RUSH: The Politico published a story a couple days ago in the evening: ”White House Reporters Phoning It In?’ — President Barack Obama traveled to Chicago Monday for a major speech on health care, but most of the reporters who cover him every day stayed in Washington and watched it all on TV. For media observers, it felt like a milestone moment: While reporters sometimes skip short fundraising-only trips or journeys in the waning days of a presidency, it’s hard to remember a time when a president, in the prime of his presidency, traveled outside Washington for a major policy address just to have the press stay home. The reason for the change is simple: money.’
I wonder if this made Obama mad, all these adoring lapdogs staying home, staying in the office and watching on television. I have another theory. Why go? You don’t need to go. You love the guy, you can love him from Chicago, from Washington for a couple hours. What’s the point of going? It is a hassle to travel with the president. Why the hell go. They didn’t expect any big news there; they had the speech in advance. You know, we used to have a watchdog media. That’s what they were called, watchdog media, today it’s a lapdog media, it’s state-run, government-run media. But even at that, Obama is miserable. Last night on CNBC he talked to John Harwood who asked this question: ‘Media critics would say not only has it not come, but you have gotten such favorable press either because of bias or because you’re good box office, that it’s hurting the country because you’re not being sufficiently held accountable for your policies. Could you assess that for us?’
OBAMA: It’s very hard for me to swallow that one. First of all, I’ve got one television station that is entirely devoted to attacking my administration. I mean, that’s a pretty —
HARWOOD: I assume you’re talking about Fox?
OBAMA: That’s a pretty big megaphone and you’d be hard-pressed if you watched the entire day to find a positive story about me on that front.
RUSH: Oh, there he is whining about Fox News. He owns every news outlet in America and around the world, and he’s whining and moaning about Fox News. Fox News is great, but the size of their audience pales in comparison when you add up every other media organization in the world that is run by Barack Obama. Now, what is it, a week from tonight I have a suggestion for my buddies at Fox News here. A week from tonight, two things will happen in the White House via ABC News, which is no longer independent. ABC News is part of the State-Run Media. The World News Tonight with Charles Gibson will originate from the Blue Room of the White House. The focal point will be health care. Later on 20/20 ABC will originate a program on Obama’s health care proposal from the East Room. There will be no opponents, no critics.
Now, this is ABC joining forces with the Obama administration to push a very important policy to him. How many of you understand that as an organization, or as an industry, and as journalists are taught, both sides of the story have to be part of every story? In fact, sometimes it gets maddening. Every story you see, every story you read is this way, it’s structured this way ’cause this is how these people are taught. Okay, so you have the premise of the story, and then there’s always somewhere in the story, ‘but critics say….’ Now, depending on who the critics may be few and far between, but still, the critics are there. Both sides of the story, that’s the structure, that is the theory, that’s how they’re taught. Do you know what some media guy at the Poynter Institute, which is a trade group that analyses media and advises it, ‘Hey, look, you know, this notion about having opposing points of view, that’s not what the news is, that’s not the requirement, this network can cover both sides of this, they don’t have to have opponents in there from the RNC, they don’t have to have Republicans in here objecting to this.’ So Obama is even standing on its head one of the tenets, quote, unquote, of journalism, State-Run Media.
Now what? What should be done on Wednesday night on counter-program this? I have an idea for my buddies at Fox. On the network, on the television network, run a movie, the Manchurian Candidate. On the news channel, devote every show to health care with nothing but opponents, starting with — well, Shep won’t do it. Start with Bill O’Reilly. No, start with Beck. Get a head start, start with Glenn Beck at five o’clock, get nothing but opponents, since Obama is so upset with Fox anyway, since he doesn’t get a fair break, let’s just make it happen. It’s not true anyway what he said about Fox. He’s got countless Democrat contributors on that network that are constantly defending Obama. But go ahead, starting with Beck, do a show on Obama’s health care with nothing but opponents. It doesn’t have to be Republicans, just nothing but opponents, scholars, think tank people. Then O’Reilly picks it up and then Hannity does it, and then Greta does it. (interruption) Why are you frowning at me, El Snerdbo? Not gonna get arrested. He’s not Chavez yet, arresting media. He’s not there yet.
