Would You Like Sugar with That?

November 13th, 2006 10:45 AM
Jack Shafer writes in Slate that the media are trying to sweeten up their relationship with the presumed new House speaker, Nancy Pelosi. The Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal are slathering "calculated praise" on the Democratic leader.

The Washington press is already ladling the sugar on Nancy Pelosi, and she's hasn't even been crowned speaker of the House yet. Yesterday's (Nov. 9) Page One story in the Wall Street Journal painted the presumptive speaker in such a thick coat of butter-cream frosting that I scarcely recognized her. Strategically placed after the jump to reduce professional embarrassment, Neil King Jr., Yochi J. Dreazen, and Greg Jaffe canonized their subject, writing:
Much as the president freely speaks of his conservative evangelical faith, Mrs. Pelosi reflects a Catholic sense of social justice when it comes to aiding the poor and disabled, and frets about missing Mass on hectic weekends.
Framing Pelosi's redistributionist views as an extension of her Catholic sense of social justice neatly removes her from the New Deal compost pile from which her political career blossomed. Pelosi's father, Thomas "Old Tommy" D'Alesandro, was a Baltimore political hack who held every office—state delegate, city council, member of Congress, mayor—but dogcatcher.
Acting "more like Pelosi's press secretary than a skeptical reporter," Washington Post reporter Lynne Duke says:
Theirs was the politics of the New Deal, of the hand up for those who were down.

"It was always about the progressive economic agenda for a fair economy, where many Americans, all Americans, could participate in the economic success of our country," Pelosi said yesterday when asked about the influence of her family's politics on her own.

"What I got from them was about economic fairness," Pelosi said. "That was the difference between Republicans and Democrats all those years ago." She also learned about the power of loyalty, both extending it and enforcing it.

How long will Pelosi be fed sugar? I think it would be as long as she's speaker. But Shafer says it could be until she fouls up.
How long will we be fed all this Pelosi pap? Until she screws up royally, which shouldn't be long, or until the press starts pouring sugar all over Sen. Harry Reid. Whoops! Did I write too soon? Mark Leibovich gives Reid the semi-sweet treatment in today's New York Times.