This is why we can’t have nice things

July 20, 2009

At DailyKos, a commentator posts a revealing interview request from Meet the Press host David Gregory (in re. the recent Mark Sanford debacle). The nut graf:

So coming on Meet the Press allows you to frame the conversation how you really want to… and then move on. You can see you have done your interview and then move on.

Now that sounds like some hard-hitting journamalism, doesn’t it? After the Great Orange Satan got ahold of the email, Gregory issued an explanation that raises more questions than it answers:

I meant my forum allows him to have the time to discuss the situation in a fullsome way, to say what he wants and move on. [emphasis mine]

Ahem… The word “fullsome” doesn’t exist. Perhaps you meant…
fulsome: Middle English fulsom copious, cloying, from full + -som -some
1 a: characterized by abundance, copious b: generous in amount, extent, or spirit c: being full and well developed
2: aesthetically, morally, or generally offensive
3: exceeding the bounds of good taste, overdone
4: excessively complimentary or flattering, effusive
(Source: Merriam-Webster Online)

It’s The Great Falafel-Loofah Controversy of 2004 all over again! Does this man, who ostentibly works in the communications industry, simply not know the difference between the two words (“fully” and “fulsome,” in this case)… or did he mean exactly what he said?

Allow me to defer to Glenzilla on this one.

I think there are a lot of critics who think that . . . . if we did not stand up and say this is bogus, and you’re a liar, and why are you doing this, that we didn’t do our job. I respectfully disagree. It’s not our role.

That was David Gregory last May, asked whether the press had enabled the Bush Administration’s push to invade Iraq. (video here)

Yeah, he means it, all right. If this kind of thing is SOP among the elite of my profession, I suppose it’s no surprise that David Brooks would go ahead and give away the secret of how to succeed in the news business without really trying…

UPDATE:What do I regret? Well, I regret that in our attempt to establish some standards, we didn’t make them stick. We couldn’t find a way to pass them on to another generation.Walter Cronkite, RIP


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