Wednesday, June 2, 2010

"So lay off him"

This was Paul's advice for the journalists who attended his press conference Tuesday at the Library of Congress. The "him" was President Obama, whom Paul referred to as a "great guy." He continued, "...he’s doing great."

Now, while Paul may think this, and while it may or may not be true, he's telling exactly the wrong group of individuals to "lay off" the president. It is the job of journalists to keep watch on those vested with great power and hold them accountable. It's a mammothly important task, one essential to the health of our republic. In other words, the Fourth Estate emphatically does not exist to coddle or prop up or "lay off." I trust Paul knows this, but it seems his personal fondness for Obama got in the way, leading to a rather imprudent comment.

Clarification: I haven't seen video footage of the press conference, which means I don't know the tone Paul used when he delivered the quote under examination. If it was a joking aside or the context gives it a different meaning than the one I took from it, please forgive my rash judgment.

More quotes from the presser:
- “I intend to just try to have fun,” McCartney said, but expressed nervousness about performing “like, three feet away” from President Obama.

“It’s very special. It’s true, I’ve had some great awards, I’ve been really lucky on that score,” McCartney said. “But for an English kid growing up in Liverpool – the White House – that’s very special.”

- Responding to a question at the press conference regarding what advice he would give his fellow environmentalists about the BP oil spill, he said, “I’m not a politician,” but added, “it is a disgrace.”

“I think most of us think it’s a disgrace, and the fact that something like that can happen and the people who are to blame don’t have the ability to instantly cap it and clean it up is something that is going to be addressed.”

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