THE NARRATIVE….Eric Alterman:

For the people who cover them for a living, elections are not about issues or evidence or even truth; they are about the narrative. Campaigns struggle to define it long before voters are paying attention — because once the narrative is determined, it’s virtually impervious to revision.

Right. And for two of the three major Democratic presidential nominees the MSM narrative is already pretty clear: John Edwards is a phony (talks big about poverty but gets $400 haircuts); Hillary Clinton is ambitious and calculating (always on message, always has her eye on the prize). But what about Barack Obama? I haven’t quite figured out what the MSM schtick on him is going to be. Luckily, it turns out that the Nattering Nabob of Narrative herself has chimed in. Alterman summarizes:

Most recently [Maureen] Dowd’s peevishness has been directed toward Barack Obama. She finds the candidate “testy,” “irritated,” “hung-up,” “conflicted” and “self-consciously pristine.” Dowd took it personally when he gave a Labor Day speech in New Hampshire taking on business-as-usual Beltway politics. Dowd mocked Obama’s “ranting about Washington pundits” by pointing out that he frequently graces the covers of magazines. This is quite a trick when you think about it. The media elite put Obama on magazine covers, and then the same media elite insist he is inauthentic for having appeared on magazine covers.

Dowd also accuses Obama of preening like a “46-year-old virgin,” demonstrating “loose” body language and being “hung up on being seen as thoughtful,” while secretly fearing “being seen as ‘a dumb blond.’”

So that’s that. Barack Obama Thinks He’s Too Good For The Rest Of Us™. I guess we can look forward to seeing this meme spread far and wide. I can’t wait.