Media Malpractice on Shutdown Politics
September 30, 2013
RUSH: Just got urgent news from the Washington Post. I have this urgent news right here my formerly nicotine-stained fingers 'cause I just printed it out. Urgent breaking news from the Washington Post: "You Will No Longer Be Able to Watch This Baby Panda Online if the Government Shuts Down." Right there it is. That's the headline right there with a picture of the panda. I'm showing it there. Urgent news, Washington Post!
Next thing you know, we're gonna hear that they're gonna close the sleigh ride concession, Jellystone National Park. I know there's no snow yet, but there will be soon, and there won't be any sleigh rides. It's gonna be a repeat. Now you can't watch the panda video. So what do we conclude? Republicans hate animals, and Republicans hate the zoo, and they don't want young kids to be able to watch nature.
Next we'll hear that the school lunch program is being cut, shut down, because of this. Just a repeat. It's a rehash of everything that's happened and been said before. The AP story on this is journalistic malpractice. Let me see if I even bothered to print that out. I think I did. Yep. You gotta figure now... I don't know how many people read newspapers, but I know that a lot of people get their news online now at places like Yahoo or Twitter or whatever, and people get their news from AP.
Much as you might wish it weren't so, AP is published in over 4,000 or 5,000 different places every day, and it's basically a press release from the Democrat Party on this whole thing. They have a story by a guy named Andrew Taylor, and it starts out, "With the government teetering on the brink of partial shutdown, congressional Republicans vowed Sunday to keep using an otherwise routine federal funding bill to try to attack the president's health care law."
So the opening line reports we're "teetering on the brink." Why, we're almost ready to go over the cliff! Did you know that? We're almost ready to fall over! This whole government is about to be brought up short because these Republicans... This story goes on to say that Republicans don't want people to have health care, that they dislike the president so much that they don't want people to have health care. And the Republicans don't know what to do to fight back against any of this.
It's just flat-out journalistic malpractice. There is no pretense of objectivity, here, to portray the Republican position on this anywhere near accurately. It is a multiple hundred word hit piece. You won't read the kind of stuff from the AP about the Iranians or the Syrians that you read about the Republicans in the Associated Press or anywhere in the Drive-By Media. It really is an outrage. It's gonna be seen countless impressions all over the place.
RUSH: This aforementioned Associated Press piece doesn't even mention Obama, other than to refer to it as the president's health care bill. But they do go to Chris Van Hollen, who's a Democrat from Maryland and he's in the Democrat leadership in the House, and they go to him, and they want to know what he thinks of what the Republicans are doing. They go to a lot of Democrats in the AP story to find out what they think of what the Republicans are doing, and Chris Van Hollen says -- now, understand, that this quote is gonna be seen all over Twitter, Yahoo News, wherever these people go to get their news. He said, "You're going to shut down the government if you can't prevent millions of Americans from getting affordable care."
That's his characterization of what the House Republican vote on Sunday is. He's expressing incredulity. He's asking a question. He's talking to the reporter, "You're gonna shut down the government if you can't prevent millions of Americans from getting affordable care." So his position is, he's not even implying it. What he's stating is that the Republicans do not want you to get health care. The Republicans do not want you to get affordable health care. That's what Obamacare is, which is not true, of course, but Republicans don't want you to have that, and they don't want you to get affordable health care so badly, they're gonna shut down the government to prevent you from getting affordable health care.
That is a smear, and in the private sector it would be actionable. It is utterly false. It is irresponsibly false, and it is dangerously misleading. And it's that kind of statement, which are all too common from Democrats, that really does create the partisan divide in this country, with this massively corrupt characterization of the Republican position. Yeah, the Republicans don't want you to have health care that you can afford. They don't want you to have health care so much, they're willing to shut down the government. And the AP just goes right on, doesn't challenge it, just accepts it, and then builds on it.
In the AP piece, the Republicans are also attacked for holding up the continuing resolution. Now, the AP calls the continuing resolution otherwise routine federal funding bill. It isn't. There's nothing routine about a continuing resolution. A continuing resolution in its normal existence is used during budget impasses. We haven't had a budget in four years because the Democrat Party has sought to hide from people their true policy intentions. We have been doing continuing resolution after continuing resolution. The only way to cut spending therefore is via the continuing resolution. There has not been a budget. This is in violation of the constitutional law and other statutory law. Four years. No budget.
