Saturday, November 30, 2013

Saturday Reading - Rooting For Failure

Today, of course, is the target date imposed by the Obama Administration for many fixes to the web site to enable more people to successfully sign up for affordable health insurance.  Who's that cheering from the sidelines, and what are cheering for? Tim Egan in the New York Times explains:
It’s hard to remember a time when a major political party and its media arm were so actively rooting for fellow Americans to lose. When the first attempt by the United States to launch a satellite into orbit, in 1957, ended in disaster, did Democrats start to cheer, and unify to stop a space program in its infancy? Or, when Medicare got off to a confusing start, did Republicans of the mid-1960s wrap their entire political future around a campaign to deny government-run health care to the elderly?
Of course not. But for the entirety of the Obama era, Republicans have consistently been cheerleaders for failure. They rooted for the economic recovery to sputter, for gas prices to spike, the job market to crater, the rescue of the American automobile industry to fall apart.
The Republican media arm (Fox "News" and the rest of NewsCorp., of course) has been getting a lot of help from other corporate media, who react to the smell of blood in the water and love a good "government fails again" story as much as any Rupert Murdoch entity.  But the early, very unfortunate mis-steps on the Federal web site may not be as painful a memory in the spring or summer of 2014.  With potentially millions of Americans successfully subscribed to affordable health insurance by then, and with health care costs slowing for the great majority, the Failure Chorus on the right and in the media may end up being drowned out by the Hallelujah Chorus of newly insured Americans.  Let's withhold judgement until then, at least.

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