“We got back to getting after it again; I guess [Spoelstra] felt he was loosening up a little bit too much,” … “He knows he has to meet us halfway. He wants to work; we want to chill.”
And this was controversial? Kevin Arnovitz is right, Chris Bosh committed a Kinsley gaffe–as in, he erred in telling the truth by accident. Unlike Arnovitz, some writers are either ripping the context from this quote, or smugly lecturing Bosh on his guileless honesty.
Today’s jaded political journalist doesn’t assess for veracity, but rather for savvy: The truth is less admirable than good PR. If a politician says something an idiot could misinterpret or froth over, scribes take turns mocking the pol.
(You are AGAINST wearing a flag-pin? Tsk, tsk, this won’t play well with Billy Bucktooth)
What’s awful about this process is that urban political junkies have a tendency to conceive of the country as replete with Billy Bucktooths. Their cultural chauvinism sets a lower bar for acceptable public discourse.
(You can’t talk about the issues, Bucktooth will think that’s effete. You really should be out in the woods, shooting ducks with a machine gun)
Manufactured outrage drives interest, commentary and hits. The media judges the figures most prone to inspire such entertanger on their ability to avoid the storm. There’s simply nothing more admirable than the bland, cynical steering of a brand. And I see sports parallels.
(Yes, LeBron James, you’re correct: Race plays a role in how you’re hated…but don’t SAY that. Not very savvy, King!)
The Heat players are getting judged in this ridiculous political context, every day. Possible Kinsley gaffes lay about them like landmines– the public is primed for outrage. In this particular case, popular resentment of the Heat has created a linguistic frame for people. We all “know” that Miami is “bad” and should be angrily mocked. Whenever a Heat player spouts even the most mundane mumble, the quote gets thrown into a Willy Wonka conversion machine. Oompa-Loompa media types will take the quote, sing cheerily, and turn it into delicious outrage fodder.
(Ya, did you take MENTAL NOTES on that last loss, LeBron? Ha! This makes me feel better about my failing marriage and sagging pectoral “muscles!”)
Next, another wave of smarter media types will act as PR consultants, tut-tutting the Heat player for riling up the drunk, blind, American junkyard dog. Instead of arguing passionately for honesty, the intelligent media will worship the false idol of Savvy. The whole process is cynical, and exhausting. Suffice to say: I don’t like the look of it.