Opening Act: Whiteboard

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Aug. 17 2012 8:38 AM

Opening Act: Whiteboard

Elspeeth Reeve writes the best tsk-tsking demolition of Mitt Romney's whiteboard presentation on Medicare.

David Weigel David Weigel

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

Just because a campaign's talking points were written on a thing used to show details doesn't mean actual details were shown. The Romney campaign has been careful to avoid getting too deep into the details of the candidate's economic proposals, because they want to make the election a referrendum on President Obama. But refusing to dip into the details is not the sign of a wonk, it's the opposite.
Advertisement

Smart-assed Democrats create a whiteboard tumblr, just to drive the point home.

Matt Zeitlin pulls a few great scoops out of Michael Grunwald's excellent, unapologetic new stimulus history.

The way [Ron] Suskind told it, “before exchanging hellos or even shaking hands” Obama told Romer that monetary policy had “shot its wad.” Suskind portrayed the meeting as an early indication that Obama “didn’t have particularly strong women skills” and that he would go on to allow Romer to be outmaneuvered by her more politically experienced male counterparts. Grunwald, however, says that “Romer is positive that Obama never said those words to her … she used them to Suskind, paraphrasing the president-elect.” In fact, the quote from Romer is that the first thing Obama said to her was, in fact, “Dr. Romer, so nice to meet you.”

Didn't the punditocracy spend a few days reading that Suskind quote and jawing about Obama's women problem?

And I think the upshot of Aaron Blake's chin-stroking about Biden's "vulnerabilities" is that Biden is now the underdog who has the most to lose or gain from the veep debate. You can so easily imagine Paul Ryan running to the board and dunking one over Biden's head on some Medicare question, producing some numbers that the veep can't refute in real time.

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

TODAY IN SLATE

History

The Self-Made Man

The story of America’s most pliable, pernicious, irrepressible myth.

Rehtaeh Parsons Was the Most Famous Victim in Canada. Now, Journalists Can’t Even Say Her Name.

Mitt Romney May Be Weighing a 2016 Run. That Would Be a Big Mistake.

Amazing Photos From Hong Kong’s Umbrella Revolution

Transparent Is the Fall’s Only Great New Show

The XX Factor

Rehtaeh Parsons Was the Most Famous Victim in Canada

Now, journalists can't even say her name.

Doublex

Lena Dunham, the Book

More shtick than honesty in Not That Kind of Girl.

What a Juicy New Book About Diane Sawyer and Katie Couric Fails to Tell Us About the TV News Business

Does Your Child Have Sluggish Cognitive Tempo? Or Is That Just a Disorder Made Up to Scare You?

  News & Politics
Damned Spot
Sept. 30 2014 9:00 AM Now Stare. Don’t Stop. The perfect political wife’s loving gaze in campaign ads.
  Business
Moneybox
Sept. 29 2014 7:01 PM We May Never Know If Larry Ellison Flew a Fighter Jet Under the Golden Gate Bridge
  Life
Atlas Obscura
Sept. 30 2014 10:10 AM A Lovable Murderer and Heroic Villain: The Story of Australia's Most Iconic Outlaw
  Double X
Doublex
Sept. 29 2014 11:43 PM Lena Dunham, the Book More shtick than honesty in Not That Kind of Girl.
  Slate Plus
Slate Fare
Sept. 29 2014 8:45 AM Slate Isn’t Too Liberal. But… What readers said about the magazine’s bias and balance.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 29 2014 9:06 PM Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice Looks Like a Comic Masterpiece
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 30 2014 7:36 AM Almost Humane What sci-fi can teach us about our treatment of prisoners of war.
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 30 2014 7:30 AM What Lurks Beneath The Methane Lakes of Titan?
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 28 2014 8:30 PM NFL Players Die Young. Or Maybe They Live Long Lives. Why it’s so hard to pin down the effects of football on players’ lives.