Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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March 26, 2007
By: Kevin Drum

COURIC AND EDWARDS....Taegan Goddard asks:

Why did Katie Couric keep pressing John and Elizabeth Edwards on 60 Minutes last night about their decision to continue his presidential campaign when she didn't give up her job as host of the Today Show when her husband was diagnosed with cancer?

Good question. My guess is that she was a little too desperate to establish her serious journalist cred, and figured that the best way to do that was to pretend she was Mike Wallace interviewing a suspected child molester.

Still, it may have been for the best. Questions like Couric's are inevitable, and it was probably better for Edwards to have them asked quickly, relentlessly, and on national TV. In fact, after watching Couric go a little overboard, it might make others embarrassed to keep asking the same questions. She probably did the campaign a favor.

Kevin Drum 12:19 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (110)

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Comments

If Ms. Couric is equally tough on Republican candidates for president, your argument might have some validity. We'll see, but I doubt it; I expect her to lob softballs at McCain and Giuliani.

Posted by: Joe Buck on March 26, 2007 at 12:35 PM | PERMALINK

No joke. Couric was ridiculous.

And, um, has she noticed that there are two other presidential candidates who themselves HAVE cancer?

I wonder if she's gonna grill Guiliani and McCain the way she grilled Edwards.

Unless, of course, she thinks that actually having cancer YOURSELF would be less of a distraction than your wife having it.

Posted by: anonymous on March 26, 2007 at 12:37 PM | PERMALINK

I agree -- the questions are being asked anyway. So it was good and interesting to see how the Edwards handled it. And I think they did very well...

But with the editing so choppy, it made me wonder how their answers were chopped up.

(it's a relief to be on a computer that lets me post comments here -- at home, my IP is blocked from commenting)

Posted by: katiebird on March 26, 2007 at 12:38 PM | PERMALINK

She spends her time listening to her good friend Rush, and follows his line of thinking. She also has Rush and right-wingers on her "free speech" segment a majority of the time.

Working the refs *works.*

Posted by: Gore/Edwards 08 on March 26, 2007 at 12:39 PM | PERMALINK

Oh, and of course, she won't grill Republican candidates with that same intensity. She never has. I saw her grill Howard Dean in the pre-Primary season (way before 'the scream') and she treated him like he was a criminal.

Posted by: katiebird on March 26, 2007 at 12:40 PM | PERMALINK

Couric is definitely part of the whole Mighty Wurlitzer effort to spread the meme that Liberals Hate Family because he puts his work ahead of his family.

On the take from the Heritage Foundation, AEI, Club for Growth, or some other gang? Or is this akin to an initiation-ritual?

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on March 26, 2007 at 12:42 PM | PERMALINK

Our MSM:
1. Drunk on power;
2. Accountable to no one;
3. Serving no one's agenda but their own;
4. Bereft of any sense of history;
5. Not a lot of IQ points.

Posted by: MaxGowan on March 26, 2007 at 12:44 PM | PERMALINK

Katie Colon is the worst news anchor ever. I don't know why anyone would take her seriously, so these questions seem to apply the standards of professional journalism to someone who they do not apply to.

Posted by: charlie don't surf on March 26, 2007 at 12:50 PM | PERMALINK

I remember Katie from UVA. She was charming and indeed "perky." It must be the sort of pressures Kevin figured, since I don't think that is her natural tendency.

Posted by: Neil B. on March 26, 2007 at 12:53 PM | PERMALINK

Our MSM:
1. Drunk on power;
2. Accountable to no one;
3. Serving no one's agenda but their own;
4. Bereft of any sense of history;
5. Not a lot of IQ points.
Posted by: MaxGowan

But endlessly devoted to 'image consultants' and 'stylists'. Who needs IQ when you just point to your Q rating and how it plays with executive management at GE (or whatever giant mega-corp owns them) or some such. There's always a credit as to who gives them all those nice free clothes to wear on air...

Who do you think tells them what they can and can not say?

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 12:53 PM | PERMALINK

One possible answer to Taegan Goddard is that being president is a (slightly) more important job than reading a teleprompter on the Today Show.

It's funny to see "liberals" calling Couric a GOP plant.

