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Ed Driscoll

The White House Correspondents Dinner is tonight; “an annual orgy of narcissistic self-indulgence where the biggest stars in media, Hollywood, and politics gather to become even more corrupt and insulated than they already are,” John Nolte writes at Big Journalism:

Things have gotten so bad that the E! entertainment channel is going to broadcast live from the event tomorrow night, and Tom Brokaw has felt the need to again speak out against it. Last year Brokaw surprised many when he made this statement about the event on “Meet the Press”:

What kind of image do we present to the rest of the country? Are we doing their business, or are we just a group of narcissists who are mostly interested in elevating our own profiles? And what comes through the screen on C-SPAN that night is the latter, and not the former.

This year, Brokaw doubled down with this statement to Politico:

But I think any organization… has to have a kind of self-policing instinct and what we’re doing with that dinner, as it has been constituted for the past several years, is saying, ‘We’re Versailles. The rest of you eat cake.’

Brokaw’s pretty good at telling the rest of America to eat cake himself; he very publicly defended fellow anchorman Dan Rather in the fall of 2004, when all of us crazy rubes in our pajamas in our basements were pointing out that Rather cooked the books. In December of 2008, at the perigee of the Great Recession, he begged President-Elect Obama to kick off his nascent administration by raising America’s gas taxes:
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At the start of 2013, again carrying Mr. Obama’s water on one of his pet issues, as Noel Sheppard wrote at Newsbusters, Brokaw denigrated the Bill of Rights and its supporters:

As NewsBusters reported Thursday, Tom Brokaw appearing on MSNBC’s Morning Joe said that not supporting gun control in the wake of the Newtown, Connecticut, massacre is akin to those that didn’t back the Civil Rights movement in the ’60s.

Noel linked to Mark Levin’s epic monologue, which punched back twice as hard against Brokaw’s rhetoric, as Mr. Obama is wont to say, before concluding:

LEVIN: [Brokaw] is a disgrace. I don’t care they keep putting these guys up on pedestals. They don’t deserve it. They’re a disgrace. He’s a disgrace. The history he refers to has absolutely nothing to do with what’s going on right now. But he brings it up, the same way Tim Kaine wants to interject race. Oh that word nullification, that’s a code word. The same way Colin Powell did it on Sunday. Every single issue that involves actual individual liberty, conservative principles, constitutionalism, they’re now twisting it and turning it, attacking our motives, when in fact we don’t have any motives other than to exercise our free will, and to defend others who seek to exercise their free will.Ladies and gentlemen, Washington is digging in. When I say Washington, Tom Brokaw is a creation of Washington. He may be up in New Jersey at MSNBC doing this, but he’s a creation of Washington. They’re digging in. Scarborough, little irrelevant gnat. Digging in. Schieffer, digging in. The NBC crowd, the CBS crowd, the ABC crowd, just listen to the broadcasts. CNN, and of course, MSLSD, MSLSD which would have been perfect during the times of like Brezhnev because Brezhnev and MSNBC, you know, their ideologies they’re almost like one and the same, but that for another day.

So the point is this: they’re digging in because you refuse to surrender your God-given inalienable rights and your Constitutional right to big government. And Tom Brokaw and Schieffer and all the rest of them are about big government, big government. This is why they defend Obama, this is why they defend the Democrats, this is why there’s not a federal program unless it has to do with the military, national security, law enforcement that they would support reducing then your respect. These are the phonies who are bringing news to you and are bring news to you. The absolute phonies.

As we’ll see tonight at Nerd Versailles Prom.

Oh, and speaking of Bob Schieffer, CBS and the White House Correspondents Dinner: “Courtesy of CBS News, Korean pop star Psy will be there. Because nothing qualifies you as a member of the media/Hollywood/DC elite faster than being a one-hit wonder who openly called for the death of American troops serving in Iraq.”

Update: The swells at Versailles Prom are not amused by Brokaw. “White House correspondents partiers say Tom Brokaw’s got it wrong — White House correspondents just want to have fun,” the JournoList-tainted Politico glibly notes, ironically stumbling over the precise issue of disagreement the rest of us have with those entrenched inside what Walter Russell Mead calls the “Acela Cocoon.” We know they want to have fun — carrying the presidents’ water, fighting his opponents; making America safe for socialism. And we know they’re not covering the White House to objectively report the news. Particularly in the case of anyone from NBC and its spinoffs:

“As a former White House Correspondent, it’s really nice for people in politics and media to come together and have a little weekend of fun,” MSNBC host Alex Wagner told POLITICO at a reception at the Hay Adams hotel. “I understand the idea of the ‘celebrification’ of the event but I think it’s more of a testament to how interesting and compelling Washington politics is to the outside world.”

Curiously, Wagner’s gripe against Brokaw makes him the second veteran NBC correspondent that Wagner has attacked in recent weeks from the left. At the end of January, she described a CNBC contributor as “not a very trustworthy source.” Can we assume she’s implying the same thing about Brokaw? For the sake of having almost as fun as those nutty kooky White House correspondents, I think we can.