Weekend Watchdog Wrap-Up

Bill Scher

The Sunday shows disappoint once again, going 0-for-3 for the Watchdog.

Despite the controversy surrounding Sen. John McCain’s claim that the “surge” strategy created the “Anbar Awakening” of Iraqi Sunni militias turning against foreign Al Qaeda fighters, when the Awakening began before the surge was even proposed, ABC’s This Week failed to ask him about the factual discrepancy.

Over at Fox News Sunday, “Fox News Analyst” Karl Rove once again was treated as an objective news observer when he remains a news subject in the middle of a brewing scandal. He was not asked at all about his refusal to comply with a House subpoena and testify about his alleged political role in the prosecution and imprisonment of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman.

And for NBC’s Meet The Press, my suggested question about David Brooks’ vapid column on Sen. Barack Obama’s Berlin address was admittedly facetious. But I offered it to highlight the predictability of Obama being asked about it — not as criticism from a conservative columnist, but as criticism from, in host Tom Brokaw’s words, “an early admirer of your rhetoric.”

Brooks very deftly manipulates his media peers in this way– giving the illusion of detached observation and political independence, offering some early praise for his political opponents so he can dump on them later in “brave” fashion.

Jason Linkins at The Huffington Post laments the ridiculousness of it all:

One of the most depressing parts of this Sunday morning’s political fare was the sad sight of Tom Brokaw flying halfway around the world just so he could dully recite Friday’s David Brooks column from the New York Times at a Barack Obama who must have been wondering if the National Broadcasting Company bought all their airtime at wholesale prices or something that it could be so wasted. Many commenters and emailers had the same head-cradled-in-hands-moaning sensation at the sight of it…

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