It's also interesting to see "liberals" complaining about "journalists" asking these type of questions, when about 99.9999% of the questions they ask are extremely lightweight.

~~~~~

Posted by: TLB on March 26, 2007 at 12:58 PM | PERMALINK

A perky morningshow presence does not equate with brains needed to be a (let alone, the) major player in evening news. Les Moonman screwed this pooch. Let's set up a pool on how long Cour-itch stays.

Posted by: Keith G on March 26, 2007 at 12:58 PM | PERMALINK

OT-

What do you think explains the failure of the mainstream media to cover the purge scandal for so long, and so many other scandals? Do you think somebody just set up newspaper editors to cheat on their wives, and threatened to tell if the editors wouldn’t play ball when they come back some day and ask for something?

It wouldn’t be that hard to do, when you think about it. People wouldn’t talk about it.


Posted by: Swan on March 26, 2007 at 1:02 PM | PERMALINK

You think Couric was like Mike Wallace? Puhleeze. See www.Mullings.com for a list of the questions that Mike Wallace would have asked.

Posted by: DBL on March 26, 2007 at 1:03 PM | PERMALINK

MsNThrope et al: Katie isn't stupid, but can have a certain "ditzy" lack of focus. Is there a good word for something like that, that isn't just plain low intelligence? Horse sense? I know, the "what's wrong with the guidance systems on those planes" or whatever...

Posted by: Neil B. on March 26, 2007 at 1:04 PM | PERMALINK

Good morning Keith? I've been missing you! How you been?

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka G.C) on March 26, 2007 at 1:05 PM | PERMALINK

What Katie does for Rush and his cigar is in all likelyhood the same thing that Monica did to Bills.

How anybody can take her seriously is beyond me.

Posted by: TomInMaine on March 26, 2007 at 1:05 PM | PERMALINK

I didn't see the interview, but if past experience holds I'm pretty sure about one thing: Couric's questioning will NOT make anyone else in the media think twice about participating in this or some other, equally objectionable line of questioning. Nor will it do the Edwards family any favors. Couric is part of the MSM, after all, and the MSM operates by constructing tired, hackneyed story lines that "define" each candidate and sticking to these narratives come hell or high water.

Posted by: mary on March 26, 2007 at 1:07 PM | PERMALINK

Couric kept pressing John and Elizabeth Edwards because Rush has relentlessly questioned the Edwards' decision to stay in the race. We all know that Rush and Drudge set the terms for political discourse in the mainstream press.

Posted by: glenintexas on March 26, 2007 at 1:07 PM | PERMALINK

Maybe I'm out of touch, but I didn't realize that a diganosis of incurable cancer meant you were supposed to stop-down your and your spouse's life and wait to die. I could be wrong I guess.

Posted by: Xanthippas on March 26, 2007 at 1:09 PM | PERMALINK

I didn't say she was stupid. I said it was beside the point and utterly irrelevant to the fact that her salary is a factor of 'Q' ratings and how faithful she is to the network owner's best interests.

I'm sure she got into a really good sorority, too.

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 1:10 PM | PERMALINK

Recently, Political Animal has taken to deleting flame-bate and debunked bullshit. Hopefully, they keep this policy.

There. That's much better.

Call a wahmbulance. Henery can't derail the thread. Oh boo fuckin' hoo. I'll get right on cryin' you a river.

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka G.C) on March 26, 2007 at 1:15 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin - year after year of watching the pundit class fall all over itself with the "some say" technique of throwing loaded questions at democrats while giving a pass to republicans leads some of us to make up bad words to describe them. I did not know I would be censored here for using them. Now I know.

Posted by: repug on March 26, 2007 at 1:16 PM | PERMALINK

*flame-bait, obviously.

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka G.C) on March 26, 2007 at 1:17 PM | PERMALINK

Couric is no worse than Brian Williams who seems totally desperate to put the administration in the best possible light. It's painful watching him contort the evening news.

Posted by: ml on March 26, 2007 at 1:19 PM | PERMALINK

deleting flame-bate

err...'bait'

Better trolls.

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 1:20 PM | PERMALINK

Couric's husband's death shouldn't be a factor either way. I didn't watch the interview, but I'd be happy to learn that she didn't mention her personal situation at all.

Posted by: moriarty on March 26, 2007 at 1:20 PM | PERMALINK

[Repug: That was me, not Kevin. And I would have overlooked Republic**t, which that would have still gotten your point across. I have a very low tolerance for that term.]

Posted by: Mod Squad on March 26, 2007 at 1:22 PM | PERMALINK

...Do you think somebody just set up newspaper editors to cheat on their wives, and threatened to tell if the editors wouldn’t play ball when they come back some day and ask for something?
Posted by: Swan on March 26, 2007 at 1:02 PM | PERMALINK

please.

Why the fuck do you THINK that guys like Jeff Gannon had so many overnight stays at the white house?

It's a blackmail op.

So is the Terrorist Surveillance Program.

I suspect, that this is why the Dems are not fighting back as strongly as we think they ought.

They're afraid of the skeletons in their closets.

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on March 26, 2007 at 1:23 PM | PERMALINK

Mod Squad - what?

Posted by: repug on March 26, 2007 at 1:27 PM | PERMALINK

If that little dingbat Katie Couric had asked me those impertinent questions, I would have walked out of the interview. I am opposed to Mr. Edwards due to the fact that he is a Democrat and I am a Republican, but where does it say that I cannot take exception to something so vile and bellicose?

