As of now, I am in control here, in the White House

White House Friendly-Journalist Policy Succeeds

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney the other day claimed President Obama has done something like a zillion interviews and just can’t stop talking to the press.

But as anyone knows who saw Steve Kroft of CBS purr while President Obama and Hillary Clinton sat down earlier this month to promote her 2016 presidential campaign, it matters a lot whom you talk to. And the White House is good at picking friendly faces.

One of them – and I don’t want to pick on her too much because she is recovering from a horrible illness – is Robin Roberts of ABC. Unfortunately, Ms. Roberts long ago abandoned political journalism and went into business as a professional Obama booster. She has a very powerful post as host of Good Morning America – one to which the Obamas are putting good use.

Right at the start of the administration Roberts gushed to Obama, “Mr. President – sounds good, doesn’t it” and then talked about how “beautiful” it was watching him and Michelle dance at the Inaugural balls and then zinged him with the prosecutorial “What are you going to remember the most” about the Inauguration Day.

The White House keeps going to Roberts, using her, for example, to stage Obamas “historic” coming out in favor of gay marriage.

And then last week, when Michelle began reviving her Let’s Move initiative, Roberts had a welcoming place for her on the GMA comfy-chair soapbox.

Mrs. Obama during the interview did her part for the White House effort to keep your self defense opportunity limited to one or two rounds, proclaiming that the Chicago girl who participating in the Inauguration and was then killed was shot by an “automatic weapon.”

Only, she wasn’t.

That’s when Robin Roberts did her part, editing out Mrs. Obama’s mistake. In an example of why we have Fox News, Fox’s America Live anchor Megyn Kelly edited it back in. Have a look:


This is a scandal. I wish Roberts the best of health, but it’s such an obscene violation of journalistic ethics that ABC should launch a full investigation and if she was tampering with the news, she should be removed from her position or at least be forced to issue an apology.

Of course, ABC won’t do any such thing. Roberts hopefully will stay well and and enjoy a wonderful life. But journalism is dying.

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36 Responses to White House Friendly-Journalist Policy Succeeds

  1. ABC jumped right on the oooops to as soon as they were caught, stating it was cut out due to “time constraints” . Yea right, and I am in running for the next Pope.

    OT – did you see MO in her google+ show today said dogs need to MOOOOOOve also??

    It’s time for her (MO) to go on vacation again, or I will have to get a new tv control because I will have broken both the mute and change channel buttons.

  2. There’s no doubt, and plenty of proof, that some who call themselves journalists are far from the principles of their chosen profession.
    The creative editing of MrsO’s interview is striking in that ABC network gurus actually think what she says on any policy is important.
    Anyone who has listened to her talk off-teleprompter, or give her un-scripted opinion on anything knows that she’s either pretending to be dumb, or she had to have graduated at the very bottom of her classes in law school.
    She’s over-hyped as something she’s not, over-exposed to where people groan when they see her on some media, and nothing she says is very important anyway.

    IMO, MsRoberts is not a journalist, she is a TV personality who does puffy interviews with people she admires. We know that she is in the fight of her life, and wish her well. We also know that ABC is using her personal struggle with cancer as a cold-hearted means to ramp up ratings.
    Just as the anti-gun crowd brings the disabled GabbyGiffords as a show and tell to their rallys and government hearings, ABC shares their shame.

    • I agree, “MsRoberts is not a journalist, she is a TV personality who does puffy interviews with people she admires. We know that she is in the fight of her life, and wish her well.”

      I doubt Ms Roberts had anything to do with the editing of her piece. That’s the role of the producer.
      Nor do I think Ms Roberts would know if Michelle made a mistake, even if Michelle had said the young Chicago victim had been killed by a fork and a spoon.

    • I read that when she popped up on the Oscars, the entire press booth groaned at once. The press is as sick of her as we are. Unfortunately, they won’t say so because it could cost the organization they work for access to the White House. And yes, the White House is that petty!!

    • From a FOX newsite:
      During a Google+ Hangout session today, First Lady Michelle Obama was asked how parents who live in bad neighborhoods can help their children safely exercise outside.

      The First Lady advised schools and churches as good safe havens for kids to conduct physical activity and encouraged parents to take their kids indoors “because it doesn’t take the great outdoors to be moving everyday.”

