December 13, 2011

Yes, Chelsea Clinton's broadcast debut was wretched, but "Chelsea Clinton's career path has nothing to do with broadcast journalism."

"She is a statist-in-training."
This is not about Chelsea Clinton learning how to do news. And, remember, there isn't news in the news anymore. There's no news. That's just that's not why people turn on the TV. There's no news. She is dutifully learning the inner workings of television in order to learn how to manipulate it later. That's all this is. Nobody starts at the top like this unless they're the daughter of an ex-president who can call in some chits. Nobody starts at the top like this.

45 comments:

shiloh said...

On a related note, Luke Russert is much better than his father, albeit a very low bar.

jimspice said...

Whereas Jenna Bush got her position due to her exemplary reporting skills?

Chip S. said...

What did lefties post as internet comments before Bush?

Closer comp for Chelsea Clinton is Meghan McCain. Similar talent, similar "nontraditional" tv look.

AJ Lynch said...

Chelsea spent what 6-7 years with a large consulting firm and a hedge fund?

That makes her qualified to be a business reporter on CNN. Or at least as qualified as their business anchor, Ali Velshi, who has a degree in religion.

YoungHegelian said...

Sadly, it wasn't that long ago that a member of the ruling class would view his daughter going into the press with the same alarm as if she had decided to become an exotic dancer.

We had a wiser ruling class in those days.

Irene said...

She speaks with a peculiar cadence.

ic said...

Statist or no, they are always lording over us.

Valentine Smith said...

She was an ugly kid and now she's a repulsive adult.

I despise this whole aristo, dynasty shit whether R or D.

As we devolve into a banana republic one of the benefits is that these people will need to become terrified of the proles. If they're not already.

David said...

A couple of years incognito as a janitor in a public high school in Detroit would be a good idea for Chelsea.

She could supplement her income with part time at McDonalds.

edutcher said...

Considering she went to Oxford, or at least was carried out the many pubs surrounding it, one might think she could get a job on her abilities.

EDH said...

Evidently Chelsea's debut has been widely panned. The Washington Post's Hank Stuever was surprisingly critical.

It’s no surprise whatsoever that Chelsea Clinton didn’t electrify broadcast journalism with her debut Monday night on NBC’s “Rock Center With Brian Williams,” because she has no experience in broadcast journalism. She didn’t cut her teeth with live coverage of strip-mall blazes in Sacramento. She never did weekend weather in Wichita Falls. She didn’t blow the lid off mail-order ham scams in Des Moines. (Who — besides everyone working in TV news who did each and every one of those things — says you have to do all that?)

Rather, what was surprising to see on Monday night’s show is how someone can be on TV in such a prominent way and, in her big moment, display so very little charisma — none at all. Either we’re spoiled by TV’s unlimited population of giant personalities or this woman is one of the most boring people of her era.

Which is well within her rights to be.

Except on television. As soon as NBC announced its opportunistic addition of Clinton as a very special correspondent to its news staff last month (using the broadest definition of “news” to include the sort of uplifting, socially concerned puff pieces Clinton will contribute), all sorts of longstanding bargains have been nullified. Clinton, who turns 32 in February, is officially past the “hands-off” restrictions firmly negotiated with the media when she was 12 and her father, the president, and her mother, the almighty, insisted that the press not write any stories about her.

That weird treatment extended well into her adulthood, creating a kind of Gen-Y Greta Garbo in plain sight, a mystery figure entirely undeserving of the intrigue and fascination accorded her. Having earned degrees from Stanford, Oxford and Columbia (and still working on her doctorate at New York University), Clinton is now ready to put all that schooling to one of the easiest tasks on the planet: feel-good journalism about folks just makin’ their way.

Her first effort took her to Pine Bluff, a small town in (as Brian Williams reminded us) “her home state of Arkansas” (and it’s a good thing he reminded us, because nothing whatsoever about present-day Chelsea Clinton seems at all Arkansan — whatever that would seem like). There, she profiled Annette Dove, a woman who runs an after-school center called TOPPS (Targeting Our People’s Priority with Service), which predominantly serves black, very poor children.