How can America tolerate the madness of Princess Katie one more day? Wasn't anyone paying attention to those stories that leaked out of, anonymously, from the set of the Today Show? She goes absolutely violent and nuts when her coffee and bagel isn't perfect.

Posted by: Norman Rogers on March 26, 2007 at 1:33 PM | PERMALINK

What's up with Kevin's penultimate sentence? Can he possiby still believe, at this late date, that our journamalists have any shame?

Posted by: Steve LaBonne on March 26, 2007 at 1:36 PM | PERMALINK

Mod Squad - what?
Posted by: repug

Kevin does not moderate the board. Duh.

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 1:36 PM | PERMALINK

But with the editing so choppy, it made me wonder how their answers were chopped up. - katiebird

This is probably more a function of Ms. Couric's contract specifying as to the 'glamor lighting', soft focus, and her best profile.

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 1:39 PM | PERMALINK

Hawk: Waaaaaaahhhhhh!

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 1:47 PM | PERMALINK

The moderation of the board is good, although I no longer no where to get my Chinese V1.agr0.

But the moderation of the board is bad because now people talk about the moderation of the board. And because the rules are hidden, and applied inconsistently, and there is no way to provide feedback.

I preferred the V1.agr0 spam but I think a better approach would be to provide more transparency to the moderation of the board and to provide feedback. And to almost never ever ever block IP addresses.

Posted by: jerry on March 26, 2007 at 1:47 PM | PERMALINK

MsNThrope - thanks for the info, but your haughtiness is unnecessary.

Posted by: repug on March 26, 2007 at 1:49 PM | PERMALINK

AH:
Wah.
Go to your LGF echo chamber if you like.

Mod Squad has deleted my posts too - pretty much well-deserved in every case.

They've never deleted a post when I've had anything substantive to say.

When I post at conservative sites (the few that allow postings, or don't have my IP permanently banned already), I almost always get deleted.

So - dear Hawkie, dear Hawkie, you have no complaint.

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on March 26, 2007 at 1:51 PM | PERMALINK

ah: In other words, there's thought police deleting dissenting viewpoints on this blog, and there's no way to even contact them to ask questions.

you are just another conservative victim...

what's it like being the fringe...

nearly all..

alone..

Posted by: mr. irony on March 26, 2007 at 1:53 PM | PERMALINK

Extradite Rumsfeld >"...It's a blackmail op...They're afraid of the skeletons in their closets."

Well DUH !

The Skeletons of Mass Guilt are one of Rove`s basic tools.

*Sigh*, "We the people..." are soooo far behind

"It's difficult to get a man to understand something if his salary depends on him not understanding it." — Upton Sinclair

Posted by: daCascadian on March 26, 2007 at 1:53 PM | PERMALINK

MsNThrope - thanks for the info, but your haughtiness is unnecessary.
Posted by: repug

Possibly 'unnecessary' but still appropriate.

But I'm still a big fan of 'sanctimoneyous' and have, so far at least, given you attribution for the coinage. Brilliant.

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 1:53 PM | PERMALINK

[I can not speak for other moderators, but my personal standard is to delete repeatedly refuted commentary that is only offered to derail discussion. In the absence of a written policy, I borrowed from Kos, and you have earned a "troll rating," American Hawk, as you have never offered one substantive critique or criticism in your entire time posting here.]

Posted by: Mod Squad on March 26, 2007 at 1:56 PM | PERMALINK

What amazed me is that she kept asking the question over and over again about why they're staying in the race, even after they'd answered it. It was as if she was expecting them to relent right there on national television and say, "Oh my God, you're right!! What were we thinking!! We are horrible parents, and worse human beings! It would be so much better for our children if their mother just took to her bed, pulled the covers over her head, and waited out her last days/months/years!! Thank you, thank you, Saint Katie!! We'll be headin' home to North Carolina now!"

As for whether she will grill Republican candidates equally vigorously, remember her first week on the job, when she interviewed Bush? She lobbed hardballs like, "We all know how dedicated you are to our troops..." Jesus, Karen Hughes would have asked tougher questions! And that was followed by her interview with Condi, when she asked her if it was tough dating men when you're so incredibly powerful and intimidating. Since they were dishing like a couple of girls at lunch, I was hoping she'd ask Condi what shoes she picked out at Ferragamo in Manhattan the day Hurricane Katrina was bearing down on the Gulf Coast.

Posted by: sullijan on March 26, 2007 at 1:56 PM | PERMALINK

I look forward to Katie Couric interviewing Mitt Romney and Romney's wife on why he's still campaigning when his wife has MS...no, wait, I don't, because of course that's never going to happen....

Not to mention Giuliani's and McCain's own bouts with cancer....

Posted by: Stefan on March 26, 2007 at 1:57 PM | PERMALINK

I do think moderators should have an email address of moderators@wamo.com or something similar.

And I do think that even troll posts that are not spam should not be silently deleted, but should be moderated with some sort of notice.

"This post has been inspected by the TSA" or something like that.

I like Fark's mod rules better than Kos'. FWIW.

Posted by: jerry on March 26, 2007 at 1:59 PM | PERMALINK

" ... let us say that the old American republic is well and truly dead. The institutions that we thought were eternal proved not to be. And that goes for the three departments of government, and it also goes for the Bill of Rights. So we're in uncharted territory. We're governed by public relations. Very little information gets to the people, thanks to the corruption and/or ineptitude of the media." Gore Vidal

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 2:02 PM | PERMALINK

