We Have A Deal, But The BBC Casts Doubt On The Tea Party

So the US Congressional leadership has agreed to a budget deal – the first real one since the President took office, as it happens – to temporarily stave off a default and financial ugliness. The agreement will raise the debt ceiling by $900 billion, and create and a cut of $1 trillion in spending over the next 10 years. Most media seem to be qualifying it as an “immediate” cut, but that seems rather silly as the actual cuts won’t happen immediately, and will be spread out rather thinly over time. And it’s pretty much a wash, so nothing is really fixed. However, the key factor is here that the agreement also requires the forming of a committee within the year to come up $1.5 trillion more spending cuts. Now that means something.

And no tax increases. We’ll have to wait and see how the vote goes on Monday, of course, but it’s hard to believe that Boehner would agree to this if the party whips hadn’t come up with the votes to pass it.

Sounds pretty much like the Boehner plan, which Mark Mardell described as having basically vetoed itself by not raising the debt ceiling even more, or raising taxes. On Friday, the BBC North America editor informed you of the White House talking point that it was wrong.

President Barack Obama says there is a way out of the mess, and he is clear it is not House Speaker John Boehner’s proposal.

He says the Republican’s plan has no chance of becoming law. It’s odds on the president won’t have to veto it, as the Tea Party seems to have done the job for him. He’s again urging people to tweet, ring, email their members of Congress and push them to reach a deal.

Has the BBC reported that Twitter fail yet? Today, he wrote this:

The sort of deal we seem to be looking at is, objectively a victory of the Republicans.

The Democrats take a lot of pain and can only hope to avoid the worst political damage. But the Tea Party members don’t get everything they want by any means and are quite capable of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

Mr Boehner’s people told me months ago that they knew there would always be a handful who would never support any deal. But that handful or rebels turned out to be a bucketful, sloshing with Tea Party enthusiasm. We will soon see the limits to their purity and the extent of their pragmatism.

So Mardell believes the vote could fail due to the “purity” concerns of the Tea Party movement. The negative connotations of that word really reveal his ideological bias.

Let’s how the vote turns out, and how the BBC covers it. Let this be the thread for discussion of the BBC’s coverage of the result.

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18 Responses to We Have A Deal, But The BBC Casts Doubt On The Tea Party

  1. Martin says:

    Dame Nicola just had a ‘Republican scumbag’ on Radio 5. Needless to say we got the references to right wing nutters, the Goerge W Bush references etc etc. There is one thing about Dame Nicki, he is consistent.

    Even at the end of the interview when the US politician referred to 5 Live as “Live at 5” there was the usual beeboid sneering.

    Pathetic, you know the BBC have lost the argument when all they can so is sneer.


  2. John Anderson says:

    Feel the pain of the New York Times – their anger will be matched by the likes of Mardell.

    Obama,  I think,  has been permanently damaged by all this.  His pathetic tweeting campaign was the last straw – as somedone said,  the leader of the free world was reduced to standing on the sidelines trying to tweet messages in.



  3. Martin says:

    Obama is toast because the US economy is f****d and he did it. Nearly 10% unemployment, huge deficit and his only solution is more spending.  
    The BBC have totally forgotten about the failed stimulus, all those shovel ready projects, the BBC were shoveling it themselves when Barry announced this.  
    I also lauched at Richard Bacon who was crowing when Bin Laden was slotted that “this guarantees a second term for Obama”, I’m sure at the BBC that was why there was no criticism of Obama personally for ordering Bin Liner killed, the BBC just blamed those red neck soldiers. Funny that.  
    As Charles Krauthammer said on Fox, the Republicans don’t need to push this issue any further now, 2012 is their goal, there is no way the US economy will have recovered by then, that is what will sink Obama, so long as the Republicans pick a reasonable candidate.


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      Completely agree about the BBC’s handling of the Bin Laden killing in cold blood.  As for the economy, unemployment is much more than that in some areas.  It’s worst for blacks, apparently, as so many of them work in service industries and the kind of low wage jobs that disappear first whenever there’s a financial crisis.  They won’t be motivated to vote in 2012 since history has already been made, and the youth vote who turned out for emotional reasons are also massively unemployed and unenthusiastic as there is nothing emotional to grab onto these days.


