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Sir Winston Churchill

10.01.2008

No Accountability for Democrats

Jonah Goldberg:

The House GOP has come under a lot of criticism for its failure to deliver on its end of the bipartisan bailout deal, including from yours truly. Meanwhile, the Democratic leadership has come in for some moderate pro forma criticism for failing to do what was necessary to see the legislation passed.

It is a funny — though not ha-ha funny — double standard: When the GOP ran the show, it was always held responsible for every “bad” outcome. Now that the GOP is in the minority, it’s still held responsible for every “bad” outcome. I suppose it’s a similar standard that somehow allows the Democrats in charge of overseeing the financial sector to whine that there hasn’t been enough oversight without even the slightest sting of embarrassment.

On that point, you know what I haven’t seen in all of the coverage of the bailout-blow-up? I haven’t seen a single interview with a Democrat who voted against this deal. I’ve seen interviews of Republicans who’ve voted for it. I’ve seen interviews of Republicans who voted against it. And, of course, I’ve seen interviews with the Democratic leadership in which they blamed the Republicans who voted against it but not the 94 Dems who voted against it.

Now I certainly haven’t watched every bit of news coverage nor have I read every story about the failed bailout vote, so I’m sure I’m missing some counter-examples. But I think the discrepancy of coverage is real. The press is eager to hear from these free market zealots, these Herbert Hoover* mini-mes, who would put their bizarre ideological concerns ahead of the country’s interests. Never mind that these alleged zealots actually believe what they are doing is in fact in the long term interests of the country. The press always knows that when conservatives refuse to compromise it’s because they are dogmatic ideologues, brainwashed acolytes in the cult of Milton Friedman and Adam Smith.

But why didn’t those Democrats vote for the a bailout that their own leadership contends is vital for the financial health of the country?

That’s a question that hasn’t gotten a lot of attention.


The line from "Animal House" springs to mind: "You screwed up: you trusted us."

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