Saturday, August 15, 2009

How the tune changes

During the '08 election, the Obama press corps -- er, the press -- lauded Obama for his rational, post-partisan style and waxed rhapsodic about the change he would bring to Washington.

Less than a year later, how the tune has changed.

Newsweek, part of the Obama administration's unofficial Dept. of Propaganda, has joined other Democratic voices urging the Dear Leader to act more like George Bush -- that is, to eschew bipartisanship and shove legislation down Americans' throats. Obama shouldn't care about bipartisanship, says Newsweek, because bipartisanship doesn't exist.

Not surprisingly, Newsweek blames Republicans for this state of affairs. Bipartisanship isn't really possible today, says the article, because "moderate" Republicans don't exist anymore. The GOP lurched to the far right while the Democrats basically stayed in the mainstream.
Since the early 1970s, Democrats have drifted only slightly leftward. But thanks to realignment and redistricting—the practice of slicing the electoral map into ever more politically homogeneous districts—a 2003 Republican House member with a voting record at the median of his party was about 73 percent more conservative than his Nixon-era counterpart.
Part of the reason the Dems "have drifted only slightly leftward" since the 1970s, as Newsweek claims, is that they were so far left to begin with. If they'd gone much further they would have all become card-carrying Communists (instead of just settling for being unofficial honorary members). And the Propaganda Dept. engages in some dishonest sleight-of-hand, making redistricting seem like a mainly conservative phenomenon. Gerrymandered House districts have indeed become one of the biggest problems in Congressional reform, but the phenomenon has benefited incumbent Dems at least as much as GOP incumbents. Good luck getting the Propaganda Dept. to cop to that, though.

And it gets even better, because there's a second tune-change in this article. 10 years ago, Democratic news rags like Newsweek praised Bill Clinton for reversing the Dems' hard-Left lurch under party leaders like McGovern and Dukakis, making them viable again, and bringing them into the mainstream -- the mainstream being where Republicans mostly resided (as evidenced by their success in presidential elections and the stunning Gingrich Revolution). These are the same Republicans that Newsweek implied were increasingly outside of the mainstream during that time period.

You've got to love patent dishonesty.

Glen Beck is right: there's no real difference between mainstream news outlets and liberal blogs, especially under this administration.

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