Reading The Pictures is dedicated to the analysis of news photos and media images.
December 1, 2006

Misseltoe Strikes And Downing Trees


If his wish from Santa Claus was for Iraq to simmer down, Bush got his present — for a day.

Unintentionally, I believe, the Chicago Tribune reveals how a “hungry” media can be seduced into running holiday interference for Pennsylvania Avenue swamp dwellers.  Not everyone was so decked today, however.  Incensed by Bush’s meeting charade with President Maliki on Thursday, War Room’s Tim Greve (via Huffpo) doesn’t just turn Laura’s menu upside down, he incinerates it.

If more subtle in these matters, the visual media has its own way of demurring.  After Mrs. Bush presented the official White House Christmas tree to the press in the Blue Room, Larry Downing of Reuters captured the shot above.

I’m sure Downing’s impression captures the true mood inside that building.  The tree is a lonely one, reflecting the tokenism of cheer.  Beyond that, what you’ve got is a House full of people scurrying around in some kind of blur.

(image: Larry Downing/Reuters.  November 30, 2006.  White House.  Via YahooNews)

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