Monday, June 16, 2008

wwrd: what would russert do

There's an ache that you get when life goes on without someone. That's certainly true of the staff who publish MSNBC's First Read who must figure out a way to get on with their jobs without their mentor, friend and boss Tim Russert.

The grain of genius in the latter of the two links cited above is WWRD - What Would Russert Do. No man is perfect, but the ideals embodied by Tim Russert in his public and private lives are certainly worthy of everyone in his profession, and I would argue sorely needed in this election cycle more than ever.

In his absence, it's up to the profession to raise the bar for itself, to settle for nothing less than constant, honest vigilance on behalf of a public that's counting on them to be both honest and vigilant.

So I'll challenge every talking head, every pundit, every beat reporter and bureau chief to write those four letters down on the back of their hands, so that every time they're tempted to spew forth another stream of ill-advised, unprepared hateful pablum they'll pause to ask themselves what the great man would have done.

He'd probably laugh, then get back to work.

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