Michael Grunwald at Time talks about reporters' 'dilemma' in dealing with Republicans. Their reporting of their behavior is beyond cognitive dissonance. He calls it irresponsible reporting.
What was true yesterday, is the opposite today:
Republican complaints that President Obama’s opening offer in the fiscal cliff talks is just a recycled version of his old plan, when those same reporters spent the last year dutifully passing along Republican complaints that Obama had no plan.During the election, Republicans accused Obama of trying to cut Medicare. Now they accuse him of not wanting to cut it enough. The media has no problem with reporting this contradiction:
It’s even more amazing to see them pass along Republican outrage that Obama isn’t cutting Medicare enough, in the same matter-of-fact tone they used during the campaign to pass along Republican outrage that Obama was cutting Medicare.
As he says, the press can't report the facts of what happened in recent history
Republicans controlled Washington during the fiscally irresponsible era when President Clinton’s budget surpluses were transformed into the trillion-dollar deficit that President Bush bequeathed to President Obama. [...] It’s simply a fact that the fiscal cliff was created in response to GOP threats to force the U.S. government to default on its obligations.without seeming partisan, so they simply pretend those things never happened.
President Obama's fiscal cliff plan is 'recycled' - but he had no plan before Election Day. The fiscal cliff's austerity will now destroy the economy, but for the past four years stimulus was a dirty word, and an 'assault on free enterprise'. Never mind that House Republicans, including Paul Ryan, voted for a $715 billion stimulus program that was very similar to President Obama's. Or that in 2008 every Presidential candidate offered stimulus in their campaign or that Mitt Romney's was the largest.
This will present no problem to the MSM as the fiscal cliff austerity talks take shape.
Mainstream media outlets don’t want to look partisan, so they ignore the BS hidden in plain sight, the hypocrisy and dishonesty that defines the modern Republican Party.If they try to weave these contradictory facts into their reporting, they will seem partisan. So their solution is just to ignore them and move along, and stenograph the Republicans' latest squawkings as if they are not full of it.
As he concludes:
Whatever. I realize that the GOP’s up-is-downism puts news reporters in an awkward position. As long as the media let an entire political party invent a new reality every day, it will keep on doing it. Every day.As we know, facts are 'partisan' (at least when only one party deals in them).
It must be very hard to share space in a profession with these hacks, for any reporter who retains a shred of integrity.