The thing that is always so infuriating to me about watching This Week is how George "I Have A Job, Too Bad About Yours" Stephanopoulos is coldly ticking away points for style, presentation, etc - everything except the truth. He is the perfect practitioner of what journalism professor Jay Rosen calls "The View from Nowhere." God knows, I'm no fan of the Obama administration. But to place the Romney/Ryan's outright lies about Medicare as a mere point of disagreement - well, that's hackery of the highest order. It's as if he's watching a sports event and acting as a referee, when this is our society and our lives he's talking about! He just doesn't care, and it's obvious.
How about a reality show, where the audience members could vote on bringing real journalists from other countries to our top media outlets, and send our hacks to theirs? Much hilarity would ensue!
STEPHANOPOULOS: One place you disagree with the Romney/Ryan ticket is the ads they have been sending out on welfare reform, neither Governor Romney nor Congressman Ryan mentioned welfare in their convention speeches, but here's the ad they've been running in a lot of battleground states.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANNOUNCER: President Obama quietly announced a plan to gut welfare reform by dropping work requirements. Under Obama's plan, you wouldn't have to work and wouldn't have to train for a job. They'd just send you your welfare check. And welfare to work goes back to being plain old welfare.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
STEPHANOPOULOS: I know you disagree with the ad, and a lot of independent fact checkers have backed you up on that. My question is, it doesn't seem to deter Governor Romney. The question is, why? And many of your supporters have accused the Romney team of playing the race card. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the DNC chair, called it quote, "a dog whistler for voters who consider race when casting their ballot." Does the president agree with that?
Well, George, the Romney campaign can advertise outright lies because they know they can count on the media to ignore them. Or just as effective, to falsely equivocate them with an unrelated action by a Democrat. "Look over here, ladies and gentlemen: Debbie Wasserman Schultz!" See how you did that?
PLOUFFE: Well, first, George, on Medicare, I want to make clear, I don't agree with Paul Ryan. I agree that it's an important debate for the country.
PLOUFFE: So, first of all, George, right now, their campaign, is built on a tripod of lies. A welfare attack that is just absolutely untrue. The suggestion that we're raiding Medicare, absolutely untrue. And then this whole we can't build it nonsense. The president, as I think everybody in America does, believes that small businesses are built through the drive and innovation and hard work. The point he was trying to make is, things like education, roads, or infrastructure, it's something we all do together.
So it is amazing, by the way -- I don't think we have ever seen a presidential campaign, ever, that's built on a foundation of absolute lies. And I think ultimately they are going to pay a price on that.
On welfare, it's absolutely untrue. Everyone who looked at it is outraged that they're making this. The president, actually, these waivers strengthen work. You would have to get 20 percent more work in the state to even qualify.
Now, as to their motivations, I'll leave that to them. It is remarkable that the entire--
STEPHANOPOULOS: But (inaudible) the DNC chair who says it's a dog whistle playing on racial resentment?
Yes, George, by all means, to point out that Wasserman Schultz is pointing out their strategy is exactly the same thing as lying!
PLOUFFE: Well, listen, I think they'll have to answer what they're trying to do. I think they're trying to suggest somehow that we're trying to give a bunch of handouts to people, which is just not true. This is a president who believes in his core that hard work must be rewarded. And if people aren't willing to work harder and be responsible, we shouldn't help them.
But here's the question, George. Their whole theory was -- our whole campaign is just going to be the economy is not great, and it's Obama's fault. Now they are on this Medicare thing. Now they're on this welfare thing. It's a remarkable thing. And so he didn't talk about welfare in his speech on Thursday night.
The other thing he didn't talk about welfare -- didn't talk in his speech, which I think is remarkable, is he didn't talk about the war we're waging in Afghanistan. Or our troops. Which is an amazing thing for someone who wants to be 66 days from now elected as our commander in chief. Not even talk about our troops or the war we're waging in Afghanistan. And maybe that's because Governor Romney called our ending of the Iraq war tragic. Has opposed our plans in Afghanistan, in terms of bringing troops home. We're recovering 33,000 in September. So that was a huge omission, and I think a really remarkable thing.