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June 29, 2007

"Talk Radio Is Running America"

Mort Kondracke complained on Hume last night that talk radio had worked its evil to defeat the bill, largely by only telling people about "the bad parts" of the bill.

Ummm... if the MSM were not in the tank for the bill, would they not, themselves, have informed the public of all "the bad parts" of the bill? The loopholes, the giveaways, the tremendous costs, the utter lack of credibility of the government on its enforcement promises, the fact that only (at latest count) 15 miles of an already-authorized 850 mile fence had been constructed, the fact that the bill was silent as to what would be done with the illegal amnesties not eligible for amensty (and for some reason had not been able to forge the documents necessary to prove eligilibiity -- remember, we can't just deport them all!), etc., etc., etc.

So, talk radio told the public about all these "bad parts" of the bill. The public should have been appraised of the "bad parts" by the MSM, but weren't. So talk radio did their jobs for them. This is a problem, yes, but not with talk radio -- the problem is with the MSM for failing to properly report and critique a major, transformational bill air-dropped on an unsuspecting public with only the scantest time for real debate and analysis.

Does anyone remember the MSM being so "intellectually incurious" about the exact provisions and faults of any other Bush-promoted legislation? Because I sure don't. The MSM was ready, willing, and able to trumpet the flaws of Bush's Social Security reform -- unfunded transition costs, the absurdly implausible chance that seniors would be permitted, in the plan, to waste their money by investing it in ridiculous investments like, I don't know, angora farms and spent gold mines and crippled race horses, etc.

Here, they reported nothing but the fact that this bill had "bipartisan support" (good!) and would, supposedly, "fix the problem." To the extent the MSM found anything to fault in the plan at all, it was in the nasty enforcement provisions, which, not entirely coincidentally, were the only parts of the bill the actual American electorate favored.

So talk radio -- and those nasty blogs of dubious, secretive funding sources -- tanked the bill by riling up public opinion. It was so, so unfair. Talk radio slamming the bill every day; blogs running Senator's contact information urging concerned citizens to register their opposition.

And who did this poor, abused bit of legislation have actually on its side to promote its virtues? Why, no one at all, really. Just:

* The entire MSM -- including renegade FoxNews

* The President of the United States of America

* All of the key executive officials who would, supposedly, manage this thing

* The leadership of the Senate Democrats

* The leadership of the Senate Republicans

* The media's favorite "bipartisan" Republicans, John McCain and Chuck Hagel and its newest favorite, Lindsey Graham, along with its all-time favorite Senator, Ted Kennedy

* Pro-business (subsidy) concerns like the Wall Street Journal

* Business and corporate interests, especially those involved in agriculture, hotels, and construction (i.e., those who benefit the most from cheap foreign illegal labor)

* The entirey of the arch-liberal academic establishment

* Most of the major racial-identity lobbying groups for Hispanics

I'll tell you -- it's simply unfair that the Juggernaut that is talk radio was able to malign this bill when it had almost no one in any position of power or prominence to speak out on its behalf.

And then, talk radio having used its undue (and entirely unopposed) influence to rile up the American populace by telling them about "the bad parts" of the bill, an overwhelming majority of the voting public expressed its strong opposition to the bill, frustrating well-meaning Senators' attempts to legislate in secret and without public input.

And then to add insult to injury, a "tiny band" of malcotents abused the system to force their extremist-minority views on the whole Senate, defeating the cloture motion by a... um, majority bipartisan vote.

Can the Constitution possibly survive if legislators are now actually expected to be somewhat congnizant of strongly-held beliefs of the great majority of their constitutents? What, did I wake up all of a sudden in Nazi Germany?

There is indeed a "structural imbalance" in our politics when our elite political-media class cannot win on every single issue they care about over the strong opposition of the majority of the American citizenry.

If this continues, we might actually have some sort of... I don't know what you'd call it, let's say "representative democratic republic" of some kind operating right here in America within our very lifetimes. In America, of all places. Why, Aaron Burr is spinning in his grave.

Can the Republic endure in the face of such an existential threat?

Who will speak for the people, if now the people are permitted to speak for themselves?

Time will tell, my friends. Time will tell. But surely we are living in dangerous days.

Video: I actually wrote this before I knew Allah had cut the video from the show last night. Not sure if Kondracke's "bad parts" whine is here, but this shoud give you the tenor from the panel. Even FoxNews was for the bill, at least institutionally.

So what chance did this poor bill have?

Asking again: Were it not for the evil talk radio and blogosphere, would there have been any debate on this bill at all and any effective, organzied opposition to it?

Of course not. And that's why they're so angry with us.

We took away a Divine Rights of the king and a cherished Aristocratic Prerogative of the political-media-lobbyist class.

And damnit, they want it back.



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posted by Ace at 12:39 PM

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