But anyway, if state-run ABC can go in there and do their news from the East Room, do you think Fox will ever be doing that? You think Fox will ever do a special from the Blue Room or East Room? So just counter it. Just counter it and promote it big time. Nobody else will be willing to do it. You don’t have to worry about CNN doing it. You don’t have to worry about those klutzes over at CNN doing it. Fox is the natural place to do this. Just run a prime-time counter, including Beck at five o’clock on the reasons Obama’s health plan is bad, why it won’t work and what it really will mean to people. Go ahead and let 20/20 have their one-hour of state-run propaganda from the East Room and let Charlie Gibson have his 30 minutes of news from the Blue Room. I take it back. It’s 22 minutes of news from the Blue Room. And then over on the Fox network, it’s summertime, you’re not going to have to broom American Idol or ’24’ for it, go in there and show the Manchurian Candidate. It’s what I would do.
Sound bite here, it’s just ridiculous. It’s nonsensical. It is absurd. In a CNBC interview last night, Obama is asked about deficits, spending, taxing health care, and all of this. ‘Specifically are you open to curbing benefits for entitlement programs, more means testing, raising the retirement age for Social Security?’ Listen to his answer here.
OBAMA: Well, uh, this is something that keeps me awake at night. There’s no doubt that we got a serious problem in terms of our long-term deficits and debt.
OBAMA: I make no apologizes…
RUSH: Stop the tape. Who created it? This is what’s absurd about this. He’s losing sleep over himself! Cue it back to the top. He’s losing sleep over himself. I’ll try to go through this without stopping again but it’s tough, folks. It’s tough to be lied to like this. It’s tough to be insulted like this, to have your intelligence insulted like this, and sit here and not say anything.
OBAMA: Well, uh, this is something that keeps me awake at night. There’s no doubt that we got a serious problem in terms of our long-term deficits and debt. I make no apologizes for having acted short-term to deal with our recession.
OBAMA: I think the vast majority of economists, conservative and liberal, felt that extraordinary interventions were necessary to prevent us from slipping into a potentially deep depression.
RUSH: No, they don’t!
OBAMA: As soon as this economy recovers — and that means planning now and starting to take some steps now to deal with it — we’re going to have to close that gap between the going in and the amount of money going out.
RUSH: It’s a bunch of BS. Stop the spending! Look the stimulus isn’t working right, and so far only four to 7% of it has been spent? Cut the rest of it! It isn’t working. There’s at least $700 billion we could save, and you might be able to sleep a couple more minutes at night. (interruption) No, I don’t think he’s losing sleep over anything. I think this guy… If he can’t sleep it’s, because he’s excited. If he’s losing sleep, it’s because he’s excited. He cannot believe how easy it is to take over all this stuff! He can’t believe how easy it is to fool all these people. He can’t believe what a stroke of good luck that an opposition party doesn’t exist. He can’t believe that there’s not one Republican that will stand up and say, ‘Stop this!’ I’m sure he can’t… Well, I take it back. With this guy’s ego, he probably is focused on Fox. He’s never been criticized in his life. He’s never been laughed at. I mean, folks, this is just… This is like Colonel Sanders saying, ‘We gotta stop killing and eating chickens.’ Now, this next one. After saying, ‘We’re going to do all this stuff. We gotta stop this recession. We gotta act fast! We gotta do this; we gotta do that. We gotta plan now for the recovery,’ the next question was, ‘Do you think unemployment will hit 10%?’
HARWOOD: You do? This year?
OBAMA: Yes. Uhh, I think that what you’ve seen is that the pace of job loss has slowed and I think that the economy is going to turn around, but as you know, jobs are a lagging indicator. Uhh, and we’ve gotta produce 150,000 jobs every month just to keep pace, just to flatten this out.
HARWOOD: So when will it start to come down?
OBAMA: You’re starting to see the engines of the economy turn. It’s going to take a long time.
RUSH: (long sigh) Okay, so you’re still losing your job; it doesn’t matter. You’re ‘a lagging indicator.’ We’re not going to look at you.