Thursday, April 05, 2012

sloppy or evil? the perpetual question

NBC Nightly News, last night.  Oops, they did it again.

They devoted a couple of valuable minutes to the Big Question of the Day:  Does President Obama not understand the Role of the Supreme Court?

Um, the guy was a professor of Constitutional Law.

Presidents have frequently made political statements making it clear that they have a point of view on an issue before the Court. In fact, it goes back to John Marshall's first Court. Obama did not say "they can't do it".  He said, in effect, "I think it would be very bad if these 'activist, unelected judges' (a factually correct phrase, by the way) do this, and you (the public) ought to think about this."  There is a difference.

So NBC Nightly News is reinforcing the Talking Point that "this President does not understand the Constitution."  Thank you very much.

Then, to cement this, they continue by reminding us (by 'us', I mean potential voters with hazy memories and/or hazy understanding of logic), that this was the same President who, during a State of the Union address, called out Supremes, to their faces, while they were forced to be sitting there listening to him, that he was angry about an earlier decision they had reached about a 'campaign finance issue' (the exact words the reporter used).

See title of this post.

They (stupidly? deviously?) reinforce the 'he does not know the Supremes can overturn laws' meme, whereas, as the Rest of us know, the rap against Citizens United is certainly NOT that "they can't overturn a law" but "they reached a conclusion that flew in the face of established precedent, in a case that had been cherry-picked by corporate Overlords to open the door to a thorough corruption of the democratic process".

Never mind, I guess it's not worth going into that much detail, when the simple sound-bite ("President = Dumb") makes it easier to move onto the next Big Story (or commercial).

If they really wanted to honestly reinforce the point the President was actually making, rather than 'Citizens United' they would have made the quick reference to 'Bush v. Gore'.  Remember that one?  I still do.

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