The era of state-controlled media

Another line has been crossed by the Obama administration: state-controlled television reports only of a news event at the White House. ABC's invaluable Jake Tapper writes at the Political Punch:

On April 27, President Obama welcomed the University of Connecticut Lady Huskies, who had just won the NCAA women's basketball championship.

After the event, President Obama went to the White House basketball court to shoot hoop with the Lady Huskies. The White House press corps was not allowed to attend.

Instead of a pesky free press, who photograph whatever they want and ask whatever they want, the American people will see only what the President wishes them to see. Should his vaunted reputation as a basketball whiz not be supported by his shooting with the ladies, he will have no embarrassing bowling moments. (I have seen it reported that he is practicing bowling, in order to redeem his humiliation at having shot a scored of 37 during a campaign appearance as a regular guy at a bowling alley. I do not know if this is true, though.)

Should he happen to make a deep bow to a Salafist dictator passing by, no annoying images will ever reach the public, either. No gaffes, ever again, when the state controlled media are the opnly camewras present.

Of course it is true that in the past some events have been kept private, with only White House photographers present. But, as Tapper notes, this new video production operation has its own broadcast TV-like logo and other accessories of a major media operation.

Starting out with a sports team visit makes the whole enterprise seem non-threatening. But make no mistake, a line has been crossed. Even the nearly universal adulation of the press is not enough for The One. Keep a sharp eye open for other events excluding the press, but open only to state-controlled media.