MSM-Speak: Slowing the Rate of Welfare Growth Is a "Budget Cut"

Remember the good old MSM formulation from the days when Newt was Speaker? The notion that slowing the runaway growth of any government program was actually a cut?

Just in time for Thanksgiving, it's back.

My local paper, the Gannett-owned Ithaca Journal, leads with this tear-jerker of a banner headline: "Budget Cuts Would Hit State's Poor Hard". Here is a link to the article.

Gannett News reporter John Machacek writes of thousands of welfare recipients being "squeezed," the poor being dealt a "blow" and the proposals "poking sizeable holes in New York's safety net."

Predictably, the story comes complete with heart-tugging personal stories: a cancer survivor living in a YMCA; a single mother with an asthmatic child, both worried about how the 'cuts' might affect them.

But buried nine paragraphs deep in the story, we find that the "cuts" . . . really aren't cuts at all: "the bill mostly pares back the growth in spending for federal anti-poverty programs."

Translation: rather than being cut, welfare spending will actually increase. It simply won't do so at the rate some of the biggest spenders would like.

Even so, the reporter insists that even these modest reductions in the growth of the welfare state "could be troublesome."

Machacek later informs us that "Democrats, advocates for the poor and even some New York Republicans" claim the "budget cuts" could "hurt a significant number of needy people."

You know 'cuts' must be mean-spirited when "even some Republicans" oppose them!

For the MSM, nothing must impede the growth of the welfare state.

Mark Finkelstein
Mark Finkelstein is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.