Roly-poly Republican strategist Karl Rove has a bit of a bad reputation, what with his mastery of quasi-legal dirty tricks, spearheading of underhanded whisper campaigns, and cut-throat dedication to enabling the most damaging presidential administration in living memory. So everyone basically thinks of him as a figure of cartoonish evil, like Dick Cheney. But now that he's on Fox News as a commentator, the liberals who run the rest of the media are shocked to find that they actually like Karl Rove!

Back in DC, of course, everyone has always liked Rove, because he is genial and charming. And also because he always happily talked and talked to the press. Rarely on the record, obv, but a good number of unnamed administration officials were always him. And every week since he started at Fox another column appears about how surprising it is that Rove is so rational and calm and fair-minded and generally not hatable. David Carr is surprised to find himself liking Karl Rove! Slate says he is thoughtful!

Now that Washington Post media "critic" Howard Kurtz has weighed in with a column on the subject, it is the official accepted conventional wisdom: Karl Rove is nice and intelligent and likable. [WP]