A New Myth Emerging

Like all groups, the Left is sustained by its myths. These myths serve a crucible into which all facts are grounded and  the resulting powder is rendered into the appropriate narrative. Consider just a couple of these myths.

The Left believes that President Bush was not elected in 2000, but rather “appointed” by a partisan Supreme Court. According to this myth, the re-count that was proceeding at the time should have been allowed to continue. What is often forgotten is that under the re-count rules then issued by the Florida Supreme Court, in a count conducted by Florida newspapers, Bush still won. However, evidence is often insufficient to overcome stubborn myths.

The Left believes that Senator John Kerry lost his bid for the presidency in 2004  because of “lies” told by the Swift Boat Veterans about his Vietnam service. However, the election was really lost when John Kerry stood up before the Democratic National Convention and “report[ed] for duty” with a smart salute to a cheering partisan crowd. The gesture was meant to overcome the perception that Democrats were anti-military, but the salute made the details of Kerry’s service a legitimate subject for scrutiny. This, coupled with the clumsy effort of Dan Rather and 60 Minutes to run a story critical of Bush’s service in the Texas National Guard based on apparently forged documents, discredited much of the pro-Kerry national media and actually made the Swift Boat Veterans appear more credible.

A new myth is emerging now. If President Barack Obama is unable to create a medical care plan with a “public  option,” we will be told that the proposal was buried under the weight of Republican lies. While there is a lot of misinformation floating around — some of it perpetuated by Obama himself — the political hurtles impeding the Obama health care plan were erected early in the year.

The stimulus package passed early in 2009 exploded the long-term deficit prospects making any new initiatives suspect. Moreover, Obama’s original, ostensible reason for a new health care arrangement was to reduce health care costs that he described as economically “unsustainable.” When the history is written of this time, the death blow to ambitious health care reform may have come from the Congressional Budget Office. This non-partisan arm of Congress scored the cost (not savings) of the plan to be over $1 trillion. If previous spending is unsustainable, adding more costs seems less sustainable.

Facts are unimportant in the face of myth. Expect that the myth of the Republican lies to sustain the Left in their cold nights of discontent.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.