On a recent edition of NBC's "Today" show, President Obama struck a high-minded tone when interviewer Matt Lauer asked him about the bitter tone of American politics:
We now have a pattern of polarization . . . where the political culture gets so wound up. Frankly, Matt, it gets spun up partly because of the way the media covers politics these days, and the 24/7 news cycle and the cable chatter and the talk radio and the Internet and the blogs--all of which tend to try to feed the most extreme sides of any issue instead of trying to narrow differences and solve problems. There's something about the political culture here in Washington that is a chronic problem. I haven't solved it yet.