In an op-ed titled “Bowling 1, Health Care 0” in The New York Times today, Center for American Progress senior fellow Elizabeth Edwards laments that for the last month, the news media’s coverage of the Democratic presidential primary has focused on the “rancor” and “money spent” as opposed to “information about the candidates’ priorities, policies and principles“:
I am saying that every analysis that is shortened, every corner that is cut, moves us further away from the truth until what is left is the Cliffs Notes of the news, or what I call strobe-light journalism, in which the outlines are accurate enough but we cannot really see the whole picture. [...]
Did you, for example, ever know a single fact about Joe Biden’s health care plan? Anything at all? But let me guess, you know Barack Obama’s bowling score. We are choosing a president, the next leader of the free world. We are not buying soap, and we are not choosing a court clerk with primarily administrative duties.
“Watching the campaign unfold,” Edwards said, “I saw how the press gravitated toward a narrative template for the campaign, searching out characters as if for a novel.”