      “Schools are an important place to get our kids active again because that’s where they’re spending most of their day, but when I was growing up our church was that place. You know we did activities in the basement of our church and it seemed like the biggest basement on earth – but looking back it was a pretty small space – and we would do plays and workshops and learn the flute-a-phone. You know so the church was a safe haven for us growing up and we have churches all throughout communities that are in desperate need of safe havens for kids – and they can be safe havens for kids for physical activity as well. So again we as the community, the adults surrounding these kids, we’ve got to get creative. And I would encourage parents that if they also find themselves in a situation where they can’t get outside, then let’s figure out what we can do indoors because it doesn’t take the great outdoors to be moving every day. One of the things I do with my kids, I turn on the radio and we will dance and work up a sweat for a good 30-40 minutes, they’ll laugh at me, they have a good time but at the same time, we’re moving. So we want to give parents those kinds of tips and be able to reach every parent where they are because every circumstance is different, but we have to be creative and we have to understand that daily movement isn’t an option – even in areas that are not as safe as we’d like them to be – it’s just not an option.”

      I rest my case.

      • The mental images of Moo Moooooving ( I would assume to Beyonce’, complete with pelvic thrusts ) makes my eyes cross.
        Off to the tea trolly.

        • Here’s a two-fer for the “duct tape your head” Olympics; Mooch MOOOVING AND disrespecting The White House at the same time!

          Don’t look if you pine for days gone by, when a First Lady was expected to have some dignity and class;

          http://thefw.com/jimmy-fallon-michelle-obama-sack-race/

          Pretty hard on those old floors, nicht wahr? And notice that not even a POTATO SACK can hold THOSE buns…

  3. Objective journalism started the slow death spiral with All the Presidents Men. Reporters used to report the facts, and not be a part of the story. Today’s reporters try to inject themselves into the story. A big no no in the classical journalistic paradigm.

    • I think journalism started its death spiral long before the 70’s, Shofar. Walter Duranty was a reporter for the New York Times in the 1930s. He won a Pulitzer for a series of articles he wrote on Stalin’s reign in Russia. They were very glowing articles about Stalin’s Russia. All the while, he hid from the public view Stalin’s forced starvation of millions of Ukrainian kulaks. Not until 1980, fifty years after the fact and long after the propagandist died, did the New York Times publicly admit he hid Stalin’s genocide. His Pulitzer was never revoked.

      • C’mon, Susan, you can ALWAYS trust the press!

        “William Randolph Hearst

        According to journalist George Seldes:

        “Hitler had the support of the most widely circulated magazine in history, Readers Digest, as well as nineteen big-city newspapers and one of the three great American news agencies, the $220-million Hearst press empire.

        Hearst…was the lord of all the press lords in the United States. The millions who read the Hearst newspapers and magazines and saw Hearst newsreels in the nation’s moviehouses had their minds poisoned by Hitler propaganda.”

        Seldes recounts that the American Ambassador to Germany, William E. Dodd, told him that

        “[When] Hearst came to take the waters at Bad Nauheim [Germany] in September 1934…Hitler sent two of his most trusted Nazi propagandists…to ask Hearst how Nazism could present a better image in the U.S. When Hearst went to Berlin later in the month, he was taken to see Hitler.”

        Seldes reports that a $400,000 a year deal was struck between Hearst and Hitler, and signed by Doctor Joseph Goebbels, the Nazi propaganda minister. “Hearst,” continues Seldes, “completely changed the editorial policy of his nineteen daily newspapers the same month he got the money.”

        In court documents filed on behalf of Dan Gillmor, publisher of a magazine Friday, in response to a lawsuit by Hearst, he states:

        “Promptly after this visit with Adolf Hitler and the making of said arrangements… plaintiff, William Randolph Hearst, instructed all Hearst press correspondents in Germany, including those of INS (Hearst’s International News Service) to report happenings in Germany only in a friendly manner. All of correspondents reporting happenings in Germany accurately and without friendliness, sympathy and bias for the actions of the German government, were transferred elsewhere, discharged, or forced to resign.”

        In the late 1930s, Seldes recounts, when “several sedition indictments [were brought by] the Department of Justice…against a score or two of Americans, the defendants included an unusually large minority of newspaper men and women, most of them Hearst employees.”

        Source: Randy Davis, “Nazis in the Attic”
        http://www.emperors-clothes.com/articles/randy/swas1.htm

        http://coat.ncf.ca/our_magazine/links/53/hearst.html

        Unless, that is, you can’t…

      • Was the NYTimes sure he knew about it? It is doubtful that Stalin allowed him to see anything other than what Stalin wanted known and written about. And a forced famine would not be something Stalin would want the rest of the world to know about. All foreign travelers in Russia at this time were escorted and only permitted to see what made the government look good. A forced famine would not be among the things that made the government look good.

