Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Being a Pundit, Newscaster and Analyst IV

As you might have guessed from my recent posts, I have not watched much cable news lately. But this morning I ventured to turn on the morning news shows and my immediate distaste returned. Flipping between more than a few channels, my ears peeked when some pundit said, "the President hasn't found his voice." Says who? You? This was in response to a discussion about his upcoming appearance on Jay Leno. (Please see my recent posts, Being on Jay Leno and Being Snubbed)

There was also some talk about what Ronald Reagan would have said had he delivered such a speech about AIG. President Reagan would have been oh so much better. What's the matter with these people? President Obama is not Ronald Reagan or anyone else for the matter with a set of circumstances like none others. What these increasingly irrelevant voices need to do to regain some relevance is to concentrate on facts and not give their personal opinions. Do we really care what any of these guys think?

The biggest problem that I see is that those of the old guard, whether pundit or politician, simply do not get it. President Obama does not seem to be terribly concerned about what they think by and large, especially when they simply refuse to think about things differently. Their egos are so large that they are in a fight for him to acknowledge them; in fact, many are in a fight for their very existence, politician, pundit or network. Many have simply become irrelevant, but are fighting for relevancy without a message that matters.

President Obama's very presence seems like an affront to their very sense of being and knowing. They are the ones who seem like they have lost their footing. They want to talk about silly stuff and fail when it's time to address serious stuff. When given the opportunity as CNN's John King's had with the former Vice-President Dick Cheney, we really see what newscasters are made of. King was putty in the former Vice President's hands. Jon Stewart would have been a far better interviewer.

Arianna Huffington makes the above point brilliantly in a recent article on the Huffington Post. I too would that Jon Stewart would have interviewed the former Vice-President. But, of course, Vice President Cheney would have never appeared on such a show; there would be no unwarranted reverence. John King was silenced in such an ominous presence; his inability as a first rate interviewer was revealed. Stewart would have been brilliant. Do read Arianna's article above. It's very thoughtful indeed.


DB said...

One of the problems with the current media is that it's flock of newscaster, interviewers and anchors have all grown up in ivy or faux ivy league environments and have slipped into their jobs with a degree from a well endowed communications department and have no savvy of real life. When, during the attack on Bagdad. one network anchor described an Arab running for cover as a man in his bathrobe, I threw my beer on the floor and said "That's it, I'm not watching these fools any more."

judith ellis said...

Are you serious? I am not easily shocked by what anyone says, but this is just so incredibly shocking to me considering that the reporter was reporting on Iraq.

I agree with you about many of the current media types. But I'm no Ivy League hater. Professionals of all kind should have an understanding of cultures and others, especially pundits, newscasters and analysts.

The bathrob comment has really floored me.