Post-Quality Journalism

Surely after the debacle of Robin Givhan's inane essay on “Hillary Clinton's Tentative Dip Into New Neckline Territory”, the Washington Post (DeLong deathwatch now down to four years) has learned its lesson, and would avoid wasting column ink on the candidates' — and especially the female candidate's — sartorial choices and perhaps instead try to write about their policy choices?

No such luck. Robin Givhan is at it again, with an equally inane article on “How She Looks” headlined “Wearing the Pants: Envisioning a Female Commander-in-Chief.” It's all about the colors of Senator Clinton's pants suits.

To be fair, it begins as it means to end, with a signal that the author hasn't got much upstairs: “The mind, so easily distracted by things mauve and lemon yellow, …” Um. Not the minds of most people I know.

Amazingly, given that start, it's actually downhill from there.

It's enough to make you channel Brad DeLong: Why Oh Why Can't We Have a Better Press Corps?

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5 Responses to Post-Quality Journalism

  1. shmuel says:

    Sadly it’s not the quality of the press, it’s more about it’s dislikes. The WaPo was and is against the Clintons (and actually against the Democrats). It’s also about not listening. Journalist do not listen carefully to what is said and how it is said. They don’t listen to Rudy or Hillary and they also totally deaf when Obama is concerned. The results are basically support of disgusting and aggrandizing. It’s not for Edwards and is for Oprah and it’s not for McCain but for Rudy.

  2. Ray says:

    This is a clue about Clinton. Clinton’s clothing and her comments about them constitute actual evidence of her choices, her character and her ability to read and understand human nature.

    It is one thing that Clinton wants to wear brightly colored pants suits. It is quite another that she wants to wear them and not have anyone comment on them. I can’t come up with an interpretation of Clinton’s behavior that is more favorable to Clinton than Givhan’s, can you? Clinton is either insane (she wants keep doing the same thing until the results change), a person who can’t learn from her experience (we’ve had Hilary watch for 15 years in the media, can’t she adapt?), or a calculating politician. Givhan is saying that Clinton is a politician trying to win the votes of the middle-aged women of Ohio and Florida. That is pretty much the kindest possible interpretation.

    I would say that this contradiction is typical Clinton, saying one thing while doing another and not being willing to tolerate any questioning about it. It is similar to her desire to paint herself as an experienced, knowledgeable leader, but not being willing to explain her foolishness and cowardice in voting to authorize to use of force in Iraq. Whatever happens, she’ll find someone else to blame – the vast right-wing conspiracy or the transparently lying administration.

    In any case, Givhan’s point about this contradiction in Clinton’s words and behavior is a reasonable phenomenon for investigation. If you want a better press corps, then you have to let them follow the clues that are staring them in the face. Clinton’s contradictory approach to her clothing choices is a clue staring everyone in the face.

  3. scarshapedstar says:

    “The mind, so easily distracted by things mauve and lemon yellow, strays from more pressing concerns to ponder the sartorial:”

    Uh, no. Don’t project on me. I’m not distracted by shining objects. Neither are most of us.

    Givhan is just a f*cking idiot.

  4. Melinda says:

    In fairness, they did the same thing to Mitt Romney this morning, although I was unable to actually read it. Apparently they’re doing “How they run,” “How they look,” and “How they talk” pieces on each of the leading candidates, and it’s maybe a wee little bit possible that they’re doing it as a sort of incredibly ham-handed response to the uproar generated by the cleavage and laugh pieces.

    It’s also maybe a wee little bit possible that this matters to a heck of a lot of voters. I hate to see the Post feeding the stupidity, but there it is.

  5. abdalla says:

    i’am going to learn how to write news, editorial and feature prgram.

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