A quick fix to begin reducing the deficit would be to remove the biggest deficit-contributor, the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy. It would also help to end the Iraq and Afghanistan occupations. In the cases of the tax cuts, and the military occupations, a majority of Congress and the establishment media have been complicit in not only cheerleading the parade of mistakes, but also in subsequently demanding the necessity of both measures. Tax cuts for the rich stimulate the economy! Al Qaeda is coming to drink our blood! We're not Socialists! The surge worked!
A recent favorite example: The AP recently ran a story with the headline "Nearly Half Oppose Tax Hikes for Rich." Here is the opening paragraph:
Almost half the country opposes tax increases for the richest Americans, according to a poll suggesting that congressional Democrats are taking some risk by backing President Barack Obama's plan to boost levies on the wealthy.
As Jamelle Bouie points out, the converse of "nearly half" is "more than half," and 54 percent of voters support raising taxes on the highest earners, while 44 percent oppose. It might have been helpful -- even enlightening -- to phrase the headline as "More Than Half Support Tax Hikes For Rich," but then that might sound like the AP is thumbing their noses at the wealthy, and as Ayn Rand taught us, if we start doing that, the rich people will go Galt and leave us leaches to perish.
If anyone is searching for a mea culpa moment in the press, you can stop looking. The media won't point out this kind of shameless deficit hypocrisy for a couple reasons. First, beltway hill jockeys rely on access to the idiot deficit fearmongers, so they probably don't want to point out that -- ya' know -- the Bush tax cuts significantly contributed to the deficit. That might stir up some bad feelings.
Second, the media feels its role is to forever insist that both sides of the political spectrum harbor "extremists." Therefore, it is unacceptable to point out cutting checks averaging $3 million each to the richest 120,000 people in the country is not a good way to help average people. After all, one doesn't want to sound like some shrill leftist blogger.
It's much safer to take centrist Democrats' word that they're very, very concerned about the deficit and working very, very hard to save us all even as they work to ensure the deficits continues to balloon. That's what a "nonpartisan" stance in the media has become: turning a blind eye to hypocrisy because acknowledging facts has somehow become a liberal stance.