Friedman's garbled recollection of a major U.S. political movement is a reminder that someone who doesn't understand the politics of his own country is probably not going to give you a lot of help understanding the politics of other people's countries.
Time's Michael Crowley deserves some credit for saying this about the Tea Party movement, in his piece about how they largely won the debt standoff: The Tea Party movement has proved not only that people can have their own facts but also that they can use them to vast tactical advantage, crashing through the taboos of political convention and changing the game along the way. But in explaining the political origins of the movement, he writes: It is an article of faith in Tea Party circles that Washington and Wall Street are in bed together, colluding for power and profit […]
The New York Times' David Carr (9/20/10) compares involvement by media figures in politics–exemplified by CNBC's Rick Santelli and various Fox News figures fueling the Tea Party movement, and Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert's dueling answer rallies to said movement–to "a football game where the reporters and commentators, bored by the feckless proceedings on the field, suddenly poured out of the press box and took over the game." Writes Carr: "In politics, it seems as if the media is intent on not just keeping score but also calling plays." Regardless of what one thinks of any particular media figure's political […]
Ryan Chittum of CJR.org holds up (2/19/09) Rick Santelli's recent CNBC tantrum as "an example of what's wrong with a certain kind of financial journalism, the kind where people of like backgrounds spend all day staring at tickers and interviewing each other. As such, Chittum says, "the segment couldn't more clearly illustrate the disconnect between the financial-services sector, certain financial journalists and, you know, 'reality'": What sent Santelli, CNBC's hot-air, oops, "On-Air Editor," over the edge? The homeowner bailout. Of course, he didn't get himself into nearly this much of a lather over the trillions of dollars we've given to […]