Sep 04 2010

Do you validate?

It’s always nice to be validated, especially by an Author I respect as much as Glenn Greenwald

(P)erhaps the most significant result of Simpson’s candor is that Obama loyalists and Beltway media voices are now forced to publicly defend Social Security cuts, because Simpson’s comments have prematurely dragged out into the open what has been an open secret in Washington but was supposed to be a secret plot for everyone else until the election was over.  The New Republic’s Jonathan Chait recently decreed, in response to the Simpson controversy, that “liberals should be open to Social Security cuts as part of a balanced package of deficit reduction.”  And in The Washington Post today, both the Editorial Page and Dana Milbank  defend Simpson and call for cuts in Social Security (Milbank even defends cuts in aid to wounded veterans).  That Social Security must be cut is not only a bipartisan consensus among the GOP and “centrist” Democratic wing, but at least as much, among the Beltway media establishment.

But it’s not just good policy, it’s also good politics.  You see, unlike the Obamabots and Institutional Democrats, I actually care about electoral victory

I certainly have not seen eye-to-eye with Bob Shrum on political strategies over the years.  So when we’re both beating the same drum with the same urgency at the same time, it’s somewhat unusual.

But we both agree that President Obama and the Catfood Commission threaten the electoral chances of every Democrat running for office this November.

Shrum has a piece in The Week in which he echoes Ed Kilgore and others Democratic strategists in pointing out that the Democrats don’t have an issue to run on this November.  Like them, he says that saving Social Security could be the issue that saves their seats as well.

But Shrum is willing to utter the uncomfortable truth that Kilgore ignores:  it is deeply, deeply cynical and unconvincing for the Democrats to be out there castigating the GOP for wanting to do the very thing that the White House is privately telling journalists they themselves plan to do by way of the Catfood Commission after the election.

They are just sycophantic liars.

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