Aside from the sorry state of the voting public -comprised of a shocking number of insane and/or astoundingly ignorant and angry pitchfork self-impalers - Rick Perlstein offers one of the reasons why this country is unable to catch up to the rest of the world in terms of public health insurance:
It used to be different. You never heard the late Walter Cronkite taking time on the evening news to “debunk” claims that a proposed mental health clinic in Alaska is actually a dumping ground for right-wing critics of the president’s program, or giving the people who made those claims time to explain themselves on the air. The media didn’t adjudicate the ever-present underbrush of American paranoia as a set of “conservative claims” to weigh, horse-race-style, against liberal claims. Back then, a more confident media unequivocally labeled the civic outrage represented by such discourse as “extremist” — out of bounds.
The tree of crazy is an ever-present aspect of America’s flora. Only now, it’s being watered by misguided he-said-she-said reporting and taking over the forest. Latest word is that the enlightened and mild provision in the draft legislation to help elderly people who want living wills — the one hysterics turned into the “death panel” canard — is losing favor, according to the Wall Street Journal, because of “complaints over the provision.”
Good thing our leaders weren’t so cowardly in 1964, or we would never have passed a civil rights bill — because of complaints over the provisions in it that would enslave whites.
Steve Benen has more on media dysfunctionality, and how it serves to screw over the American people repeatedly and without lubrication.
I did my best to tune in to the Sunday newsies yesterday, but was made physically ill by the discussion of death panels as if there actually was, you know, a provision remotely resembling “death panels” in any of the bills under consideration. Anywhere.
And as if the actual end of life provisions aren’t entirely innocuous, and previously championed by such death panel demagogues as Newt Gingrich and Sarah Palin. The whole point of these provisions (that Palin supported wholeheartedly) is to allow the individual the FREEDOM to decide how to deal with their final days in order to make sure that the GUMINT can’t make decisions for them.
While these facts went unmentioned, there was plenty of discussion of how this whole saga is indicative of Sarah Palin’s political power and, I shit you not, “political savvy.”
What the fucking fuckity fuck in the world does that mean?????
The stupid has reached supernova and all the media can do is applaud the ability of those firing up the stupid to capture the media’s attention with a particularly shiny stupid. Rather than, you know, point out that stupid mendacity is actually stupid and mendacious, and its purveyors likewise (or, in the alternative, cynical and mendacious).
Next up, a spirited debate on the likelihood that ObamaCare will end up looking like this: