Ed Driscoll

The Welfare State: Mission Accomplished

“So, Let Me Get This Straight,” PJM contributor and former Vodkapundit co-blogger Will Collier writes:

The overwhelming political objective of the Democratic Party since the 1930’s has been to get as many people as possible enrolled in one government program or another, at least in part to guarantee their votes in subsequent elections: “Tax and tax, spend and spend, and elect and elect.”

And now it’s somehow a scandal when a Republican notes that they succeeded, to the tune of nearly half the country?

Am I missing something?

On Monday night, I saw the selectively-edited Romney clip being aired on multiple Bay Area 11:00 PM news broadcasts on the TV monitors above the treadmills at the gym; but I didn’t have headphones on to the hear the sound. But I had to wonder, given that California taxpayers are essentially working to pay for the state’s government unions and as VDH recently noted, one third of America’s welfare population resides in California, did the newsreaders think that the percentage of people beholden to the government that Romney quoted was too small?

As we noted earlier today, over three-quarters of CNBC Website readers agree with Romney’s sentiments; at Red State, Erick Erickson declares it “Another Chick-Fil-A Moment:”

The Chick-Fil-A controversy animated a whole lot of people. It just turned out that the people it most animated were the people who agreed with Dan Cathy.

So it is, I think, with Mitt Romney’s comments. I think the media and the left have badly misread the American mood on this. On CNN yesterday, I spent a fair amount of time with Kate Bolduan and Joe Johns, two of my favorite people. They kept focusing on Mitt Romney’s characterization of the word “victims.”

What I explained to them and what I think the media misses is that many of the people the media would claim Mitt Romney described as “victims’ weren’t who Mitt Romney was speaking about. And those people intrinsically know it. They may technically fall into the category Mitt Romney described as government dependent victims, but they know he’s not talking about them. He’s talking about the people they also are talking about.

But more than that, and this is really what the left and media miss, a fair number of those people in the 47% are not there by choice. They are there by Barack Obama’s economic policies. And they absolutely understand that Barack Obama’s policies got them there. All they need to hear from Mitt Romney is that he really does get it and really will fix the problem, not just manage the decline of the nation as his primary opponents claimed he would.

That off the cuff, off the record talk was what they needed to hear. Mitt Romney recognizes we have a problem with government dependency, as do a majority of Americans. But more importantly, Mitt Romney will improve the lives of that 47% by growing the private sector, not redistributing pieces of the economic pie.

In contrast, as John Nolte writes at Big Journalism, WaPo Poll: Political Pundit Approval Rating Sits at 21%”

Gee, I can’t understand why the American public refuses to trust an MSM that more than ever openly admits that it’s lying to them.

Update: More on the deceptively-edited Mother Jones tape from Bryan Preston, who has a nifty before and after blinking gif to highlight the edit points, though as Andrew Klavan writes perhaps it’s all academic anyhow: “One more disastrous week for Romney and he could win by a landslide!”