White House Incurs Blogger Wrath, Battles Fox News

For a guy who just won the Nobel Peace Price, President Obama and his administration sure seem to be fighting with everybody these days.

As Brian Stelter reports in the New York Times, the White House openly considers conservative Fox News Channel to be a political adversary:

“We’re going to treat them the way we would treat an opponent,” said Anita Dunn, the White House communications director, in a telephone interview on Sunday. “As they are undertaking a war against Barack Obama and the White House, we don’t need to pretend that this is the way that legitimate news organizations behave.”

Meanwhile, comments attributed to an anonymous White House staffer by CNBC’s John Harwood have liberal bloggers and activists up in (figurative) arms. As Politico‘s Michael Calderone reports:

Harwood, recalling a conversation with a White House adviser about the “Internet left fringe,” said the adviser told him that “those bloggers need to take off the pajamas, get dressed, and realize that governing a closely divided country is complicated and difficult.”

The anonymously attributed slight kicked off a firestorm of blogger indignation, as this Huffington Post article documents. The White House has tried to stamp out the furor, issuing a statement saying, “That sentiment does not reflect White House thinking at all.”

A couple of things: First, I really hate that “bloggers in their pajamas” cliche. It’s almost as bad as the “what you had for lunch” nonsense that makes it into 90 percent of mainstream media articles about Twitter.

Second, part of being a blogger is the freedom to remain in your pajamas, 24/7, if you so desire. Take that right away from bloggers and all they’ll have left are second jobs lavish incomes. And that’s not change I can believe in.

Publish date: October 12, 2009 https://dev.adweek.com/digital/white-house-incurs-blogger-wrath-battles-fox-news/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT