Fred Barnes takes decisive action to recapture the lead from Charles Krauthammer in their long-running duel for the title of “America’s Worst Columnist.”
Two facts all but forced Republicans to adopt the zero option. Partisan zeal wasn’t one of them. Republicans were ready to be pawns in a bipartisan game. But Obama’s promise to bring the parties together played out in form (he courted Republicans) rather than substance (he declined to compromise). Republicans got nothing in the bill. That was fact number one. And after they objected to the cost of the House version ($819 billion, not counting the debt payments), the measure grew larger in the Senate. That was the second fact.
Democrats couldn’t hide their self-consciousness about the excesses of their own bill. Supporters made few TV appearances to defend it and rarely talked about specific spending items. Obama sounded like Al Gore on global warming. The more the case for man-made warming falls apart, the more hysterical Gore gets about an imminent catastrophe. The more public support his bill loses, the more Obama embraces fear-mongering. “The failure to act, and act now,” the president said last week, “will turn a crisis into a catastrophe.”
Yes, that’s right, hundreds of billions of dollars in tax cuts now count as “nothing.” And Barnes has (a) invented the fact that there’s no man-made global warming, and (b) invented a new meta-fact which claims that there’s growing evidence for his position. Normally when reading something like this you need to wonder if the writer is being stupid or being dishonest, but in Barnes’ case it’s usually safe to assume that the answer is “both.” Naturally, contributors to Barnes’ Weekly Standard—a publication that enjoys nothing more than misinforming people—will continue to be guests on cable television much more frequently than will contributors to progressive publications.