A Provocation

I am not a Republican.  I am a Democrat so shame on me for this posting, a cut and paste job from a Times piece about media incompetency. The author speaks to my frustrations.   Does he speak to yours?  

Fiscal Cliff Fictions: Let’s All Agree to Pretend the GOP Isn’t Full of It

By Michael GrunwaldNov. 30, 20120

Read more: http://swampland.time.com/2012/11/30/fiscal-cliff-fictions-lets-all-agree-to-pretend-the-gop-isnt-full-of-it/#ixzz2DoJ4muIA

It’s really amazing to see political reporters dutifully passing along Republican complaints that President Obama’s opening offer in the fiscal cliff talks is just a recycled version of his old plan, when those same reporters spent the last year dutifully passing along Republican complaints that Obama had no plan. It’s even more amazing to see them pass along Republican outrage that Obama isn’t cutting Medicare enough, in the same matter-of-fact tone they used during the campaign to pass along Republican outrage that Obama was cutting Medicare.

This isn’t just cognitive dissonance. It’s irresponsible reporting. Mainstream media outlets don’t want to look partisan, so they ignore the BS hidden in plain sight, the hypocrisy and dishonesty that defines the modern Republican Party. I’m old enough to remember when Republicans insisted that anyone who said they wanted to cut Medicare was a demagogue, because I’m more than three weeks old.

I’ve written a lot about the GOP’s defiance of reality–its denial of climate science, its simultaneous denunciations of Medicare cuts and government health care, its insistence that debt-exploding tax cuts will somehow reduce the debt—so I often get accused of partisanship. But it’s simply a fact that Republicans controlled Washington during the fiscally irresponsible era when President Clinton’s budget surpluses were transformed into the trillion-dollar deficit that President Bush bequeathed to President Obama. (The deficit is now shrinking.) It’s simply a fact that the fiscal cliff was created in response to GOP threats to force the U.S. government to default on its obligations. The press can’t figure out how to weave those facts into the current narrative without sounding like it’s taking sides, so it simply pretends that yesterday never happened.

The next fight is likely to involve the $200 billion worth of stimulus that Obama included in his recycled fiscal cliff plan that somehow didn’t exist before Election Day. I’ve taken a rather keen interest in the topic of stimulus, so I’ll be interested to see how this is covered. Keynesian stimulus used to be uncontroversial in Washington; every 2008 presidential candidate had a stimulus plan, and Mitt Romney’s was the largest. But in early 2009, when Obama began pushing his $787 billion stimulus plan, the GOP began describing stimulus as an assault on free enterprise—even though House Republicans (including Paul Ryan) voted for a $715 billion stimulus alternative that was virtually indistinguishable from Obama’s socialist version. The current Republican position seems to be that the fiscal cliff’s instant austerity would destroy the economy, which is odd after four years of Republican clamoring for austerity, and that the cliff’s military spending cuts in particular would kill jobs, which is even odder after four years of Republican insistence that government spending can’t create jobs.

I guess it’s finally true that we all are Keynesians now. Republicans don’t even seem to be arguing that more stimulus wouldn’t boost the economy; they’ve suggested that Obama needs to give up “goodies” like extending unemployment insurance (which benefits laid-off workers) and payroll tax cuts (which benefit everyone) to show that he’s negotiating in good faith. At the same time, though, they also want Obama to propose bigger Medicare cuts, even though they spent the last campaign slamming Obama’s Medicare cuts and denying their interest in Medicare cuts. I live in Florida, so I had the pleasure of hearing a radio ad from Allen West, hero of the Tea Party, vowing to protect Medicare.

Whatever. I realize that the GOP’s up-is-downism puts news reporters in an awkward position. It would seem tendentious to point out Republican hypocrisy on deficits and Medicare and stimulus every time it comes up, because these days it comes up almost every time a Republican leader opens his mouth. But we’re not supposed to be stenographers. As long as the media let an entire political party invent a new reality every day, it will keep on doing it. Every day.

