...Or reason #7,589 why the Media is hurting America.
This clip is so unfocused that I think it perfectly exemplifies how the media dumbs down the populace so that the average American hasn't a clue what's going on.
Chris Matthews starts the segment by bemoaning that the Obama administration has no really strong spokespeople out there to sell their economic plan. So far, no argument there. The Republicans have been much better in throwing sand in our eyes and giving these easily digestible soundbytes that sound good on the surface. Of course, that's when Matthews goes off the rails a bit and says that the Obama needs someone as clear as Limbaugh to speak for the administration, but as Clarence Page suggests, that's only if you want to convince a very small portion of the citizenry:
MATTHEWS: You know who can talk? You know who can talk? Limbaugh. You don’t have to like the big guy, but you know what he does? He defends capitalism. What he says is, “You, Mr. President, are out there raising taxes and getting rid of deductability and itemization and putting more injury on those of us who are already injured. You’re hurting the people who are driving the truck.”
PAGE: Right, and nobody believes that but dittoheads. The fact is, Bush has already done the same darn thing. That argument isn’t working right now. People know that government is in a spend mode, and by the way, you know we’ve been in….
MATTHEWS: Limbaugh’s numbers are doubled. Barack Obama’s numbers are not doubled.
PAGE: That’s his job, though, look at the numbers. About 18% of the public agrees with Limbaugh. You don’t win elections that way, you get radio ratings. But ever since Reagan, we’ve been on a trend of taxing lower income people and giving breaks to the upper income. Obama has slightly reversed that now, and I don’t see a revolution in the streets.
Nice of Matthews to go ahead and echo the ratings/audience share exaggeration for Limbaugh. Who needs facts?
The panel then admits that Wall Street are looking for immediate solutions with no pain to them. Gosh, that's not an unrealistic outlook at all, is it? The continued focus on the tax increases on the wealthiest 2% of the population is simply intended to scare the rest of us schmoes not making that kind of cash...and as CNBC's Trish Regan admits, won't even come into play until 2011. Rick Stengel has the money quote (literally):
STENGEL: Look, I confess that some of my best friends are investment bankers. You know, I won’t…you shouldn’t hold it against me. But they are… to a man with a hammer, everything looks like a nail. They are just looking at the things that help them. They are not looking for the wider economy, the relationship between Wall St. and actual value of companies has never been wider. And by the way, I’d say to Rush Limbaugh, and as he says to his folks, how is capitalism working for you these days? Not very good, right? I mean, these people are hurting and people want to have the government do something.
That's it in a nutshell, isn't it? These "economic experts" like Limbaugh are big WATBs complaining because THEY are hurt. They couldn't care less about the country as a whole. But to further obfuscate the issue, Matthews' Meter Question asks if we should blame the Obama administration for some of the economic doom and gloom:
Um, excuse me? Didn't we just agree that all this hand-wringing and pearl-clutching over the stimulus plan is due to economists looking for an unrealistic quick fix that offers no pain to them, even if it's not in the best interest for the country? How's that the Obama administration's fault. Even reliable GOP mouthpiece Kathleen Parker (who voted yes) admits that the stock market performed worse under Bush.
Once again, the Fourth Estate abdicates their responsibility to inform the public.