Not a single individual in the room would have fessed up to it, but the room Ed Rendell spoke to on Sunday contained the closest thing that America has to undeserving feudal royalty. Governor Rendell addressed leading newsreaders of the three major TV networks. The Fourth Estaters present included Tom Brokaw, George Stephanopoulous and Bob Schieffer. He not only addressed them, but he dressed them down.
“Ladies and gentleman, the coverage of Barack Obama was embarrassing," said Rendell, in the ballroom at Denver's Brown Palace Hotel. "It was embarrassing."Politico (24 Aug, 2008)
“MSNBC was the official network of the Obama campaign," Rendell said, who called their coverage "absolutely embarrassing."
Chris Matthews, Rendell said, "loses his impartiality when he talks about the Clintons.”
Politico felt constrained by association from admitting that CNN was Barack Obama’s free, 24-hour infomercial. However, Matthews did successfully creep out about 1% of the American electorate by claiming a thrill ran up his leg every time he heard Obama speak. Rendell’s assertion is freighted with condign merit.
Rendell, however, does carry some less savory baggage into this discussion. He was Hillary Clinton’s advance man in Pennsylvania and has a history of winning votes from people who cling ever so bitterly to both bibles and firearms. He would punch anyone in the nose who told him that Barack Obama represented the heart and soul of his beloved Democratic Party.
Of course this isn’t about what peasants from Altoona want in a leader. It was about what the media tells them to except as a leader, and about whom their Union Rep has already told them they will vote for as a leader. Governor Rendell’s objections must have been directed to people who live in an alternate universe.
This became obvious, when the lovely, talented and never in the least bit politically partisan Judy Woodruff intervened to prevent anything unpleasant like an intelligent discussion from erupting.
At that point, PBS's Judy Woodruff, who was moderating the moderator’s event, said: "Why don’t we let Governor Rendell sit down."
That was met with applause from the crowd of big-time media figures, which included Arianna Huffington, Gwen Ifill, Al Hunt, and Chuck Todd
Woodruff, who cribs her arrogance from Jacques Chirac the way Democratic VP nominee Joe Biden cribs his speeches from Neil Kinnock, represents the manner in which the Democratic Party tries to represent the working man. Like House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who couldn’t be bothered with complaints about high gasoline prices because she was saving the planet.
Keith Olbermann tells us what’s good for us, and the bitter folk in the Appalachians had better shut up and swallow their medicine. We wouldn’t want to make a list of “The Worst People in the World.”
After this faux unity thugfest that the DNC describes as a party convention, the Ed Rendells will come back into line and the world will see a happy Democratic Party, infused with a belief in Hope and Change™. The forced grins, through gritted, green teeth, won’t be obvious enough to mar the festival. McCain propaganda memos aside, expect His Oneness to pocket a nice 7 point bounce from Operation Forced Belief.
Its two months later, when Obama and Axelrod have to go back to Governor Rendell hat-in-hand to win a nail-biter, that we find out the real truth. It may be this election, or it may be in 2010, but the Democrats will split like a rotted tree. They may go Bull-McCain, they may go Bull-Jackass, but they will go.
Or they could just go home and sulk. That may be all John McCain needs to limp across the finish line with the biggest upset win since Truman beat Dewey. Perhaps Keith Olbermann and Chris Matthews would get that headline wrong as well.