having missed it I will just point u folks to one "journalists" opinion of the interview. http://www.cjrdaily.org/politics/couric_plays_devils_advocate_b.php

Posted by: hphill on March 26, 2007 at 2:03 PM | PERMALINK

But I'm still a big fan of 'sanctimoneyous' and have, so far at least, given you attribution for the coinage. Brilliant.

Posted by: MsNThrope

I'm touched that you remembered. I made it up, I don't know if anyone else had used it before or not.

Posted by: repug on March 26, 2007 at 2:03 PM | PERMALINK

I like Fark's mod rules better than Kos'. FWIW.
Posted by: jerry on March 26, 2007 at 1:59 PM | PERMALINK

I suggested a mod system like Slashdot's. The software is free.

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on March 26, 2007 at 2:03 PM | PERMALINK

Excuse me, whiners, but as to moderation--

The only way to get "moderated" around here is to do the sort of things that stand out from being within the bounds of polite discourse. I am not moderated because what I write is profoundly correct, reads in a very charming way, and always informs while entertaining the reader. It is called "talent" and the Creator gave me a heaping pile of it to spend in this lifetime (I doubt that I will ever use up my allotment, but thank you for noticing.)

If there is anything that should be moderated, it is the relentless attacks that I and I alone face here every single day.

Posted by: Norman Rogers on March 26, 2007 at 2:03 PM | PERMALINK

I was hoping she'd ask Condi what shoes she picked out at Ferragamo in Manhattan the day Hurricane Katrina was bearing down on the Gulf Coast.
Posted by: sullijan

I'm sure she is still spoken of in hushed tones at Gamma Gamma Gamma for her trenchant analysis of why the escorts' carnations needed to be lavender rather than pink.

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 2:05 PM | PERMALINK

I don't why people presume to offer opinions as to how others live their lives, in either an approving or diaspproving manner, in regards to wholly personal decisions. Why is it so damned hard for people to say, "I have no opinion of the matter, because it's none of my business."?

Posted by: Will Allen on March 26, 2007 at 2:08 PM | PERMALINK

Mod, don't fall into the trap of responding to troll whining.

Posted by: Disputo on March 26, 2007 at 2:09 PM | PERMALINK

I also don't know why I can't type.

Posted by: Will Allen on March 26, 2007 at 2:10 PM | PERMALINK

Why is it so damned hard for people to say, "I have no opinion of the matter, because it's none of my business."?

I don't know. I've never understood Republicans either.

Posted by: Disputo on March 26, 2007 at 2:12 PM | PERMALINK

Oh, for crying out loud. Everyone's looking for a partisan monster under the bed. Couric's just playing devil's advocate because it's good press, that's all. Ask controversial questions, and you attract attention. More people will pay attention because you threw a "hard question" because they want to see how the interviewee reacts. It's good (commercial) television from the perspective of the producers because it generates more eyeballs. If you don't like seeing how sausage is made, don't watch. If you want balanced, comprehensive coverage that is focused on issues, not just personalities, watch PBS Newshour. If you want soft news and superficial coverage, watch cable and the major networks.

Posted by: CT on March 26, 2007 at 2:21 PM | PERMALINK
Brian Williams who seems totally desperate to put the administration in the best possible light…ml at 1:19 PM
If it were not for the prettyboy, he would be an empty suit. He was equally worthless on MSNBC. Then, the apogee of his analysis would be to claim "wag the dog." What an ass.
leaving verbal abuse from the likes of Blue Girl unchecked. American Hack at 1:39 PM
waaaaa!
I and I alone face here every single day.Norman Rogers at 2:03 PM
Pompous waaaaa! Posted by: Mike on March 26, 2007 at 2:22 PM | PERMALINK

Oh, for crying out loud. Everyone's looking for a partisan monster under the bed. Couric's just playing devil's advocate because it's good press, that's all.

Except that Couric treats Rs and Ds different. That's the point. Keep up.

Posted by: Disputo on March 26, 2007 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK

Just stay on topic is that so hard to do.?

Posted by: john john on March 26, 2007 at 2:27 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, sure, Disputo, people who are compelled to offer commentary about others' personal lives are almost always Republicans. Right.

Posted by: Will Allen on March 26, 2007 at 2:27 PM | PERMALINK

Then just leave AH, God your helpless idiot.Or click your pretty little heels together and scream MOMMY MOMMY.

Posted by: john john on March 26, 2007 at 2:32 PM | PERMALINK

Why do I get the feeling that 'substantive' is a codeword for 'liberal?
Posted by: American Hawk on March 26, 2007 at 2:14 PM | PERMALINK

Substantive = 'of substance'

If you just regurgitate ideology, wild assertions, and the same talking points we could hear on Rush Limbaugh's show (which is pretty much all you have ever done) - what's the point of wasting the screen real-estate?

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on March 26, 2007 at 2:33 PM | PERMALINK

The moderator is not a cult.

Posted by: Brojo on March 26, 2007 at 2:48 PM | PERMALINK

Couric didn't bother me half as much as the Air America host, Bill Press this morning, who broadcasts from yhe Center for American Progress.

After saying he thought Edwards would be a great prez and it was their decision to make, he indicated he disagreed with their decision and tossed it out to phone callers.

They were unanimously supportive of the Edwards. But I found Press offensive. He always says he likes ALL the Dem candidates, but by his sound snippets, it's clear he's a middle roader completely enamored by the Clintons.

Air America should restore other, real progressives to its airwaves like Marc Moran. Press is so vanilla that I can usually ignore him, but his criticizing of Edwards was so blatantly biased, that his leading words failed to cover it up in this instance.

