At the start of last year, in the wake of Scott Brown’s surprising victory in Massachusetts, I wrote:
[Howard] Fineman, and the rest of the newly hyperpartisan and opinion-dominated Newsweek (not to mention the advisors that President Obama keeps even closer at hand) are just bitter that the right has any megaphone at all.
And if their recent victories continue, someone on the far left is bound to dredge up Al Gore’s loony Frankfurt School-style “conservative media bias” trope from 2002.
In the fall of 2008 and early 2009, the left dared to dream big. Back then, we saw the Daily News’ hagiographic endorsement of Obama (their publisher and erstwhile Obama speechwriter has since seen the light). This was quickly followed by Rahm Emanuel’s ham-handed “Never let a serious crisis go to waste” quote. In early January of 2009, even before Obama took office, John Judis of the New Republic wrote, “A decade ago, I might have been embarrassed to admit that I was raised on Marx and Marxism, but I am convinced that the left is coming back.” James Carville promised their reign would last for 40 years. And Newsweek had us believe that resistance really was futile, to coin a phrase.
Two years later, and all is lost.
The Daily News (hot on the heels of fellow crosstown rivals Paul Krugman and Frank Rich) is dusting off Al Gore’s nearly decade-old conservative media bias mantra, and the New Republic is picturing the new GOP Congress as the Return of the Son of the Monster that Devoured DC.
Forget the sclerotic old paranoid style of Richard Hofstadter from nearly 50 years ago — judging by the past two years, it’s long been superseded amongst his fellow leftists by the manic-depressive style of punditry.