The Media’s Distaste for Hillary – No Reverent Coverage for Her

Over the years I’ve watched how those in the media have degenerated from a respectful position to one of disdain. Outside of a few reporters in print media or television, there are few who are not considered media whores.

Media whores . . . . individuals who work for news organizations who are owned by large corporations who will do what’s necessary to protect their image, AND the status quo. Because the status quo is what separates them from you and me. It is about class, very much so.

I don’t pretend to know where many of those who report the news come; I don’t know their roots, in other words. Outside of Tim Russert, who champions his coming from that of ‘big Russ’, a man not unlike my own father when providing for his family.

When I was growing up, Dad had two demanding jobs. The main one was with the City of Buffalo sanitation department. He started out as a lifter, the man who picks up the garbage cans and empties them into the truck. He gradually worked his way up to driver and, later, foreman.

He left for work at dawn, and when his shift was done, he’d come home around 5:30, eat a quick supper and then sprawl across the bed for a short nap before heading out for his second job, which was driving a delivery truck at night for the Buffalo Evening News.

Humble beginnings, humble bringing up.

Whether he wants to admit it or not, Tim Russert is not going to endanger losing what he has. It’s a demonstration of failure. So his lips remain attached to his head which is up the ass of whoever owns MSNBC. Even Keith Olbermann for all his chutzpah has to answer to the corporate piper.

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Yesterday I saw a piece with that disturbingly disgusting Candy Crowley on ‘Crooks and Liars’ where a CNN producer complains about standing in line waiting for his hotel keys. What? It ends with Candy’s admonition – ‘your lying eyes aren’t lying’.

As Glenn Greenwald points out:

For all the talk about the complex ideological, economic and other factors that shape our horrendous political press coverage, it is always important to remember that so much of it — as Romano’s accurate comments highlight — is attributable to the adolescent, self-absorbed, herd-like behavior of the reporters who travel around with these candidates. Those whom they like personally — the ones who flatter them or otherwise trigger their desire to be liked — receive reverent coverage, while those to whom they’re personally hostile receive the opposite.

It’s evident in the frosty, petulant reception they gave Hillary when she entered their bus with the way White House press reporters at the President’s news conferences, for years, cackle at his every attempt at humor and light up with glee when he deigns to engage them in his insulting frat-boy repartee.” In which every person watching could see it and gag. Why? Because it’s about not disturbing or insulting in any way the powers who keeps them in that huge expensive and expansive home, in that car, in that college you can boast your children attend, in that which separates ‘You’ from ‘Us’ because of some inane desire to be – ‘Them’ – the status quo. Glenn lights up the comparison of the president as George the Popular Jock to whom they’re grateful for any attention” while Hillary on the other hand, “is the overly competitive, know-it-all girl at the front of the class with all the answers….”

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Matt Taibbi – Rolling Stone reporter, book writer, and ‘Real Time’ media gadfly – talks in 2005 about being on the campaign trail covering the presidential campaigns in which an incident occurred that for him crystallized the depiction of the media.

TP: You’ve written about covering the Kerry and Dean campaigns where it was like high school with the big reporters sitting up front [of the plane] and the lesser ones in the back… Did the cool kids act like pricks? Were you mostly ignored?

MT: As for the press corps, they really weren’t that bad. I don’t think I was ignored any more than most other small-time reporters, most of whom were pretty nice people who just had lousy jobs. But the cool kids, the people working for the big papers and TV stations who really loved hobnobbing with all the pols on the plane — they were a pretty disgusting group in some ways. I think the one image that will stick with me is Candy Crowley (CNN) jamming fistfuls of complimentary chocolate chip cookies into her mouth in a bus in Houston (the Kerry campaign had given us all free cookies wrapped in American-flag-patterned bandanas) and talking about Kucinich. She’s got this huge waterfall of crumbs coming out of her mouth and she’s talking about how ugly Kucinich is. That to me summed up the whole campaign press crew, right there...

As Greenwald referenced from an interview given by Taibbi with the Campus Progress (dot.org)

“….. And, you know, it’s not that a lot of these people are bad people. It’s a mistake to go into it saying that these people are all elitist snobs like David Brooks really is. A lot of them are Ivy Leaguers, they all come from a certain class. And you can’t be on the campaign trail unless you work for a massively funded organization. It costs like 3,000 or 4,000 bucks a day to cover the presidential election, just to be on the plane. Some big money has to be behind you.

The group of people who end up being on the bus are a group of upper-class people who are all from the same general background, and they’re familiar and comfortable with each other and they’re comfortable with the candidates culturally. They’re living the high life when they’re on the trail, they’re mostly staying in five-star hotels. They get these delicious catered meals served to them four or five times a day. You get chocolates on your pillow, you get the best musicians in the city coming out to play for you everywhere you go. It’s like a big summer camp, like a big field trip.

So, I understand why the media doesn’t want to ask the hard questions for our benefit, but why such disdain for Hillary Clinton?

Without a doubt, the coverage for Barack Obama has been cushy. Following the skit on Saturday Night Live in which the media was portrayed as a bunch of mindless sheeple suckling at the breast of Obama’s chest, there’s been an inordinate interest in coming out on Obama. Personally, I think much of the reticence with Obama is due to race. People, simply, do not want to be accused of racism, and the fear may be there that in criticizing Obama, it will be interpreted as some racist rant. However criticism of Hillary Clinton isn’t necessarily seen as a misogynist rant, unless you’re Tweety.

So now it’s starting with the press looking over their coverage of Obama. As Ari Berman writes at ‘The Nation‘, The scrutiny that Clinton had been receiving for months altered course and slammed right into Obama.Berman maintains it’s because the media is “more anti-front runner rather than anti-Clinton.'”

Yeahhh, okay.

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