Wednesday, April 18, 2007

How A Pundit Is Made.

Combine three-quarters bullshit and one-quarter selectively picked facts. Seriously, if you were ever curious about where political pundits come from, this Wall Street Journal piece will interest you.

Every morning, Tammy Haddad, executive producer of MSNBC's "Hardball with Chris Matthews," hears from more than 100 aspiring commentators. They each explain why they'd be the perfect guest to spout off on the issues of the day. "We call them 'street meat,' " says Ms. Haddad. "They're always available, walking the streets, waiting for your call on their cellphones."

They are the minor-league pundits -- political consultants, professors, activists, actors, journalists, bloggers and opinionated civilians -- and they're using 21st-century stunts to troll for airtime. Some try to break out of the blogs by repeating particular phrases in their written rants, designed to pop their sites up when TV bookers search for keywords online. Others are buying air time on AM and Internet radio stations to practice their punditry. And many are turning to media advisers or partisan training programs, where they learn new rules of engagement, such as how to use food to bribe producers. The ploys can work, as networks like CNN regularly survey the field, looking for new contributors.

There but for the grace of God go I; despite my compulsive need to pontificate on subjects I'm clearly unqualified to do so on, the reason I have the day job I do is because I don't want to be in front of a camera.

The whole article makes punditry sound just like the same process for attempting to make it in movies, music, modeling, or any other form of entertainment, which heads right back to proving yet another adage of the Washington/political world: politics is Hollywood for the ugly.


Sanchez said...

So now bloggers are "minor-league pundits"?

Yeah, 'cause we're not as good as those 'professional' pundits that really know what they're talking about ehy?


Mini Me said...

I just read the article. It is interesting, thanks for the link to it.

BD said...

To hell with that. I don't want to be on MSNBC and if Haddad calls me I'm not answering. Exposure is overrated. I just need someone to pat me on the back and tell me I'm not an idiot once in a while.

I'll stick to triple A until I actually know what I'm talking about. Or can at least pretend as well as Steve Phillips.

Run Up The Score! said...

So that's how my cousin gets on MSNBC so often...