Sunday, September 22, 2013

Chuck Todd Get's Slammed For Not Understanding His Job

I will admit that I have been an advocate of the Affordable Care Act (AKA Obamacare).  Fair enough.  However, I think this speaks to something deeper than one issue or another.  Republicans who believe the entire media establishment is out messaging them and their positions should also pay attention.

Interesting article HERE that sums up the whole fight:

On Wednesday morning’s Morning Joe, Todd attracted the attention of liberal critics when, as TPM puts it, he suggested that It’s Not Media’s Job To Correct GOP’s Obamacare Falsehoods. But is that a fair reading of what Chuck said? Not according to him. In response to the criticism, Chuck tweeted“Somebody decided to troll w/mislding headline: point I actually made was folks shouldn’t expect media to do job WH has FAILED to do re: ACA."

The problem to me is pretty straight forward but nobody chooses to talk about it very clearly.  Chuck Todd is part of a media culture that has been living in the "sexy" part of political journalism for too long. His head is so full of talk about selling and messaging that he doesn't even recognize that he's become the announcer for a sports game with no referees. 

Referees are much less popular because people get mad at them. They also need to pay very careful attention and blow the whistle on the whole game when someone fouls or breaks the rules.   It could have been the best play in the world but it won't count and everyone from that fouled side goes "BOOOOOOO!!"

The problem with the culture of political journalism these days is that nobody wants to be the referee who gets booed, especially when they are all on a quest to show they are "balanced".  Everyone thinks someone else is doing the referee work and they give three cheers to that. . . but, personally, they all seem to love the game too much to interrupt it with a whistle themselves.  They leave that to people with less important things to loose.   They are like honorary Referees who sit at a special table next to the game and talk about it.   They have completely abdicated their job to the point that they don't even recognize it as something they themselves need to be part of anymore.

To me this explains why Chuck Todd seems far more focused on the way the game is being played by the teams, rather than wondering what he could do better as a referee.  He doesn't even see a Referee problem in the equation.  I'll wager several political journalists don't.  The fact that the fans are confused about the score in the game is the failure of one team to play the game well enough in their view.  To clarify the score and enforce the rules would be to "do the White House's Job re: ACA."  It is painfully clear where Chuck Todd's head was both at the time he made the statement and the way he defended himself after. . . but it's not just a Chuck Todd problem.

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