This is the type of segment on Chris Matthews' show Hardball that makes me want to just throw something at the television set. It seems Karl Rove's PAC, Crossroads GPS has a new lie filled attack ad out and the best we got with any acknowledgment of that fact in the clip above, was Cynthia Tucker calling it "a good ad" and admitting there are "a couple of lies" in it, but hey, that's just politics.
Well, that's fine and good that yes, we know politicians and people like Karl Rove tell lies, but isn't the job of reporters to let the viewers know what those lies are and why they're not true? Instead we have Matthews showing the ad and Tucker and former RNC head Michael Steele discussing which voters it's supposed to influence, and a discussion on the fact that we don't know where the money is coming from to run the ad and who is donating to these Super PACs.
I'm all for getting the money out of politics and full disclosure on these ads as all of them said they were in the segment above, but I would have appreciated a conversation about the fact that the ad doesn't just have "a couple of lies." It's packed full of them, not to mention the irony of Karl Rove not being willing to stick his name on the ad, so the unfortunate television viewers who happen to watch it will know that Rove is the one responsible for these ads blaming Obama for not cleaning up the mess his old boss left us, regardless of who's donating to his PAC.
We got a lot more honest assessment of the ad from Steve Benen today over at The Maddow Blog: The best lies money can buy:
The New York Times seems quite impressed with the latest attack ad from Karl Rove's Crossroads GPS, which is poised to blanket the airwaves in swing states. The Times calls it "deeply researched," "delicately worded," and "low key."
The paper neglected to mention another phrase: misleading to an offensive degree.
Jamelle Bouie had a good take on this [...]
Indeed, the great irony of the ad is that it's Karl Rove attacking Obama for the fiscal policies the president inherited from Rove's old boss. [...]
But perhaps now would be a good time to note that efficacy and honesty aren't the same thing, and the latter matters more than the former.
The Crossroads attack ad is as cynical as politics can get, working from the assumption that voters are fools.
It talks about bailouts, assuming voters won't know it was Bush/Cheney that rescued Wall Street before Obama took office.
It talks about debt, assuming voters don't know Mitt Romney's agenda would raise the debt far more than Obama's agenda would.
It talks about student loans, assuming voters don't know that Obama expanded Pell Grants and Romney wants to scrap student loans altogether.
It talks about "job-killing debt," which as a policy matter, is just idiocy.
It lies about the stimulus; it lies about spending; it lies about health care.
If Obama were such a terrible failure, shouldn't his Republican critics rely on truths for their attack ads? Why make stuff up if the facts are supposed to be so damning?
As for the indifference to Crossroads' dishonesty, the political world has become inured to the constant lying, and it's not a healthy development. As Bouie concluded, "It's not hard to find an independent evaluation of each claim, and yet, it's rare that news outlets challenge the Romney campaign -- or Republicans in general -- on any of it. The GOP is running the most mendacious presidential campaign in recent memory, and the collective response has been a shrug."
Which is exactly what we got from Cynthia Tucker in the segment above.