Carol E. Lee of Politico had a short March 5 piece about President Obama’s singular inability to give a speech, even short ones, without the crutch of a TelePrompter in front of him to prod him about what to say next. This isn’t the only time the media has raised its eyebrow about the president’s TelePrompters (I even covered it myself not long ago), so the story isn’t a new one, but one little thing that Lee wrote reveals how the media goes out of its way to help Obama’s image by keeping the devices out of Obama’s photography.
His use of the teleprompter makes work tricky for the television crews and photographers trying to capture an image of the president announcing a new Cabinet secretary or housing plan without a pane of glass blocking his face.
In other words, the Old Media puts in a herculean effort to make sure The One still looks like he is speaking extemporaneously by working overtime to make sure those speech prompters are NOT in the picture.
Lee also explains how unusual the reliance on TelePrompters is, especially for a president that has a reputation as a great orator. Lee reveals that “no other president has used one so consistently and at so many events, large and small.”
Now, here is a question for you. If, say, President George W. Bush had tried to roll out the TelePrompter at every tiny little gathering at which he spoke, and if the Old Media had realized how “unusual” this crutch was, would they have taken such great pains to be sure that the TelePrompters did not appear in the video footage or the still frame camera shots of the president? Or would one expect, rather, the Old Media to try and make Bush look bad by including those crutch speech helpers in every shot they’d take?
Yet, for The One, they try their hardest to keep the TelePrompters out of Obama’s shots.
What do you think?
(Photo credit: Charlie Archambault/USN&WR)