Read more: http://swampland.time.com/2012/11/30/fiscal-cliff-fictions-lets-all-agree-to-pretend-the-gop-isnt-full-of-it/#ixzz2DoFXCqx5

LilAnnie LilAnnie
56-60, F
6 Responses Dec 1, 2012

I applaud your right to post nonsense wherever you want to post it. I simply cannot wrap my mind around the way collectivists think, but rock on nonetheless. You left wingers have gone down the rabbit hole and through the looking glass, and although this is not a real good example, nothing you say or do surprises me anymore.

Nothing? Will have to work at that.

Well said!

Isn't it crazy? That article was written a year ago. The Republican's spin their positions hard, fast and often. Nothing with them is consistent, except the ability to make us dizzy and less stable.

Thank you for posting this, very interesting and I tend to agree. i also want to THANK YOU for posting it here so that those whom have been the most brain washed by fox "news" may see it and the light.

Those who claim that Fox News "brainwashes" people must believe that 95% of the whole media must be fair and balanced. Liberals have a whole slew of media outlets to choose from that claim are more fair and less brainwashing than Fox. CNN, PMSNBC, ABC, CBS, NBC, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The LA Times, National Public Radio, The View, Politically Incorrect. Despite the fact that all these outlets preach the Obama and liberal Democrat agenda 24/7, one cable channel that stands out from the rest presents both sides of the issue, is considered too right-leaning or biased.

Gumshoejane, conservative people do not reject views like yours because we haven't been exposed to them. On the contrary, we have been abundantly exposed to them and found them unpersuasive.

Gumshoe, your comment made me realize something.....I never for one split second imagined that this article was going to be an eye opening one for any Republican. It has been my experience that politics lately is a dance. One in which each side pivots and swirls and reacts according to how the the music of the moment makes them feel. The music is the key. We need a Movement to play a better tune!

Barefoot, how do you feel about CSPAN?

I never watch C-SPAN. From what I know, they do try to remain neutral when it comes to issues since they basically cover gavel-to-gavel coverage of the House and Senate sessions. C-SPAN 3 is basically lectures on historical events. If you are a true politcal junkie and you have nothing else to do or watch, then watching C-SPAN is right up your alley.

2 More Responses

We are not all Keynesians now. The 2009 stimulus was a failure.

So...you would become austere like the rest of first world countries.....at least we are growing slowly.

And what is your point exactly? You post a partisan hack piece with the same old accusations thrown at Republicans. Obama has offered nothing "SUBSTANTIAL!" The Republicans never said he had offered nothing. They have repeatedly said that this president has refused to lead and has refused to negotiate in good faith -- and they are right.

If you believe the poor need so much, take from yourself and give to the poor. Do not demand that the Government steal what is mine and give to someone else to make you feel better.

"My" point is that I agree with the author of the article. The style of political coverage we have now is not serving us well.

Well you've got that right. The entire main stream media in the US is left-wing.

The right loves to say that the media is in Obama's pocket. As you can see in the above article, we on the left have problems with the media as well. Maybe the problem is our expectations. We should stop expecting that the people who cover the news will ever be able to rise above the influence of their own perspectives.

Split! I can't believe how thick headed I am not to mention CSPAN. CSPAN is magnificent. Don't you agree? We are so lucky to have it. I swear, If anything ever threatens that service, I might tie myself to a pillar at the capital building until they reinstate it.

Very true and unfortunate. I do not believe that has always been true. Journalists always have had their own views and opinions but most made a reasonable attempt to report the facts, not their opinion. Every piece I read today, regardless of source, is slanted, expressing the journalist's own perspectives and opinions. Often the slant is only in the choice of words used, at other times the bias is more blatant.

I have no objection to opinion journalists slanting what they say. That is expected and acceptable. What is not, is when straight reporting is biased, regardless of which direction the bias takes.

Mine mine mine. If liberals are for helping the poor than obviously we are talking giving what is ours also. I have never heard a liberal say "let's only take from the Republicans"

Yes. Mine. I sacrificed years of my life to attain a college degree, worked hard all through school, studied to get good grades, worked every chance I had starting at about 14. I took on manual labor jobs, janitorial jobs, I scrubbed pots and pans and cleaned rest rooms all in order to get ahead. Neither you nor our Government now has any Constitutional right to take what I have earned to give to others against my will. You are free to do as you so choose. Do not presume to tell me I am selfish because I worked to get ahead while others did not.

