John Feehery: Speaking Engagements

Header

Howie Mandel Revisited

Posted on September 21, 2009

As I get ready to watch the President appear on David Letterman, after he appeared on five news shows yesterday, I am reminded of this post that I wrote last March.


 


Deal or No Deal Strategy


 


            When the television show Deal or No Deal --the Howie Mandel reality game show that features 26 buxom beauties holding suitcases promising various amounts of potential plunder  -- first came to the air, it swept the imagination of the American viewing public.


 


            There were stories about the intricacies of the show’s game theory.  The ratings were strong.  Howie Mandel reclaimed  his star status.  I even watched it on occasion.


 


            Then NBC decided to run the show every night for months on end, and the show became a total bore.  Howie Mandel is now starring in another show.


 


            I was thinking about Howie Mandel when I heard that President Obama was doing another press conference.  As the song goes, the thrill is gone.


 


            Talk about over-exposure.  First, I am watching ESPN and there is the President.  Then I am watching Jay Leno, and there he is.  Then he is on 60 minutes.  Now, another press conference.


 


            The guy is everywhere.  And the overexposure is making him boring.


 


            And Barack Obama does not do boring well.  When the thrill is gone, the press starts picking.  And with our new President, there is plenty to pick at.


 


            He went on ESPN, didn’t pick Duke for the Final Four, and the Duke coach fired back that maybe he should spend more time fixing the economy.  Touche.


 


            He then goes on Jay Leno and makes an unfortunate comment about the Special Olympics.  Whoops!


 


            The most memorable thing he did on 60 Minutes was pick a fight with Dick Cheney, elevating the former Vice President’s concerns about the President’s plans to keep the country safe.  No percentage in picking that fight with a retired ex-Vice President.


 


            And the news coming from tonight?  Well, that he didn’t pick any reporter from the major newspapers and that he used a huge television instead of a teleprompter.


 


            The teleprompter story is gaining more and more traction out in the country.  The persistent story that our President is so scripted that he has to use a teleprompter to order lunch in the White House mess ( it has almost got to that point), must be of great concern for the President’s spinmeisters.  It takes away that aura of authenticity that has been so important for his mystique. 


 


            And that is the real problem with over-exposure.  It takes away a President’s mystique.  Familiarity breeds contempt, the old saying goes.  The more the American people see their President, the more they will eventually turn on him. 


 


            The President is becoming Howie Mandel.  Let’s hope he doesn’t shave his head.