He represents CAP? Air America? Then no wonder real progressives always face an uphill battle.

Posted by: Kevin Hayden on March 26, 2007 at 2:52 PM | PERMALINK

If there is anything that should be moderated, it is the relentless attacks that I and I alone face here every single day.
Posted by: Norman Rogers

Uncle Normie as Joan d' Arc.

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 2:55 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin;
I have the same feeling about Ed Schultz. I used to like the guy; but he's leaning so hard towards Clinton, I don't know what to think. Either he's on the take somehow, or he's afraid Obama will get in there and take his "huntin' rifles" away.

But Schultz has been very unfair and narrow minded towards the other candidates, like Edwards, and ESPECIALLY Richardson (who, IMO, is not only the strongest candidate, but who is also the most balanced on policy).

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on March 26, 2007 at 2:57 PM | PERMALINK

Uncle Normie as Joan d' Arc.
Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 2:55 PM | PERMALINK

I picture him, bearing the French revolutionary flag, baring his saggy man-boobies, pantslegs torn, revealing sock-suspenders.

Oops, was that a personal attack?

Oh well, I guess pushing a guy in a wheelchair down a flight of stairs merits more respect.

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on March 26, 2007 at 3:02 PM | PERMALINK

"My guess is that she was a little too desperate to establish her serious journalist cred,"

Why doesn't she try that with members of the Bush regime.

Her "girl talk" interview with Condi Rice was cringe inducing. They looked like two giggling teenagers talking about nail polish. Same with her interview with Bush. She treated him with kid gloves.

Posted by: Nan on March 26, 2007 at 3:02 PM | PERMALINK

ER: I picture him, bearing the French revolutionary flag, baring his saggy man-boobies, pantslegs torn, revealing sock-suspenders.

That's Les Miz. Get with the program here, sugar...


*laughs*

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 3:05 PM | PERMALINK

american hawk....i'm here if you need a hug..

Posted by: Jay on March 26, 2007 at 3:06 PM | PERMALINK

I dunno, I think that question is by far the one at the forefront of people's minds. The only reason the Edwards' were on 60 minutes is because of Elizabeth's recurrance of cancer and their subsequent decision to stay in the race.

Besides, as others have noted, it gave them a great opportunity to explain their decision to the country-being badgered and responding with grace only makes them look better.

Posted by: Chris on March 26, 2007 at 3:11 PM | PERMALINK

You won't get any hugs from me, liberals. Instead, try growing up and doing something with your lives. Staggering around, high on drugs, and blaming George W Bush for the fact that you don't want to get a job or vote or participate in the political process is a surefire way to end up living in Single Room Occupancy living situation, with a share toile, shared kitchen and a broken hairdryer.

Posted by: Norman Rogers on March 26, 2007 at 3:12 PM | PERMALINK

with a share toile, shared kitchen and a broken hairdryer.

That should read "shared toilet."

And that pretty much describes liberals. They would rather share a toilet with something called "roommates" than work hard and earn a living. Pathetic.

Posted by: Norman Rogers on March 26, 2007 at 3:14 PM | PERMALINK

The only way to get "moderated" around here is to do the sort of things that stand out from being within the bounds of polite discourse. I am not moderated because what I write is profoundly correct, reads in a very charming way, and always informs while entertaining the reader. It is called "talent" and the Creator gave me a heaping pile of it to spend in this lifetime (I doubt that I will ever use up my allotment, but thank you for noticing.)

Posted by: Norman Rogers on March 26, 2007 at 2:03 PM |

norman, if you were writing to parody a sanctimonious, supercilious, right-wing asshole, i would agree that you're very talented.

if, however, this is not the case, then you're just a sanctimonious, supercilious, right-wing asshole.

but i gotta admit, you spell pretty well for a troll. maybe you could give egbert some lessons.

your persecuting pal,
blake

Posted by: blake on March 26, 2007 at 3:21 PM | PERMALINK

Extradite: after Googling, I discovered Press is NOT Air America and I knew Ed Schulz wasn't either. However, I haven't discerned as much bias by Ed. I thought he was pretty even-handed (And though I'm not a Clinton fan, I don't mind overall balance towards all Dems by radio hosts).

Maybe I need to listen closer. Like you, I consider Richardson to be top tier. His record stands stronger than most. I was leaning towards supporting a ticket that included him and Edwards or him and Obama. But the healthcare performance of Obama startled me... he still needs time to develop a position on the major domestic issue of 2008??!??

Bottom line: Press is just too conservative. I'm much more charitable to Schulz because some of my liberal Eugene friends like him better than almost everyone on air. He plays well to Western Dems. Press is just another Beltway flack who'll deliver like the entrenched Dem consultancy that Rolling Stone disses this month; more DLC Republican Lite.

Posted by: Kevin Hayden on March 26, 2007 at 3:24 PM | PERMALINK

Norman Rogers hated his Uncle Fred. Because Fred (Mr. Rogers) regularly snapped his butt with his sweater and made him cry.

Posted by: Kevin Hayden on March 26, 2007 at 3:28 PM | PERMALINK

It's just another example of the supposedly "liberal" MSM going overboard to be "fair and balanced" by roughing up Democrats in ways they would never consider if it were a Republican.

After all, this was a much more important issue and called for much tougher questioning than obstructing justice by firing US attorneys getting too close to the GOP's elites.

