It's unlikely that Mr. Lott will be forced to explain himself. The "liberal media," which went into a frenzy over political statements at Paul Wellstone's funeral, have largely ignored this story. To take the most spectacular demonstration of priorities, last week CNN's "Inside Politics" found time to cover Matt Drudge's unconfirmed (and untrue) allegations about the price of John Kerry's haircuts. "Just two days after moving closer to a presidential race, John Kerry already is in denial mode," intoned the host. But when the program interviewed Mr. Lott the day after the Thurmond event, his apparent nostalgia for segregation never came up.Ok, it's official; the "liberal media? Nonsense" meme is now out there in the wild, and is likely to become a part of the left-liberal zeitgeist. Writing a column it is one thing; having it be a background point for other articles is quite another, and Paul Krugman is a meme vector of uncommon virulence nowadays. (Y'know, best columnist of the year and all. Speaking of which, anybody else noticed how good a job the Krugman-bashers online aren't doing of affecting his credibility? "Advantage:blogosphere" my proverbial aunt fanny, although "Advantage: Media Horse" might be somewhat more appropriate.)
From here, though, Mr. Lott's retroactive endorsement of a frankly racist campaign seems more important than Mr. Kerry's hair. The question is, who will make something of it? Not the media, apparently — but maybe it's time for the Democrats to make an issue of Mr. Lott's views.
Oddly enough, this change in the perception of the media is all because, (it would appear), of an interview with Al Gore in the New York Observer. Kinda like that "um, aren't we already in a war?" bit that turned the punditry upside down during the election.
Gotta say one thing: for better or worse, the man is listened to. Good thing he uses his powers for good instead of evil.