A Conversation With A White House Reporter

Chicago Dyke at Corrente has shared a conversation she had with a friend who is a member of the White House press corps. It's a very interesting insight into a job of which we have no little opinion (or criticism). One particular passage stuck out for me:

I can tell you what drives me nuts about some of the things I read - with the caveat that this is a silly exercise, because I'm about to paint a stereotype that doesn't apply even to a majority of bloggy criticism.

On the Right, I'm driven nuts by the notion that what my spouse does or did professionally means that my fair coverage of the current Something Bad for Bush is a biased hit piece, and the idea that because some percentage of reporters voted for Clinton in 1992 means, all reporting out of Iraq is really the hallucinations of Marxist seditionists. On the Left, I'm driven nuts by the notion that my failure to include Event X while writing about the current Something Bad For Bush is clear evidence of being a toadie for Karl Rove, and that my failure to jump up at a press conference and tell Bush he has blood on his hands means that I'm just another cog in the GOP machine. On both sides, it drives me crazy that people equate explaining with defending. On both sides, it drives me crazy to see plain-jane mistakes get dressed up as darkly motivated attacks.

What do you think? While it's clear that there are some in the media that inject their own biases into stories, and there are some flat out lazy journalists, is it dishonest of us to ascribe more malevolent motives when we don't see stories covered the way we think they should be?


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