Last week, when pushing gun control and immigration reform, the media were big believers in “civil bipartisan compromise.” This week, the media have sided with a president who refuses to negotiate and called the GOP “house burners.” Today, the Washington Post listed “9 ways to punish Congress for a shutdown,” and under a photo of John Boehner is the suggestion that we “Line ‘em up and shoot ‘em.”
So what should be the fate of our 535 voting members of Congress, who are shutting down the government instead of doing the work we pay them a handsome $174,000 a year to do? Unable to craft a last-minute deal to stave off disaster, this Congress must be punished. Now. …
“Line ‘em up and shoot ‘em. I consider what they’re doing treason,” said a D.C. retiree who runs a T-shirt stand near a Capitol Hill Metro stop.
“Or make ‘em spend a night in D.C. Jail,” said his partner.
Just last week, had a Tea Partier said such a thing, in that kind of language, it would have been the Washington Post headline and made news on every cable network in the world.
Things sure have changed.
Over the past ten days, the media have done a complete reversal of every principle they once held dear. No longer is bipartisan compromise expected from our political leaders. Today, it is perfectly acceptable for Senate Democrats and Obama to openly declare that they will not negotiate.
No longer is the media punishing politicians and their staffs for what used to be called “extremist, unhelpful and eliminationist rhetoric.” With impunity, congressional Democrats, the White House, and even the president have compared the GOP to terrorists, arsonists, criminals, and anarchists. In fact, as you can see in today’s Washington Post, the media have only joined Democrats in the use of this language.
Finally, we used to have a media that believed in making government work. This week, though, the media have sided with those who refuse to negotiate and have hurled rhetoric that destroys the ability to negotiate– all of which has brought government to such a state of dysfunction that it is now shut down.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC