"If he [President Bush] had engaged the press throughout his administration and used the press to his advantage, he would not find himself at the end of his presidency in a situation where he couldn't even come back for a simple photograph."
Here's another excerpt: "I think this president has never been comfortable with the press."
Hmmm, when's the last time you were comfortable with a group of people out to get you? a group who made fun of you and pointed out every single flaw?
I defy anyone to take a run back through the past eight plus years and find some really nice, or even balanced, reporting on George W. Bush by the mainstream media. Sure, they tossed in the occasional vague kinda-sorta positive bit of praise just so they could point and say "look, we tried, we're balanced in our reporting" but for the most part, President Bush couldn't get a nice story in the mainstream media if he wrote it himself and paid to have it included.
There was a brief respite after September 11th 2001, but that didn't last long, did it?
One thing that is patently clear when it comes to the media --- if they start out with the premise that you're a big bad nasty environment-hating, big-business loving Republican they're not going to change their minds and the bias is going to show.
When the media likes someone, like say, oh who might the media like at the moment? Maybe Barack Obama? The One they're throwing a party for after the Inauguration? When the media likes someone they don't look for dirt. They don't try to find the negative. They see everything through the prism of goodness thus it's easy to only see the positive.
Case in point is the lack of late-night talk show host jokes about Obama. Even though President Bush is leaving office, they can't stop with the nasty, biting jokes.
Stolberg's comment are very much like the statement a bully might make when caught beating someone up. "He started it, it's his fault I pounded him to a pulp."
Remember this joke that made the rounds via email:
The Pope visits Washington and President Bush takes him for a ride down the
Potomac on the presidential yacht. They're enjoying themselves when a gust of
wind blows the Pope's hat (zucchetto) off and out onto the water. The Secret
Service begins to launch a boat but Bush waves them off saying, "Wait. I'll take
care of this." Bush steps off the yacht onto the surface of the water, walks out
a ways and picks up the hat. Back on board, he hands the hat to the Pope amid
stunned silence.The next morning the Washington Post carries the story complete
with photos under the heading BUSH CAN'T SWIM.
It sums up the media's treatment of President Bush perfectly.
Here's a link to the video of Stolber's talk on Charlie Rose: http://www.charlierose.com/view/interview/9936