Reprinted from Mike Malloy
MSNBC is treating tonight's speech and aftermath like it's the Superbowl, complete with non-stop pre-show coverage and a countdown clock. There are snazzy, rock-and-roll flash graphics showing Obama getting ready and leaving the White House, cut with shots of MSNBC anchors getting into position for their coverage tonight. I wonder who they have booked for the opening act -- Miley Cyrus or Howard Dean?
And they just aired a little snippet of Obama reclining on a chair, tie-less and so relaxed, sharing his feelings on his sixth time at the podium. That was weird. Are we now at a point where the CEO of the USA gives a staged, artificially casual commercial for his SOTU address? How it affects him, personally? His reflections on speaking to Congress?
Just seems wrong somehow. Not that the entire enterprise isn't faked to pieces, but this is too great a suspension of disbelief. Too artificially wistful. Way too obvious. And it further diminishes the alleged importance of the moment, but does justice to the concept of "news" marketing circa 2015.
Given the reign of Reality TV freakshows, I guess this is what the White House media managers think we want.
Speaking of freaks, the real entertainment tonight won't come in seeing who kisses whom, or who stands and applauds, or who shouts "YOU LIE" during the main event, but it will be when neophyte Neocon Sen. Joni Ernst (R/IA) issues the GOP rebuttal. If the clip of her press preview on MSNBC is any indication, they better lower her mic; she's a surprisingly tiny little Teabagger. Her pig-castrating prowess is even more impressive given her diminutive stature.
Even more amusing, the GOP announced it will also air a Spanish-Language version of the rebuttal, given by freshman Florida Rep. Carlos Curbelo. No doubt they are courting the Hispanic vote for 2016. But one wonders how Ms. Ernst likes the idea of her words translated en Espanol, given that she's a leading "English only" advocate. She takes it so seriously, she once sued Iowa's Secretary of State when he offered voters the option of a Spanish language ballot.