At this point, CNN must have the same ratings as the lady who tells you not to leave your bags unattended, because the only time anyone ever watches them is in the airport. But I was in some airports this week, and so I happened to catch some of CNN’s coverage of the government shutdown. And it’s dishonest — by which I mean, it’s not news, it’s Democrat propaganda. The interviews with Republicans are hostile and challenging. The interviews with Democrats are opportunities to attack Republicans. At one point, I saw one reporter lament the fact that some Republicans could act with impunity because they have safe seats — as if Nancy Pelosi from San Francisco weren’t sitting in the safest seat in the most leftist district in the country.
But this — which is happening at the networks and the New York Times as well — does throw a light on President Obama’s strategy. He wants the debt ceiling raised without conditions — something that never happens. He feels the GOP has made a tactical error by pushing the Obamacare defunding campaign over the brink of shutdown and so now he refuses to negotiate, using the threat of U.S. default as a pressure point.
And he can do this because he knows the media will lie. Obama and the Democrats will refuse to negotiate — and the media will say Republicans are intransigent. Republicans will offer to fund the default and Democrats will refuse — and the media will say Republicans are reckless. Republicans may even cave on Obamacare but still want conditions on the debt ceiling — and when Obama turns them down, oh, how wrongheaded will Republicans be then?
Our news media speak slavish obedience to power, and feel right proud when power takes advantage of it to become even more powerful. Really, for shame.