Obama Scolds Journalist for Committing Journalism

 

There was a bizarre event at the President’s press conference Wednesday, one rarely seen in the past six-plus years. A member of the White House press corps asked Obama a difficult question. Major Garrett of CBS News cast a skeptical eye on the administration’s “historic” deal with the genocidal Iranian regime.

https://youtu.be/oh9TAagk9Ds

“As you well know, there are four Americans in Iran, three held on trumped up charges and, according to your administration, one whereabouts unknown,” Garrett asked. “Can you tell the country, sir, why you are content with all the fanfare around this deal to leave the conscience of this nation, the strength of this nation, unaccounted for in relation to these four Americans?” Garrett asked.

Behind Garrett, you can see spokesweasel Josh Earnest looking constipated. Obama was visibly agitated at the impertinence of a free press. The Lightbringer was so shocked to be asked a tough question from his fan base, it took a few seconds to gather his thoughts.

“The notion that I am content, as I celebrate with American citizens languishing in Iranian jails,” Obama said, followed by a long pause. “Major, that’s nonsense and you should know better.”

The President wasn’t the only person in the room to take offense. A fellow reporter piled on Garrett for attempting to hold the most powerful man on earth accountable. CNN’s Dana Bash called the question “disrespectful” while left-wing blogs cheered Obama’s dressing-down of the dissident scribe. Liberals on Twitter lost their minds, hurling all sorts of invective at Garrett.

These are many of the same people who thought it was “speaking truth to power” for an Iraqi journalist to hurl shoes at President Bush.

Garrett shrugged off the criticism as just part of the job. “Sometimes you have to take a scolding from a president to get to an answer,” he said. “Politicians, especially those elected as president, are very adept at creating straw men… that’s exactly what the president did.”

“Clearly it struck an nerve. That was my intention,” Garrett added. “Was it provocative? Yes. Was it intended to be as such? Absolutely.”

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  1. lesserson Member
    lesserson
    @LesserSonofBarsham

    Hats off to Major. Looks like the “free press” is dead, long live the steno pool.

    • #1
  2. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    I’d love to see the reaction if you say the President’s middle name out loud when discussing the Mullahocracy in Tehran.

    • #2
  3. user_82762 Inactive
    user_82762
    @JamesGawron

    Jon,

    Didn’t you know Major, I am the Obama! How dare you ask me a question that doesn’t make me look good no matter how absurd or inept my administration is. It is my divine right that all media shall make me look good. I am the Obama!!

    Regards,

    Jim

    • #3
  4. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Give the guy a break.  It’s not as if these American hostages are of the stature of Bowe Bergdahl.

    • #4
  5. Eric Hines Inactive
    Eric Hines
    @EricHines

    Keep in mind, too, that Garrett had a prior stint as White House Correspondent for…Fox News.

    He’s tainted.

    Eric Hines

    • #5
  6. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    President Humperdink to Major Garrett:

    President humperdink

    • #6
  7. lesserson Member
    lesserson
    @LesserSonofBarsham

    @Western Chauvinist

    Thanks, now I have to explain to the folks I’m riding with what’s so funny…

    • #7
  8. Misthiocracy Member
    Misthiocracy
    @Misthiocracy

    I’m torn on this one. I can’t come up with a good reason why I’m not 100% in favour of how he phrased the question, but it still irks me.

    • #8
  9. Pilli Inactive
    Pilli
    @Pilli

    Well, it’s started.  The “journalists” are starting to ask tougher questions.  Getting ready for the next President…a Republican.

    • #9
  10. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Misthiocracy:I’m torn on this one. I can’t come up with a good reason why I’m not 100% in favour of how he phrased the question, but it still irks me.

    Oh, it was phrased very poorly and not quite to the point.  Still, give him credit for calling attention to the issue.  People can rephrase it correctly in their own minds.

    • #10
  11. Eric Hines Inactive
    Eric Hines
    @EricHines

    Misthiocracy:I’m torn on this one. I can’t come up with a good reason why I’m not 100% in favour of how he phrased the question, but it still irks me.

    Consider the disrespect inherent in the question, and Garrett’s acknowledgment that he was deliberately provocative in order to draw out a response from No Drama Obama.

    Consider next at whom or what the disrespect (if I’m right, and there was disrespect) was aimed: the President, or the man who is the current President.  The man has well earned the disrespect, the office never.

    This man, especially, conflates himself with the office.  I keep waiting for him to start using the royal “we.”

    Eric Hines

    • #11
  12. Misthiocracy Member
    Misthiocracy
    @Misthiocracy

    Eric Hines: Consider the disrespect inherent in the question, and Garrett’s acknowledgment that he was deliberately provocative in order to draw out a response from No Drama Obama.

    The thing is, I generally don’t oppose questions merely because they are provocative, or even if they’re disrespectful.

    I really dislike questions that dishonestly put the subject in a no-win situation (i.e. the classic “when did you stop beating your wife?”), but the facts in the case of this question appear to be on the side of the journalist, so that can’t be what’s bugging me about it.

    I genuinely can’t put my finger on it.

    • #12
  13. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Misthiocracy:

    Eric Hines: Consider the disrespect inherent in the question, and Garrett’s acknowledgment that he was deliberately provocative in order to draw out a response from No Drama Obama.

    The thing is, I generally don’t oppose questions merely because they are provocative, or even if they’re disrespectful.

    I really dislike questions that dishonestly put the subject in a no-win situation (i.e. the classic “when did you stop beating your wife?”), but the facts in the case of this question appear to be on the side of the journalist, so that can’t be what’s bugging me about it.

    I genuinely can’t put my finger on it.

    He could simply have asked why Obama didn’t get those Americans freed as a very minimal part of the deal.

    • #13
  14. Johnny Dubya Inactive
    Johnny Dubya
    @JohnnyDubya

    A long silence such as that usually would have been filled with one of the president’s patented uuuhhhhh’s.  I guess we now know how to break him of that habit.

    • #14
  15. Trink Coolidge
    Trink
    @Trink

    Husband and I NEVER listen to B.O.   We each have a mute button.   But we watched his expression as he responded to Major Garrett.

    Smug.   Arrogant.

    When will this end?  This nightmare?

    • #15
  16. Johnny Dubya Inactive
    Johnny Dubya
    @JohnnyDubya

    The Reticulator:

    Misthiocracy:

    Eric Hines: Consider the disrespect inherent in the question, and Garrett’s acknowledgment that he was deliberately provocative in order to draw out a response from No Drama Obama.

    The thing is, I generally don’t oppose questions merely because they are provocative, or even if they’re disrespectful.

    I really dislike questions that dishonestly put the subject in a no-win situation (i.e. the classic “when did you stop beating your wife?”), but the facts in the case of this question appear to be on the side of the journalist, so that can’t be what’s bugging me about it.

    I genuinely can’t put my finger on it.

    He could simply have asked why Obama didn’t get those Americans freed as a very minimal part of the deal.

    I agree that Garrett could have done that and been less tendentious.  The second half of the question, pertaining to the CJCS was pointed but perfectly fine.

    • #16
  17. Muleskinner Member
    Muleskinner
    @Muleskinner

    Jon Gabriel, Ed.: A fellow reporter piled on Garrett for attempting to hold the most powerful man on earth accountable. CNN’s Dana Bash called the question “disrespectful” while left-wing blogs cheered Obama’s dressing-down of the dissident scribe. Liberals on Twitter lost their minds, hurling all sorts of invective at Garrett.

    The soft bigotry of low expectations…

    • #17
  18. HVTs Inactive
    HVTs
    @HVTs

    This episode reaffirms something we’ve known for a long time.  It’s very easy to get under Obama’s skin and throw him into a petulant tailspin.  The only thing that’s unusual is a journalist going beyond the set-piece softballs normally delivered up to Obama, which he filibusters with professorial rambling.

    It’s so easy, in fact, that it begs the  question: why have GOP candidates not done a better job of baiting Obama, luring him into revealing outbursts?

    • #18
  19. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    HVTs:This episode reaffirms something we’ve known for a long time. It’s very easy to get under Obama’s skin and throw him into a petulant tailspin. The only thing that’s unusual is a journalist going beyond the set-piece softballs normally delivered up to Obama, which he filibusters with professorial rambling.

    It’s so easy, in fact, that it begs the question: why have GOP candidates not done a better job of baiting Obama, luring him into revealing outbursts?

    They don’t need to bait Obama.  They just need to ask questions for which informative answers are needed.  When you try to bait someone and it doesn’t work you just end up looking stupid (or worse).  But when you try to extract information, even if you fail you win.

    • #19
  20. Vance Richards Member
    Vance Richards
    @VanceRichards

    Release of the Americans should have been a prerequisite to even begin having talks.

