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Thursday, November 09, 2006

Reading the tea leaves

Maria sent me this link The media party won by a hair
The New Media have not yet beaten the Old. They are making a difference, but the Old Liberal Media have protected their power, at the cost of major alienation from millions of America. Over time, the Old Media will continue to move to the Net, but the political debate will continue. The New Media have a voice, but not as powerful as ABCCBSNBCPBSNPR.
Tuesday's election was won by the relentless support of the Old Media for the Democrat agenda. Not simply the Amercan Old Media, but the press, the BBC, France2, and the many other outlets that support them. A habitual reader of the American and foreign Old Media like myself finds the Democrat talking points repeated nearly verbatim day after day.

It's not just simply the news that are told; it's also the news that are ignored.

For instance:
Back when the first Clinton was President (trust me, the other Clinton's waiting in the wings even if Madam Speaker gets to be third-in-line) the Old Media - which was the only media - didn't tire of talking about the economy, the low unemployment, the stock market, the productivity figures. The White House press corps eagerly publicized the latest economic news. The Hosannah Media didn't tire of singing the praises of the President's policies, while we slept through the many terrorist attacks around the world; economic good news was the focus. I hadn't been bombarded with so much economic statistics since the days when I was an undergrad and had to do my final paper for Dr. Clark's microeconomics class.

Back when I was in college, an unemployment figure of 5% was considered an unattainable number. Economists believed that any such figure would come at an undesirable cost, such as depressed wages, high inflation, and a depressed economy.

Well, guess what, folks. The unemployment figure is currently at a historically low 4.4% - an impressive enough number, but immensely so when one looks at the good productivity, rising wages, the historically-high stock market and the low inflation. Old-school economists thirty years ago would have laughed at you if you told them that by the time your son was in high school the economy would be in such a shape. It's the kind of economic news that ought to be shouted from the rooftops.

But not from the Old Media rooftops. The Hosannah Media can't get themselves to sing the praises of a non-Dem idol.

I'm using the economy simply as an illustration. Instead of economic news, or good news of any kind that would put the President and the Republicans in a good light, we are bombarded with every story that calls a wartime President a liar even when the information proves that he acted on factual information; if that weren't enough, as this guy has observed,
Attempt to engage many on the left in debate and conversation or attempt to question their beliefs, ideologies or institutions and you’ll be met with some of the most vile and vicious rhetoric of the day.
And that's not going away. To the contrary, they are now empowered. They feel they have a mandate to drain the swamp. They control both houses and nothing's going to stop them now.

The only reason the Dems didn't win even more seats in both Houses is that New Media and talk radio have a large audience. If it weren't for that, Dan Rather's "fake but accurate" would be the standard of today's journalism. The Republican losses would have been by tens of thousands of votes instead of the current narrow numbers.

While I'm an optimist, and actively strive to remain an optimist, here's what I see in the tea leaves:
1. The Democrat party will do anything and everything to win the 2008 Presidential election. They will not hesitate to stoop to new - previously unimagined and unfathomed - lows.

2. Having achieved control of both houses, they will now not simply dedicate themselves to their official agenda, but to the persecution of all that get in their way. Look for any new number of official investigations into all things Republican.

3. Madam Speaker and her freshmen will walk in lockstep. The moderate freshmen owe liberal Nancy big. Together they will peruse all possible ways through which Republicans will be shown in the worst possible light, and will pounce on them.

4. Impeachment hearings, filibustering of judicial nominees (I expect at least one new Supreme Court Judge in the next two years), prosecutions, innuendo, scandal after scandal will be part and parcel of the Democrat strategy. Never mind if the scandals are real, or of any consequence (such as pecadillos incurred decades ago when their opponents were barely of legal age); the aim is to keep a relentless stream of stories that would turn public opinion against anything Republican.

5. The Old Media, with a few exceptions, will be there to shout those stories from the rooftops. At the same time, the Hosannah Media will make a comeback to sing the Dems' praises.

6. The emptier the Democrat stash of ideas of substance, the more the ineffective their agenda, the more virulent the attacks will be, and the more they will be publicized and repeated by the Old Media.

7. The Old Media will continue to pummel the war efforts until we are defeated.

If you think politics this year was dirty, just wait and see what the next two years will bring. The stuff the Dems will come up with is going to make this year's mudbath-in-the-smelly-tar-pits look like a quick soak in Violetta Di Parma bath salts.

As for New Media, let's hope it remains free and accessible. The storm clouds are gathering on that front.

Having said that, I hope to G-d I'm wrong. But while I'm an optimist, I'm also a realist.

Update The New Media-Old Media Wars: Winners and Losers

Update, Friday Nov. 10 Dick Morris reads the tea leaves:
The Democrats, for their part, will use their new House majority to plague the administration with investigations. While the left would be appeased by investigations into why we invaded Iraq in the first place, it is financial scandals that will do the greatest damage to Bush and the Republicans.
Democratic committee chairmen will examine Halliburton contracts in Iraq, royalty deals for offshore oil drilling, defense procurement scandals, and resource leases in national forests and wilderness areas. They will examine the nexus between campaign contributions and favors from the trough of the executive branch.
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At 9:28 AM, Blogger A Jacksonian said...

Luckily, I am a short to moderate term pessimist and very hard to disappoint: as I expect the worse not getting it makes every day a brighter day. This last election met with my already low expectations and, thusly, makes this business as usual.

The electorate has replace Big Government Conservatives with Big Government Liberals: which do you want to have dictated to by Congress - internet gambling or cholesterol amounts in food? That is the wondrous choice we got this last election.

I did look at the election and its immediate SecDef aftermath, and do have to say that calling in a committed Cold War INTEL person with backing from the Cold War diplomatic community is going to get us Cold War concepts for an era that is decidedly NOT the Cold War.

But then I am a Jacksonian and the things I look to a political party to support is not contained within this lovely 'Two Party' concept.

Usually I am a long-term optimist, but the Nation is in a deep, dark place as a society and stepping into the future requires ditching much of the 20th century so that the basis of Freedom, Liberty and Individualism can be put to work as a Nation. Neither of the Parties wants *that* and both want more of what they knew in the past, and are unwilling to face the future that is here. The year is 2006. The Two Parties are still in the mid-1970's. To find the rope ends to get us OUT of this place requires reaching back BEFORE the 20th century and using the framework given in that era and reaching forward into the 21st century and applying strength to *both* to save this Nation.

And the 'center' of this dark place is crumbling into an Abyss. Either America acts, or the freefall downwards will be fatal to us and the very concepts of liberty, freedom and individual rights. One party is making it crumble a bit faster than the other, because neither wants to LOOK up to the future, and find a way OUT.

But, the Yellowstone Caldera remains uneasily quiescent and did not erupt! So today MUST be a good day!


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