The media like to blame both sides of the sequester equally. Maybe they feel safer that way. But they're betraying our country and taking us into worse trouble as they do.
Derek Thompson, whose field is business economics and who is a senior editor at The Atlantic, takes a look at the blame game, and the role the media have been playing in establishing who's at fault for the sequester.
When negotiations between Republicans and Democrats are breaking down (which is to say, on weekdays), Washington centrists savor being above the fray and blaming each side. But occasionally they float so far above the fray that they disappear into the exosphere of evenhandedness and lose sight of the details on the ground.
We saw this happen with David Brooks, who hammered the Obama Administration for not proposing a balanced plan to replace the sequester. But not only did Obama's balanced proposal exist, but also Brooks later acknowledged that it was more balanced between taxes and spending than he preferred himself. He later apologized (to his considerable credit) in the next column. ...
... All the evidence I see is that the sequester is not merely a bad law foisted on the president but also a bad law motivated by a bad misreading of what the economy needs. The most frustrating part of the latest frame of the budget war has been that the media's fetish for evenhandedness prevents us from seeing the simplest truth: That there is no evidence that the deficit is a danger -- and too much evidence that the Republican Party's behavior is. ...Thompson, The Atlantic
The only piece missing from this otherwise flawless piece is what could be called the crisis game. When did it start? Oh, decades ago. But the perfecting of the crisis game began in the Bush administration. I think they rediscovered its use during 9/11. Perhaps even before 9/11 if, as many suspect, they saw the attack coming.
There's nothing like crying wolf to get the sheep moving.
And so we have the deficit crisis. It isn't a crisis, it's a long-term habit whose consequences we manage to avoid because, for the most part, we have a tough and and usually booming economy. But now we have a party of the right that wouldn't have a license to carry any political clout if it had to go through a mental health exam, a party that focuses solely on the acquisition of power. And a media that gets the butter for its bread from not blaming the blameworthy.
How much mass dislocation, dismay, and even death is caused in the process are of little concern to either.