Starting tomorrow, The Rise of Leadership Down: Yesterday, we published an extremely rare Sunday report. It related to our ongoing study, a month-long effort which appears beneath the award-winning rubric, Leadership Down.
Good God! A full eighteen months from next year's presidential election, the New York Times had published a front-page report which skillfully told us this:
She believes that Wisconsin—where 22,000 votes separated Mr. Trump and Hillary Clinton in 2016—"could go either way" in next year’s election.Were you able to follow that? Next year's election could go either way in the state of Wisconsin! For the record, the "she" who offered that deathless assessment was NAME WITHHELD, "a Democratic pollster who has worked in Wisconsin and throughout the Midwest."
Alas! The fatuous focus on useless polls is a principal part of upper-end mainstream press corps culture. It represents a familiar part of journalistic "leadership down."
That utterly pointless report on Wisconsin showcased this devotion to "horse race" reporting. This morning, the Times has chosen to showcase another part of broken press corps culture.
In print editions, it's the sprawling featured report in the "National" section. Sadly, the hard-copy headline says this:
With Aides on High Alert, Biden Keeps Gaffes to a MinimumSad! The ridiculous piece goes on and on about the idea that Candidate Biden "is given to malapropisms." Left unsaid is a much more troubling fact:
Along with their devotion to utterly useless horse race polls, our modern upper-end mainstream journalists love "gaffes" more than life itself. These twin devotions—to horse race coverage and gaffe culture—help define the modern state of journalistic "leadership down."
Starting tomorrow, we ponder the rise of this pitiful state—The Rise of Leadership Down. We expect to reach all the way back to the (truly remarkable) spinning of Candidate Muskie—by several of his poker partners within the upper-end press!
For our original reports on Leadership Down, you can just click here. Last week, we considered several aspects of the sad state of affairs often described, by future scholars, as Basic Skill Levels Down.
Last week, it was Basic Skill Levels Down! Our reports went exactly like this:
Tuesday, May 7: Emba paraphrased Senator Harris. Let's see what she actually said!So many skill levels, so little time! Starting tomorrow, the painful, deeply embarrassing Rise of Leadership Down!
Wednesday, May 8: Harris asked an excellent question. But she didn't quite seek a reply!
Thursday, May 9: A unified theory of Skill Levels Down leads us towards What Trump Said!
Friday, May 10: Parker actually quoted Trump! But her basic skill levels stayed down.
Coming next week: Professoriate Down!