Obama: Give the media its ball back

Happy New Year! Which is harder: the mental or the physical recovery from a prolonged and unusually sedentary holiday break? Answers welcome.

While we sort out that quandry, below is Jon Friedman’s (WSJ) opinion on what Obama can take away from Bush’s media interaction. The most interesting part of the commentary is the observation that the new administration needs the press on its side to successfully navigate the mess at home and abroad.

I agree, but I also believe it’s time we start thinking in different terms. The Iraqi invasion was widely acknowledged as a PR war: keep the U.S. enthusiastic, gain mindshare in Iraq. The administration began by “using” the media, spiraled into “abusing” it, within a few years had destroyed the credibility of the press, the government, and America as a whole. In a very real sense, the Bush administration took the kickball away and ruined the game for everyone.

Well done!

The new administration should not be thinking about how to use the media. They should be thinking about the best course of action and then allowing reporters to do their job. The world of journalism may have changed radically in the past five years, but we can prevent its principles from disappearing by granting them the respect they earned over the course of two hard-fought centuries. Give the damn ball back.


One Response to “Obama: Give the media its ball back”

  1. Russ G Says:

    The physical (i’m getting old)…

    Happy New Year!

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