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Sorry to Burst the Bubble

by Pamela Leavey

Ron posted some quips from Slate’s review of “Inside the Bubble” earlier tonight. I’m not one to tout what Faux News has to say, but clearly a bit too much was made of “Inside the Bubble” earlier this week. Even Faux conclused that in their review…

Empty ‘Bubble’

You may have heard buzz about a documentary called “Inside the Bubble,” which, according to the film’s press release, reveals the “Democrats’ worst fears about the Kerry Campaign — a disorganized, contensious [sic], self-aborbed [sic] team that thought that they could win by ‘not making mistakes’ and keeping their candidate in the public eye without every clarifiying [sic] a position on anything.”

Other than needing a better spell-check device, the writer of this release needs a serious clue. I’ve seen the film, which is yet to find a distributor, and it’s hardly what the release purports it to be.

It mainly features the press wranglers and personal aides who traveled with Kerry during the last leg of the campaign — some of them cursing at a bad photo op or moaning about lack of sleep.

Halfway through, it plays like a home movie (calls home to the kids, celebrating colleagues’ birthdays), and by the end it’s like watching paint dry. How exciting is it to see someone check his Blackberry?

Faux notes that there “are too few moments with the campaign’s heavier hitters, such as Mike McCurry and Joe Lockhart.”

Where’s the real strategizing? Or the campaign’s “self-absorbed,” “contentious” team?”

There wasn’t any of that in “Inside the Bubble”. As I noted in my earlier post about “Inside the Bubble”:

My sources tell me that the Inside the Bubble crew traveled very sporadically with the Kerry campaign as members of the Traveling Press. The film crew was granted no inside access to senior staff members, no access to the top decision-makers or the decision-making process, and virtually no access to John Kerry, himself. One former campaign staffer notes never seeing the film crew at HQ.

Clearly this attempt at selling out is, a flop. Sorry to burst the Bubble for all those expecting more, they won’t find it “Inside the Bubble.”

21 Responses to “Sorry to Burst the Bubble”

  1. Nobody will see it which makes it even easier for Faux News, hate radio, newmax, washington times et al. They will just as usual agree on their spin and make up whatever lies they wanted to be in the film, then repeat that in unison until it becomes MSM (and kos kids) conventional wisdom. Take about a week or two tops.

  2. Talking about Newsmax, I actually freaked out this morn when I checked my mail. I had my usual NYT and WaPo, and lo and behold, there as big Bush’s ego, was a mail from Newsmax. HTF! did these idiots get my email address? Talk about mad!! Needless to say, straight to the deleted file it went. That was creepy.

  3. I actually signed up to get newmax e-mailed daily(well it comes more than daily) to one of my accounts. I get a kick out of reading some of it. Well it gets me angry too but I seem to like to read and listen to stuff I know will make me angry…

    It is pretty amusing though too. It seems to be for people who get tired of Fox News being too highbrow and “balanced” 🙂 Though it’s always good to be tipped off to the latest “What Hillary/NY Times/… don’t want YOU to know!!!” When I see that want to know the important truth, esp if those types don’t want me to. I know it’s got to be critical info I won’t get anywhere else! Well except from the rest of the echo chamber, but still…

  4. Well you signed up for it. Imagine if it came to you and you didn’t subscribe to it. Kinda gives me the creeps when I think of how they got my email.

  5. Yeah, I wouldn’t like that at all. If they have your e-mail address, you may start getting a couple a day from them and also some from other related outfits that they must share email lists with. Though those were automatically being recognized as spam by the email account I used.

    Maybe one of your friends was worried about you acting peculiar lately(not being happy with BushCo) and thought they’d sign you up to help you get back on the path of truth and light.

  6. A while back I got something from Newsmax passing themselves off as just a web news service. This was before I knew what they were really about, so I signed up. It didn’t take long for me to realize what a right wing propaganda outfit they were, and I stopped the emailings.

  7. It’s a straight up Bush loving rag. Right wing to say the least. I picked up one and glanced through it one time when I ran out of reading material while offshore. They had what they labeled the “Left Coast Watch”. Too extreme for me. Kinda like Bill O’Reilly after two pots of coffee. That’s why I was able to know what it was as soon as I saw it.

    Dave From Princeton, says:
    “Maybe one of your friends was worried about you acting peculiar lately(not being happy with BushCo) and thought they’d sign you up to help you get back on the path of truth and light”

    God help them if I find out they did. I know how to hit them where it hurts. I have one buddy that goes stark raving mad if he hears the name of Mr. and Mrs. Clinton. One of the others, hates the Dixie Chicks with a passion, I know he would love to be put on a mailing list!!

