Backing down from a bully
Great Thundercrack live video from '73: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CWd5ugerSHI
Interesting that Eric Boehlert can criticize both Trump and Karl in the same article. In my opinion, Karl is right to want to not become the story. Trump is the story. Acosta became the story for a while. Didn't change things.
And Karl wonders why Trump treats him like shit ....honest to God, some of these people like him don’t have one bit of street or common sense. I heard Karl doing a show on the POTUS Channel last week relating this very thought to the host, Julie Mason, and I thought then : “ and you really think he has one bit of respect for you ? “ The only way you get the attention of somebody like Trump is to go right back at him, literally or figuratively !
A great piece as always. But
1. Karl is right to this extent: the public don't care that the media are attacked. As Richard Nixon realized, it appeals to a wide swath of Americans. It's the right that always does the attacking--sort of like working the refs--because it works, not so much on the public, as on the media. Which brings me to ...
2. A large portion of the media have long since abdicated their responsibility. Consider yesterday's Times and the story about all that is wrong with Alex Azar. Quite true. But how much of that came from people close to the traitor-in-chief who are playing the reporters, who are allowing themselves to be played. The real issue is the overall incompetence and who put Azar in a position to demonstrate his incompetence.
And Karl wonders why Trump treats him like shit ....honest to God, some of these people like him don’t have one bit of street or common sense. I heard Karl doing a show on the POTUS Channel last week relating this very thought to the host and I thought then : “ and you really think he has one bit of respect for you ? “
The decision-makers in the network and network news divisions like the insult dog-and-pony-show as good TV.
The reporters, meanwhile, value their jobs. And being subject to the insults makes them news objects, examples of taking abuse for the cause. This raises good professional capital for them because in that arena and at that level it's an otherwise a-moral enterprise.
It almost goes without saying that a D prez doing this sort of things would be 'round the clock news for a week.
In a different setting, if an obnoxious supervisor was routinely browbeating unionized employees, the president of the union would be thrown out if he offered a dismissive, "it doesn't bother me," and did nothing about the situation. Karl forgets that as president of the White House Correspondents Association he is representing his colleagues and his profession, and his words and deeds are amplified beyond his own self interest. Karl has an obligation to the WH press corps to establish some boundaries, and that obligation supersedes his personal belief that reporters should silently endure Trump's disrespect and disparagement because to object would be inserting themselves into the story. Trump behaves like he does because people like Karl let him.