Saturday, January 28

The elephant in the room

Anybody who says the Abramoff scandal is bipartisan can bite me*. Completely aside from being in bed with Ralph Reed, who apparently used to merely crash on his couch (?!), Abramoff went after Republican congresscritters for the same reason Willie Sutton reportedly went after bank vaults -- because that's where the money is. Everybody knows it.

Unfortunately, it looks like the congressional Democrats are afraid of losing their own ticket on the gravy train -- after all, someday they might actually be worth bribing again! Parading congressional Democrats in front of a pledge nobody will read is no substitute for real reform. Although I like the relative detail of this proposal, it seems the reform effort overall is a bit fuzzy.

Nevertheless, this is a great time to let the media know that balancing the story is not the same as balancing the facts. If the facts show that Abramoff was playing pander to the GOP, and the punditocracy keeps saying otherwise, the public needs to ask why pundits are allowed to pull assertions from their asses without getting called out on the air. Chris Matthews (or whomever, but Media Matters has a typical quote) may be too craven to call a man a liar to his face; but can anyone explain why he won't book somebody who's willing to do it? I thought the whole point of the Crossballs genre was the agon! I can't believe, I refuse to believe that no one is willing to talk about this honestly. Give me a break! It's an elephant -- & it's in the room!

Of course, the Treadmill to the White House 2008** could be the problem; for the last few decades, the Democrats have only ever had a leader for about 4 months out of every 4 years**. If there's no "front bench", how can you field a team?

* hat tip to Kevin Drum, whom I visit too seldom.

**"2008 election" = 17.2 million Googles at the moment...

***actually, from August convention to November election is barely over 3 months.


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