  8. Donnie McDaniel Says:
    October 2nd, 2005 at 6:06 am

    LOL 😉

    “when I ran out of reading material while offshore”
    Did or do you work on oil rigs? If memory serves me one of my college buddies worked on one either over a summer or just after college. Wasn’t a good match for him at all though, can be rough life it seems. He made real good money but he’d go nuts being out there for extended periods and so would go extra crazy once back on shore and blow everything he’d earned. Though to that friend, an extended period without partying and blowing off steam could only consist of a couple days 😉

  9. I was a Licensed Captain/Mate. I worked on offshore Jack-up Boats. Not the Drilling Rigs, but the Self elevating boats. Worked 14 and 14. Two weeks off, was a good side to it. 😉

  10. What’s been so startling is watching the Democrats act just like the Republicans in all this. Character assignations, empty assertions, talking points, the ‘Blame Game’ is no different than the “Snore Room” – catchy slogans that reporters repeat and blogs amplify.

    That isn’t who we are. At least, it’s not who I am.

    And the film isn’t any of the things that the press (or even a poorly-copy edited press release) have turned it into. Pamela, you didn’t see the film unless you stole a copy – because each and every copy was numbered and watermarked.

    Instead -you went on the Kerry offensive – slagging the film as ’empty’ and ‘boring’ without thinking about the long term impact of that characterization on your candidate or your party.

    The film is honest. It is accurate. And real audiences (not political reporters looking for a ‘gotcha moment) are finding the story of ’04 engaging, funny, spirited, and even inspirational.

    Pamela. Here’s a offer – how ’bout a copy? Then rather than repeat other allegations or catch-phrases, you can see for yourself. I suspect you’ll find the film actually helps both John Kerry and the Democrats – because we’re not going to win within understanding why we lost. And this film should be part of that exploration.


    Steven Rosenbaum
    Inside The Bubble.

  11. Steven Rosenbaum

    Working with what clips I have seen, the press slant from the right-wing media, and conversations with a few sources from the Kerry campaign, I can only derive that the meme used to bill the film ““Democrats’ worst fears about the Kerry Campaign”, is simply that, a meme.

    I did not travel with the campaign, but did have access to many campaign staffers from Aug 03 through the election. As a writer for the Kerry Blog, I was often given press passes at Kerry campaign events. I have met on many occassions some of the staffers in the film, those staffers in the movie were not the decision makers, Steven – there were more like access granters.

    I don’t know who wrote your press releases, but if you are saying they were poorly written, why were they released? From what I have seen from the clips I see nothing that is harmful to Kerry or explains why we lost – if indeed we did.

    I’d love a copy of the film. Many Kerry supporters I know have expressed after seeing the clips that they would most likely enjoy seeing the film. When I said I saw the film as empty and boring from the clips I have seen (available online – insinuating that I stole a copy is tacky at best), was said to debunk the right-wing spin that there was something offensive and telling in those clips as to what went wrong.

    I thoroughly understand your need to defend your film. Please understand, that I have a similar desire to defend a man I have respected and admired for over 30 years, a man who ultimately would have been a far better president than George W Bush.

    If you send me a copy of the film I will give it an honest assessment here. I honestly can not fathom that a look inside the bubble with traveling staffers reveals anything but the ordeal of life on the road with a presidential candidate.

    You can email here for contact info – pamela@thedemocraticdaily.com

  12. Steven Rosenbaum Says:
    October 4th, 2005 at 7:25 am

    “And the film isn’t any of the things that the press (or even a poorly-copy edited press release) have turned it into. Pamela, you didn’t see the film unless you stole a copy – because each and every copy was numbered and watermarked.”

    Excuse me Steven, But you didn’t do your homework. Pamela did not claim to see the movie!! http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,170957,00.html

    Take a better look, and try to read the whole thing this time. I resent your implied allegations against Pamela. If you want to cry, do it to those that wrote on it. Pamela reported on it. She did not claim to have watched it.

    Try one more time, and then maybe you will get taken serious. Twisting the Truth, is not a way into people’s heart. Director, LOL. Direct link to the Right Wing is what I would call it. Yet one more example of twisted truth and propaganda.

  13. Pamela and I each had a somewhat different take on the movie in our comments–beyond both agreeing that the initial media attacks were all hype.

    Personally I have no opinion as to whether the movie is “empty” or “boring.” The point of my posts was to question the early hype in which the movie is portrayed as devastating to Kerry.

    From everything I’ve been able to find out about the movie, including viewing the clips and reading various reviews, I see no evidence of anything devastating. My bet it is more likley what Slate characterized as “garden-variety chaos that hits all campaigns.” I’ve also noted in earlier posts how some of the anti-Kerry comments in early media stories do not appear to hold up–such as disputing the claims in one review that Hillary’s scowl accompanied a Kerry gaffe. ( http://blog.thedemocraticdaily.com/?p=703 )

    Steven somewhat backs up my assessment in saying “And the film isn’t any of the things that the press (or even a poorly-copy edited press release) have turned it into.”

    I would also be happy to take a look at the entire film in order to provide a more accurate assessment. My beef so far is with the media claims that this is devastating to Kerry, not with the actual film itself.

  14. Ron

    Here’s what Rosenbaum himslef says on his blog about the film –

    “Those of you who’ve followed this film know that it’s been an emotional road. No one sets out to make a film about a losing candidate for President. We though we were chronicalling a winner. And after that fateful day in November, 2004 – we spent a bunch of months with the footage under lock and key. But in the end – it seemed like someone needed to pull thier head out of the sand and ask the painful question ‘What Happened?’

    That said – the 80 min. film should give Democrats alot to think about. Which is not to say the film is grim – far from it. The truth is the experience of being on the road with the Kerry team was upbeat, exhausting, and expensive. But in the end – the questions come down to ideas. Who has them. Who can express them. And how many American’s are willing to sign up for a candidates platform. I won’t spoil the movie – except to say, it’s not what you expect. ”

    Now he’s coming here claiming a poor releases and that the film actually helps JK and Dems? Who put out the press releases? The quote above from Rosenbaum’s blog isn’t his only nasty dig at the Kerry campaign.

    He’s gotten bad press from the very people he hoped to sell out to and now he’s spinning it another way.

    Rosenbaum also needs to be aware that I did not personally call Inside the Bubble empty, I quoted Faux who called it “empty” and I never stated anywhere that I thought the film might be boring.

    Rosenbaum misses the point that I posted in both posts that my sources with Kerry’s staff enlightened to me to the realities of the film and the process under which it was made.

    As I told Steven – I’d love a copy of the film. Unfortunately I thinkk he simply came here in attempt to defend his “work” that isn’t going anywhere.

  15. It should be noted also that on Rosenbaum’s blog the only reviews he notes are the reviews with right-wing slant.

  16. Pamela,

    You might be 100% right in your criticism, but I don’t know for sure. I can’t criticize the entire film without seeing it.

    My main concern in posting following the initial publicity was in disputing the argument that the film was seriously harmful to Kerry. The clips which were availble did not show things to be as harmful as the conservative spin, plus we know that they didn’t have access to the top to be in a position for this to be a definitive work on the campaign.

    Over the couple of days prior to the release of the movie, there were many publications and blogs suggesting that something harmful to Kerry was coming out. It is now pretty clear that this was not the case. Rather than having more anti-Kerry stories as would be expected if there was really anything to this, the talk about the movie died down very quickly.

    From my perspective, it is still open as to whether the movie has any value or is entertaining. If Steven wants to send me a copy, I’ll proceed to comment on it fairly.

  17. Steven did contact me. It looks like he did really mean his offer so I should have more comments on the movie in the future.

  18. Ron

    I too heard from Steven, so it looks like we will both be able to post our 2 cents on the film. I’m sure there are enjoyable moments to the film, especially as I mentioned in my first post, on the film, that aspects of it would be enjoyable to Kerry volunteers and former staffers, otherwise, from the clips online and the more recent reviews from Slate and Faux it appears the early publicity was indeed slanted.

  19. Both Pamela and Ron should have copies of the film in their hands. I’m looking forward to what i hope will be an impartial and open minded viewing of the film – and I’m genuinely interested in what they have to say. At the very least, i hope we can put the “snore room” monicker to rest, since none of the reviews have concluded that the film is boring.

  20. Hi Steven

    Yes, thank you it arrived Thursday and I’ve been swamped with work. I’m hoping to get to this tonight, at the latest tomorrow. I have a film from PBS that is airing Monday that I need to review as well.

  21. Steven Rosenbaum Says:
    October 15th, 2005 at 12:55 pm

    Mr. Rosenbaum,

    While I have not watched your film, I do have a suggestion, as to how your camera might better serve to get you good reviews. Spending time putting out a film on things that happened in the past, seems futile with all the current events. If you want real life stories, just look past the hype of the MSM and see the everyday survival of people in our own country. Graves being moved, and caskets being tossed around, and having to try to identify those remains for family members to put their family and ancestors back to rest.

    The outcry from the forgotten parishes in Louisiana, coming together to protest the complete lack of hurricane protection of a parish that is vital in the oilfield of Louisiana. The TFA(Time For Action) forum needed people like you to send the message out to the country to show that half of the second largest parish in La. ended up underwater, and now the federal Gov. that took three days to declare us a federal disaster area, is now looking at that same area for another Federal Oil Reserve spot to be underground, in the same area that those graves sprouted out friends, family, and ancestors, in an ungodly evacuation.

    You can find my post here:

    Hurricane Dislodged Coffins and Scattered Bodies Across Louisiana

    La. Parish Longs To Get Its Levee

    This describes what was happening right when Rita engulfed our parish.

    If you notice, my responses got more serious and more urgent with each post. Now I ask you, can you not see the more urgent things that should be on film? We fight for our very lives, and if there is no death, there is no story. I pose this question to you sir, will you use your abilities to show real life, or live in the past?