The mainstream media are failing to address two central truths about key domestic issues for America this summer.
1. Agencies of the US federal government created the “Gunwalker” problem.
2. President Obama is the one who will decide who gets paid after 2 August, if there is no budget deal.
The two issues are largely unrelated, except through the principles on which the Obama administration has handled them and the MSM are dealing with them. The latter principle is one of slavishly repeating the talking points put out by the Obama administration. In both Gunwalker and the budget stand-off, the administration has relied on obfuscation and unrealistic narratives to frame the public discussion. And the MSM are largely acting as a giant repeater, propagating the original signal without modification or loss of fidelity.
In the wake of Gunwalker, a false premise is in full swing and is already shaping policy. Pajamas Media has thoroughly documented the inane credulity of theWashington Post and other news outlets regarding the administration’s press releases on the Gunwalker scandal. But I was amazed on Friday to see A.B. Stoddard chirp out (on Fox) the administration talking point about new gun-sale reporting requirements. (Video here; the title says “”Libyan Rebel Recognition” but the first topic is Gunwalker.)
Granted, A.B. Stoddard is on the left side of the political spectrum. But it doesn’t require any particular ideological posture to recognize that increasing restrictionson the people is not a method of “repairing” (her verb) the damage done by a rogue federal agency operation. Nothing about the revelations from Gunwalker justifies changing gun-enforcement measures that affect the people. It was the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATFE) that directed licensed gun dealers and local agents to ignore activity they would otherwise have pursued as suspicious, under existing law and existing enforcement standards. The problem in this situation is not current law or enforcement standards; it’s BATFE.
The outcome of the operation clearly doesn’t justify increasing gun restrictions on the people. The falsity of the premise articulated by Ms. Stoddard is so laughably obvious, it can’t help evoking the propaganda campaigns of Soviet-era Pravda. Government creates a problem, the media talk it up, and then government increases restrictions on the people to “fix” it.
If Obama presides over a sea of unsent Social Security checks in August, that too will be a problem of his administration’s making. As confirmed in Congressional hearings this week, there will be plenty of funds to service the debt and meet Social Security and defense obligations after 2 August. Choosing not to meet them – choosing instead to pay, for example, the salaries of union workers in the non-defense civil service – will be up to Obama.