Kurtz: Network Morning Shows Feel Guilty, Book McCain

Earlier today, Howard Kurtz held his weekly chat where he covered such topics as press coverage of the presidential campaign, David Carr’s new book, and downsizing at the Post. Some excerpts:

Plymouth, Minn.: Hello. My question is, what does a candidate do when his opponent has hogged the entire (world) news? I have a feeling the McCain camp will almost do anything at this juncture to defuse the news blitz from Obama. What, in your opinion, do you expect will happen here?

Howard Kurtz: Well, the first thing he does is go on all three network morning shows, which McCain did this a.m. I don’t suppose that “Today,” “Good Morning America” and the “Early Show” felt they could turn the senator down. A little guilt factor, perhaps?

Diane Sawyer asked McCain whether the press coverage of Obama’s trip has been unfair. McCain said that would be up to the American people. I guess he sees no percentage in getting into a public argument about media treatment.

Ann Arbor, Mich.: Any plans to write a sordid tell-all memoir a la David Carr? You could sell a lot of books, Howie!

Howard Kurtz: I could barely fill a chapter. My childhood was disturbingly normal. I’ve had a series of respectable jobs, and I don’t do more than the occasional glass of wine. So there’s no deep, dark place for me to have triumphed over. Very frustrating.

Washington:“We have a pretty big staff.” Yeah, they’re working on that too — the last round was the last of the buyouts, but it wasn’t the end of the downsizing.

Howard Kurtz: I’ve detailed my thoughts on the downsizing (which, unlike the NYT and LAT, has avoided layoffs). I sure hope it is the last round for some time to come. Believe me, it’s painful. But The Post still has one of the largest newspaper staffs in the United States. (Maybe I shouldn’t say that out loud, in case the bean-counters get any more ideas.)