Giving Tony Snow, Gonzales, and a host of other administration officials a break after lying about the firings, but blasting Edwards and his wife about this issue is par for the course for today's reporters.

Posted by: anonymous on March 26, 2007 at 3:30 PM | PERMALINK

But the healthcare performance of Obama startled me... he still needs time to develop a position on the major domestic issue of 2008??!??

Yeah, I found that pretty mind boggling.

You can't help but think that his seeking the Presidency is little more than an exercise in narcisism. If he were thinking at all about actual people, don't you imagine it might have occurred to him that this was the biggest thing in their lives that a politician might affect positively?

We're supposed to give him all this credit for great judgment about the 2002 vote on the war, but he hasn't paid any attention to THE progressive issue of 2008 -- health care?

Posted by: frankly0 on March 26, 2007 at 3:33 PM | PERMALINK

We're supposed to give him all this credit for great judgment about the 2002 vote on the war, but he hasn't paid any attention to THE progressive issue of 2008 -- health care?
Posted by: frankly0

Whereas I think it's tax reform. Real tax reform.

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 4:09 PM | PERMALINK

Katie Couric is far more in touch with Rush Limbaugh's talking points than the vast majority of Americans, who support the Edwards' decision 2 to 1.

Seriously, how out of touch does the media have to be before anybody calls them on it?

With 150,000 soldiers in the field putting their lives on the line for the country, most Americans understand very well what it means to make sacrifices in order to serve your nation. Those soldiers have kids, too, and they put their nation first.

It's the spoiled draft-dodger Republicans who treat government like it's a job like any other, where your goal is to make as much money as you can and get out rich.

Edwards was right when he said it's not a job, it's service. That alone makes him more fit to serve as President than the Republicans who are ruining the place.

Posted by: anonymous on March 26, 2007 at 4:15 PM | PERMALINK

Richardson may have as good a track record as any major party candidate, but that isn't saying much. True, he doesn't have the track record of making his pile from eminent domain and taxpayer subsidy, which is what indicated to me that Bush was a mediocre (at best) executive, but Richardson's track record at DOE was not sterling, and his record of cronyism as Governor of NM is mindful of a state that lies directly to the east. Romney (whom I am unfamiliar with) excepted, however, the rest of the people with a shot at the ring don't have much executive experience at all to speak of, so why not Richardson? Assuming Holbrooke goes to Foggy Bottom, and the Democrats don't do a repeat of Les Aspin for defense, it may be as good an alternative as may be available.

Posted by: Will Allen on March 26, 2007 at 4:21 PM | PERMALINK

Will a: Richardson's track record at DOE was not sterling, and his record of cronyism as Governor of NM is mindful of a state that lies directly to the east.

There's a taint there, I can't deny, but on the whole he's not in the same league. You can be just a little bit bought...you can get over it.

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 4:27 PM | PERMALINK

Air America should restore other, real progressives to its airwaves

If real progressives were employed by Air America, they might support candidates who are not selected by the DLC. That would be unacceptable to ADM, GE, Boeing, Citi, etc., and may threaten the American Way.

Posted by: Brojo on March 26, 2007 at 4:36 PM | PERMALINK

Well, DOE has been an absolute train wreck since it's inception, and Richardson's predecessor there, Hazel O'Leary, was every bit as awful as the most incomptetent bureaucrats in the current administration, so one can't hold Richardson solely responsible for that mess. New Mexico is not exactly a clean government state, so the odds of having a a career there without a history of cronyism is pretty much nil.

I never get my hopes up for any politician, so it isn't exactly like I support the guy, it just appears at this point that he may be the least objectionable alternative.

Posted by: Will Allen on March 26, 2007 at 4:45 PM | PERMALINK

This could have been an interview for the ages - one that would be revisited on clip shows for decades - if Couric had put more than 10 minutes of work into preparing for it. Questions that she could have asked:

**How the Edwards optimism for her long-term health is grounded in their access to quality health care -- a privilege that is denied to millions of Americans.

**How Elizabeth Edwards belief that giving in and waiting to die reflects the consensus of cancer research that survival is enhanced by normal life activity.

**Does this third blow, following the death of their son and her prior cancer treatment, ever make them feel unlucky, unfairly challenged?

**Where do they find their optimism and strength? What experiences and beliefs do they hold that nurture their strength?

I could go on. Sure, a couple of "some people says" were needed because "some people" do say some of those things. However, a sustained prosecutorial interrogation of nothing but "some people" attacks was not only indecent, it was stupid. This could have been a great interview. Instead, it's not even good.

Posted by: Kija on March 26, 2007 at 4:57 PM | PERMALINK

MsNThrope wrote: "Uncle Normie as Joan d' Arc."

Please choose either "Joan of Arc" or "Jeanne d'Arc" ...

Nobility oblige ... reason d'être ... Each one à son goût ... joy de vivre ... is it a good idea to mix one's languages like that?

Posted by: Joel Rubinstein on March 26, 2007 at 5:00 PM | PERMALINK

Will: I interviewed with DOE's predecessor, FEA, back before it was a bought and paid for arm of the American Petroleum Institute and it didn't have to be a train wreck. That was not the objective at the time. It was not a GS revolving door for the oil lobby.

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 5:02 PM | PERMALINK

