Tuesday, August 26, 2008
As my TV shifted from round-the-clock sports to round-the-clock politics this past weekend, it also did something else. & It lost my interest.
I understand the need for party conventions. & I'm fascinated by them, in fact. & Politics is face-to-face talk, back slapping and hand shaking, not policy memos and staff opinions. & Decisions need to be made, and conventions are where that's done at the highest level. & Deals will be struck and compromises will be reached. & There may even be some hurt feelings. & But that's not what's being covered.
Network coverage of the political conventions & has been & like watching coverage of a major sporting event, except the on-air personalities are spending all their time interviewing the fans and cheerleaders. & Fluff over substance, like trying to live on a diet of cotton candy. & Feels good in the short term, but probably not the most fulfilling option available.
Want to make it newsworthy? & Embed a camera back stage. & Get some fixed cameras in place in the back rooms and wait for the fireworks, a la CBS' Big Brother. & Find an issue that's actually & in contention and cover both sides of the debate. & But don't show partisan speeches and "voting" that's a foregone conclusion and call it news. & It's as much of a farce as the so-called "Live" coverage of the Olympics was last week. &