The Absurdity of Dana Milbank and Bush's Body Language

October 12th, 2005 2:24 PM

Describing a brief interview NBC's Matt Lauer had with President Bush and the First Lady in front of a Habitat for Humanity construction project yesterday, The Washington Post's Dana Milbank was so obsessed with the President's body language that everything else he wrote about the interview got lost in his frenzied descriptions. For instance, regarding a question about prosecutors' interest in Rove, Milbank described the President's response as:

"Bush blinks twice. He touches his tongue to his lips. He blinks twice more. He starts to answer, but he stops himself. 'I'm not going to talk about the case,' Bush finally says after a three-second pause that, in television time, feels like a commercial break."

Another example of Milbank's observation of the President's body language:

"...during Bush's 14-minute pre-sunrise interview, in which he stood unprotected by the usual lectern. The president was a blur of blinks, taps, jiggles, pivots and shifts. Bush has always been an active man, but standing with Lauer and the serene, steady first lady, he had the body language of a man wishing urgently to be elsewhere."


"As Lauer went through his introduction, the presidential eyes zoomed left, then right, then left and right again, then center, down and up at the interviewer."

And another:

"When the questioning turned to Miers, Bush blinked 37 times in a single answer -- along with a lick of the lips, three weight shifts and some serious foot jiggling."

I could go on with more references to blinking, hitching trousers up by the belt, et al, but I won't. You can read the rest of it for yourself here.

My, my...has the liberal media nothing more to report than this kind of silliness? I saw the interview and well, at least FOX News focused on the substance of the interview, for instance, Laura Bush's statements regarding Harriet Miers, which Milbank completely fails to mention.

With this article is Milbank launching a new tact for the MSM to take in describing the President? Has the standard portrayal of his intelligence worn off? C'mon guys, this is not up to the standard of reporting the American people want. Is it any wonder they complain of bias?

Sharon Hughes is a Radio Talk Show Host heard on KDIA in San Francisco and Her weekly column appears in many recognized news sites. Sharon's blogs: Veritas and WOMANTalk