We have seen it all the last two years: Weeping journalists on election night; a journalist openly promising to help make Obama successful ("Yeah, it is my job."); film takes of journalists cheering an Obama speech; the savaging of Sarah Palin and the hands-off treatment of Biden; soft-ball interviews and long puff-pieces on Obama as the young cool crusader;comparisons to JFK's Camelot, and on and on.
In the 3rd book of his history, Thucydides has some insightful thoughts about destroying institutions in times of zealotry-and then regretting their absence when there is a need for refuge for them. The mainstream press should have learned that lesson, once they blew up their credibility in the past election by morphing into the Team Obama press agency.
There will come a time in the year ahead when either Obama's unexamined past will come back to haunt him, or his inexperience and tentativeness in foreign affairs will be embarrassingly apparent, or his European-socialist agenda for domestic programs simply won't work. And as public opinion falls, what will MSNBC, the New York Times, the editors of Newsweek, a Chris Matthews or the anchors at the major networks say?
Not much-since they will have one of two non-choices: (1) either they will begin scrambling to offer supposed disinterested criticism, which will be met with the public's, "Why should we begin believing you now?" or "Why didn't you tell this before?", or (2), They can continue as state-sanctioned megaphones of the Obama administration in the manner that they did during the campaign. They will lose either way and remain without credibility.
In short, we live now in the Age of Post-Journalism. All that was before is now over, as this generation of journalists voluntarily destroyed the hallowed notion of objectivity and they will have no idea quite how to put Humpty-Dumpty back together again.
SILVER LININGS, EVEN ON THE RIGHT
By Jeff Jacoby
To be a conservative in Massachusetts is to know disappointment, never more so than on Election Day, when candidates and causes of the right rarely stand a chance. Waiting in line at my Brookline polling place yesterday, I was under no illusion that my vote would change the outcome: Barney Frank would be re-elected to the US House, John Kerry would go back to the Senate, and Massachusetts would vote decisively for Barack Obama. To say nothing of the rest of the nation poised to elect the most lopsidedly liberal government in years.
But why succumb to gloom? Even for a red voter in the bluest of states, Election 2008 has its consolations: The Clintons really won't be going back to the White House. We haven't seen the last of Sarah Palin, who demonstrated genuine star power as she withstood with aplomb and good humor a vicious assault from the left.
Government financing of political campaigns, always a dreadful idea, is dead. Yes, Obama egregiously broke his solemn promise to accept public financing and its attendant spending limits. But having witnessed Obama's astonishing financial blowout -- he raised well over $600 million, crushing his rival in the money war and therefore in advertising and field organization -- no future candidate will agree to be shackled by those limits.
A turn in the wilderness will do Republicans good. During the GOP's years in power, the one-time party of fiscal sobriety and limited government turned into a gang of reckless spenders and government aggrandizers. If a few years in exile can lead Republicans back to their conservative, Reaganite roots, yesterday's losses will not have been in vain.
But the most lustrous silver lining of all, even for disappointed Republicans, is the racial one. As a politician and policymaker, Obama distresses me; his extreme liberalism is decidedly not what the nation needs in its president. But as a symbol -- a son of Africa elected to lead a majority-white nation that once enslaved Africans and treated their descendants with great cruelty -- Obama's rise makes me proud of my country. The anthem of the Civil Rights Movement was "We Shall Overcome." Impossible as it might have seemed scant decades ago, we have.
Thanks to Financial Fiasco, This Holiday Season Has 'Wal-Mart' Written All Over It: "Sales at department stores and specialty retailers are in free fall. They are cutting staff, discounting merchandise and closing stores to survive. But even as the financial turmoil strangled discretionary spending at many stores, it sent struggling consumers into the arms of Wal-Mart - and left it, the world's largest retailer, poised for a blockbuster Christmas, the NY Times reports."
Richest Voters Supported Obama: "The wealthiest Americans voting in yesterday's presidential election supported Sen. Barack Obama over Sen. John McCain, 52% to 46%, according to the exit poll conducted for the television networks. The poll asked voters to place themselves in one of 8 different income categories, ranging from under $15,000 per year to $200,000 per year or more. Those who said they earned $200,000 per year or more picked Obama over McCain, 52% to 46%. McCain, by contrast, won among voters in 3 of the 4 middle categories of income. Voters who said they earned $50,000 to $75,000, picked McCain over Obama, 49% to 48%. Voters who said they earned $100,000 to $150,000, picked McCain over Obama, 51% to 48%. Voters who said they earned $150,000 to $200,000 picked McCain over Obama, 52% to 46%"
New Zealanders come to their senses: "New Zealand prime minister, Helen Clark, is to stand down as Labour leader after conceding defeat in the country's general election. The victorious National Party, led by John Key, took 59 seats in the vote and its partner ACT 5. United Future leader Peter Dunne will join them, making a total of 65. Labour has 43 seats, the Greens eight, and they are joined by Progressive Party leader Jim Anderton for a total of 52. Mr Key said: "New Zealanders have voted for prosperity, for a brighter, more ambitious future." Ms Clark said: "In politics we all experience the highs and the lows ... tonight is a night for the winners to savour, but we won't be going away." [Like Obama, she talked a good talk but all she delivered was failure]
Obama to appoint talk radio's executioner?: "Democrat Henry Rivera, a former commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission, is expected to head President-elect Barack Obama's FCC transition team, a move that has sparked fear in media circles that the Fairness Doctrine may return to silence conservative talk radio. If reenacted, the "Fairness Doctrine" would require broadcasts over the public airwaves to give equal time to opposing political views. For talk radio, which boomed after the law's repeal in 1987 by building an audience devoted to conservative talk, the law's return would decimate the industry's marketability. Many fear the "Fairness Doctrine" would drive talk radio hosts - like Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Michael Savage - out of business. Rivera, according to Maloney, "is expected to lead the push to dismantle commercial talk radio that is favored by a number of Democratic Party senators. Rivera will play a pivotal role in preventing critics from having a public voice during Obama's tenure in office."
Israel Braces for Obama's Engagement in Iran, Gaza: Israeli leaders have become accustomed to President George W. Bush's reticence to push them into making tough decisions. In Barack Obama, they are bracing for a president who may not be so accommodating. Obama's plan to engage Iran in direct negotiations over the Shiite Muslim state's drive to enrich uranium to produce nuclear weapons could limit Israel's option to use military force to block the program. And his pledge to be actively involved in peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians could lead him to exert pressure against settlement-building and travel restrictions on the Palestinians in the West Bank. ``There could be more pressure on Israel to take more risks, like removing security checkpoints in the West Bank,'' said Efraim Inbar, director of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies at Bar-Ilan University near Tel Aviv. ``The Iranians will exploit Obama's willingness to talk to them to play for time.''
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, EYE ON BRITAIN and Paralipomena
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The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialist) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party" (In German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei)