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Friday, July 15, 2011

A Damn Nice Thing

Timothy Birdnow

Brent Bozell from MRC has some thoughts on the media blitzkrieg over the debt ceiling, followed by thougts from Yours TRuly.

Who's Burning Down D.C.?

By Brent Bozell

The political prognosticator Charlie Cook appeared on National Public Radio on July 11 and summarized perfectly the media narrative on the debt-limit battle. Boehner, Cook said, “is not a burn-the-barn-down, break-the-china kind of guy [and] he does not necessarily reflect the views of a majority...of the House Republican Conference, who are of the burn-the-barn-down, break-the-china mold.”

Hold on here. Why is it destructive to insist on a limited government? Why is fiscal sanity equated with pyromania? Cook was brought on as a “nonpartisan” analyst, but there’s nothing either civil or accurate in casting conservatives as barn-burners.

This is the “nonpartisan” Washington narrative of the budget talks: Reasonable Obama vs. Dangerously Unhinged Republicans. The establishment is imbibing deeply of the David Plouffe spin that somehow, a reckless, unsupervised Congress spent all the money and Barack Obama was too busy golfing to notice, as if he didn’t sign every spending bill. It’s as if he didn’t aggressively shovel ObamaCare and almost a trillion dollars of “stimulus” on top of the deficit mountain.

Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen got the ball rolling on July 4 by describing the GOP as the “Grand Old Cult” that needs a “mental health professional," and its presidential field was “a virtual political Jonestown.”

On July 5, MSNBC star Chris Matthews started “Hardball” by comparing conservative Republicans to foreign Islamic militants: “Well, the GOP has become the Wahhabis of American government, willing to risk bringing down the whole country in the service of their anti-tax ideology.” They were “willing to risk economic Armageddon in the name of religion, that is, the religion of no taxes.” By the next morning, Newsweek editor-in-chief Tina Brown upped the ante and called the Republicans “suicide bombers.”

So who, exactly, is unhinged in this debate?

On NBC, White House “reporter” Chuck Todd pointed fingers: the problem was that new “Tea Party caucus” that can’t back “anything that remotely looks like a tax hike on anybody.” Ever heard of liberal Democrats who can’t back “anything that remotely looks like you spent less than last year”?

That so-called “conservative” David Brooks – please, please stop this “conservative" silliness! – also wrote a column on July 4 for The New York Times trashing the Tea Party types for wanting to file a “psychological protest” instead of governing. They have “no sense of moral decency" about debt.

How ridiculous and perverse it is for Brooks to insist they don’t care about debt – and Obama does! Did Brooks spend the last two years in a cocoon of hermetically sealed ignorance?

Brooks claimed that Obama is desperate to campaign in 2012 as a “moderate” and would love to make a sweet deal for the Republicans that would provide, we are told, “a roughly 3-to-1 rate of spending cuts to revenue increases, an astonishing concession.” The biggest, most reckless spender in the history of the Republic, by far, and he’s a “moderate.” What would it take to label this man as a liberal?

For conservatives who remember the budget negotiations of 1990, this whole routine is nauseatingly familiar. The media are playing the exact same role today that they did then. They all encouraged Bush One to be a savvy dealmaker and forget that troublesome “read my lips, no new taxes” pledge. We were all told this deal would be two dollars in spending cuts for every dollar in tax hikes. Ditto with Reagan and Tip O’Neill in 1982.

The media want complete amnesia about what happens next. In both cases spending (and the deficit) surged upward, which is what happens when the Democrats make big “compromises.” Bush lost in 1992, due in part to angry conservative voters who believed in his campaign promises.

Here’s what our media could be asking, but they won’t, since it constitutes a serious question. If Obama really believed in a “balanced” menu of tax hikes and spending cuts, why didn’t he pass all these tax hikes he’s now touting when Democrats were solidly in control in 2009 and 2010? Obama never made any plans to “pay for” his “stimulus” with new taxes, and he even claimed ObamaCare would reduce the deficit, which was a cruel farce. And isn’t he now touting tax hikes on taxpayers making less than $250,000 – another broken promise? Does no reporter care to notice that would violate his “no new taxes except the super-rich” promises in 2008?

Instead, Obama’s allowed to hold press conferences and lecture the Republicans about how they’re not serious about deficit reduction. Obama’s allowed to paint himself as the troubled centrist who’s been cursed with an opposing party stuffed with extremists.

This time I’m just not sure anyone’s buying what the left-wing press is selling.



Does anybody remember George Herbert Walker Bush? Bush campaigned on the slogan "read my lips; no new taxes" and his pledge to keep taxes down was pilloried by the Media and Democrats. When Bush held firm they began a charm campaign, cajoling Bush the Elder and begging him to "do the right thing" by raising taxes, since the deficits were so high. (Compared to Obama, Bush was the soul of fiscal prudence. See here )

Bush caved, and those charming pleaders for fiscal sanity gleefully shouted AHA! and began a vicious campaign against Bush, who they accused of lying to the American People. It was a trap, and Bush walked right into it. This is what they have planned for Boehner should he buckle under pressure to be "reasonable".

This is a political trap being laid.

This trap is the only card up the Administration sleeve, and the media understands this. This is panic time on the Left, and they have to get Boehner to take the bait. If he does the Tea Party splits the GOP and the old "divide and conquer" strategy gives the BHO another four years to dismantle the U.S.

Boehner is holding fast, but even in holding fast he makes stupid statements like "everybody wants to find a way to raise the debt ceiling just..." which is the fast track to loserville. You don't concede a point like that. You say you have no interest in raising the debt ceiling, that government should live within it's means and that Obama can play less golf on the taxpayer's dime, that "Let's Move" should be defunded, that NPR, ACORN, Planned Parenthood, etc. should be defunded instead of borrowing more money from the Chinese.

No wonder Donald Trump says the Republicans suck at negotiations.

And the stakes are nothing less than the survival of the Republic. Everything rests on the shoulders of one knock-kneed House member. As Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington said of his victory over Napoleon at Waterloo "It has been a damned nice thing — the nearest run thing you ever saw in your life. .." (nice being an old term for uncertain or delicately balanced.)

We hang by a thread. This is a damn nice thing.

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