The Wydening Gyre


Menachem Begins!

I’m not sure what annoys me most about this piece. Is it the musta-pulled-something stretch it took to straightfacedly compare the positions of, on one side, Paul Krugman, Sherrod Brown, and Pete Stark, and on the other, some Tea Party jagoff?

Or maybe it’s this:

In contrast, Mitt Romney, who knows something about health care legislation, welcomed the Ryan-Wyden proposal, which is not too far removed from a Medicare reform plan the former Massachusetts Governor had put forward earlier, as “an enormous achievement.”

Why yes, of course the voice of bipartisan reason, the healing center, the maypole we can dance around nonidealogically just happens to be the once and probably future leading contender for the Republican presidential nomination. Christ, I haven’t seen false equivalence pay off like that since the mirror scene in Evil Dead II.

Or maybe it’s how he distinguishes between Wyden and truly conservative Dems like Nelson and Landrieu:

Wyden is an independent-minded political centrist with a long and strong pro-business, consumer-oriented track record and solid credentials in the arena of health care reform who has authored over 150 bipartisan pieces of legislation since entering the Senate in 1996.

Look, I don’t know much about Wyden (or the proposed legislation, or Medicare for that matter), but that hardly matters in this instance—look at that pile of mush, it says nothing. I could copy & paste a chunk of text out of a universal remote operating manual and it would be an equally accurate assessment of Wyden’s record. I gotta get a job writing appreciations of members of Congress, you get payed by the weasel word.

Or perhaps this is the passage that chafes so:

Perhaps the most serious problem with the contemporary American political landscape is that far too many prominent Democrats and Republicans alike seem to have devolved in counter-Darwinian fashion to cliché-ridden sound-bite spouting exponents of unimaginative insipid dogma.

Sorry, I just lost it and punched my computer right in the face—turns out they don’t have faces, just monitors—so I won’t be able to catch any spelling errors from here on out. On the upside, we might’ve found the culprit!

Oh wait, no, I bet this is the offending passage, if only because it’s hard to out-irritate anything that brings to mind Chris Matthews:

Never mind that Ronald Reagan and House Speaker Tip O’Neill found ways to work together, or that some of the major successes of the Clinton administration were the result of substantive give-and-take on both sides of the aisle.

Yeah, you remember how the Gipper and the Tipper’s bonhomie resulted in a decades-long, seismic shift in the political landscape of which they can claim equal authorship. That’s why we call it “Reaganandoneillonomics,” after all. And it was great how the Right reluctantly agreed to help Clinton take a big blue wrecking ball with a Donkey drawn on it to the welfare state!

So that’s a whole lotta “I don’t knows” from me, huh? One thing I do know, though, is that I’ve been dying to say the following ever since I heard this guy’s name:

I’d say that Ron Wyden ought to do more thinkin’ and ron wydin’!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/19/11 at 07:01 PM • Permalink

Categories: PoliticsEditorialsElection '12Health CareOur Stupid Media

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In the not too distant future, someone will ask me who was the Republican candidate that ran against President Obama in 2012. My reply shall be, “You know, that rich Mormon guy who went on vacation with his dog tied to the roof of his car.”

OT, but I’m sure you guys will find this interesting: ry-clinton-for-president-robocall-hits-san-francisco/

Comment by LTMidnight on 12/19/11 at 10:24 PM

Kudos for Menachem Begins, Gil. I guess Rosensaft aspires to bigger vistas in opinionatin’, perhaps even the Golden Mantle of Broder Hisself!

And the Overton window just keeps marching to the right…

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