As I read back through my archives, I find myself wondering, once again, just how much of our current political disfunction is a result of the Washington media's unwillingness to simply call things by their right names.
For example, we have the once-smart-but-no-longer Clive Crook writing that
These important votes is that--curiously--and despite the contention they aroused on Capitol Hill, they were all quite popular with the American public, as well as being good decisions on their merits. They should never have been controversial in the first place. It is a tribute to the obduracy of the Washington political class that they ever were...
Now I know, and Clive knows, that START, repeal of don't-ask-don't-tell, and the 2010 Bush tax cut extension were held up not because of Democrats who would not support them before the midterm election. The number of Democrats who would vote for these after but would not vote for these before the midterm was zero. Nada. None.
Now I know, and Clive knows, that these were held up because John Boehner and Mitch McConnell did not want to see any "Obama Wins a Victory" headlines before the midterm election was over. If Clive and company had been willing before the midterm to write stories headlined "Republicans try to break the government to make Obama look bad" then John and Mitch might not have gone there. But they weren't. So for John and Mitch there was no downside.
And so Clive complained about a situation that he had helped create. And he still could not nerve himself to tell his readers what was really going on. Can he nerve himself even today? I wonder. I do see him ignorantly trashing the excellent work of Maya Shankar and company for no good reason...
But, for balance, let me note that five years ago I was not just worried about the idiocies of the right-masquerading-as-the-center. I was also annoyed that Chris Bertram is simply unable to read...
From One Year Ago:
- What Happens to My Browser When I Visit the "Weekly Standard" Website: Live from La Farine
- Ann Leckie on David Graeber's "Debt: The First 5000 Mistakes": Handling the Sumerian Evidence Smackdown
- David Bell Praises "The Old New Republic" as "Not Predictably Reaganite": Live from La Farine
- Afternoon Must-Read: Kevin Murphy: How Gary Becker Saw the Scourge of Discrimination
From Two Years Ago:
- Watching Bitcoin, Dogecoin, Etc...
- David Frum on the Death Knell of "Welfare Capitalism", and Where We Should Go Next
From Five Years Ago:
- Yes, the Affordable Care Act Is a Sensible Centrist Policy
- Luigi Zingales Does Not Like the EFSF...
- Department of "Huh?!" (Call Things by Their Right Names Edition
- Does Jeffrey Goldberg Really Not Know What Binyamin Netanyahu's Plan Is? UPDATE: Yes He Does!
- Michael Froomkin Worries About His French...
- A Time to Spend
- DeLong Smackdown Watch: How Much Longer Will the Washington Post Survive?
- I Confess I Find It Hard to Know What to Do with This...
From Ten Years Ago: