Media's Misplaced Glee Is Nothing New
John Hinderaker has a typically excellent post at Powerline regarding a moronic article by Howard Fineman at Newsweek. Read the whole thing. It brings a refreshing wash of fact over what is a remarkably substandard bit of writing that is nonetheless a fairly accurate indicator of what the left is thinking.
John makes a decent point when he says:
The reality is that the Republican base is holding remarkably firm, in the face of a media onslaught against the Bush administration that has no parallel in modern history...
I would tend to agree with that conclusion to the point that I think that the negative coverage of Bush today is almost exactly as bad as it was this time last year, preparing to go into a very close election, with the media trying to do John Kerry any favor it could to get him some extra points in the Midwest states.
But as with everything else, history has its parallels.
Does anyone recall the fall of 1998/beginning of 1999? Bill Clinton was impeached by the House of Representatives in December 1998 and tried in the Senate in February 1999. For the entire time when Clinton fought for his presidency, the mainstream media was there shielding him and attacking the House Managers who prosecuted the case in the Senate. From media coverage attacking the managers and calling the impeachment "sexual McCarthyism", to Hollywood putting together an episode of Law and Order where the writers constructed a straw man scenario that fit the image of the scandal they wished to project, with Jack McCoy asking "have you no shame?!" of an investigator who was going after the Clinton alter ego. All very transparent efforts to defend a politician of whom they personally approved.
The media-left has been on the warpath since at least that long, and probably as early as 1995 after Republicans retook the Congress. I think that their efforts are coming from an increasingly painful realization that their relevance is waning in America, and that they are unwilling to consider that their vision for America conflicts greatly with that of a vast majority of Americans. And any cyclical hiccup for Bush is a reason to take joy.
But such hope is historically chimerical, and the celebration generated from it is typically short lived. Let them have their fun. Being consistently and painfully wrong has its consequences.