Not all the DOE is run by big oil. The Pentagon controls a large part of it.

Posted by: Disputo on March 26, 2007 at 5:11 PM | PERMALINK

MsNThrope, Los Alamos, which has nothing to do with the oil lobby, has always been a DOE responsibility, and it always has been a mess. Look, I never say that private bureaucracies are populated by better or smarter people than government bureaucracies. I can say however, that badly run private bureaucracies stand a much better chance of being defunded than bad government bureaucracies, which is why it is so hard for a government bureaucracy to avoid poor performance over time.

Congress simply cannot be as ruthless in regulating the continued flow of capital as can millions of decentralized decison-makers. No, this isn't an argument that all government bureaucracies should be done away with, but it is an argument for recognizing just how damnably difficult it is for a political appointee to have any great effect over a bureaucracy's direction in only a few short years. The forces for the status quo know that the money is most likely going to continue to roll in, and they know that the political appointee will soon be gone. As a result, what is dysfunctional tends to remain so.

Posted by: Will Allen on March 26, 2007 at 5:18 PM | PERMALINK

Not all the DOE is run by big oil. The Pentagon controls a large part of it.
Posted by: Disputo

And your point is...

'Over the past five years, as gas prices have doubled, fuel consumption has continued climbing upward. In 2006, we spent $364 billion on gasoline, which was double what we spent in 2002, according to Tom Kloza, an analyst who monitors American gasoline-buying behavior for the Oil Price Information Service. (The difference amounts to as much as the entire federal budget for Medicaid in 2006. It’s hard to imagine that we would have swallowed a one-year tax increase of that proportion.)' - Lisa Margonelli - http://pipeline.blog.nytimes.com/

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 5:19 PM | PERMALINK

Of course, I've overlooked Giuliani in the survey of candidates with executive experience, and certainly being mayor of NYC is a more daunting executive challenge than most governorships, but I have some real doubts if he has the personality to be an effective POTUS. The thin-skinned, ultra-combative approach may be more suited for the unique environment of NYC than elsewhere.

FDR and Eisenhower were probably the most obviously qualified candidates the U.S. has had in the past 100 years, but those kinds of choices aren't available very often.

Posted by: Will Allen on March 26, 2007 at 5:28 PM | PERMALINK
One possible answer to Taegan Goddard is that being president is a (slightly) more important job than reading a teleprompter on the Today Show.

You'll be sure to tell the today show that they can cut Katie's salary then (President - $400k a year, Katie - $15M a year).

Posted by: royalblue_tom on March 26, 2007 at 5:40 PM | PERMALINK

Why is Katie Couric pursuing a career in "journalism" when she has two small children and a husband who died from colon cancer?

Pot meets kettle, maybe?

More journalistic hypocrisy,maybe?

Posted by: FitterDon on March 26, 2007 at 5:48 PM | PERMALINK

Mr. Rogers: "And that pretty much describes liberals. They would rather share a toilet with something called "roommates" than work hard and earn a living. Pathetic."

Yes, and the subscription to Reader's Digest, and having church and as the only social outlets each week, and listening to rightwing talk radio. And going down to the VFW to talk over old times. That sure sounds like liberals all right. You are amazing , sir!

Posted by: Kenji on March 26, 2007 at 5:53 PM | PERMALINK

You'll be sure to tell the today show that they can cut Katie's salary then (President - $400k a year, Katie - $15M a year).
Posted by: royalblue_tom

But how much 'Secret' deodorant does the president move? His real sponsors (secret) are stumping up $1B for is 'library' at SMU though...

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 5:59 PM | PERMALINK

Implicit in this questioning of Couric is the notion that she had the capacity to think of asking anything else.

I think that's a highly questionable assumption, particularly if you watched her performance.

Never attribute to malice what is readily explained by incompetence.

Of course, this only applies to Couric herself. It says nothing about the larger media system she's part of.

Posted by: Paul Rosenberg on March 26, 2007 at 5:59 PM | PERMALINK

CT: Couric's just playing devil's advocate because it's good press, that's all. Ask controversial questions, and you attract attention.

What seems to escape Couric is the notion of a follow-up question. It's not supposed to be the same question as the initial question.

Of course it's fair game to ask a question from several different angles. But when one question is all you have, it no longer looks "tough." It looks childish.

Which, I guess, was the point. It certifies her as one of the gang.

Posted by: Paul Rosenberg on March 26, 2007 at 6:07 PM | PERMALINK

Never attribute to malice what is readily explained by incompetence.

Posted by: Paul Rosenberg

Excellent point. But her sisters at Gamma Gamma Gamma are so proud. She's validated the principles of Gamma Gamma Gamma to the nth degree.

Posted by: MsNThrope on March 26, 2007 at 6:12 PM | PERMALINK

Will anyone ask John McCain about his life expectancy? He's 70. Elizabeth Edwards could outlive him and she's not asking to be elected president. It's a rhetorical question, if you hear any media whore asking him questions like the Edwards just wait for the questioner to get fired.

Posted by: olvlzl the Heretic on March 26, 2007 at 6:22 PM | PERMALINK

My husband started yelling, I can't believe that reporter's questions. This is just awful.
How could she ask that? We met Elizabeth Edwards, he said. She was a great person. Remember? How well-spoken and sincere?
He put his hands in the air and stated, I can't believe this, got up and left in dismay.

Posted by: consider wisely always on March 26, 2007 at 6:42 PM | PERMALINK

