Establishment writers, liberal and conservative, in careering or faith-based defiance of reality, continue to frame mainstream political processes as oppositional. The ‘huh?’ head scratching over Aditya Chakrabortty’s new Guardian article starts with the sub-head:
The economic abyss is a distortion peddled by the US right and Obama’s Democrats – just like Britain’s left – need to counter the myth
Wait … wh-at? You’re beseeching “Obama’s Democrats” to what? COUNTER the myth? But, aren’t they, I mean …
Obama demands fast action on fiscal cliff
Election behind him, Obama to talk “fiscal cliff”
Obama to Discuss ‘Fiscal Cliff’ with Labor Leaders
So can it be any more obvious who is leading the campaign to over-hype a fiscal slope into a cliff? Obama! Obama’s Democrats! I can’t believe you haven’t noticed this, so I ask why the perverse denial of reality? Are you just afraid of the career consequences of ditching the liberal/conservative oppositional frame? Have you looked at the main campaign contributors (Big Finance! Wall Street!) to Obama, the Obama Democrats, and to the Republicans, both this year and in 2008? Why hasn’t that blown up your oppositional fantasy world?
What agenda are you selling, Mr. Chakrabortty? The myth that we have two parties, one of which is ‘for us’ and the other ‘right wing’? Sorry, but a President-Obama-led ‘fiscal cliff’ scare campaign is not the place to push that. The evidence emphatically contradicts your thesis. (Helpful hint: peddle that stuff over abortion or gay marriage.)
If you want the details of what the Obama Democrats have planned regarding the slope, listen to former Senate Majority Leader and Obama Democrat Tom Daschle:
“I don’t think there’s any question that entitlement reform will be a part of whatever new agreement is reached,” former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) said at an event here Thursday sponsored by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. “I do think cost containment for Medicare and Medicaid will be a very important part of the discussion.”
And when it gets to the final minutes, Obama’s Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner will be ready to clang the debt limit alarm bells:
“Geithner’s role is going to be to ride shotgun on the debt limit and make sure that everybody is sufficiently alarmed about that,” said Robert Bixby, director of the Concord Coalition, a nonpartisan advocate for responsible fiscal policy. “And that would help bring a negotiation to a conclusion.”
Or, just read Glenn Greenwald.
Like you say, we’ve all been here before, this cliff b.s. is the same as the preceding — and wildly successful for big finance and the right — bipartisan/multipartisan scare campaigns, the ones we saw in fall 2008 in the U.S. and in the spring 2010 in Britain, when
Democratic debate was railroaded; the wrong economic policy was followed – and it was all done to avert a wildly inflated threat.
Though in all three cases, a “wrong” economic policy for almost all of society was and is right, great, from the perspective of the rich, Big Finance, big banks, and the neoliberal ideologues who control the major parties in both Britain and the U.S.
Finally, Aditya, another example, your incoherent conclusion:
I can only hope that America’s Democrats learn their lesson from the British experience. Because the right here owned the language and framed the debate.
Again, uh, the opposition between the Democrats and “the right.” What agenda are you serving with that lie?