AP talks about the continuing resolution as a routine federal funding bill, and then they castigate the Republicans for wanting to cut spending and resorting to this as though it's somehow sinister that they're doing this in a routine and normal procedure to fund the federal government. And of course keeping the federal government funded, why, there's nothing more important, ladies and gentlemen, nothing. Not your life, not the life of your kids. The only important thing is keeping the federal government funded, and those damn Republicans, they want to cut the budget.
They want to delay Obamacare. If they could they would defend it, and at the end of the day what they really want is for you not to have health care. I mean, it's the news of the day, as the Democrats start keeping score and covering this shutdown in the context of a horse race.
So you've got this idiot, Van Hollen, saying the GOP want people to be prevented from getting affordable health care so much that they're trying to delay the individual mandate for a year. That's the theory espoused. The Republicans are trying to delay the individual mandate. The individual mandate, don't you understand, is a wonderful thing, it's a beautiful thing. This federal law, which is unconstitutional, I don't care what John Roberts said, that mandates that you buy health insurance? The proof that the Republicans don't want you to have health care is because they are trying to delay the federal requirement that you go buy it. This is as out of phase, cockamamie, grotesquely wrong as anything could be.
They are trying to delay the individual mandate for a number of reasons. A, it is constitutional. The federal government cannot tell you what to buy, when to buy, nor can they determine the price. But all of that is happening. The objective here is the vast majority of the American people do not want Obamacare. This is a vehicle for delaying a central aspect of it. If people are not forced to buy health care, just as the employer now is not required to provide it, then a lot of the guts -- not all, but a lot of the guts of Obamacare get scooped out. This is what I mean when I say that the coverage of this kind of -- I shouldn't say this. 'Cause it's not actually true. It bores me, but it doesn't bore me; it infuriates me. The boring aspect is it's the same thing. It's just a replay. It's so damn predictable.
There isn't any attempt by anybody in the media anywhere to get to the truth of what is actually happening here and why it matters. None. Nowhere. All that's taking place is the structuring of events in such a way as to protect the Washington establishment. So the Republicans are attacked for holding up the continuing resolution. That's the only way to get any spending cuts when you don't have a budget. And there must be spending cuts. We cannot go on. The Democrats refuse to put up a budget. No budget for four years. The AP in this story never mentions that the Republicans are asking for the individual mandate to be delayed because the AP knows that idea is very popular with the country.
Instead they are characterize the individual mandate as the most beautiful, wonderful gift the government could give its citizens, because it's going to require them to have affordable health care. Oh, by the way, the Obamacare website has just today and very quietly deleted references to free health care. The Obamacare website has now deleted its reference to free health care. The Weekly Standard has it.
"Even as President Obama and his administration are making a last minute push to encourage enrollment in Obamacare," at the exchanges starting tomorrow, "a quiet change was made on the Healthcare.gov website regarding those who will still not be able to afford coverage after the program kicks in. From at least June 26, 2013 to as recently as September 15, under the topic, 'Where can I get free or low-cost care in my community?' the following statement appeared: 'If you can't afford any health plan, you can get free or low-cost health and dental care at a nearby community health center.'"
They have screen grabs showing what it looked like at the health.gov website. "However, sometime between September 16 and September 23, the reference to 'free' care was dropped. The title of the topic was changed as well, and now reads: 'Where can I get low-cost care in my community?'" And then there's a screen grab of that. They have eliminated the word "free." So, up until the moment of truth, they were content to lie to whoever it is that would venture to this website to get answers on health care, and there was an option for "free" all summer up until September 16th. Now it's gone. It's not a new page. They just eliminated the word "free." As I say, the Weekly Standard caught this.
So, anyway, the mainstream media, they're just all too happy to focus on the shutdown aspects of this, because it gives them the opportunity yet again to avoid talking about Obamacare, and they don't want to talk about Obamacare because there isn't anything about it that is a plus.