Green Room

So the British Press is sharper than ours? Part two

posted at 8:00 am on May 29, 2009 by

Last week I posted this story. Based on the fact that the story received only two comments, I’d say it’s safe to say not many people found this story interesting. Apparently the White House found this story less than interesting also; in fact, I’d say the WH let this story get under their skin a bit.

Nile Gardiner from the Telegraph/UK, responds to press secretary Gibbs remarks:

Robert Gibbs should apologise to the British press for his sneering rant

Politico has an extraordinary report on Robert Gibbs, the White House Press Secretary, launching a furious broadside against the British press. Here are Gibbs’ sneering and condescending remarks:

“I want to speak generally about some reports I’ve witnessed over the past few years in the British media,” Gibbs said. “In some ways, I’m surprised it filtered down.”

“Let’s just say if I wanted to look up, if I wanted to read a write-up of how Manchester United fared last night in the Champions League Cup, I’d might open up a British newspaper,” he continued. “If I was looking for something that bordered on truthful news, I’m not entirely sure it’d be the first pack of clips I’d pick up.”

Gibbs’ juvenile comments followed an article in The Daily Telegraph relating to the President’s decision not to release new photos reportedly showing appalling prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib by a tiny minority of military personnel. The straightforward news piece, hotly disputed by the White House, is based upon an interview with Major General Antonio Taguba, who oversaw the inquiry into the Abu Ghraib abuse scandal.

James Delingpole chimes in as well:

Memo to Obama attack dog Robert Gibbs: stop pooping on our lawn

Memo to US Press secetary Robert Gibbs

1. Congratulations. Your presidential regime has managed to secure the most supine, slobbering, spineless, unquestioning media coverage since Enver Hoxha’s Albania. A report last month by the Center for Media and Public Affairs said Obama has received more coverage than his two predecessors combined. On ABC, CBS and NBC news the majority of evaluations – 58 per cent – have been favorable. (Compare GW Bush – 33 per cent; Bill Clinton 44 per cent – in first 50 days of office). More importantly, you have Pravda. Yes, no less than 73 per cent of all evaluative comments in your chief propaganda organ – aka The New York Times – have been favourable to Obama.

2. Sure your congenitally libtard Mainstream Media were probably biased that way anyway, but you have played your part. Your combative style – which led you to dismiss the entire British print media just now in one glib, sneering phrase – has earned you the nickname “The Enforcer.” You have a reputation for coming down hard on any media outlet which doesn’t follow your approved version of reality. “I work the referee a little bit,” as you once put it. (A reference, perhaps, to when you played goalkeeper for your college football team).

3. If you are going to make clever-sounding football references displaying your rich understanding of the British press, try to get your terminology right. We call it the “Champions League.” Not the “Champions League cup.”

4. That’s only the beginning of your problems, matey. Your treatment not just of the British media but of Britain generally smacks of a risible ineptitude. First, you let President Obama send back the Winston Churchill bust. Then, you insult our visiting prime minister with a dismally low-key reception (worthy of a minor African head of state, not your closest and most loyal ally) and shoddy gifts (those DVDs). Then you compound the insult by having one of your monkeys declare, Chicago-politics-style, “”There’s nothing special about Britain. You’re just the same as the other 190 countries in the world. You shouldn’t expect special treatment.” OK so we know Obama’s not much interested in foreign affairs and has a special loathing for Britain because it roughed up his Kenyan granddad during the Mau Mau insurrection. But don’t you realise, that one of your jobs as his press secretary is to make out like he loves us so much even his underpants have a union flag on them?

5. Insulting the British print media. Big mistake. We know we’re not angels. We know we can go over the top sometimes. But unfortunately that’s a much bigger problem for you than it is for us. You see, while a lot of your mainstream media will hold fire on stories which they think may reflect poorly on your wondrous Obamamessiah – what his half-brother has been up to, say – we have fewer qualms about telling it like it is. So far, you’ve had a pretty easy ride. The Obama Kool Aid has proved almost as popular beverage in Britain as it is in the US. But just you wait till we start showing our teeth.

6. A lot of Americans know this. They appreciate our irreverence. They enjoy our frank criticisms of all the myriad areas where Obama is getting it so badly wrong – everything from his disastrous cap and trade measures, to his brutal treatment of Chrysler dealerships which didn’t support him, to his pork barrelling, to his failure to do anything that looks remotely like rescuing the US economy. That’s why they come to read us online: because they can and there’s nothing you can do to stop them.

7. We had a guy just like you over here once. Guy named Alastair Campbell. Did for our now heavily discredited prime minister Tony Blair what you do for Obama: a little light press bullying; professional turd polishing; that kind of thing. We hated Alastair Campbell, really loathed him. But he got away with bullying us because in those days we didn’t know any better. We were still going through this sort of dumb-cattle phase where we still had some vestigial respect for politicians and trust that they knew what they were doing.

8. But we don’t respect politicians any more. Not our politicians, and not yours either. Imagine how this new strain of irreverence bordering on utter contempt is going to affect our reporting of political affairs. Actually, you’ve no need to imagine. Just read some of our Telegraph blogs.

The Obama administration simply can’t handle negative critique in any shape or form. These people are behaving like juvenile teenagers. Press secretary Gibbs warning to the world to be very careful what gets said when referring to Judge Sotomayor, is another example of this thug juvenile behavior on display from the White House.

Recently in the Green Room:

Blowback

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hell, I’ll comment…..

He’s 100% right. Our press is in some kind of hallucinogenic haze around this administration.

I’m just quietly hoping that, at some point in the near future, the Obama administration FAILS SO BADLY and its pure idiocy is exposed for all to see so that we can get back on track to becomeing a responsible America for Americans again.

*me jumps off soapbox*

wildweasel on May 29, 2009 at 8:31 AM

Based on the fact that the story received only two comments, I’d say it’s safe to say not many people found this story interesting.

I don’t think the lack of comments reflects on how interesting the story might be.

I noticed that Greenroom stories generally don’t get many comments unless you promote them off the extreme right column. Stick that story on the main part of the page and I bet you get a lot more comments.

Daggett on May 29, 2009 at 8:48 AM

A lot of Americans know this. They appreciate our irreverence. They enjoy our frank criticisms of all the myriad areas where Obama is getting it so badly wrong – everything from his disastrous cap and trade measures, to his brutal treatment of Chrysler dealerships which didn’t support him, to his pork barrelling, to his failure to do anything that looks remotely like rescuing the US economy. That’s why they come to read us online: because they can and there’s nothing you can do to stop them.

I love the above quote, especially the part about “and there’s nothing you can do to stop them.”

That’s one flaw in Obama’s plan to get nothing but favorable press. The US MSM can cooperate with that plan all they want, but the foreign press will undermine their propaganda. Thank God for that.

Daggett on May 29, 2009 at 9:02 AM

I’ll add to your comment list by commenting that I read the Green Room comments every day, but don’t post. I love the addition of HA’s new Green Room.

jintrabar on May 29, 2009 at 9:08 AM

We had a guy just like you over here once. Guy named Alastair Campbell. Did for our now heavily discredited prime minister Tony Blair what you do for Obama: a little light press bullying; professional turd polishing; that kind of thing. We hated Alastair Campbell, really loathed him. But he got away with bullying us because in those days we didn’t know any better. We were still going through this sort of dumb-cattle phase where we still had some vestigial respect for politicians and trust that they knew what they were doing.

This quote is my personal favorite…

Keemo on May 29, 2009 at 10:24 AM

I miss picking up a Brit tabloid and thumbing through the hot babes photos…

And the Brit coverage of football is excellent, and written with passion, too.

But, what most miss about the British press is that their reporters actually investigate, spend a lot of gumshoe time and get stories, and write it up and get it published…unlike our MSM who simply parrot the most popular “stories” of the day and ignore any stories that require, um, require actual investigative reporting and a lot of gumshoe time.

Lately their reporting on US news items seems to be better written and with more focus than our vaunted MSM.

coldwarrior on May 29, 2009 at 10:33 AM

I didn’t comment on the first one, but I did run around the internet reading more stories from across the pond.

LOVE IT. They sound like Americans and the American media sound like…oh, i’m at a loss…my comment won’t get posted if I go with my first choice of words here.

bridgetown on May 29, 2009 at 2:21 PM

So far, you’ve had a pretty easy ride. The Obama Kool Aid has proved almost as popular beverage in Britain as it is in the US. But just you wait till we start showing our teeth.

Please bring it, British press, please oh please.

patriette on May 29, 2009 at 4:07 PM

Gibbs overstepped the mark on this one. The Brits are fed up with their government. It took a long time for the penny to drop over the shambles that was taking place.

The Australian lapdog press are still in need of an overhaul since Laurie Oakes still doing his lapdog dance. However, we are finding that the gloves have been coming off – I think that the move to increase the retiring age might have something to do with the change that is slowly happening.

Your own media has a long way to go, so if the Brits are willing to dish up the truth about what is happening, including doing an expose on the Chryslergate then I say let them give the left and the right hook to Obama and Gibbs.

I am not into the birth certificate thing but I am really starting to think that these documents must be produced sooner rather than later because if this guy is a fraud which seems likely then he needs to be pushed and impeached now, not later.

maggieo on May 29, 2009 at 4:26 PM

8. But we don’t respect politicians any more. Not our politicians, and not yours either.
.
Sounds like the Brits are going to do the job(s) that [the] American(s) [Press] won’t do?   Man, I hope so!
.

martywd on May 29, 2009 at 8:46 PM

Um, if I had the energy I’d catalog all the insults the Brits threw our way since 9/11. Since, this mock outrage is directed at Obama, I’ll give them a pass this time.

promachus on May 29, 2009 at 10:32 PM

The British press have a lot of faults but despite their left-wing leanings they are like a rabid dog when they sense blood in the air- when they get that scent it doesn’t matter if the target of their ire is a left-wing politician or not.

It looks like Gibbs may just have outsourced investigative journalism to the UK.

Jay Mac on May 30, 2009 at 3:08 AM