A Gospel Song at the National Press Club
The scoundrels at Gawker were impressed, or horrified, by the apparent success of this song at quelling the media at the National Press Club. I've been there a few times myself -- it's kind of an interesting place. The sort of journalists who frequent it are often the sort who believe in the old patriotic model of journalism. I mean by this that they believe that the press has a duty to the Republic, which is to ensure that the truth is understood and readily available to those of the people who wish to understand. These are the good guys of journalism, so to speak: they have their flaws, chief among them an inability to accept that their desire to avoid bias merely causes them to push their bias into their subconscious, so that they cannot honestly track it. Nevertheless, their hearts are in the right place. They seem really to believe that they are serving the Republic in the performance of their work; and I've occasionally been impressed by the kind of knowledge and analysis that they can bring to bear -- not from their own corps, as they lack the practical experience of the world that would let them have a capacity for either, but out of the various think tanks and organizations in D.C. who wish to have their voices heard. You can learn a lot by listening to the thinkers who come to talk to the press.
Watch the eyes of the lady seated at the table to Mr. Cain's right. I'm not quite sure how to characterize the glance she gives to the camera, although I might start at "disbelief." When the song is over, though, she joins in the cheery handling of the performance. Why is that? How many politicians would try to sing at a moment like this? Is it good that he does? Should more of us feel inclined to resort to beautiful and moving music to try to explain ourselves? If so, why? If not, why not?
By Grim on Monday, October 31, 2011