Conflating Moderates With Corporatists And AstroTurfers With Grass Roots


In another exercise where our corporate media is pretending that Democrats have moved to the left to counter the fact that the Republican Party has moved way to the right, Chuck Todd treated his viewers to Conserva-Dem and former Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln pretending she received a primary challenge from some "extremist" in the Democratic Party.

I don't think anyone who has taken an honest look at her challenger, Bill Halter's career, could rightfully paint him as being someone who's some far left extremist, but Todd let Lincoln get away with that here.

Todd played a campaign ad running in Texas against Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst by "tea party" candidate, Ted Cruz, attacking Dewhurst as being a "moderate" and naturally Lincoln took the opportunity to decry the fact that she faced a primary challenge herself and how terrible it is that the "extremes" have taken over both parties and asked how are we going to get anything done when good "moderates" like herself are run out of politics.

What Todd and Lincoln omitted of course is that Lincoln was challenged by someone who had actual grass roots support and who would be considered a "moderate" Democrat by most of the readers here. Progressives and the unions in her state were tired of her continually voting with Republicans in favor of the insurance companies and the financial industries and mucking up the works for Democrats at every turn, like she did when they were trying to get the health care law passed. She wasn't looking out for the interests of her constituents. She was looking out for those big monied interests that were sponsoring her; a point I made when she was on this same show last year and it was Chris Cillizza hosting and doing some revisionist history for Lincoln and her time in office.

But they continue to peddle the lie that what happened to her is the same as these AstroTurf teabaggers coming into these Republican primary races and ousting incumbents and pushing the Republican Party even further to the right and deeper into the pockets of corporations and people like the Koch brothers.

What we saw here was the false equivalency game where people who would like to see some of the money out of politics and some good governance are painted as "extremists" and are somehow the equal of a Republican Party that's fallen off the cliff with their move to the right, their refusal to support ideas that used to be their own just because a Democrat has proposed them now and who have basically been captured by the Libertarian/John Birch Society wing of their party.

And it's a lie that gets told over and over in the media every day. Candidate A says the earth is flat, so rather than tell the audience that Candidate A is crazy, we'll bring in Candidate B who disagrees and "you decide." And it's a lie that refuses to acknowledge the problems in both parties with the amount of money it takes to get elected and the media companies that are paying Chuck Todd's salary that are benefiting from it. And it's the lie that conflates the word moderate with corporatist and conflates actual grass roots movements with the AstroTurf "tea party" and their Republican rebranding effort.


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