  4. John Anderson says:

    The Dems really are in a bind now,  especially the fruitcake liberal wing who hate this deal.

    Here’s one of them describing it as a “Satan sandwich”.   I bet the BBC does not describe him and his ilk as extremists.



  5. Umbongo says:

    If the vote is carried, Mardell will sneer at the Tea Party’s failure in the “purity” stakes.  If the vote is not carried, Mardell will damn the Tea Party for its intransigence.  Either way, Mardell will get his sneer in: he’s probably practising it in the studio mirror as I write.


  6. David Preiser (USA) says:

    I’m sick already of the lie that this deal “makes a down payment on the deficit” coming from the President and his innumerate followers at the BBC.  It does no such thing.  It’s a wash at best, if not actually a slighlty higher rise in the debt than we’re going to cut spending.

    Oh, so the President thanks the public for twatting their Congressmen into a deal, eh?  Which party caved more, BBC?  Read my lips:  No new taxes.


  7. David Preiser (USA) says:

    The President is still doing His class war rhetoric.  That will cheer Mardell up no end.


  8. David Preiser (USA) says:

    Hey, BBC, if “both parties” supposedly realize that something needs to be done about the deficit, why has no budget been passed since The Obamessiah was elected and had control of both Houses of Congress?  And why have you censored that fact from all your reporting?

    Kim Ghattas says that both the “far Left and the far Right” are unhappy with various aspects of the deal, but – naturellement – it’s the “Tea Party Republicans” who are the most dangerous to scuttle it.

    Then she mentioned the real reason the President sent Biden to Capitol Hill to twist some Democrat arms: He needs to be re-elected, and if this thing fails, He might not be.  She didn’t put it quite that way, of course, just mentioned that incumbent Presidents don’t get elected when there are no jobs and the economy is in the toilet.  Don’t want to say that The Obamessiah is a triangulating, opportunistic politician concerned only with His own ass or anything.

    Look how negative towards Bush the BBC reporting was back when he got Congress to raise the debt limit in 2004:

    Washington’s coffers have also been depleted by a round of controversial tax cuts, seen by critics as a boon to the rich.

    Sound familiar?  They’re still singing from that same hymn sheet.  Anybody ever seen the BBC talk about how “critics” referred to any of their beloved Obamessiah’s plans as “a boon to the unions” or “a Socilalist redistribution scheme”?  Not counting actual quotes from pols or pundits, I mean.  Just when the sub-editors write this stuff.

    The opposition Democrats are likely to point to the country’s deteriorating fiscal position as evidence that President George W Bush is mishandling the economy in the run-up to the presidential election in November.

    But the same thing isn’t evidence that The Obamessiah has been mishandling the economy?  Not much time for “critics” from the other side these days, I guess.


  9. David Preiser (USA) says:

    News Channel now giving you an opinion on the US debt vote from someone from the far-Left blog Talking Points Memo.  No political affiliation given, of course. But the blog itself claims Leftoid bona fides.  Why no label, BBC?  The public deserves to know what kind of opinion your giving them.

    Oh dear, the President has appeared “powerless” this week, says the Beeboid.  Not so, says the TPM Leftoid.  He defends the President to the hilt, describing Him as a great compromiser and someone who can get things done, and this will end with Him “winding up on top” and getting re-elected.

    Next up, a Leftoid “journalist” from the New York Times, Loiuse Story. She’s a little more honest about how nobody knows exactly how this will turn out.  But you can guess that the Leftoid media doesn’t think this is so good becaue the Tea Party got more of what they want, so she’s hinting that this may actually tank the economy.  This makes Congress look bad, but not the President.

    Next up, Leftoid pollster John Zogby.  Again, not identified as such.  He says most people will see this as a success for the President.  Even though a good percentage “hate this President’s guts”, the numbers show (his skewed numbers, anyway) that the President will thrive in 2012.

    Anyone from the non-Left available, BBC?  Anyone who didn’t vote for The Obamessiah?  Anyone you can ask questions that aren’t softballs?


