" Is it possible the media have the administration cowed into not defending themselves at all, because ANY defense whatsoever, even a stammering, "But . . . but . . . " will be characterized as a "smear"? "
No matter what GWB will be slandered. Might as well fight back then.
You are absolutely right. I remember during the election everytime Bush tried to make a point it was called an attack or smear.
It is a challenge to manage this media. I notice we never get approval numbers on the media, must be really low.
I'd like to see Bush pick a fight with the media. He is afraid to do so though. I don't think his coverage could get any worse.