Behind the Scenes

Tom Brokaw leading in to a question to Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson, started by talking about how he knows that Hank and his wife are ardent conservationists: "I've been on bird-watching expeditions with them that are also marathons; it's a death-march from 4AM to midnight."

Now, obviously, there's be no way to enforce a rule like "important media people aren't allowed to be bird-watching buddies with high government officials" but it is striking that you tend not to hear about this sort of coziness between the media and political elites when said media elites are busy posturing as a vast brigade of Woodward and Bernsteins eagerly digging to the truth. Meanwhile, Paulson, representing an administration that's worked tirelessly to block action on climate change at a climate change event, just sat around and said a bunch of misleading stuff designed to make you think that the Bush administration has been contributing constructively to this matter. Brokaw, who's probably not an idiot, doesn't want to give his friend the bird watcher a hard time, and just smiles before moving on.