Monday, July 17, 2006

benign truth

The main gist of the Post's front page story about the Democracy Alliance is that there are a few centrists in the Democratic Party who are a little pissy about the fact that a major source of their party's funding is leaning to the left. Yeah, it feels like the paper may have gone to print a little too quickly on this one, with the authors alluding to more intrigue than they manage to actually uncover. Printing a line about the people and groups who will not speak to you certainly does suggest that there's more to the story, but it also suggests that the reporters stopped asking before they uncovered what may indeed be a rather benign truth.

(Disclosure: I have friends at the Alliance and at some of the groups the Alliance funds. These friends are entirely more optimistic than I am that the work that they are doing is going to generate results this year and in 2008.)

Dana Milbank may have forgotten the golden rule about not beating up little old ladies, but his review of Helen Thomas' Watchdogs of Democracy is a damn good read. Sure, I was charmed by Thomas during her recent appearance on The Daily Show, but Milbank successfully takes Thomas to task for her criticism of the White House press corps during the Bush administration (which includes Milbank) and for her use of her position in the press room as a bully pulpit. The best line in the piece gets attributed to former press secretary Ari Fleischer, who -- prior to calling on Thomas for her "question" -- apparently said, "We will temporarily suspend the Q&A portion of today's briefing to bring you this advocacy minute." Go, Ari.


Anonymous said...

Thomas really should be grateful to be allowed to sit in on the press briefing. She's a columnist, not an objective journalist. The least she could do is ask questions to solicit information, even if she does tinge those questions with a bit of partisan snark.

It's the fact that she uses the opportunity to lecture the press secretary on administration policy that makes her a joke.

--Ken Shepherd

abf said...

I know I am in trouble when conservatives post to my blog and appear to be in agreement with something I said.