I haven't read all these comments word for word, so maybe this has already been addressed: The last words in the interview were spoken by John Edwards, when he seemed to be stating categorically that he was in it for the duration. The words he spoke when he and Elizabeth made their announcement to the press were essentially the same, and ended up with the caveat that he was definitely staying in the race unless Elizabeth's condition worsened to the point that she would need his undivided attention. I had the distinct impression that he had expressed the same caveat in Couric's interview, but that it was edited out.

Posted by: Joan on March 26, 2007 at 7:38 PM | PERMALINK

40 years of the women's movement and the best that can be done is this chirping bimbette?

All the makeovers in the world don't solve stupid (which she has in abundance), and all the money in the world can't buy talent (of which she has none).

This self-involved little Yuppie bimbo had no problem putting herself first over her husband ten years ago and would probably have walked across his still-warm body if she thought it would have gotten her 1 point in the ratings.

CBS News is swirling the toilet bowl and it's time to let them flush before they embarass themselves further.

Posted by: TCinLA on March 26, 2007 at 8:22 PM | PERMALINK

As for Couric, the woman is desperate to save her career. She'd pay NBC to take her back at this point, and she is forced to "play tough" in the hopes she'll boost her sagging ratings.

Now the conservatives have done a lovely job of casting the Edwards in the "godless liberal" mold, ala Ann Coulter. (I can barely stand to type the name). Rush said that politics is their religion, and they turned to that instead of where they "should" turn - to God. That's really rich. I'd love to see a picture of either Rush or Ann coming out of a friggin church, where I'm SURE they turn for guidance with all sincerity and humility each week.

While the media sharpens its collective axes this way or that over the Edwards' plight, this unbelievably corrupt government keeps rolling along. It's all bread and circus people, remember that. Bush must love all the chatter and the tut-tuts over John and Elizabeth so we're distracted.

Posted by: mary on March 26, 2007 at 8:35 PM | PERMALINK

Mrs. Edwards has a terminal illness and some very young children. Its legit to ask if this is the right time for her husband to run for one of the most grueling and demanding jobs in the world.

Posted by: aline on March 26, 2007 at 9:49 PM | PERMALINK

I wonder if anyone else noted that when John Edwards answered a question, Couric's face revealed a scowl.

Posted by: cal on March 26, 2007 at 10:30 PM | PERMALINK

aline, to be a couple who runs for President is to be absentee parents, so unless one wants to say that nobody with minor children should run, that's simply what comes with the territory.

Frankly, the percentage of prominent political familes who have attentive parents is probably not very high, cancer or no cancer.

Posted by: Will Allen on March 26, 2007 at 10:56 PM | PERMALINK

aline, to be a couple who runs for President is to be absentee parents, so unless one wants to say that nobody with minor children should run, that's simply what comes with the territory.

Yeah but at the end of the day those couples come home to their spouses and children. Ultimately, its the Edwards family choice, a tough one and I respect them for it. However, I can't help but think that under the circumstances, Mrs. Edwards is entitled to some time to just deal with her diagnosis and to be with loving friends and family, not putting up with the hustle, bustle, nastiness and overwhelming scrutiny of a campaign.

Posted by: aline on March 26, 2007 at 11:28 PM | PERMALINK

"Yeah but at the end of the day those couples come home to their spouses and children."

Really? When a candidate is going all around the country, the kids travel too? Or the candidate comes back home at the end of every day? Definitely not true.

"However, I can't help but think that under the circumstances, Mrs. Edwards is entitled to some time to just deal with her diagnosis and to be with loving friends and family, not putting up with the hustle, bustle, nastiness and overwhelming scrutiny of a campaign."

Sure, she's entitled to that time, if she wants it. But she wants John to continue the campaign, and he was willing to drop the campaign! Never having been diagnosed with a terminal illness, I cannot really imagine what it must feel like to receive such a diagnosis. But I think that her decision to push on in the face of such potentially incapacitatingly depressing news is admirable, and might well help increase her life expectancy.

Posted by: dslack on March 27, 2007 at 6:36 AM | PERMALINK

The righties are always whining about their free speech but I've been banned from all 3 frightwing sites that allow comments. And I wasn't even off topic or rude, I just presented a different viewpoint.

Posted by: merlallen on March 27, 2007 at 7:36 AM | PERMALINK

Katie Couric is, in fact, the GOP's best friend. During her years on Today, she was reputedly the "most influential" woman in TV. What did she use that influence for?

Was it to challenge viewers to pay attention to the world around them, analyze facts, question their elected officials, and look through the BS of campaign bluster?

Nay. Under her "influence," Today cut its hard news down to thirty minutes of airtime; and then clogged up the next 90 minutes (and later, the next two and a half hours) with summer makeup tips, how to cook an omelet, skating with the Olympic hockey team, and fawning interviews with movie stars.

This is why Katie Couric is not a so-called liberal. A true liberal would have used her influence to insist on actual news coverage, for what was supposed to be a morning news show. All Couric did with her influence was encourage us to anesthetize ourselves. She is an idiot.

Posted by: Maren on March 27, 2007 at 8:12 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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