"Did they want a headline saying, 'Congress is standing up to President Bush,' or 'Congress gives President Bush free rein?' "
I hear alot how one of the great failures of the Merkin Imperial War Machine is it's inability to get it's message out, through the gatekeepers of the fourth estate.
There's some truth to that. Some bad, but you know, largely some good.
I look at the relationship, the bubble it's sometimes called, between the members of the media and members of our political class, up there in Delta Charlie. A tad incestuous, introspective and self serving.
What I would worry about is the Imperial War Machine getting caught up in that entire process, an unintended consequence of trying to massage the message. The media has a NEED to KNOW, NOW, so they can REPORT, EXCLUSIVE, BREAKING NEWS.
If there's no crisis, well, by god they'll just have to invent one. And there'd be a great temptation to play along with that, inside the ranks. Camera's are very seductive. They can also make one very stupid.
Stick with "just the facts, ma'am."