WHY DID GOP UNLEASH IT'S MEDIA DOGS ON DEAN LAST WEEK?
Howard Dean has been a real pain in the ass for BushCheney. The kinds of progressive reforms he advocates-- from equitable and workable health care and insurance systems to a plan to ensure that participatory democracy (in the form of fair voting counting, for example) is as prioritized for places like Ohio and Florida as it is for Anbar Province and Baghdad-- drive the Far Right insane. True, that may not be that far of a drive, but last week the full might of the BushCheney media empire struck, with all the vicious intensity it could muster. Why now?
One of the policy areas that the VAST majority of Americans feel BushCheney and the GOP Congress have been particularly inept and burdened with conflict of interest in handling, is the social safety net (i.e.- the heart and soul of the Right-wing's longtime bete noir, the New Deal). In his efforts to rally Democrats (his job), Dean has been going around the country and pointing this out. Until the Washington Post pointed out Dean's aggressive campaign against what can only be seen as GOP malfeasance (in an area near and dear to the hears of most Americans) the right-wing machine just tried to ignore it. (They don't really care all that much what people are saying Arizona and Colorado and Michigan.) But when the Post ran a hard-hitting report on what Dean was saying about them, they struck back. The Post piece, "Dean Accuses Bush of Not Protecting Pensions" by Dan Balz ran June 3. The first paragraph probably got them pissed off-- "Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean delivered a broadside at President Bush and the Republican Party yesterday, accusing the president of failing to protect private pensions in the United States and the GOP of embracing a 'dark, difficult and dishonest vision' for the country." A little close to home. Dean went on to say that there is a need to broaden the debate over Bush's proposal to restructure Social Security to include the issue of private pensions, citing Labor Department statistics estimating that private companies underfunded their pension plans by $450 billion last year. Dean correctly pointed out that Bush bears considerable responsible for the failure of private industry to protect those pensions. "The president wants to take away our Social Security," he said, "and then he's going to take away the private pension plans, too? What does he think ordinary Americans live on after they get to be 65 years old?" The only solution that Dean suggested is to make pensions portable, saying pension plans "ought not to be controlled by companies, they ought to be controlled by the people who those pensions belong to." BushCheney corporate donors DESPERATELY do not want this to happen. Period. That means it's time to bury what Dean is saying by attacking the messenger, something the BushCheney media apparatus is expert at-- and something the rest of the sheepish media follows along on without thought.