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Sunday, June 16, 2024

Obama and the press: The battling Bickersons


Barack Obama surfed into the White House on a giant wave of favorable press coverage, due in large part to his personal charisma.

But Obama’s honeymoon with the press is over and relations between the White House and the press are chilly at best. Reporters say Obama is less accessible than Bill Clinton or even George W. Bush and anyone who dares write anything critical of Obama faces exile from West Wing sources.

Politico says gripes from the media are increasing and the Obama White House is controlling, vindictive and hypocritical when it comes to living up to its pledge to be more open with both the press and the public.

Reporters say a routine press question can unleash a “string of vitriolic emails” while a negative story draws “a profane high-decibel phone call — or worse.”

Even Press Secretary Robert Gibbs is distant from the press.

“It’s an odd White House where it’s easier to get the White House chief of staff on the phone than the White House press secretary,” one reporter told Politico.

Despite his promises to be more open, Obama hasn’t held a press conference in 10 months. His comments about the press are often sarcastic and critical.

The press corps is equally sarcastic and critical. At a recent press briefing, Gibbs said “this is the most transparent administration in the history of our country.”

Loud, raucous laughter broke out among the reporters, along with some jeers.

A growing number of reporters consider the Obama White House childish when it comes to reacting to negative stories or probing questions from reporters. Some refer to Gibbs’ press briefings as “amatuer hour.”

Many reporters feel they were had by Obama and fell for his charm while failing to take a harder look at his inexperience. Instead of transparency, the Obama White House has become more standoffish than Bush’s and more secretive than any President in modern history.

Bill Clinton held 252 informal Q&A sessions with reporters during his first year in office. George W. Bush managed 147. Obama? Just 46.

One media outlet that’s not complaining is The New York Times. Other reporters complain that the Times is Obama’s favorite son and gets most of the leaks and scoops handed to them. On the other side, the White House has frozen out access to the Wall Street Journal since it was acquired by right-wing media magnate Rupert Murdoch.

Obama’s double standard shouldn’t surprise anyone. The President has long been more style than substance and his growing list of broken promises  is politics as usual in Washington.

He came into office on a promise of change and the only promise he has delivered is proof of the old adage that the more things change the more they remain the same.

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6 thoughts on “Obama and the press: The battling Bickersons”

  1. Hence forth,
    with heretofore query posed by
    3 simple questions.
    Let clarification and mindful interpretation be the wind of guidance, sail, and rudder,
    not the blood of our essence.

    Woody asks one , we are left to sift the many.

  2. We are and have been under CoG directives since 9/11 and with PDD-51 the Executive was split into 2 governments, one a figurehead, and the other the operating a secret government outside of the Beltway. The Congress and the Courts have been made subservient to the Executive by claims of National Security and they are no longer allowed their Constitutional checks and balances. Indeed, since PDD-51 which the Homeland Security Council of Congress has not been allowed to see, the Executive has operated in a “stand alone” manner writing laws and appointing/creating czars via Executive Order.

    This explains why things have not changed under Obama. The shadow government that is calling the shots still wants the War on Terror, Cap and Trade, and orchestrated the global financial collapse to bring about a world government. It also explains why Richard Cheney is still given air time to scare monger without any media heads ever challenging anything he says.

    Everyone should write their representatives and ask them three simple questions:

    1. Is the United States still in a state of emergency as was declared on 9/14/2001 retro-actively to 9/11/2001 and re-stated at least until 2007 until the signing of PDD-51?

    2. Have Continuity of Government plans been set in motion as a result of the state of emergency since 9/11/2001 suspending our Constitution?

    3. Why are you ignoring your Constitutional duty to check the power of the Executive since our three separate but equal system of government was set up to endure much worse than the state of emergency that was declared back in 2001?

  3. Well Al, the press was the Bush lap dog for eight years with minor whimpering from the lefties drowned out by all the lapping up of lies at the fetid and foul Rovian / Cheney trough.
    For any amongst that would cry foul now is pathetic and despicable conduct.

    They never so much as put forth the energy it would take to pull a greasy string out of a dogs butt to nail the past criminal cabal for their arrogant and criminal behavior.

    Crying foul now shows their timbre resembles not even a sliver of a toothpick.

  4. What do they hope to learn that we don’t already know.
    The Wars drag on.
    The economy continues to tank.
    The justice dept. still has their thumbs you know where , the SCOTUS has become a corporate whore, and blackmail in the House and Senate is the order of the day.
    On the grand scale nothing has changed, and he’s got a dog.

    Why don’t they just boycott, save some ink, and relieve us all from the blather ?

    • Even the dog took 3 months to come by.

      On the other hand, the more they can document his chameleon chutzpah the easier it will be to get rid of him. It will also likely make it easier to get rid of his congressional buttlikkers.

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