Woefully Out of Touch–58eh.,b58

The Scrapbook has slowly begun to grow accustomed to the idea that Donald Trump—Donald Trump!—is going to be sworn in next month as president of the United States. What we continue to be shocked by is how out of touch the entire Democratic party appears to be. Had we understood just how clueless they were, the election result might not have been so shocking.

Let’s start with the sitting president. There is always a danger that presidents will become cocooned and out of touch after years in the White House, and certainly Barack Obama’s arrogance gave reason to believe that this might become an issue for him. And it has! The president recently granted an interview to Rolling Stone that confirmed an astonishing estrangement from the real world. Discussing Trump’s victory, he offered this theory: “Part of it is Fox News in every bar and restaurant in big chunks of the country.”

What, pray tell, is he talking about? “Hey, barkeep, can you turn off the game—Megyn Kelly is on,” is a statement we’re confident has not yet been uttered from any barstool in America. Occasionally in airports or hospital waiting rooms, the supposedly neutral CNN is inflicted on unsuspecting citizens, but opportunities to see Fox, much less any cable news, in public spaces are pretty rare. Fox may be the highest-rated cable news network, but its ratings are small potatoes compared to network news and minute compared with TV entertainment.

Also, how many times has Obama now singled out Fox News during his presidency? The White House even tried to shut them out of the press briefings at one point. Donald Trump has done the same sort of thing but with this key difference: Whenever Trump attacks, say, CNN, the entire media reflexively condemn him. Obama, to very little notice, has spent the last eight years pretending that the fact millions of people seek out media sources presenting views opposing him is an affront.

Rolling Stone also asked Obama about the challenges posed by a fracturing media landscape. In response, the president floated the crackpot idea of government subsidies for media—while also attempting to strike an optimistic note. “Good journalism continues to this day,” he said. “There’s great work done in Rolling Stone.” Perhaps he was being polite because Rolling Stone has put him on its cover an absurd 10 times. But we’re honestly not sure he’s even aware that the magazine just lost a staggering libel lawsuit.

source std, weekly std


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