Clinton will continue such segments as part of NBC’s “Making a Difference” featurettes, which are not unlike ABC News’s “Person of the Week” segments, and, frankly, not unlike the article and photos laid out in the center of most newspapers’ Metro pages — so many points of light that one eventually becomes inured to them, especially when one is on the hunt for news. Coincidentally enough, “Rock Center’s” first half-hour consisted of an epically long report from the also newly hired correspondent Ted Koppel — who got his start in broadcast journalism 48 years ago — on the precarious void that will remain after U.S. troops pull out of Iraq this month.

Stories from the Chelsea beat, meanwhile, are all meant to do a few things, very quickly: Highlight some bright spot of good news in otherwise bleak circumstances; indicate how viewers might help out the situation, if so inclined; and (this is never once said, but almost always palpable in the empathetic eyes of the reporter) ennoble the reporter herself, and thereby ennoble the network. This is why Clinton says she is doing television — to make a difference.

Who among us will tell her that’s not what TV does, not really?

garage mahal said...

Funny to hear the fat sex tourist speak of statism and starting from the top, when his show is given away to many local stations, for free, through barter deals. Local stations get free programming without having to hire staff, and Premiere gets 15 minutes per hour of pre-sold advertising.

MrMaryk said...

Garage, WTF does that series of non-sequitirs have to do with what he said? Does it have something to do with "starting from the top"? Because even though he is at the top, he didn't start there.

I mean, that comment was incoherent. What does "fat sex tourist" have to do with this subject? Oh, right, puritanic high dudgeon is reserved for those you disagree with politically. I'm sure you think Bill Clinton is just fine, since he didn't need Viagra?

Paul said...

Has it ever occurred to anyone here Chelsea may just want a good paying job and not be kept under the shadow of her parents?

She is using her name (or her parents name) but hey, who wouldn't?

At least she isn't in Monica's shoes.

AJ Lynch said...

Libruls sure do stick together. They will kneejerk defend a fellow librul no matter what. Why, I wonder, is it so important to defend Chelsea Clinton from nepotism and incompetence charges? Aren't those the kinds of things the OWS crowd was protesting against?

DADvocate said...

What did lefties post as internet comments before Bush?

Nothing worthwhile. Oops, they still post nothing worthwhile, a la jimspice, just whining about a Bush, or two.

As a public face, poor Chelsea has nothing going for her. Intellectually, pretty much the same. Not because she's stupid, but we all know what she's going to say. Not the exact words but close enough. She'll parrot the left wing talking points.

AJ Lynch said...

Paul- Chelsea has had several well paying jobs since she left college. Her husband has made a few million bucks on Wall Street. How about some empathy for those poor unemployed college grads with degrees in womyn's studies? I bet they too would love to get an on-camera job on a national news program. Heh.

DADvocate said...

Garage, WTF does that series of...

Expecting logic out of garage? Don't hold your breath. He specializes in fallacious thinking.

Bob_R said...

I forget. Is team blue or team red the royalist team? Kennedy, Bush, Clinton,... It's so confusing.

Wally Kalbacken said...

Look, I see her doing what Caroline Kennedy tried to do with Hilary's seat, only wherever Chelsea tries it she will be far more articulate. But then again, she'd have to be, you know? She has no siblings and her father earned one-hundred-and-eleven-fucking-million-dollars in less than 7 years out of office.

Another 4.5 years have elapsed since then, and I bet he's earning at an even faster clip. The money has to go somewhere, so if she has any ambitions, they will be well funded. A special tip of the hat to Buckley v. Vallejo, which is why we have to suffer millionaires like Herb Kohl and maybe one day. in a jurisdiction to be named later (but likely to be NY), Chelsea Clinton.

MadisonMan said...

She probably didn't even have to blow anyone to get the gig.

wef said...

Chelsea is no mere trailer park lewinsky.

No,no. She is a true, lewinsky of the one-percent.

With solid gold kneepads.

Trained by the best.

(And anyone talking about the Clintons without mentioning that the chief magistrate and thug of the united States raped Juanita Broaddrick is participating in a polite fraud.)

Meade said...

@MadisonMan, laughed out loud, then felt ashamed for laughing out loud, and then laughed out loud again.

Troubled Voter said...

man the commenters on here are so vicious and indecent, it's crazy.

shiloh said...

"man the commenters on here are so vicious and indecent, it's crazy."

Typical Althouse conservative posters and Meade is still laughing ...

Interesting what Meade er AA's tagalong deletes er censors and what he considers amusing.

Alan said...

So what's the difference between "broadcast journalist" and "statist in training"?

Fen said...

Can't wait till I come across her in DC. Will be one of those "put some ice on it" moments.

Justice: sexually harassing Bill Clinton's daughter.

Fen said...

man the commenters on here are so vicious and indecent, it's crazy.

She's the daughter of a sexual predator that Democrats, Feminists and the MSM covered for.

BTW, you know what you can do with your faux outrage over "indecency".

beast said...

What is with all of these attempts to establish an aristocracy? Really disturbing

beast said...

And why are liberals so acquiescent?

Lawler Walken said...

I don't think Grandma did Chelsea any favors by encouraging her to lead a more "publicly purposeful" life. That's kind of weird anyway, the idea that just because her parents are public people she has some obligation to be that way too. Or that she would even have the ability to pull it off. She can have an amazing purposeful life without being on TV. But I guess she's subscribed to the theory that if nobody sees you doing it, what's the point? Unfortunately for her I'm thinking no one's going to be watching anyway.

Paco Wové said...

And the media-government complex marches on!

shiloh said...

"That's kind of weird anyway, the idea that just because her parents are public people she has some obligation to be that way too. Or that she would even have the ability to pull it off."

Bush43

Bush41

Senator Prescott Bush

And you're correct as Bush43 left office w/a 25% job approval rating so he didn't pull it off! :D

Take care

shiloh said...

Bush43 is the perfect example of "The Peter Principle" lol ie he rose to his level of incompetence! w/lots of help from daddy ...

Paco Wové said...

"Aren't those the kinds of things the OWS crowd was protesting against?"

"This isn't the one percenter we're looking for. She can go about her business."

Jay said...

jimspice said...
Whereas Jenna Bush got her position due to her exemplary reporting skills?



Er, Jenna Bush is a teacher and she was hired by the Today show to do a few segments on education.

But that is like totally the same thing as Chelsea!!

Idiot.

Jay said...

shiloh said...
Bush43 is the perfect example of "The Peter Principle" lol ie he rose to his level of incompetence! w/lots of help from daddy ...


And this makes Obama, the President you voted for, a good President, right?

Take care!

pm317 said...

oh, give it a rest. She is doing a 'make a difference' segment where she wants to bring attention to the otherwise unknown do-gooders in many communities. Her bringing their story to the mainstream gives them some credibility and perhaps donations to continue their work. What is so wrong about that?

She is smarter and more serious than your average reporter. Expecting her to 'report' is the wrong thing here. It was never about her but about using her visibility to give other people some recognition and help in the good Samaritan work they are doing. What is so wrong about that?

pm317 said...

Yeah, Jenna Bush is some big education expert.

TWM said...

I watched it and yes she was horrible. None of the charisma of her father. Hell, none of the charisma of even her mother.

She looks dead inside.

Aridog said...

Question: Why on earth does anyone care what Chelsea Clinton is doing? Or not doing?

Hell, the new Alvin & The Chipmunks movie is more interesting.

shiloh said...

Jay, why are you always so angry? ~ Rhetorical.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... man the commenters on here are so vicious and indecent, it's crazy..."

I think its funny. Chelsea represents the exact wealthy types who benefit from being politically connected that OWS is protesting about.

Jay said...

17 said...
Yeah, Jenna Bush is some big education expert.



Um, nobody said she was captain strawman.

Keep flailing.

Tank said...

Whoa - shiloh made ME laugh. Must punish myself.

Madman - how you know who Ms. Clinton has given a BJ to?

Seriously, I'm glad I'm not her. I have a small business and no one knows who I am (mostly). I recognize my own charisma deficit. I know I'm not the one to light up a room. I'm the guy quietly getting a job done for a fair price.

I feel somewhat sorry for Ms. Clinton. I would not have wanted to be her, especially with her unfortunate inherited facial features. Sorry, just being honest there.

But, she's asking for it now. Why not continue out of the limelight. Have a rich (and she's already rich) and quiet life. But no, she's chosen to stick her face into our face. She wants to be on TV. Oh well....