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View Diary: Reality and the post-debate responses (263 comments)

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  •  It's a consequence of the "hack gap," isn't it? (2+ / 0-)
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    bdop4, leney

    After the first debate, Kevin Drum argued that Romney had benefited from the fact that the left suffers from a "hack gap":

    The hack gap is a liberal problem of long standing. Put simply, we liberals don't have enough hacks. Conservatives outscore us considerably in the number of bloggers/pundits/columnists/talking heads who are willing to cheerfully say whatever it takes to advance the party line, no matter how ridiculous it is.

    My conservative readers may scoff at this notion, but rarely has the hack gap been on such febrile display as it has since last Wednesday's presidential debate. Ask yourself this: can you even imagine Sean Hannity or Rush Limbaugh tearing their hair out over a weak debate performance by Mitt Romney the way that liberals have been over President Obama's? I can't.

    Drum was complaining; his point was that Obama suffered more of a blow to his election chances after the first debate because liberal pundits (Matthews, Schultz, and others—you saw them) blasted him in ways that right-wingers never would resort to if Romney had been similarly beaten. ...And subsequent debates showed Drum was right about that.

    Well, the points Kos is making in this post show the other side of that coin: sure, having hacks who will slavishly back you up rather than allies willing to deliver you (admittedly over-the-top) "tough love" can be helpful in the short run, but it comes with costs, too. Kos's point calls into question whether the "hack gap"—which does indeed exist—is actually the benefit, overall, to the right that Drum thought it was.

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