One of the more frustrating things about mainstream media coverage of this year’s Presidential primaries has been their short attention span and preference for the low-calorie sensational stories over the meatier issues of the day. ie: Samantha Power calling Hillary Clinton a “monster” (a comment which, taken in context, is hard to argue to with) is somehow more newsworthy than actually vetting Clinton’s numerous exaggerated claims of experience (kudos to the Chicago Tribune for finally exposing that batch of lies).
It’s no wonder the Daily Show is considered a better source of news than the actual networks dedicated to covering news 24/7.
On that note, this back-and-forth between Bill Maher (who I’m no big fan of) and Terry McAuliffe is both refreshing and noteworthy, if much too short:[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTWumj6qpmI]
On a related note, the so-called independent political blogs covering the primaries aren’t much better than the mainstream media they love to criticize so often, preferring to repost campaign press releases and talking points with little to no commentary as opposed to offering more in-depth analysis and pushback on the more obviously deceptive information being put forward. While I still regularly refresh Talking Points Memo, TPM Election Central and The Politico’s Ben Smith, I’m finding myself frequently as annoyed with them as I am with some of the nonsense that passes for news on the cable news networks.
The Atlantic‘s Andrew Sullivan, though, is a refreshing, truly independent voice who offers insightful analysis and regularly highlights intelligent critiques of his opinions from his readers. That he’s an openly gay, self-described Conservative (not a Republican, a Conservative — an important distinction) who has no problem with admitting when he’s wrong about something makes his opinions even more appealing to me, proving that people of varied ideologies often have a lot more in common than they think.
Keith Olbermann, perhaps, is the closest thing TV has to Sullivan and while I find some of the bells and whistles of Countdown to be a little annoying, the show has become must-see TV for me lately.
PS: Yeah, I said no more politics for a little bit but if it wasn’t this post, it was going to be a really nasty one about how much I despise Clinton’s campaign tactics over the past couple of weeks and there’s nothing to be gained from that. I just hope Obama’s “slow and steady wins the race” approach actually does, in fact, win the race, while incurring a minimum of damage along the way.