  4. While Michelle Obama has about as much credibility when it comes to guns as “Shotgun” Joe Biden, Robin Roberts may be unfairly singled out here. While she’s not an in-depth journalist, she likely didn’t make the decision on this Obama-friendly edit. More likely the producers made that call.

    OTOH, since Michelle (like her husband) has a law degree, and should be adept at the parsing of words (as her husband clearly is), when she spoke of the automatic weapons those kids didn’t need, isn’t the obvious question: Precisely which automatic weapons did those kids need?

    While we’re at it, isn’t it time this “debate” actually got and stayed on topic? Bloomberg (who financially backs much of this) heads “Mayors Against Illegal Guns”. Aren’t all law-abiding Americans against illegal guns? So why don’t we focus on guns that are illegal and the perps who use them instead of punishing those who legally arm themselves against those with illegal guns?

    • I’m not arguing with your points, they’re all good and reasonable. My position is that an American citizen can never have an “illegal” gun when our constitution says we have the RIGHT to bear arms.
      It’s not the “right” to bear a certain firearm, and no governing agency has the ‘right’ to declare this or that firearm illegal for any reason.

      • You pretty much nailed it — Obama’s people want the ability to declare which guns are illegal. I believe Bob Woodward called that “moving the goal posts”. Obama, Bloomberg, GIffords, Kelly, Schumer, et al would be a lot more effective if they concentrated on prosecuting those who use guns for illegal purposes, and protecting the rights of those who own guns to protect themselves from the aforementioned perps.

      • I asked an attorney friend of mine to define an illegal gun. He said an illegal gun is one that is not registered. Nothing about the type of gun.

  5. Sometimes I think “news” is just one big personality sink, sympathy factor for sick (TMI), hairstyles, wigs, gushy non-questions, fake smiles, red carpets, accusations, talking pts….one big blob.

  6. Journalism RIP.. We’re left with disgusting state-run media and no one seems to have the vaguest notion how we would ever resurrect what once was.

  7. OT: Here’s a freebie Obots, blame the death of 87 year old woman at a Bakersfield, CA. nursing home because she failed to receive CPR from a staff nurse due to the ” GOP sequester ” cuts.

    • She had a DNR registered with the nursing home. She had given instructions not to be resuscitated if she died. Had nothing to do with sequestration.

  8. Mr. Koffler,
    How do you work being a member of this current “WH press corps”?

    NO offense to you Keith, but how do you show up and work at this WH with all the Lies & Propaganda the Obama WH spews, and NO ONE in the “WH press corps” (your co-workers) ever questions…

  9. ah, just another day at ABC as far as I cam concerned.

    I’ve been outraged by so many things the obama press does, stuff like this barely others me any more

  10. I’m no longer surprised by anything like this. It’s simply another case of one of the Obamas making a huge mistake in what they say with no teleprompter or notes, and then their friends in the lame stream media covering it up for them.

    As far as Robin Roberts, I agree with srdem65’s opinion completely:

    “MsRoberts is not a journalist, she is a TV personality who does puffy interviews with people she admires. We know that she is in the fight of her life, and wish her well. We also know that ABC is using her personal struggle with cancer as a cold-hearted means to ramp up ratings.”

  11. The foruth estate has no spine, no direction, no ambition other than to keep those ratings up. They are like the Florida Chamber of Commerce weather reports-“Its all wonderful, come on down!!” While the hurricane rages….

    A politican without airtime/copy withers on the vine, but THAT will never happen. Pity.

    • The Florida Chamber of Commerce has NEVER suggested that people come on down during a hurricane. In fact, they ask people who are visiting to leave so as not to further burden the first responders and others involved in keeping us safe during a hurricane. I know it was probably snark, but felt I had to set the record straight in case someone missed that it was snark.

  12. Keith, Educate me here. I agree about journalism is dying or even dead. But is Robin Roberts really responsible? I would assume that some editor cut the tape and let it air. Does the interviewer have control over the entire segment? How does this work? What is the process for shows like GMA?

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    It’s not difficult to know about the link amongst extra extra bodyweight and hypoglycemia. There is a Cherry-Almond Smoothie in the book will be Gaga s dangerous dieting gassy habits.