Thursday, May 19, 2011

When Did the Truth Become 'Gotcha' Journalism?

Tina Fey recently hosted Saturday Night Live and resurrected her brilliant impersonation of Sarah Palin in a 2012 Republican presidential debate skit in which The Wasilla Wonder incredulously declares "I just hope the lamestream media won’t twist my words by repeatin’ em verbatim."

SNL and Fey were of course spoofing the real Palin, who has made many such accusations of media foul-play, including over her most embarrassing encounter when famously asked by Katie Couric what books and magazines she reads. That interview was the beginning of the end for Palin's 2008 vice presidential bid.

And just this week, as his 2012 presidential candidacy appeared to be imploding, the real Newt Gingrich, when asked by Fox News' Greta Van Susteren about his $500,000 Tiffany credit card balance, refused to answer and claimed he won't play "gotcha games."

Gingrich also this week defended his disastrous "Meet the Press" interview Sunday morning--in which he attacked the GOP, Rep. Paul Ryan and his Medicare plan--by claiming "I didn't go in there quite hostile enough, because it didn't occur to me going in that you'd have a series of setups. This wasn't me randomly saying things. These were very deliberate efforts to pick fights." Poor Newt. He maintains he was blindsided by the very crafty David Gregory and had no idea what to expect from this liberal attack show. You'd think that after appearing on the program 35 times he'd know what he was walking into.

When the proverbial shit hit the fan and his campaign appeared to be detonating after just one week, Gingrich, after telling Van Susteren he "made a mistake" in attacking Ryan's plan, then arrogantly declared "on the record" that any ad that an opponent might use against him which includes his actual "Meet the Press" comments will therefore be a lie. Jon Stewart summed up Gingrich's convoluted philosophy this way: "If you quote me directly utilizing videotape of my comments in context, you're lying!"

What is it with these Republicans and the truth? What exactly is "gotcha" about being held accountable for the idiotic things that come out of their mouths? We live in a digital age of 24/7 news coverage. Where anything and everything will end up on YouTube. But it's not the media that's responsible for making people like Palin, Gingrich, Donald Trump, Michele Bachmann and countless others look foolish. They do that all by themselves simply by speaking. To quote my late father Sol, the master of the malapropism, I say to these Republican dummies...If ya don't like the truth, get outta the kitchen.

1 comment:

Suzanne said...

I agree - you make good points. I have reposted on