Tuesday, October 27, 2009

"Where's the Outrage?"

"Where's the Outrage?"  Republicans want to know why The Community Organizer gets a pass on some of the very actions that would have brought the media down on Bush like a hammer.  Duhhhhhh.  The media?

A four-hour stop in New Orleans, on his way to a $3 million fundraiser.

Snubbing the Dalai Lama.

Signing off on a secret deal with drug makers.

Freezing out a TV network.

Doing more fundraisers than the last president. More golf, too.

President Barack Obama has done all of those things — and more.

What's remarkable is what hasn't happened. These episodes haven't become metaphors for Obama's personal and political character — or consuming controversies that sidetracked the rest of his agenda.

It's a sign that the media's echo chamber can be a funny thing, prone to the vagaries of news judgment, and an illustration that, in politics, context is everything.

Conservatives look on with a mix of indignation and amazement and ask: Imagine the fuss if George W. Bush had done these things?

And quickly add, with a hint of jealousy: How does Obama get away with it?

"We have a joke about it. We're going to start a website: IfBushHadDoneThat.com," former Bush counselor Ed Gillespie said. "The watchdogs are curled up around his feet, sleeping soundly. ... There are countless examples: some silly, some serious."

Indeed, Bush got grief for secret meetings with the oil industry, politicizing the White House and spending too much time on his beloved bike. But it's not just Republicans who notice. Media observers note that the president often gets kid-glove treatment from the press, fellow Democrats and, particularly, interest groups on the left — Bush's loudest critics, Obama's biggest backers.


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