Wednesday, January 28, 2004
Media Whores on the Whoop:
Dean delivered a speech after losing in Iowa. Dean spent two years in IOWA. Dean spent a lot of money in Iowa. Dean, if a normal person, was stunned, disappointed, and frustrated that, after all of his exhaustive and exhausting effort, he did not win in Iowa. Dean was faced with the task of trying to keep his supporters and himself energized.
Dean's speech was entirely appropriate under that scenario.
What's more, everybody who has commented about "the scream" knows it.
Dean's opponents, Republican, Democrat and unaffiliated, are pretending to think the speech was noteworthy. They know it wasn't, and they know they are pretending. Those members of the public who are reacting similarly also know they are pretending. They know the others they have heard reacting are pretending.
Everybody who has publicly reacted has agreed to pretend Dean did something extraordinary. Their reasons for pretending range from amusing themselves to gutting the Dean candidacy.
But they all know they are pretending and, despite the affected puzzlement or concern in the voices of cable news media whores delivering the story, they all know that they, themselves, were not "disturbed" (or puzzled or concerned) by Dean's speech. They know Dean did not betray profound mental incapacity or lack of political savvy in the speech. Had they not heard someone else pretending the speech was noteworthy, they would not have noted it even if they had seen it.
The only thing that can be said is that candidates must be certain they know how vulnerable they might be to phony outrage contained in RNC blastfaxes and regurgitated by media whores, and be prepared to either aggressively turn any such phony outrage back onto those reacting phonily, or avoid any action that will provoke it.
The most that can be said is that, if the phony outrage harms Dean, he was not sufficiently prepared either to avoid or respond to the phony outrage over his speech (what a disgraceful "standard" for political performance we've sunk to).
But nobody thinks there was anything wrong with Dean's speech.