Parker plays an old song: Mainstream scribes possess one great skill.
They’re highly skilled at blame-shifting. In this morning’s New York Times, Ashley Parker—she’s just 29—shows her mastery of the old practice:
PARKER (3/3/12): Mitt Romney is best known as a private equity specialist, but he is trying to transform himself into a primary care physician for an ailing nation.Wonderful clownistry! Even Romney’s most casual remarks “are pounced on by Democrats and Republicans alike?” That’s true, of course. But before that pouncing occurs, Romney’s remarks are pounced upon by fly-weights like Parker herself!
“If I were a doctor and I saw somebody who was obviously suffering from some condition, I would want to do something to help,” Mr. Romney said, at a town hall-style meeting in Bexley, Ohio, this week. “Well, my experience is not in medicine. My experience is in business.”
His goal, he told the crowd, is “to use what I’ve learned to try and help.”
Convincing voters that he means it, however, may be Mr. Romney’s greatest challenge. He has been struggling with how to handle his immense wealth ever since he announced his candidacy in June. Even his most casual remarks—about the Cadillacs his wife owns, or how his six-figure speaking fees did not add up to much—are pounced on by Democrats and Republicans alike, and used to portray him as a millionaire titan who is out of touch with the concerns of average Americans.
A bit later on, Parker even cites Romney’s aides as they make this obvious observation:
PARKER: Mr. Romney’s aides reject the notion that his inadvertent comments underscoring his wealth are gaffes, and instead argue that the news media takes a few words and blows them out of proportion. But Mr. Romney acknowledged in a news conference on Tuesday that his tone-deaf remarks have stalled his campaign.Really? “The news media” has been doing these things? What makes these aides think that?
It has ever been thus. During Campaign 2000, mainstream scribes would routinely attribute their own behavior to “late-night comedians.” Late-night jesters were constantly blamed for the press corps’ behavior toward Candidate Gore, although the blame was often shifted to “Gore’s Republican opponents.”
The fact that the press corps was staging a war against Gore never seemed to get mentioned!
“Even his most casual remarks are pounced on by Democrats and Republicans alike!” Parker trained under Maureen Dowd. This is how such life-forms act.
Policy postscript: What about Romney’s most ridiculous policy proposals? Darlings, please! At the New York Times, reporters don’t bother with that!