The Infrastructure Bill Is Joe Biden’s ‘Shovel-Ready Jobs’ Moment – Opinion

President Joe Biden’s former boss, then-president-elect Barack Obama, appeared on Meet the Press and declared that his goal was an infrastructure overhaul that would create “shovel-ready jobs” amid the recession America faced. According to the Washington Post pointed out later, the phrase appeared to be pretty much new (they discovered its origin might have been based on Hillary Clinton’s previous statements regarding “shovel-ready jobs” for upstate New York), but it took off.

It was a common phrase and everyone was praising Obama’s brilliant message. The media didn’t just discuss the talking point, they celebrated it.

Those shovel-ready jobs were not created after a year and a $800 billion infrastructure plan. It was never mentioned by the New York Times, Obama admitted he now understood there’s really no such thing. “The problem is that spending it out takes a long time, because there’s really nothing – there’s no such thing as shovel-ready projects,” he told them ahead of the 2010 midterms. Obama was hoping that Republicans would win and Democrats would lose.

This is how it turned out.

At a public event, he actually said “‘Shovel-ready’ was not as ‘shovel-ready’ as we expected.” And it was met with a chuckle on the stage and among the media. Just a shrug and an “Oh well!” and that was the response to (yet another) of his promises turning out to be a lie.

Joe Biden celebrates the passing of the bipartisan infrastructure bill. He claims it will jumpstart the economy, fix major infrastructure problems, and immediately improve our overall infrastructure. But we already know that won’t be the case because that relies again on “shovel-ready jobs” at a time when employment is sluggish and there are supply chain and transportation issues. What’s worse is that all of these projects will be burdened by environmental regulations championed by the Democratic Party for decades (ironically, had Joe Biden not undone a lot of the regulatory rollback Donald Trump had put in place via executive order, this may not be the case).

BidenAP Photo by Susan Walsh

While none of these jobs and projects will be completed in the shortest time possible, once again the media won’t care. Biden got something passed, and it’s cemented into his legacy. That was our goal. That’s what they want.

CNN yesterday suspended Chris Cuomo for indefinitely This was an action that should have been taken months before, but CNN waited until it became impossible to do so. A friend of mine on the left reached out via Twitter after the texts detailing Cuomo’s involvement with his brother’s team came out. “It’s journalistic disgrace,” he said. “I’m actually surprised I haven’t seen much else on it ever, other than from you. Meaning the left wasn’t covering it.”

There is a reason that the media acts like this, and it goes beyond “They are leftist partisan hacks.” There is a reason they didn’t want to touch any of this. It’s all because these people know who butters their bread.

News executives, account managers, and editors know that the goal in journalism isn’t journalism. It is about getting people to notice the ads of those who are paying them big money to have their ads in print and on TV. Yesterday I said that Jeff Zucker brought with him experience in entertainment. The network benefited from this new perspective and it helped to grow. But a lot of Zucker’s audience-building was aimed at people who are naturally more progressive. The programming needed to become more progressive in order for them to stay loyal.

You will see many programming adjustments to accommodate that. CNN makes Chris Cuomo’s and Don Lemon prime-time news. Less popular are the straight-news men, even if they’re left-leaning. CNN let Cuomo entertain his audience with the Cuomo siblings, rather than asking Andrew Cuomo difficult questions. Zucker demanded that the network stand against Trump. Yes, a lot of the reporters were more than happy to do so because of their political leanings, but by that point, CNN’s primary audience was so left-leaning that they were more than happy to upset conservatives rather than dare to chase off liberals.

They are also the same for the other major networks and newspapers. They know that journalism, however they perceive it, is their profession. HowThey do this because it’s more tied to the reason advertisers stay with them. This is why left-leaning media outlets are often attacked by right-leaning companies.

Reporters are happy to accept this because they don’t only love access but are left-leaning. The Clintons were the reason they struggled so much to stay in Clinton circles in 2000 and the 1990s. They wanted to be allowed into the Obama White House. If they were allowed to continue accessing the White House, the disgruntled Trump and Trump staffers (especially those in the latter), they would be more than willing to provide a platform.

For them, it’s not about journalism. If it were, they wouldn’t be worshipping the Democrats like they do. They wouldn’t be trying to build up new superstars. Real journalism isn’t about giving someone like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez unbalanced coverage. It’s about reporting actual stories, and covering her every “controversial” and “brave” statement isn’t news. It’s all fodder for hagiographical puff pieces and nothing else.

You won’t find out about Biden’s infrastructure promises being empty until well after the fact, because the news outlets don’t want to run off their audiences (any more than they already have) and reporters don’t want to lose that sweet, sweet access in Washington they’ve been getting.