Blogs > Cliopatria > Getting the Russert Treatment

Jun 3, 2004 1:06 pm

Getting the Russert Treatment

Am I the only one who thinks Tim Russert is trying too hard to prove that he's tough?

When he quizzed Nancy Pelosi recently he demanded to know if she agreed with Al Gore's big speech calling on Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz et al. to resign forthwith.

It was a good question to ask but Russert, his eyebrows arched, his eyes penetrating, his voice piercing, seemed to suggest that if she said she agreed with Gore's take, described as"far left," she should be ridden out of town on a rail.

Chalk up another of Tim Russert's Angry Man moments.

Moral outrage is well and good, but when an anchor interrogates guests like he's Eliot Ness and they're Al Capone, something's wrong.

And I don't remember him showing this kind of outrage when he interviewed President Bush a few months back. Was there nothing in the president's record which might have earned Russert's contempt?

Mea culpa. Years ago when I heard Republicans denouncing the media I was often aghast. The media were the good guys in Watergate and Iran-contra up against the bad guy Republicans. And I wished the media hot shots well.

But I wonder if Spiro Agnew wasn't a little itty bit prescient when he warned the country in 1969 against an overreaching media. Shouldn't the media moguls like Russert be a tad more humble? Their track record doesn't inspire confidence after all that they know so much that people should kowtow before them.

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