Politics

The Man Who Cried ‘Much Ado About Nothing’

Matt K. Lewis Senior Contributor
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Want proof David Axelrod is an evil genius? On Morning Joe earlier today, I asked the former top Obama strategist whether or not the president’s insouciance — the fact that his administration downplays every crisis — might contribute to the fact that the public no longer trusts him on serious issues like Ebola.

But I botched the question at the end, referencing the “boy who cried wolf” phenomenon. Of course, what I was actually suggesting was more a reverse-boy who cried wolf-type situation (though both examples involve misleading the public to the point they no longer believe you).

Guess which part of the question Axelrod seized on?

It probably wouldn’t have mattered. Joe Scarborough followed up on my comments by pressing him on the premise of my question — and Axelrod promptly parried his question, too.

But the larger problem remains: A lot of Americans simply don’t trust our government on a wide range of important issues, including information about the spread of Ebola (for more on that, read Ron Fournier’s excellent essay “The Scariest Thing About Ebola.”) And while President Obama isn’t solely to blame for the loss of trust in institutions and leaders (which has been going on at least since Watergate), his “No Drama, Obama” mentality has likely contributed.