Robby Mook in the NYT: Distracting Thoughts on Trump’s Distractions Bait and Switch | Blog#42
Former Clinton campaign manager, Robby Mook, writes an op-ed in Wednesday’s New York Times in which he appears to warn readers about Trump’s talent for changing the topic of conversation and counsels Democrats not to allow themselves to be distracted.
That’d be fine advice, were it not for the fact that Democrats aren’t distracted. It would also be fine advice if Mook, himself, didn’t use most of the op-ed space given to him to engage in more 2016 recriminations.
Mook is deflecting, just like Trump. Trump uses clubs and flamethrowers. Mook uses varnish to gloss over what the public has noticed over these past 18 months. This is the typical Republican blunt force to the Democrats’ finesse. In the final analysis, what both engage in is pure bait and switch.
Yes, the media has been focusing voters away from the dirty underhanded things the Trump minions have been doing instead of covering all the news and highlighting what is being undone. That’s what mainstream media outlets do. They should be focused on all the things the Koch-chosen Trump cabinet has been doing while we all aren’t looking, but they have advertisers to keep and interests to guard.
Mook’s self-promotion of his efforts at resisting Trump while rehashing the 2016 election and blaming the media for its failure to prioritize certain issues is a poor excuse for the underperformance of Mook’s candidate. Furthermore, blaming the media for its insane breaking news priorities but not the non-existent congressional opposition, in the final analysis, is no different than Trump’s bait and switch grenade throwing approach to changing the narrative and conversation.
Yes, the media has its own agenda. A part of it is driven by profit and minding the unstated wishes of corporate advertisers. Another part of it is minding the wishes of the unseen establishment hand that, at least in the last three presidential cycles, has guided the editorial schedule. For some insights, here is Charles Blow during the height of the 2016 primary, talking about the unseen hand:
Meanwhile, the Democrats have quietly been cooperating with Republicans on some things since day one, with a group of about 35 centrists that has been actively passing Trumpian legislation or systematically voting with the GOP. It’s as if the GOP has its own branch within the Democratic party. When asked, Democratic leaders defend “vulnerable” Democrats’ actions. Now, compare that to John Boehner’s GOP from 2010-2015 for a moment, and then think about how insane it is for Democrats to continue acting as if they’re not in a hostile environment.
If these were any other times, it would be one thing. But Democrats are well-aware that Trump and Pence’s appointees have been busily destroying everything that can be dismantled without Congress, and what can’t be undone without a vote has been inserted into many of the bills that have been signed by Trump. I’ve been documenting the great undoing in three separate web pages practically since the beginning.
Where is the Democrat’s opposition? Who leads it? Nancy Pelosi?
Well, no… She and Chuck Schumer even gave Representative Maxine Waters a dressing down after Trump himself attacked Waters.
Exactly whose side is the Democratic leadership on? For that matter, whose side is the pundit class on? Right around the time Auntie Maxine was being attacked by Trump and threatened by crazies, this is what pundits were doing:
The news cycle has actually been full of the racially charged grenade-throwing by Trump and the rest of his administration. There have been many days in which that was all you could see and hear on TV and radio. The separation of migrant families, mistreatment of children in the custody of our government, in the name of the American people, to the point of sexual abuse and torture at the hands of government-paid minders – all have been in the news, day in and day out.
“When you’re in a crisis, the bag is the least helpful thing,” said D.M., now 20, referring to the spit mask. “They just grab the left side of your head and they force it over you. You can’t move to resist. The first thing that came to my head when they put it on me was, ‘They are going to suffocate me.’”
There have been many accounts of abuse of this kind and worse in the media, with parallels being drawn from Nazi imagery, rather than the actual source: Jim Crow and his forebears.
On policy and legislation, the media has diligently reported on the repeated attempts by Republicans to erase millions of Americans’ health benefits, the dismantlement of our tax system to benefit the rich, and many of the other things that have been done since January 20, 2017.
Why didn’t the congressional leadership pick up the mantle from the Women’s March and Obamacare repeal organizers and keep voters engaged and in the streets? Why didn’t the congressional leadership exercise the same degree of parliamentary discipline the GOP did all throughout the Obama years? Why are 35 Democrats regularly voting with Republicans with no consequence? Why did a group of 4-5 Democrats write and pass legislation that undoes Dodd-Frank?