands any more to ask questions because Obama always has before him a list of correspondents who’ve been advised they will be called upon that day.
Will the rest of the press retake their manhood and again become the tough guys they have always claimed to be or are they going to stay so smitten by Obama and their love for The One that they will allow themselves to continue being forced into a subservient role?
One has a sinking suspicion that the press is allowing itself to become Obama’s lapdog extraordinaire.
(Photo credit: Chicago Sun-Times)