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November 12, 2008


The Man

My only defense of this NY Times article would be that they're not necessarily politicizing food, they're just sort of using Obama as a segue into a discussion about plate lunch.

Lots of people are doing this: Obama is immensely popular right now, so everybody is trying to piggy-back on that popularity by baiting people with an article about Obama and then making some tenuous connection between him and some topic that they really want to talk about, like plate lunch.

It's a cheap gimmick, an attempt to make something "topical" by linking it (however weakly) to whoever's famous at the moment. If somebody was trying to push a plate lunch article a few years back they would have linked it to Lindsey Lohan.

Why not instead make the topic -- plate lunch -- compelling in and of itself, rather than roping people in with mention of Obama?

It's just unimaginative writing, they could have spent more ink on the plate lunch itself than giving us a bait-and-switch about Obama and his caloric intake.

I guess, by piggy-backing on a politician's celebrity, they are sort of politicizing things, but I think it might be a bit incidental to this more general "bait-and-switch" tactic for grabbing reader interest. I don't think your article's wrong in what it claims, I just think poor writing is a bit more the culprit than political agenda.


I knew you were going to write about this when I saw the NYT article earlier this week. Oh how I miss your rants!

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