Why is the mainstream press always surprised whenever a conservative movie does well? Case in point: the huge early success of the hard-hitting documentary "2016: Obama's America."
The movie, made with almost no money and no major studio backing, by neophyte directors, and with zero attention from the mainstream press, grossed $6.5 million over the weekend, putting in the top 10.
So far, "2016" has taken in more than $9.3 million, which puts it easily within reach of becoming one of the top five highest-grossing political documentaries of all time.
And, if anything, the movie is just getting started. Last weekend, it averaged nearly $6,000 per screen, which is higher than when it was showing in just 62 theaters a couple weeks ago.
But aside from a few grudging news stories about the weekend box office take and a smattering of predictably critical reviews, the media are largely turning a studied blind eye to the film.
No wonder, since the success of "2016" exposes several inconvenient truths about President Obama, as well as the media's dereliction of duty in vetting him four years ago.
Even today, people know little about the president, and what little we think we know is based on distorted self-reporting by Obama in two autobiographies.
We don't even know what grades Obama got in college, since he guards his transcripts more carefully than he does national security secrets. Obama has also downplayed his relationships with radical leftists. Terrorist Bill Ayers? Barely knew the man. America-hating Rev. Jeremiah Wright? Never heard any of his diatribes in the 20 years attending that church.
At the same time, he's kept his ideology, and his intellectual roots, largely hidden behind a smoke screen of cliches — "hope and change," "built to last," "forward," etc.
And the press — always eager to dig, dig, dig into the lives, views and friends of Republican candidates — has acted instead as Obama's bodyguards.
So it shouldn't be surprising to anyone else — even if it is to the mainstream press — that the public is hungry for real answers to some basic questions about the man who's occupied the White House for nearly four years and wants to do so for another four.
What does Obama truly believe? Who were his intellectual influences? Does Obama share his father's rabid anti-colonial views? What does Obama actually want the country to be after he's done "transforming" it?
The "2016" documentary does a good job of getting answers to at least some of those lingering questions. Getting answers to all the rest is more vital now than ever.