By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

This may or may not be really awful

Perhaps the worst lede on a political column you’ll read this week comes from Peggy Noonan in the Wall Street Journal:

He is willowy when people yearn for solid, reed-like where they hope for substantial, a bright older brother when they want Papa, cool where they probably prefer warmth. All of which may or may not hurt Barack Obama in time. Lincoln was rawboned, prone to the blues and freakishly tall, with a new-grown beard that refused to become an assertion and remained, for four years, a mere and constant follicular attempt. And he did OK.

Media Nation is no Peggy Noonan-basher. I often found her insights during the presidential campaign to be valuable. But what you submit to your editor is supposed to be what you write after you’re done clearing your throat.

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7 Comments

  1. bostonmediawatch

    Peggy Noonan obviously misses the adrenaline rush from being told to be scared all the time.It’s like the people at that McCain rally who started booing when McCain said they didn’t have to be afraid of Obama”NOOOOOOO!” they screamed. Don’t take our fear away…

  2. Neil

    Letterman noticed the same thing–people casting about for something negative to say about Obama, can only come up with this level of criticism. Dave mentioned the teleprompter and said that it was such a grievous offense that perhaps Obama should step down. Then he showed a clip called “Teleprompter/no Teleprompter”, comparing…well, you can guess.This type of complaint (he “seems everywhere and nowhere”) is an example of itself. That is, it is the complaints themselves that are everywhere and nowhere.

  3. zadig

    Magical dolphins have assured me that Noonan is, and has been for many years, completely and utterly nuts. Any political insights she evinced in the recent election were purely accidental.

  4. The Arranger

    Ol’ President Weirdbeard did OK, so we should be all set with…I don’t know, who’s “willowy and reed-like”? Who’s a “cool..older brother? “Noonan is right…Barack Obama is a combination of Audrey Hepburn and Greg Brady…President Greg Golightly!The Arranger

  5. cavard

    Obviously Peggy Noonan was thinking too much when she wrote that. As they say, “keep it simple stupid.”

  6. An Astute Observer

    ‘atta boy!Anything to defened your ideological leader!(I suppose Noonan must be ‘irrational’ too!)It must be tough to leave your critical thinking at the door and always be “in the tank” for Obama.

  7. Mark

    Dan, you should write a post about Edmund Burke to see if it elicits the same knee-jerk hatred from your readers that every other post about a conservative does. I’m not sure if BostonMediaWatch or zadig read Noonan on a regular basis, but I assure you she is nothing but fair. Her column about the inauguration demonstrated that she is fully capable of giving credit where credit is due.To attack her as some kind of mindless neo-con is a ridiculously ignorant thing to. I’m a Republican, but I can name scores of Democrats and liberal journalists I respect. And yet it’s the Democrats that are supposed to be the ones so good as rising above petty partisanship.

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