On Friday's CNN Newsroom, anchor Rick Sanchez dazzled viewers with his profound grasp of economics. His guest was CNN chief business correspondent Ali Velshi, whose most recent achievement was being called "incompetent" by Rush Limbaugh:
SANCHEZ: You know, it's funny, but, as I hear him (President Barack Obama).talk, I'm just thinking, tax cuts are spending, right? I mean, they really are, because you have got to get it from somewhere.
VELSHI: Right. If you think about it, is -- your own budget, right? If you have less money coming in, you have to have less money going out.
The issue is that -- the argument is that, tax cuts, while it brings less money into the government, which means it lowers the amount of money the government has, which makes it the equivalent of spending, it stimulates the economy, because it lets -- people will use that money in another way.
The way tax cuts could be considered spending, a contention with which Velshi agreed, is if one believes that all income belongs not to the individual earning it, but rather to the government. It's then government's option to determine how much people are permitted to keep and if they're using it "appropriately."
Sanchez's reasoning reminds me of President Bill Clinton, who said of the budget surplus: "We could give it back to you and hope you spend it right." But "if you don't spend it right," bad things would happen to Social Security and other programs.
Sanchez's implicit suggestion is that government has first claim on the earnings and investments of its citizens. That conflicts with our laws and our history.
It doesn't, of course, conflict with the liberal prattle routinely enaged in by Sanchez. He's the guy who read his viewers' minds and knew they couldn't understand Sarah Palin. He's the man who called out Joe the Plumber. Almost every day he has Patricia Murphy as a guest to explain current events. Introducing her as the editor of CitizenJanePolitics.com, he doesn't mention that her work history includes employment with three U.S. senators, all of them Democrats. This would explain where she's coming from politically, but perhaps Sanchez doesn't think her background is relevant.
Rick Sanchez was in the vanguard of blending CNN with social network sites like Twitter, Facebook and MySpace. Urging his viewers to voice their opinions, he reads some reactions while others stream across the bottom of the screen. There are invariably a highly disproportionate number of liberal opinions aired.
With only 53 percent of voters opting for Obama in the election, it's not reasonable to presume that Sanchez hears from almost no conservatives. I have sent him numerous Twitter messages and, in fairness, note that he's aired perhaps half a dozen of them. Certainly he's receiving communications from many other conservatives, yet broadcasts almost none of them.
Rick Sanchez is using new social networking technology to advance an old reality: mainstream media's liberal bias.