How vigorous is this assault? So great is it that it is being noticed even in The New York Times and The Washington Post.
Consider Bob Herbert's opinion piece Absorbing the Pain in which Herbert talks with and about people who are under- or un- employed and who are facing life without health care, without homes and ultimately without hope. He specifically addresses the current attempts to limit the right of public employees to collectively bargain:
What seldom gets recognized or written about by the writers in newspapers such as The Times is the way in which a union's impact on wages is framed. When editorialists and opinion-writers ask the question "is it true that unionized workers make more than do those who are not" they are suggesting that if it were true then appropriate wage scales are being distorted and that the way to fix them is to lower the wages of the unionized workers. What seldom (if ever) is suggested is that the wages of the nonunionized workers be increased to rectify this distortion. Similarly it seldom, if ever, is suggested that way to deal with budget crises is to increase revenue through the tax code. I point this out because if public service workers are truly being paid too highly it might be better to clawback those wages through taxation that to break the workers union.
We know, of course, why that will never be suggested as a solution to the budget problem. Higher taxes will hit employers and employees alike. Breaking unions will hit employees and benefit employers. And make no mistake it will benefit every employer in the state since without unions all wages and benefits will spiral even further downward.
However we should not think that all these proposals to cut the budget through the destruction of the middle-class are driven purely for the purposes of financial gain. If that were so government programs that benefited the overall health the country (and paid off fiscally in the long run) would not be under attack.
Charles M. Blow in a another Times Op-Ed piece The G.O.P.'s Abandoned Babies discusses the impact that budget decisions/cutbacks on the health of American babies. The United States, he reminds his readers, has the highest rate of infant mortality among the 33 countries the International Monetary Fund identifies as "advanced economies." Many of these infants deaths can be attributed to the high rate of premature births. That high rate was beginning to be whittled down in the last few years. The new budget cuts will eliminate or underfund the very agencies that have been distributing finds and care for pregnant women or researching ways to provide better care. As Blow points out:
One cannot even argue that this budget cuts are good faith attempts to address the United States' economic woes because as Blow notes:
It is a truism among the right that these two papers are bastions of the left. That placement has been achieved by moving, by magical sleight of hand, the "acknowledged center" of American political life significantly to the right of the average American.
 Acknowledged, that is, by the chattering classes. It was members of that class who declared that the "single payer option was off the table" before the health insurance debate even began.