One of the many unattractive aspects of Left wing ideology is a willingness to substitute wishful thinking for analysis. Perhaps this is just another manifestation of a narcissistic view of life, the idea that if I really want something it is tantamount to reality.
The just completed Israeli election is a great case in point. The media, most of which dislikes Bibi, and much of which despises him, was primed for his defeat. They could taste it. After all, he has been in office for six years, his wife is not returning plastic bottles, and he had the effrontery to cross King Obama.
And so idea was born of ABB – Anyone but Bibi. Somehow, it was just an open little secret that everyone wanted Bibi out. We just needed a replacement. But in all likelihood, anyone would do.
Well, in Buji Herzog, you got anyone. Buji is about as enticing as day old sushi. Piling absurdity on top of dubiousness, he partnered with Tzipi Livni, who could outgun Sara Netanyahu any day as the Lady Macbeth of Israel.
No matter. This was the dynamic duo that would be the lightning rod for the millions of disaffected voters who were itching for a change.
There was only one problem. Well, maybe more than one. But the big one was that this was a mindset that did not extend very far beyond the four walls of select Tel Aviv neighborhoods (as well as various newsrooms or studios).
Could Buji have won? Maybe, but once the Media smelled victory and announced that a new day was upon us, a strange thing happened. The Israeli public took the media at its word and collectively gasped.
Frankly, Bibi also gasped. In doing so and by returning to who he is and what has gotten and kept him in power all these years, he was for the first time in the campaign able to viscerally connect with his constituency.
The result was a dramatic rise in voter turnout. Now, in the wishful thinking world of the Media, the prospect of such a rise meant that the People were rising to shake off the shackles of oppressive Bibi-dom, eager for a milky-on-sale new Israel led by a Prime Minister who looked like the second coming of Don Knotts.
What they didn’t realize was that people were actually giving credence to the scenario that was being presented, and were horrified.
While many will point fingers at remarkably wrong polling results throughout the campaign, I am more inclined to give credence to the polls and to credit the Media with enabling the change by a premature, too excited to keep a straight face depiction of the about to occur revolution.
So, bottom line, I believe that the enduring story of the 2015 election will be the power of the Media. Yes it was a perverse power; yes, it produced the exact opposite result of what the Media had hoped for. But it was an outgrowth of their tremendous influence.
All of this should raise important questions as to the proper role the Media should play in our society. But don’t count on it. Instead, the not-for-public-consumption-scuttlebutt will be the panic of the great unwashed, the inability of mezuzah kissers to envision a more humane, Denmark-like Israel.
So, hats off to the Media for helping keep Bibi in office. And all things considered, its probably what they secretly wanted all along since it means its business as usual and still open season on Bibi.
Watch what you wish for. Especially when everybody knows about it.