What the heck is up with the standard of tv-journalism these days? It seems to me that most broadcast reporters exist only to provide platforms for those in public office to spout their carefully-rehearsed stump speeches.
This morning, for instance, I was watching MSNBC while running on the treadmill. The subject of discussion was the congress' non-binding resolution on Iraq, due to be deliberated today. The morning anchorman was interviewing one of the few congressional Republicans left supporting Dubya's troop surge and, predictably, the congressman was criticizing his opponents as being in contradiction with themselves: "How can you say you support our troops but at the same time say you don't support their mission?"
It looked like things were going to get interesting when the anchorman interrupted him to quote the latest public opinion polls on the Iraq war. "56% of the American people no longer support the Iraq war, congressman. Are you and your colleagues out of touch with the tide of public opinion?" But then, typically, he allowed the politician to pretend he heard an entirely different question and respond to that instead. "Well, Bill," (I don't know if this was his name) "What I do know is that the American people overwhelming support our troops. This poll doesn't show that."
Ok, so it's contradictory for Democratic politicians to say they support the troops but not the troop surge, but when the American people do it, it makes complete sense? I waited for the anchorman to join the dots and call the congressman out on his fuzzy logic, but nothing.
Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. It never ceases to amaze me how politicians are allowed to side-step and dodge every question thrown at them, contradict themselves within the same breath... and yet our press just nod and move on to the next question.
In other news...
BA launches new baggage charges
Passengers will be limited to a single 23kg bag - unless they travel to the US or other countries whose rules are based on pieces of luggage, not weight. Travellers with an extra bag will pay £240 return for long-haul, £120 for European and £60 for domestic flights. The rules will not be fully enforced until 30 September - and those who find a single bag too unwieldy are exempt.
Let's hope this doesn't become an industry norm or I'm in serious trouble!