As that hoary old newspaper cliche goes, the goal of journalism is “comforting the afflicted and afflicting the comfortable”, a statement that makes a hash of any mid-20th century claims to “objectivity.” But in the past, most journalists, print or video, paid lip service to the idea of being a champion of the little guy, the working man, Joe Six Pack, or whatever that particular week’s fabulously outdated and only mildly paternalistic reference to Middle America was.
But that was a long time ago. On Sunday, Tom Brokaw suggested that President Elect Obama tank the economy even more, by sticking it to commuters’ wallets:
Let’s talk for a moment about consumer responsibility when it comes to the auto industries. As soon as gas prices dropped, consumers moved back to the larger cars once again. The SUVs are the big gas consumers. Why not take this opportunity to put a tax on gasoline, bump it back up to $4 a gallon where people were prepared to pay for that, and use that revenue for alternative energy and as a signal to the consumers: “Those days are gone. We’re not going to have gasoline that you could just fill up your tank for 20 bucks anymore.”