They're Hurting America

To paraphrase Bill Maher, yes, too many Americans are uninformed doofs. Here's the latest illustration: a poll showing that people don't understand healthcare reform. Yeah, no kidding.

And at the risk of sounding like an apologist, it's not the president's fault. While it's probably true that he could be more forceful and Moyers-ish with his explanations, President Obama has been explaining the reasons and means for achieving reform since the earliest days of the campaign.

The disconnect, as John Cole points out, is the corporate media. They've been predictably covering the politics-as-sports debate, but not the intracacies of the policy, which they ought to be doing. So it's not surprising that cable news is leading the charge in suggesting that it's the president who hasn't been forthright enough. Let it be said that the media never misses an opportunity to make excuses for its massive breaches of integrity.

But let's say for a moment that the president explained reform and the public option perfectly. Exactly like the press is prescribing. Even then, they'd very likely 1) find another anti-reform meme to inject into their "smackdowns" and half-time shows, and 2) they'd still be inviting serial liars like Mike Pence, unabashed morons like Maria Bartiromo, and centrist capitulators like Harold Ford onto their air to spread misinformation about reform and further confuse viewers.

Ultimately, though, any poll based upon whether Americans are confused and uninformed will probably have similar results when it comes to any number of important things. Asking whether Americans are confused is like asking if monkeys fling their own poo. But the corporate media isn't helping to ameliorate this and, to quote Jon Stewart, the they're, in fact, hurting America.