So much of what people call “news” isn’t hard facts. There’s a less favorable word for it: publicity. When Democrats rule, news meets a dam, and publicity overflows.
On June 29, ABC’s “Good Morning America” aired several minutes of this, swooning over Jill Biden and promoting a preposterously positive cover story in the August issue of Vogue magazine. Nobody reads Vogue for hard facts about politics. The fashion magazine, run by longtime Democrat Anna Wintour, is a willing participant in glossy propaganda.
ABC reporter Janai Norman happily repeated that Jill Biden told Vogue: “I want the White House to feel comfortable. It’s like my beach house where you feel like you can just come in and your bathing suit is sandy, but it’s OK to sit down on the chair.” It’s not the People’s House. It’s a beach house.
Chioma Nnadi, editor of Vogue.com, gushed to ABC that the first lady has “embraced her role with both hands, and she’s also kept her role as a teacher, you know. She’s extremely inspiring as someone who can multitask with a smile on her face.”
The cover story comes with a bunch of pretty, posed pictures — of Jill Biden, Jill with Joe, and Jill with precious Biden grandchildren — all by star photographer Annie Leibovitz. Some have designer captions: “Dr. Biden wears a Michael Kors Collection sweater and skirt.”
Troubling family topics — such as Hunter Biden and his infernal laptop — are all airbrushed out.
Inside the magazine, writer Jonathan Van Meter turned to Mary Jordan, a Washington Post reporter, who hailed Jill Biden as “an underestimated asset … It’s hard to imagine Joe doing this without her.” Jordan regaled Vogue with all the parties she’s attended with the Bidens, and how they let everyone take photographs because they’re so very fun-loving and normal. Jill sprinkled Joe with a squirt gun! Aren’t they the best?
Servile publicity sounds like this: while Joe Biden hugs a kid waving a flag, “Jill lingers on the macadam behind him in black-and-white stilettos, looking every inch a goddess at 69.”
Van Meter then underlined how un-Trumpy this is: “It’s moments like this with the Bidens — hugging children! — that bring home just how incomprehensibly irregular and out of place our previous president and first lady really were.”
In Sugar Puff Land, Jill is both a “goddess” to be adored and “perfectly calibrated” for “a nearly pomp-free presidency.”
We’re subjected to happy talk about how “countless editorials began marking the first 100 days of the Biden administration, many expressing surprised relief over how much was getting done, how much legitimately helpful policy was moving through the system, how little drama, how few flubs or fumbles or ugly fights.”
To quote “The Lego Movie,” the theme song is “Everything Is Awesome!”
There was no Vogue cover story for Melania Trump. Three years ago, Vogue instead was celebrating porn star Stormy Daniels (complete with posed, pretty Annie Leibovitz portraits) as a “catalyst of historic proportions,” destined to ruin the Trumps.
These sticky valentines underline that, overall, journalists shouldn’t boast it’s their job to ask tough questions and hold powerful people accountable. Because they seem to do that about half the time. That’s the spin when the Democrats they supported didn’t win.
Democrats pretend everyone’s a Democrat. Vogue pushed Jill Biden on the cover as a “First Lady for All of Us.” That’s transparently false, but the liberal media lamely attempt the Jedi mind trick: “You will all adore, admire and envy Jill Biden in her stilettos, every inch the goddess at 69 … ”
Tim Graham is director of media analysis at the Media Research Center and executive editor of the blog NewsBusters.org. To find out more about Tim Graham, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.