06
Apr
11

“mystified”

Steve Benen: Yesterday afternoon, the lead story on Mark Halperin’s “The Page” was the White House’s mild rebuke of Paul Ryan’s Republican budget plan. Halperin’s headline: “Obama Pans Ryan – Without Alternative.”

This was one of those cases in which the media establishment had accepted the Republican line before Republicans had even offered it. Ryan wants to eliminate Medicare and gut Medicaid; the White House disapproves; and the media is already demanding an “alternative”….

This morning, Halperin’s lead story was a GOP endorsement of yesterday’s lead story. The headline: “Boehner Asks For Bam’s Budget ‘Alternative’.” … I have two follow-up questions for the duo.

First, what kind of “alternative” is the White House expected to offer, exactly? If the political establishment is waiting for the administration’s plan to use unicorns to reduce unemployment to 2.8%, and Obama’s “alternative” to eliminating Medicare, I suspect Halperin and Boehner are going to be waiting a long time.

Second, if the request is for an “alternative” budget, I might remind them that the White House already presented Obama’s alternative. Mid-February really wasn’t that long ago, but that’s when the administration presented a budget plan for the next fiscal year. They put it online, and it generated a lot of discussion. Halperin and Boehner might have heard about it.

“The president is certainly entitled to disagree with our budget, but what exactly is his alternative?” Halperin seems to like the question, but Obama’s alternative was sent to Congress nearly seven weeks ago.

I’m often mystified by our discourse. This is one of those times.

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13 Responses to ““mystified””


  1. 1 Asher in Boston
    April 6, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    WHATEVER! Halperin.

  2. April 6, 2011 at 12:30 pm

    Halperin is another one I don’t listen to.

  3. 3 Hachikō
    April 6, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    Morning, Chip. Morning, TOD family. I was about to take Tucker out for a walk when this post caught my eye, and I just had to stop and leave a comment.

    Mark Halperin’s hypocrisy and misleading rhetoric should not surprise anyone. Mark Halperin is a political hack. A repub tool. I’ve known this for quite some time. Sure, once in a while he might sound reasonable and say something that seems to be in defense of the President, but it’s a game. It’s a game he and his fellow pundits play. They’ll play whichever side of the field/argument benefits them at the moment. Whatever helps them promote their personal agendas.

    What’s their personal agenda? To make money and fame for themselves. It’s that simple folks. There’s no “news” any more. There’s no reporting of the facts. There’s no such thing as journalism as we once knew it (at least, not in the tv medium). It’s all about the personalities and how much of a fan base they can amass for themselves by spewing their pontifications and “opinions” on tv 24/7.

    Obama, or “‘Bam” as Halpo (and NY [Com]Post (that should tell you something) so disrespectfully call the President, is just another pawn in their little game. They leverage his popularity (or notoriety, as far as the wingnuts are concerned) as a springboard for their own careers and money-making schemes. I don’t buy their books or listen to anything they have to say. I’m as opinionated as the next person. Nothing they say impresses me – none of ‘em. Not even the so-called progressives. Who decides who gets to be the paragons of truth and justice and arbiters of what’s wrong or right? I make those judgments for myself based on facts/data gathered by real experts. People with real experience and serious credentials. Not some blogosphere fanboys like Greenwald or Halperin. Other than their ideologies, how are they different from say a Matt Drudge? They’re not. They’re all demagogues blinded by their own prejudices, short-sightedness and stunning narcissism and will use any tool at their disposal to advance their agendas and beliefs.

    My point is, don’t be surprised, disappointed, swayed by anything these frauds have to say. Sure, we should call them out, but don’t place any credence in anything they say. Don’t let them manipulate us and distract us from the truth and what’s really important.

    Look at this whole government shutdown debate. For months – months now – republicans have been singing the government shutdown tune (see Gingrich, Pence & Tea baggers in Congress). Now that it’s a real possibility because of Republican demagoguery and games, they’re claiming that it’s the Democrats who want a shutdown. They go on tv and say this with a straight face! Does anyone in the media call them out for it? Anyone play a couple clips of them proudly calling for shutdown? No! They facilitate the republicans in spreading this falsehood. The repubs throw the ball, the media catches it and throws it to us.

    It’s up to us to let that ball drop. And screw Halperin and the like.

    Now off to my walk.

    • 4 Proud of Obama
      April 6, 2011 at 12:56 pm

      Very important comment this:

      “My point is, don’t be surprised, disappointed, swayed by anything these frauds have to say. Sure, we should call them out, but don’t place any credence in anything they say. Don’t let them manipulate us and distract us from the truth and what’s really important.”

      They have absolutely zero credence. They are republican liars using the media to line their pockets. Look at Halperin and that trashy book Game Change? (not purchased by me) They used a political season made incredible because of the incredible Barack Obama to make money off of.

      We will call them out and follow PBO’s strategy for winning again in 2012.

      And I, too, hate that they call him Bam. WTH does that even mean?

    • 5 Audrey
      April 6, 2011 at 4:29 pm

      Amen, amen, amen Hachiko! Thank you! You are on the mark with EVERYTHING you have written!

  4. 6 tally
    April 6, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    I have no idea WHY, but this reminds me of the Balcony scene from R&J:

    ROMEO
    O, wilt thou leave me so unsatisfied?
    JULIET
    What satisfaction canst thou have to-night?
    ROMEO
    The exchange of thy love’s faithful vow for mine.
    JULIET
    I gave thee mine before thou didst request it:
    And yet I would it were to give again.
    ROMEO
    Wouldst thou withdraw it? for what purpose, love?
    JULIET
    But to be frank, and give it thee again.

    BECAUSE YOU’RE SO FRAKKIN STUPID YOU DIDN’T SEE IT THE FIRST TIME. What do I have to do, BEAT YOU OVER THE HEAD WITH IT???

    • 7 EDP4BHO
      April 6, 2011 at 1:43 pm

      LOL….I love this tally. And love your much needed truth disguised in humor.

      • 8 tally
        April 6, 2011 at 1:54 pm

        HAAAA! Thanks! :)

        As much as it’s my favorite show, and favorite role, it makes me want to write a (funnier) version of that scene with Juliet calling Romeo out on all his (well-meaning) romantic, man-sisms – which she does to an extent already, “Oh, swear not by the moon! The inconstant moon, that monthly changes in her circled orb, lest that thy love prove likewise variable.” [OH SNAP! You gonna change your mind every damn day???]

        When he then asks, “Then what should I swear by?” She tells him basically, “Swear by thy gracious self”,[because YOU ARE SMOKIN HAWT and I want to rip your clothes off right NOW!]

        However, other than that, Romeo doesn’t LISTEN to her, and is a bit of a hot head, which is why he gets himself banished and they both end up dead…. because he is a typical male, short-sighted [teenager] who OVER REACTS (like everyone seems to want Obama to do) instead calmly thinking the situation thru, and making the SMART CHOICE, and going on to fight another day – or in this case, be happy and grow old with Juliet.

  5. April 6, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    It’s not only that seven weeks ago the administration put forward its budget, and it is the Republican plan that must be viewed as the “alternative.” On health care, President Obama has been asking the Republicans what their plan is for more than two years. Thanks to Representative Ryan, we finally know what their plan is. Their plan is to abolish Medicare.

  6. 10 LOL
    April 6, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    Now any other day, I would do a big collective Yawn on anything Dana Milbank writes, but today he absolutely nailed Sir Paul to the wall. Sure, there are the “required” pot shots at the pres, but the jist of his article was that Ryan’s plan amounted to a horse load of (beep). (http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/paul-ryans-irresponsible-budget/2011/04/05/AF4O7PlC_story.html?hpid=z4)

    An excerpt

    Yet for all these cuts, the Republicans’ plan increases the federal debt by more than $8 trillion over the next 10 years, and it continues federal budget deficits until nearly 2040. Under the proposed balanced budget amendment to the Constitution that Ryan and his Republican colleagues claim to support, Ryan’s budget wouldn’t be in compliance for at least the next quarter century.

    How could the House Republicans make such enormous cuts and yet not solve the debt crisis? Simple: Ryan’s proposal isn’t a budget. It’s a manifesto for the anti-tax cause. The GOP plan reduces the government’s revenues by $4 trillion over 10 years because of tax cuts, including a lower top rate for businesses and the wealthy.

    And what is particularly amazing to me is that Chris Matthews was ridiculed mercilessy for saying he got tingle up his leg from one of the prez’s speech by the I love you Paul gang from Morning Joe. Yeah, no hypocrisy there.

    There is nothing courageous about a Republican cutting social programs for the poor and CUTTING taxes for the rich. But I forgot the golden rule, It’s Okay if You A Republican.

  7. 11 lisa
    April 6, 2011 at 4:58 pm

    Halp-the-Tramp is an attention whore who will do and say anything that garners him attention. Nothing that comes out of his mouth or computer should be taken seriously. He is the biggest douche alive, who, if he was ever involved in the 08 elections, vouched for Hillary, and if he voted at all in the general election, only backed Obama because he didn’t want that other guy(whom I refuse to name) to win. But I find it highly doubtful he voted in 08. The funny thing about the PL is they all have big ideas, they sit around their computers blogging, or meet up with their equally douche-y know-it-all friends and complain, but they never do anything. They’re like parasites, they just feed off other people amd make them sick.

  8. 12 Sue in Minnesota
    April 6, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    I am writing a letter, at the very minimum, he needs to demonstrate respect to President Obama and stop the “Bam” bullshit.
    What lying piece of arrogant scum.

  9. 13 conlakappa
    April 7, 2011 at 9:53 am

    They should be called out every time they lie. Yes, I know it will take an army of people paying attention but it’s important. And it’s not that Halperin doesn’t know about the President’s budget, it’s an annual event in Washington. He’s just trying to push the lie down the field. Further, The Weeper and Co. are supposed to be dealing with their colleagues in the House and keeping tabs on what the parallel bill is doing in the Senate. All of the players know this but take it on faith that the voters don’t know it.


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