I've been thinking about all the frustrating media hype about the big Clinton "Old Guard"/Obama "New Guard" schism. It seems to be driven by two types of stories. Stories that Bill Clinton is pissed at Obama for criticizing his legacy and recent polls showing the number of dissatisfied Hillary Clinton supporters who support McCain to be growing (augmented by the PUMA's who are being easily manipulated by the RNC). I think the latter is an issue that will need to be dealt with (Slate's John Dickerson has a good piece here), and I'm wondering if the Obama campaign is pushing the stories about the former so that unified convention stories will be all the more powerful and effective. If that's the case wonderful.
However, what is so frustrating about the media's continued harping on this supposed schism is that it reinforces the continued dynamic the Republicans want imposed on this election: Obama weak, McCain strong. The more reporters frame their stories in a way that makes it seem as though the Obama campaign is on the defensive and the McCain campaign has seized the offensive, the more that dynamic is seen as fraudulently true by the voters.
This framing could (maybe) work to Obama's favor if he was considered the underdog. However these same stories time and again cast Obama as the front runner, barely holding on or falling behind the insurgent McCain. Obama never seizes a lead in a poll or surges ahead. He always drop back. Obama's lead is never considered enough. In one way or another, he's always losing.
The media, by framing Obama as both on the defensive and barely holding on, only then reinforces the idea that the Democrats are the weaker party. It's BS. And the media needs cut the shit. Too bad they won't.
Guess that really makes Obama the underdog, no matter what the polls say.