Many people worked just as hard as you did and still failed. To assume everyone who is poor are lazy is such a common stereotype and untrue. Its called taxes, everyone pays them not just the hard working. They should go towards things that help us all, and helping the poor is one of those.

According to the US Government's own numbers, nearly half of all American citizens of working age pay no Federal Income Taxes while the other half pays all of the Federal Income taxes, yet people like you want to increase the taxes on those who already pay the largest portion of all Federal taxes collected.

I am very sorry to strongly disagree with you, but there is very little excuse for anyone to totally fail in this country. Education is paid for and provided free of charge. If someone fails to take advantage of that free education, fails to study, fails to graduate, they have made their choice and pay the consequences -- and that includes me. I could have studied harder, could have done better, could have graduated higher in my class; Because I did not, I pay the consequences by having less opportunity and lower income than my age peers who did better in school than did I.

As a society, we have an obligation to help those who are incapable of supporting themselves because of age, illness, or disability. Taxpayers should have no obligation to help those who screwed up by their own free will.

Life is all about choices. Bad choices bring bad consequences, although not always immediately. Good choices bring benefits, although again, not always right away. Sometimes we pay for our bad choices for years -- even for the rest of our life. Sometimes it may be years before we reap the rewards of the good choices we made. At least in the US, the choices are ours to make -- study, don't study; graduate, don't graduate; do drugs or alcohol or not; run with the fast crowd or study with the nerds; have sex or don't; get pregnant or don't. Every choice we make has a consequence. It is not society's responsibility to indemnify us against the consequences of our mistakes.

I understand what you are saying. I have worked hard in school and have been blessed to have all of my college paid for and am working to save my money to pay for my next step in schooling. College is not totally free for everyone though, its not possible unless we open up to socialism. I do think people should work hard, but I think its important to remember not everyone was born in the same situation. where we grow up, how are family acts, how society treats us...its all affects how we turn out. We can't all have the same mentallity. The girl who grew up in foster care and then was kicked out at 18 and forced to drop out of school and get a job, should not be expected to reach the same level as people with better oppertunities without some help. I believe its a hand up rather than a hand out.

Also, if you work you pay taxes. That counts for the working poor too. I believe in taxing the super rich their fair share, not bleeding them dry.

Woo Hoo, nerdbabe! Thanks for these comments. You present your perspective very well. And since its also my perspective....I salute you!

Haha thanks! I alsways support fellow libs!

Because of the Earned Income tax credit, it is possible to work, have taxes deducted from your pay, and then at the end of the year after you have filed your return, to actually get more back than you paid in.

The woman you describe, 18, kicked out of foster care, no income, is eligible for a variety of government loans and grants. I am not opposing that. A person willing to work hard to advance themselves deserves our help, but does not deserve for us to totally support them for not working, not educating themselves, and for having child after child, perpetuating a welfare culture and adding additional burden. The system as it exists today actually encourages some not to work and to have additional children for which they receive additional support. Its not right.

No, it isn't. There are some like that, but we shoudnt group together the whole and judge them all because of it.

Very unfortunately, government is not good at managing flexibly. Bureaucracies tend to manage yes/no, black white, up/down. Asking a bureaucrat to consider a specific individual's circumstance does not generally end in a positive outcome. In the legislative process, it is difficult to impossible to take into consideration every special circumstance. This is simply the nature of government and it is why I tend to the philosophy that the government that governs the least governs best. I understand that not everyone agrees, but that is my outlook.

13 More Responses

EP's Community Guidelines say "Please post each story once, to the most appropriate group." EPArsineh confirmed that people should not post in viewpoint groups stories attacking the views of the group's members but rather put their stories in compatible groups. http://www.experienceproject.com/stories/Want-To-Improve-The-Experience-Project/2604203

Well, I guess this story might seem like an "attack" if you are very sensitive to having your world view upset. For the record, I did not post this with an aggressive spirit, more as a way to share the authors views of how political coverage frustrates. Regardless, EP gives its members a good option if they feel uncomfortable about anything here and I am certain you would not hesitate to flag the story if you feel it deserves it. I would not take such a flag personally so feel free. You would not offend. So.....yeah. Its all good.