Mainstream Media's Tea Party Cognitive Dissonance
In all my years of watching news coverage in America, I don't believe I have ever witnessed more condescending, amateurish, purely politicized reporting than what transpired among the liberal mainstream media (MSM) covering of America's Tax Day Tea Parties. The Tea Parties represented a very significant news event.
Whenever close to 300,000 middle-class Americans put their productive lives on hold on a midweek workday, make original signs with their own hands and travel miles to stand with other private citizens just to demonstrate their anger with government, in more than 300 cities from coast to coast and everywhere in between, that's NEWS. Yet, many local newspapers — even the Boston Globe, for crying out loud! — pettily refused to even cover their local protests. When every news channel — except the only one thriving on the block, Fox — finally decided to cover the events, it was with derision, mockery and elitist condescension.
Note to MSM: This is why you're going broke.
The puerile, vulgar humor of MSNBC's Rachel Maddow and CNN's Anderson Cooper, targeting the most clean-cut, rancor-less groups of protesters possibly ever assembled in the U.S., was the kind of thing one would expect on an adolescent playground when the teacher isn't listening. I personally polled 16 friends and relatives, ages 23 to 66, and not a single one of them had ever even heard the sexually perverse phrase regarding tea bags, which peppered Maddow's and Cooper's prime time rants.
Yet, apparently, these two don't even have enough good sense left to be ashamed of themselves. Who raised these eternal adolescents?
The real cake-taker in my view, however, was the flighty pomposity of a previously unknown CNN "reporter" on the scene of the Tea Party in Chicago. Susan Roesgen approached an all-American male, holding his toddler son in the crowd of protesters, asking an open-ended question, "Why are you here?"
This gentleman proceeded to try to explain his frustration with Barack Obama, citing Abraham Lincoln's valiant stand for liberty, at which point he was sanctimoniously cut off by CNN's know-nothing. Ms. Know-nothing then demanded to know, "What does this have to do with taxes? Don't you know you're eligible for a $400 tax credit? Don't you know that Illinois is getting millions from the stimulus?"
If the CNN woman had been more of a reporter and less of a shill for Obama, then she might have actually allowed this Illinois gentleman to explain himself. She might have uncovered the reality that not many Illinois citizens are all that fired up over other Americans paying millions into their Blago-genic political system, via the Democrat trio of do-gooding tyrants, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and Obama. She might have understood that the Tax Day Tea Parties were more about liberty than about taxes, more about the Democrats' profligacy and waste than about paying one's fair share for the real purposes of federal government as specifically outlined by the U.S. Constitution.
Alas, reporting the facts was not CNN's mission. But anyone with half a brain already knew that.
This on-air "interview" was quite enlightening on another measure, however. It perfectly illuminated the sheer cognitive dissonance among the lion's share of our too-disgraceful-for-words MSM. They simply do not get it.
Perfectly akin to Obama's exchange with now-famous Joe the Plumber, these liberal statists — who see government as more loving than God, more able than Superman and more necessary than drinking water — simply have no genuine understanding of liberty or the individual spirit that kindles and keeps its fires burning from generation to generation. They are so out of touch with the American productive class that they honestly believe no honest-to-goodness patriots even exist in the current day.
Our media have convinced themselves — as has the entire Democratic Party cabal of power-wielders now in charge — that the November election really was a landslide of historic proportions (which it certainly was not), that the "change" moderates really wanted was what they are now getting (out-of-control profligate spending) and that they are now free as "reporters" to finally come out of the closet as the socialist elitists they've always been.
Many posed the questions, during their Tea Party coverage: "Why all this anger now? Why are these people protesting now, when they weren't out in the streets during Bush's eight years?"
We're the productive class, the vast middle. We're busy living our own lives, busy building the businesses and earning our livings, and busy raising our children and doing the host of volunteer services that infuse life into our churches, synagogues and civic organizations. We're the citizens doing the lion's share of those things, which have made America the great and exceptional nation for the past two-and-a-third centuries.
Much of the anger now boiling over in protest has been building for the past 20 years, since the end of Ronald Reagan's presidential tenure. Much of it is aimed at Republicans, not just Democrats. And it goes to the heart of the size, scope and fundamental duties of the federal government as enumerated by our U.S. Constitution.
This mounting anger, aimed at the tyranny of a federal government — completely off-the-rails of its constitutionally framed limited scope and power — may be surfacing now due to a tipping in the fragile balance that was upheld during the Bush presidency. What was that fragile balance between our quietly continuing our personal business and our taking to the streets?
One thing and one thing only, in my opinion. As long as the federal government is doing the one job of protecting our national security and standing up for us in the face of the world's slights, we will take a great deal of folderol from our elected officials. We will suffer the profligate spending and invasions on our personal freedoms when we — at the very least — believe our leaders are stridently bent on protecting our interests and our children from harm.
When a president cuts both those legs off at the knees, as President Obama has shamelessly done for 100 days, then frustration boils over into national protest. Obama's first 100 days has been the last straw.
Not only has this president pompously promised the wages of our children and grandchildren in a wasteful spending spree that guarantees serfdom for the productive class, he has bowed, scraped, fawned and apologized his way across the entire continent of Europe.
He has planned huge and irresponsible cuts in our defense spending, promised to do away with missile defense systems and heralded the day he will disarm our nuclear arsenal, so as to set a nice example for the resurgent Russian Bear. Obama has obsequiously bowed to the Saudi King, some of whose own subjects blew more than 3,000 of our fellow Americans to kingdom come a mere seven years ago. Obama has called off the Global War on Terror, yet has no surrender treaties to accompany this juvenile exercise in hating all things Bush. He has welcomed Fidel Castro, Hugo Chavez, Daniel Ortega, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Hamas with open arms, salivating grins and friendly warmth, while dissing our heretofore friends and allies, even making a rude point of telling Israel's prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, that there will be no face-to-face meeting with him next month in Washington, D.C.
So, when our liberal MSM confronts Middle America, now on the march, and demands to know what there is not to like about this new administration, they demonstrate the most out-of-touch elitism ever to disgrace American media. It is cognitive dissonance on steroids. And what's worse, their liberal statist myopia prevents them from even realizing it.
Never in the history of this grand republic of ours has a group so demanded massive intervention as the media do now. And I think they may be about to get it from the folks they most hate: genuine American patriots.
To find out more about Kyle-Anne Shiver and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
COPYRIGHT 2009 CREATORS.COM