    • #20
  21. Kate Braestrup Member
    Kate Braestrup
    @GrannyDude

    Jon Gabriel, Ed.: As you well know, there are four Americans in Iran, three held on trumped up charges and, according to your administration, one whereabouts unknown,” Garrett asked. “Can you tell the country, sir, why you are content with all the fanfare around this deal to leave the conscience of this nation, the strength of this nation, unaccounted for in relation to these four Americans?” Garrett asked.

    In fairness—is this actually a question?

    Also—the syntax is strange, or something; what does it mean to be “content with all the fanfare…to leave the conscience of this nation, the strength of this nation unaccounted for in relation to these four Americans?”

    • #21
  22. Kate Braestrup Member
    Kate Braestrup
    @GrannyDude

    The Reticulator:

    Misthiocracy:

    Eric Hines: Consider the disrespect inherent in the question, and Garrett’s acknowledgment that he was deliberately provocative in order to draw out a response from No Drama Obama.

    The thing is, I generally don’t oppose questions merely because they are provocative, or even if they’re disrespectful.

    I really dislike questions that dishonestly put the subject in a no-win situation (i.e. the classic “when did you stop beating your wife?”), but the facts in the case of this question appear to be on the side of the journalist, so that can’t be what’s bugging me about it.

    I genuinely can’t put my finger on it.

    He could simply have asked why Obama didn’t get those Americans freed as a very minimal part of the deal.

    Yes—this!

    • #22
  23. Pencilvania Inactive
    Pencilvania
    @Pencilvania

    Well ok, good for Major Garrett, but can’t we do better than this? That was an incoherent question.  Obama was speechless for the first few minutes just trying to parse it. I didn’t get it myself till I heard Garrett’s 5 to 6 sentence translation of it to the news anchor.

    I also think there should be some respectful way for reporters to say to this or any President, “Kindly stop laughing at my question and treat it with the respect you so pettishly demand from others. It is a serious question that intelligent people want an answer to.”

    • #23
  24. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Vance Richards:Release of the Americans should have been a prerequisite to even begin having talks.

    Oh, no. I distinctly heard the President say this deal requires nothing of the Iranians. And that’s the brilliance of it, don’t you see?! ‘Cause if we had made any demands, we would have had to go to war with them.

    ‘Errr, somethin’.

    “This is the line of death. Cross this line, you die.”

    “Okay — never mind.”

    I wouldn’t let these dopes negotiate payment on a parking ticket. And they’re running the dang country!

    • #24
  25. Kate Braestrup Member
    Kate Braestrup
    @GrannyDude

    Pencilvania: Pencilvania Well ok, good for Major Garrett, but can’t we do better than this? That was an incoherent question.

    Okay, good. It’s not just me.

    • #25
  26. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Kate Braestrup:

    Pencilvania: Pencilvania Well ok, good for Major Garrett, but can’t we do better than this? That was an incoherent question.

    Okay, good. It’s not just me.

    Yes, let’s bash the guy for asking an important question because he didn’t ask it with excellent words.  That will encourage the media to stick their necks out again.

    • #26
  27. DocJay Inactive
    DocJay
    @DocJay

    If a reporter had projectile vomited on the president it would have been a good question. Whoever thinks the office deserves respect ( or a doctor, or anything) please understand that you’re the last generations that do. Times have changed for better or worse, mostly worse, and the brutal legacy media will accuse president Walker of anything to demean him. President Walker. That’s so comforting to write.

    • #27
  28. aardo vozz Member
    aardo vozz
    @aardovozz

    James Gawron:Jon,

    Didn’t you know Major, I am the Obama! How dare you ask me a question that doesn’t make me look good no matter how absurd or inept my administration is. It is my divine right that all media shall make me look good. I am the Obama!!

    Regards,

    Jim

    Goo-goo-ga-joob, goo-goo-ga-joob, goo-goo-ga-joob!

    • #28
  29. Steve C. Member
    Steve C.
    @user_531302

    First, the question reads worse than you hear it on TV. Second, does anyone think Obama would prioritize the lives of innocent citizens held hostage by Iran over achieving world peace in our time?

    • #29
  30. Ball Diamond Ball Inactive
    Ball Diamond Ball
    @BallDiamondBall

    Thank you Major Garrett for putting this guy on the spot.
    My problem with the question is that it’s a stunt. It’s a speechifying, self-puffing, overwrought Hannity/O’Reilly question.
    It’s better than what usually passes for journalism, but the only reason we’re happy to hear it is that there’s so little substance in these bicycle-seat-sniffing contests.

    So good for Garrett. I have my criticisms, but that’s small potatoes.

    • #30
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