February 23, 2010

The Extinction Burst

Before the 2008 election, I told my wife that I think the real reason that the media was completely tossing aside even the pretense of objectivity was that it was - to me - obviously an "extinction burst."

Consider the following:

1) The continuing daisy chain of newspaper/newsmagazine failures
2) The utter failure of liberal talk radio
3) The declining ratings of the alphabet networks, CNN and MSNBC
4) The ascendancy of Fox News
5) The enduring popularity of conservative talk radio
6) The rise of the dextrosphere and the already peaked popularity of the sinestrophere.
7) The repeated best-selling success of conservative books - not just on current topics, but re-examining political history as well (e.g., Liberal Fascism).
8) The calamitous decline in union membership outside of government.

Put them all together and what do you have? The end of the ability of the Left to completely control the narrative, to hide inconvenient truths and to pretend that opposing views are without merit or that they even exist.

I believe that the media understood very well that 2008 would be the last presidential election in which they had as much influence as they did. So they had no incentive to pretend they were objective any longer. After all, most of them wouldn't even have jobs by the time the next election rolled around anyway.

By 2012, it is very likely that neither Time nor Newsweek will even exist as print magazines. The NY Times may or may not be putting ink to paper, but even if it is there will be far fewer copies to circulate. Air America has already gone silent. Etc., Etc.

The Leftists in this country have controlled political conversation in this country for generations now. That monopoly has effectively ended, and now their agenda is being shredded daily by Glenn Reynolds' "Army of Davids" who are pointing out that the emperor has no clothes, and in fact, never really did.

So the Democratic Party had no choice but to go "all in" after the last election. From ObamaCare to Cap-N-Tax to Card Check, every liberal wet dream is on the table.

They thought "we've only got one more shot to get this through, so we've got to jam as much through as possible RIGHT NOW." They know they're not likely to get another bite at this apple for a very long time to come.

Because not only have they lost control of the message, they've run out of money. Federal and state budgets are exploding across the country as the inevitable result of decades of liberal mismanagement (see California) and the extraordinarily high cost of government union workers (see GM and Chrysler for examples of where this is heading).

The appetite for, and the ability to fund, the expansion of government is over for the foreseeable future.

We just can't afford it. Democrats knew the debt bomb was ticking, but this recession and their own irresponsibility in passing the stimulus plan, sped up the countdown timer far faster than they had planned. The Tea Party movement was a completely unanticipated development which is why they were left floundering when it took off so suddenly. They never saw it coming, and it left them angry and sputtering ineffective, inaccurate and inane responses like "Nazis," "racists," and "unAmerican."

Time has run out. The steady flow of money and muscle from their union allies is quickly drying up, and that will affect the Democratic Party's ability to remain competitive. (And why they reacted so vehemently to the recent Supreme Court decision allowing corporate participation in elections.)

The Leftist agenda will always find a way to come back eventually. That totalitarian impulse isn't going to go away. It never really does as there are always people who seek to use the heavy hand of government to control other people's lives. But if it gets defeated now, it's going to have to go underground for a long time. And the actions of the Leftists for the last few years proves that they know it too.