How to receive a White House pat on the head

Here’s a lesson for progressive and Leftist writers and bloggers. If you want White House approval (God knows why you would, if independence is valued) then don’t be too critical, praise the wonders of Barack Obama and bask in the glow:

The vice president told Democrats to “stop whining.” The president told them to “buck up.” And neither seemed to leave any doubt in separate interviews this week that press secretary Robert Gibbs’s exasperation over the summer with the “professional left” was the official view of the White House.

But who, exactly, makes up this “professional left” that is so bothering President Barack Obama and his advisers? On Tuesday, Gibbs’s deputy, Bill Burton, made it clear that the occasionally critical cable personalities originally associated with this comment have the administration’s blessing.

“If you’re on the left, if you’re somebody like Keith Olbermann or Rachel Maddow or one of the folks who helps to keep our government honest and pushes and prods to make sure that folks are true to progressive values, then [the president] thinks that those folks provide an invaluable service,” Burton told reporters.

Noticeably absent from Burton’s embrace was anyone from the blogosphere once courted so avidly by the White House. Peter Daou thinks he knows why:

“With each passing day, I’m beginning to realize that the crux of the problem for Obama is a handful of prominent progressive bloggers, among them Glenn Greenwald, John Aravosis, Digby, Marcy Wheeler and Jane Hamsher.”