On the 6/3/11 NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams spoke derisively about Mitt Romney's new wardrobe and his new look of "studied casualness". Brian accused Romney of buying "new jeans and a fleet of I'm-just-a-regular-guy shirts...," as part of a new and intentional image makeover. Romney's goal was obviously to appeal to the middle-American heartland working-class, salt-of-the-earth people whose votes he so desperately needs. Wow--where does Brian get balls that big? On Friday's Nightly News (8/31/12), Brian reported from New Orleans wearing the exact same type of I'm-just-a-regular-guy shirt and pants that he criticized Romney for wearing! And Brian was wearing these clothes in order to appeal to the middle American heartland working-class, salt-of-the-earth people whose ratings he so desperately needs. What a hypocrite! (Brian is partial to blue shirts and beige khakis.) Talk about "studied casualness"! Where does Brian get the nerve to criticize Romney for image management? There is no one on the planet whose image is more studied, managed, controlled and manipulated than Brian Williams. Every aspect of his on-air persona is carefully honed and crafted to bring us the character of "Brian Williams" that we see every night on Nightly News. I'm certain that Brian has ten image managers for every one Romney has. Hair stylists. Makeup artists. Wardrobe consultants. Personal assistants. Skin consultants. Feng Shui advisors. Astrologists. I'll bet Brian employs a full-time person just to act as his tie wrangler. And then there is NBC's team of high-priced behavioral consultants and analysts. They pore over every microscopic detail of every Nightly News broadcast. What if Brian sat three inches to the right? What if he moved his left arm up a bit? What if he lifted his head up higher? What if he dropped his "g's" and pronounced words like "talking" as talkin' and "watching" as watchin'? What if he wore more blue? Should he wear his eyeglasses more often? Should he trim 1/4" off his hair? They search for any tiny change that can improve Brian's ratings. They constantly conduct focus groups to find out what viewers think of every aspect of Brian and his broadcast. Do you like his hair? Do you like his tie? Do you like his shirt? Do you like his tone and inflection? Brian wouldn't dare wear a stitch of clothing on the air unless it had first been approved by a focus group. If a panel of viewers indicated that they didn't like one of his ties, it would be taken out back and burned immediately. But the analysis doesn't stop there. There's also bio-analysis. Focus group participants are hooked up to medical monitors while watching NBC Nightly News. Their heart rates are monitored. Their breathing is monitored. Their pupil dilation is monitored. Their eye movements are monitored. All on a second-by-second basis. If viewers look away from Brian at a certain point, the analysts need to find out why. Was it his tone of voice? The particular news story he was reading? The camera angle? The people in the newsroom behind him? The on-screen graphics?
So with all this going on, Brian had the nerve to criticize Mitt Romney for buying a few new shirts--the exact same kind of shirts that Brian himself wears to improve his own image. Politics is largely about image. News broadcasting is ALL about image. Brian has taken one of his own most weaselly and disingenuous traits and used it to mock Mitt Romney. That is the ultimate in hypocrisy. And it's hilarious. It would be like Donald Trump making fun of someone else's hair.