Thursday, February 28, 2013

Boob Woodward: Dumb like a Fox

Slow news cycles breed stupid media obsessions -- with themselves. Thanks to long past his prime DC hack Bob Woodward, the Capitol Hill courtiers found a springboard to launch into an endless bitchfest about their dismal treatment at the cruel hands of Obama's White House. If somehow you missed the red siren alerts, last night Politico posted an interview where Woodward claimed to have been threatened in an email from an unnamed, highly placed, White House official.

Today, the White House released the Woodward email exchange that nearly had him hiding under his bed. Here's the the "threatening" part of it:
From Gene Sperling to Bob Woodward on Feb. 22, 2013


I apologize for raising my voice in our conversation today. My bad. I do understand your problems with a couple of our statements in the fall — but feel on the other hand that you focus on a few specific trees that gives a very wrong perception of the forest. But perhaps we will just not see eye to eye here.

But I do truly believe you should rethink your comment about saying saying that Potus asking for revenues is moving the goal post. I know you may not believe this, but as a friend, I think you will regret staking out that claim.
It was the "you will regret" bit that had our hapless sad sack trembling in his booties. I'm sure you'll be shocked to learn Politico truncated the quote in their original piece. But that aside, more revealing is his response to Sperling.
From Woodward to Sperling on Feb. 23, 2013

Gene: You do not ever have to apologize to me. You get wound up because you are making your points and you believe them. This is all part of a serious discussion. I for one welcome a little heat; there should more given the importance. I also welcome your personal advice. I am listening. I know you lived all this. My partial advantage is that I talked extensively with all involved. I am traveling and will try to reach you after 3 pm today. Best, Bob
Doesn't he sound terrified? Gracious. You can almost smell the fear. Or maybe that stink is something else that reminds me of living on the farm. But mission accomplished. The entire media industry from the internets to the teevee punditry are all talking about the Boob Woodward today with Sean Hannity scoring an exclusive interview with him on Fox tonight. Oh and by the way, did you know Woodward has a new book out about debt crisis dealing on the Hill?

The glaring attention Woodward is basking in has already spawned a half dozen, "yeah I was "threatened" by the White House too" copycats seeking their share of the spotlight. Most notable being Ron Fournier who woefully informs us he had to "ice" one of his longstanding inside contacts who had hitherto enjoyed guaranteed "blanket anonymity" for any and all tips rendered. I imagine Fournier misses his cozy exchanges with Karl Rove back in the the golden days of the Bush era.

Even one of the biggest hacks in the business is embarrassed by this solipsistic orgy. Chuck Todd tweeted: "This Woodward-WH story is proving a media stereotype that I hate but can't disprove: that we're too self-absorbed. It's not about us!!!!!!!"

Not that Chuck's lament will stop the airing of the grievances. Because what this is really about is that most of our Big Media DC divas do feel threatened by their diminishing role as sole gatekeepers to access. I mean what's the point of manning the gates when everybody and their brother has a key to the side door?

Addendum: To be fair, I should mention much of the chatter is actually mocking Woodward's lame claim to being terrorized by email. Nonetheless, they're still all talking about themselves -- and their access.

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