    • Craig says:

      There’s a ‘See Also’ article on the BBC website this evening, ‘Media reaction to the US budget deal‘, which can match that, David – and which brings back memories of the JournOList (Ezra Klein’s secret e-mail list of left-liberal journalists and professors that campaigned to get Obama elected and discussed concerted attacks on the Right.)

      First up is left-wing ‘economist’ (and JournOLista) Paul Krugman with what the anonymous BBC writer calls a “hard-hitting piece”, attacking the deal from the Left and talking of “extortion” by the Republicans and “right-wing extremists”.  Next up is fellow JournOLista and left-wing ‘New Republic’ editor Johnathan Cohn, also attacking the deal from the Left. He wants more money pumped into the economy, attacks Fox, links to two more JournOListas (etc). Then comes Ezra Klein of the ‘Washington Post’ himself, attacking the Republicans.

      The piece then moves away from named JournOListas, but  continues with another attack on the Republicans from Reid Epstein of the ‘Daily Beast’ and ‘Politico’, doubting Republicans can behave in an “adult” way. Then comes Jay Newton-Small of ‘Time’ contributing some praise for Obama. Only the final snippet from a ‘Chicago Tribune editorial’, which critiques both parties, isn’t an attack/defence from the Left.

      Whoever wrote this didn’t just fail to provide a balanced selection of U.S. media voices, he/she also failed to find a single right-wing commentator. There are lots of them out there, so there’s no excuse!


      • Craig says:

        And none of these people was labelled as ‘left-wing’ or ‘liberal’ or ‘Democrat-leaning’ or ‘pro-Obama’ either.


  10. Umbongo says:

    Much to Mrs U’s upset I’ve become, if not persona non grata then persona only just tolerated (sorry, my Latin is not up to a translation) at various get-togethers here in North London.  However, the ammunition provided by David Preiser in the war against the BBC is startling in its effectiveness.

    The ignorance in the UK of US politics and of the reality of democracy in the US is profound – and this is what the BBC trades on.  Even most educated people view the US political system as an approximation of ours but carried on in a different accent.  They have no appreciation of the importance of the relationships between the states and the federal government, that primaries can actually by-pass the power of the political class (cf the rise of the Tea Party movement), that politicians – not all of course – actually listen (and have to listen) to their constituents, that the president is not all-powerful etc.

    My friends and acquaintances listen to me – or in many cases, let’s be frank here, ignore me – because I can give them chapter and verse on BBC bias and incompetence in its reportage of US politics.  Increasingly, but ever so slowly, people are realising that the BBC they knew, appreciated and (above all) trusted died a long time ago.  So DP, keep it coming although I’ll admit the anger it stokes in me is not doing my blood pressure much good.


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      Sorry to cause disharmony, Umbongo.  But ripples in the pond are a good thing.  That’s how the Tea Party movement started as well.  And please give the missus a big hug for me as an apology. 🙂


    • Span Ows says:

      Ditto, Umbong. But it needs sayng as much as possible, luckily I have “rightwing nutter” family in the US so I can happily concur with David P.


      • Beware of Geeks Bearing GIFs says:

        Yes, don’t be disheartened: using the BBC’s own tactics: if you keep telling people the same thing over and over again, they will believe it.  However, in this case we are sharing indisputable facts.  That’s the difference.

        I’ve shown so many people how easy it is to cancel the licence fee and, if you can be bothered with the stream of low brow “entertainment”, watch it for free, I’ve lost count of those that have done just that.

        All they need to know is how to do it.

        Hell, I might even put an ABC on how to do that on my own website shortly if I can find a spare minute in my life.  You see, the unintended consequences of not watching dumbed-down TV 6 hours a night, is that your life becomes so much more fullfilling!


  11. Umbongo says:



    You’re forgiven apparently but Mrs U claims my social conversation is becoming a one-track rant.  Although she agrees with the sentiment she would prefer not to be able to predict 100% accurately my reaction to yet another ill-informed or skewed item of drivel issued by the BBC under its Today brand.  Mind you, she’s becoming just as adept as me at recognising the BBC’s nasty little habits.


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      I live in Manhattan, so I know all about awkward social conversations when the topic turns to politics.  People simply assume that you’re “of the body” and are shocked when someone they otherwise liked doesn’t toe the party line.