Notes From Babel

Obama Backpedaled on His C-SPAN Promise Because It’s Good for Us?

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In response to the mounting criticism of Obama and the Dems’ walking away from Obama’s multiple promises that the deal-brokering on the health care bill would be televised on C-SPAN, Ezra Klein urges that it’s really better for us if we just leave these folks to their closed meetings.  Folks will either grand-stand or they’ll be too cautious.

What you’ll get are kabuki negotiations in which legislative leaders make carefully planned statements about the awesomeness of the bill while staff works in a back room to haggle out whether, say, we should tax rich folks or expensive insurance plans. What C-SPAN is offering isn’t transparency. It’s the illusion of transparency.

Of course, Obama had no qualms about accepting applause from his adulating fans when he offered—again and again and again—the promise to provide transparency specifically through C-SPAN broadcasts.  If you were dumb enough to believe (a) that Obama is above politicking, or (b) that putting politics on TV makes it honest, then no one’s going to fall over themselves keeping promises to you.

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Written by Tim Kowal

January 7, 2010 at 11:12 pm

Posted in Politics

Tagged with ,

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