MIGHT THE REPORTERS AND ANALYSTS BE DEAD WRONG--AGAIN?
by Andy Weddington
Friday, 09 March 2012
"Many people have their reputations as reporters and analysts because they are on television, batting around conventional wisdom. A lot of these people have never reported a story." Bob Woodward
For months and months and months and more months television reporters and analysts have been disparaging the Republican field campaigning for the presidency. Is anyone ever good enough to run for the presidency? As Election Day nears and the field winnows, nothing has changed. If listening to "conventional wisdom" and incapable of independent thought, you'd believe the once field of eight serious candidates, now standing at four, all to be bumbling incompetents. The pontificaters found fault with Herman Cain and Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann and Jon Huntsman, and Gary Johnson and Donald Trump and Mitch Daniels and Chris Christie and Sarah Palin and whomever else who slips memory who's no longer in the race. And they continue to find fault with Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum and New Gingrich and Ron Paul. And that's not going to change.
Flipping around channels during the evening coverage of Super Tuesday, the reporters and analysts continued on about the Republican field--more about weaknesses than strengths, and how the extended battle for the GOP nomination is only doing them all, and the party, harm in the pending fight against Barack Obama. Or so is "conventional wisdom."
One analyst, an unapologetic Obama apologist, went so far as to say if looking at the big picture, the voters just are not turning out in the numbers they did during the 2008 caucuses and primaries. He was "reporting and analyzing" without supporting data--throwing darts. Others, reporters and analysts, on the panel quickly refuted that claim--with data. Fact and data can be so troublesome.
But what if voters are not turning out in record numbers? So what. Is that to say voters are not paying attention? Is that to say voters do not care? Let's consider voter behavior from another perspective.
What about the possibility voters have already made up their minds? What about the possibility folks who hesitantly gave Barack Obama the benefit of the doubt four years ago have realized their mistake? What about the possibility the movement that made a statement in November 2010 has been quietly swelling far bigger than anyone (i. e., reporters and analysts) imagines? What about the possibility voters are waiting for 06 November to cast their vote for anyone other than Barack Obama? What about the possibility it simply does not matter whom the GOP candidate--they'll win in a landslide?
What about the any number of 'life in the real world' issues folks are facing day-to-day that has caused them change of heart and mind? What if the reporters and analysts don't have a clue as to what Americans are feeling and thinking?
...the folks, with a family, working at least one job (fortunate), maybe two (more fortunate still), neither of which pays all that much, standing at the fuel pump early in the morning, long day ahead, watching $6.00 (and more) roll by for every gallon of gas. Imagine what's going through their minds, "Thank you, Barack Obama. Huh. Hope and Change. Right. He's done." Their vote sealed when the pump spits out a $100.00 receipt--two or three or four times a week.
...the folks who know something about fighting for what's right and loyalty to friends who hear their president tell the leader of Israel, Prime Minister Netanyahu, face-to-face, "We've got your back," (confronting Iran and nuclear weapons program) and less than a day later during a press conference says he didn't mean military support? What?
...the folks who are disgusted by the president bowing to and apologizing to foreigners for America when there's nothing to be apologetic for, and, frankly, the president should be accepting apologies from them for sundry slights and atrocities against America and Americans? Since when does an American president apologize for exceptionalism and power?
...the folks who see, and feel, the impact of flawed energy policies creating economic chaos with 'green' initiative after 'green' initiative collapsing under cronyism and corruption while executives walk away pocketing millions and millions of taxpayer dollars?
...the folks who are just sick and tired of hearing their president blaming others and uttering "I, I, I," and "Me, me, me," and, like him or not, cannot cite a single achievement that has bettered their lives nor moved America forward?
...the folks still wondering about a president who--cannot produce a valid birth certificate (a recent investigation challenges the authenticity of the White House release); has inconsistencies surrounding social security numbers, passports, travel abroad to restricted countries; has embraced radicals, foreign and domestic, hostile to America; continues to secret academic work and transcripts and medical records; and so on and so forth?
And the list goes on--economy; unemployment; taxes; health care; contraception; religious freedom; illegals; border security; war(s); Constitution sanctity; national unity; etc.
Four years ago President Obama talked--talked himself into the presidency. He's had a term to turn talk into action, to make his case. Fact is, policy after policy on issue after issue has failed. Failing still. The only success he's realized has come through maintaining and/or enhancing policies of his predecessor. Yet, no "Thank you, President Bush."? It's not in his nature.
There's a variable at play in this election that was not nearly so present four years ago: Pain.
Pain that is far and wide and the folks have been enduring, largely needlessly. Americans, in pain, are no longer interested in nor will they be assuaged by flowery rhetoric. Americans, a demanding and impatient lot, want and expect remedy. By now folks have figured out the president, the administration, and congress is incapable of delivering. And that hope and change was and is nothing more than a hawked placebo proving to be poison. That's just the way it is.
But it is the president who bears, willingly or not, the burden of responsibility. That is, whether everything is his fault or not is irrelevant, he enjoys blame. So bag extenuation, mitigation, alibis, and redirected blame.
In some sense, most folks just don't care who's president. Most folks merely want to be able to go about their lives working to improve conditions for themselves and family while doing so relatively carefree expecting their government to provide an umbrella of leadership and protection while staying out of their way--not meddling and certainly not forcing them along a way.
To this business of being a reporter and analyst and what Bob Woodard really meant by "...batting around conventional wisdom..."--whatever "conventional wisdom" is (sheep mentality?), I know nothing; nor care to.
But good ol' southern grit common sense concludes, after taking a good long look around--from coast to coast--and talking to folks (mostly strangers), that cell phones or no cell phones, 06 November 2012 will be the biggest and longest lasting flash mob the free world has yet to see--that is, American voters converging for a landslide election seating a new president. It's coming. Date and times set.
folks do not necessarily fall into the neat little cohorts polls like to build and reporters and analysts like to talk about. And folks, despite what they say, do not always vote the way they poll. And with more folks than not opining our country is headed in the wrong direction (the pain factor), why not deduce President Obama is done? It's the logical conclusion.
This election is about relieving pain--acute, chronic, persistent, referred and however else it's defined. That is not today's "conventional wisdom." Nor was it "conventional wisdom" thirty-two years ago.
The reporters and analysts, living large, occupying a fiction world detached from the pain(s) of reality, are dead wrong--again!
If "conventional wisdom" held merit, Jimmy Carter--number 39--would have been reelected. Number 44 is a 'one-termer,' too.