Saturday, November 23, 2013

This week's Blame-the-Republicans award for creativity

Why did the press not report that the development of Obamacare was in trouble for the whole three and a half years from bill passage until October 1, 2013? There were signs all over that there were problems. But the press did little. The Republicans were complaining about it. And the press's called that obstructionism by poor losers. Not that they might be right.

Enter Times Magazine editor-at-large Mark Halperin. He admits the press didn't do their job, but blames Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney? Breitbart

To his credit, Halperin didn’t dodge the fact that the media failed to do its job. He did, though, rather bizarrely blame Mitt Romney and Republicans for it. [quoting him talking to Laura Ingraham]

Laura, there is no doubt that the press failed to scrutinize this program at the time of passage and during the context of the president’s re-election. Any reporter who would argue otherwise would be putting their head in the sand. As we write in “Double Down,” the problem for the Republicans in the re-election context was you nominated, Republicans nominated Mitt Romney, a guy who was not very well positioned, to say the least, to make the case against Obamacare because he passed the healthcare plan in Massachusetts. …

Barack Obama knew he wasn’t going to run for re-election defending the program. Part of the flaws of the way the media works. If the candidates aren’t talking about it gets less coverage. No doubt a disservice was done to the country and to liberals. It didn’t get scrutiny on passage and then again when the president was running for re-election. Our cover story in the magazine lays all this out just how deep the president’s predicament is now politically and substantively.

One wonders how many moons Halperin can see from his planet.

Romney did hit on ObamaCare, once during the most high-profile of all presidential election events -- a presidential debate. But he was immediately pummeled by elite media fact-checkers.

In fact, the media played whack-a-mole with Romney, repeatedly hitting him again and again and again whenever he dared criticize ObamaCare. By loudly screaming liar! every time he brought it up, the media intentionally turned ObamaCare into a liability for Romney to run on. And you can bet that was the plan.

According to Halperin, just how many times did Romney have to bring up ObamaCare in order for the media to do its job? Was he just one mention away? Two? Four?

Regardless, the biggest election of the last three years without Romney's name on the ticket was Republican Scott Brown's January 2010 Senate win in Massachusetts; a startling upset caused almost completely by the public's growing concern over ObamaCare.

Still, the media did not scrutinize.

It is also nonsense that Republicans as a whole didn't make an election issue of ObamaCare. Dozens of Republican lawmakers ran on ObamaCare in 2010. Their victories were historic.

Still, the media chose not to scrutinize.

But there is just no excuse -- other than bias -- for the media not scrutinizing ObamaCare as it was being proposed, written, and passed. Still, throughout all of that, including a grueling legislative process, the media refused to investigate the legislation or to take New Media's reporting seriously.

In many cases, over the last few years, the media pushed back against ObamaCare critics as motivated by race...

If the press can't blame the Republicans they might have to do some investigative reporting and … that's work. So their assignment is to find a way, any way, to blame the Republicans for every shortcoming of President Obama and his well paid, underperforming government minions.

I thought Mark Halperin (confused with highly accomplished novelist Mark Helprin*) was one of the more reliable mainstream journalists. But everyone has to suspect every word he writes after they read this creative fiction.

* Mark Helprin is an ivy-league educated American who has served in the Israel military. His novels, Winter's Tale, A Soldier of the Great War and others are very highly regarded.

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