I was doing my usual blog browsing today when I stumbled upon a post at CrooksAndLiars.com showcasing an interview with President Bush by RTÉ (Radio Telefís Éireann). This was an old interview done in 2004 when President Bush came to Ireland to meet the Taoiseach Bertie Ahern before heading to meet with the EU. It was a contentious interview with some people feeling that the interviewer(Carole Coleman) went too far and did not show enough respect to the President of the United States:
THE White House has strongly criticized the RTE interview with President Bush, claiming that journalist Carole Coleman constantly interrupted him, preventing him from getting his point of view across.
Other critics were quite happy with the interview as those kinds of questions never get asked by journalists in the United States. This goes back to my post yesterday about the defeat of liberal point of view in the American media. Arianna Huffington often pointed this out in her book as did Eric Alterman, that not enough hard questions have been asked of the current administration. If you visit the original video at YouTube, the presenter suggests that this was banned in the United States however the interview was mentioned in the media:
Meanwhile, the interview was raised on the Larry King show on CNN, CBS, the New York Times where it was described as “contentious”, and in other media.
I was unable to find anything through Google where Larry King might have mentioned the interview but the New York Times piece on the interview was appallingly short with just three paragraphs. A bastion of liberal journalism somehow managed to let go of an opportunity to criticize the President and his Iraq war policies… I wonder why? Maybe because as suggested by research done by the Center for American Progress that even in the NYT, conservatives have managed to gain some kind of control.
On January 22, 2005 CNN had a discussion with Ms. Coleman about President Bush’ second term inauguration. The essence of the discussion concerned the increasing need for the media to discover what is really going on in Iraq. The problem is that 3 years later we still do not have an accurate understanding of the Iraqi situation, and no news organization with the exception of Al-Jazeera is able to provide an detailed account of what is going on.
My point is that the media needs to be asking the hard-hitting questions to both presidential candidates because letting any candidate slide because of his “war hero” status or his “charisma” is simply not acceptable. The next American President is going to have an aircraft carrier’s worth of problems to deal with and if the American people are to vote for the right person, the media needs to step up to the plate and get back to old-fashioned hard-hitting journalism.