October 16, 2012
WALTER RUSSELL MEAD: Hillary Jumps Under the Bus But Can’t Save the Driver From Himself.
If Bush were still in the White House, the press would in full firestorm/feeding frenzy mode on what would no doubt be called the Middle East Meltdown. Endless expositions on the pattern of presidential failure would be the main preoccupation of the chattering class. From Mali to Afpak via Syria and Bahrain (if Bush were president the hypocrisy of US policy in Bahrain would be driving some of our more sensitive moral consciences into glorious arpeggios of rage and invective) the story of administration miscalculations and strategic mistakes would be on the front page of our papers.
We would probably also be seeing at this point a lot more attention to stories contrasting the Secretary of State’s forthright acceptance of responsibility for specific problems with the President’s steadfast refusal to discuss his record in the Middle East—and his dodging of press conferences where these policy problems could be vetted would now be a huge issue—if Obama were President Bush.
But he isn’t, and connecting those dots is something that, given the MSM’s evident sympathy for this administration, American journalism is doing its best to avoid. That’s likely to change after the election no matter who wins.
Key phrase: After the election.