As we all do, I have friends that fall along a different section of the political spectrum, and we often can have lively conversations concerning politics, religion, current events, etc. Today my wife forwarded some election spam from one of our friends and asked me to respond to it in some way. Here’s the original spam in all its glory, followed by my response to my wife:
This should be read by every democrat and liberal.
…The day the democrats took over was not January 22nd 2009 it was actually January 3rd 2007 the day the Democrats took over the House of Representatives and the Senate, the start of the 110th Congress. The Democratic Party controlled a majority in both chambers for the first time since the end of the 103rd Congress in 1995.
For those who are listening to the liberals propagating the fallacy that everything is “Bush’s Fault”, think about this:
January 3rd, 2007 was the day the Democrats took over the Senate and the Congress:
At the time:
1. The DOW Jones closed at 12,621.77
2. The GDP for the previous quarter was 3.5%
3. The Unemployment rate was 4.6%
4. George Bush’s Economic policies SET A RECORD of 52 STRAIGHT MONTHS of JOB CREATION!
Remember the day…
1. January 3rd, 2007 was the day that Barney Frank took over the House Financial Services Committee and Chris Dodd took over the Senate Banking Committee.
2. The economic meltdown that happened 15 months later was in what part of the economy?
BANKING AND FINANCIAL SERVICES!
3. Thank Congress for taking us from 13,000 DOW, 3.5 GDP and 4.6% Unemployment to this CRISIS by dumping 5-6 TRILLION Dollars of toxic loans on the economy from YOUR Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac fiasco’s!
(BTW: Bush asked Congress 17 TIMES to stop Fannie & Freddie – starting in 2001, because it was financially risky for the U.S. economy, but no one was listening).
And who took the THIRD highest pay-off from Fannie Mae AND Freddie Mac?
And who fought against reform of Fannie and Freddie??
OBAMA and the Democratic Congress.
So when someone tries to blame Bush…
REMEMBER JANUARY 3rd, 2007…. THE DAY THE DEMOCRATS TOOK OVER!” Bush may have been in the car, but the Democrats were in charge of the gas pedal and steering wheel they were driving. Set the record straight on Bush!
So, as you listen to all the commercials and media from the Democrats who are now distancing themselves from their voting record and their party, remember how they didn’t listen to you when you said you didn’t want all the bailouts, you didn’t want the health care bill, you didn’t want cap and trade, you didn’t want them to continue spending money we don’t have.
I’m not forgetting their complicity in getting us into this mess, and I’ll be marking my vote accordingly!
“It’s not that liberals aren’t smart, it’s just that so much of what they know isn’t so” -Ronald Reagan…
(Note: All emphasis in the original)
This was my response:
Well, it’s nice to point out that the Dems were in control of Congress for an extra 2 years, but it’s really isn’t all that helpful, and is intellectually dishonest. 2 years is really not enough time to fix the problems that came from the past. I could pick two years in the Bush administration, hell, I could pick the first six years, and make a more damning argument than was made here. For instance, when Bush was elected, he inherited a surplus of $236 billion. By 2008 Bush had reduced that to a $318 billion deficit. Note, that’s a $554 billion move in the wrong direction. In 8 years.
To understand where we are today, you really have to go back farther than January 2007. Back as far as January 1981, when Reagan came to office, and started the slide. He believed in “supply side economics”, which is just another way of saying cut taxes on the rich and corporations, and they will use their tax savings to stimulate the economy, the so called “trickle down theory”, what Bush Sr. called “voodoo economics” but ultimately got sucked into it himself. As a result, the 3 Reagan, Bush, and Shrub administrations actually added 9.2 trillion dollars to the National Debt. To look at the DOW, the GDP and other “facts” in isolation is disingenuous, and frankly stupid. A better way to look at this is to look at the National Debt as a % of the GDP over the past 80 years.
Here you can see that after WWII, when we ran up quite a debt, the Debt as a percentage of the GDP (Gross Domestic Product) steadily decreased until Reagan, when it started going back up again (During the Clinton years it declined). Yes it’s still going up under Obama, but in fact you CAN blame Bush (and his Father, and Reagan)for that and not Barney Frank and Chris Dodd, who are, after all, only two out of 535 legislators. The only reason it’s still going up is because Obama inherited the financial crisis from Reagan, Bush and Shrub, and we had no choice (Bush agreed) but to infuse government money into the economy to avoid a depression. TARP, the Troubled Asset Relief Program (what is commonly known as “the bailout”) actually worked. There was $700 Billion earmarked for TARP, but only about $400 billion was actually used, and it looks like the worst case scenario is that the government will lose only $50 billion from TARP, and may actually make money on it depending on factors like the sale price of stock etc. See the recent article about that here:
So all those so called facts cited in that spam message are true, but irrelevant, (unless you cast your vote solely on the basis of sound bites) and certainly not any indication of what occurred in the two years preceding. A lot of the problems we have now CAN be laid at the feet of Bush. Some to Clinton, but really, it all goes back to the so-called Reagan Revolution, which began the greatest shift of wealth away from the middle class (us) this country has ever seen.
So Barney Frank and Chris Dodd are responsible for the economic meltdown because it happened 15 months after they took over as the heads of their respective committees? How many brain cells had to die to come up with that idea? The economic policies (deregulation, lack of oversight, etc) that resulted in the Wall Street meltdown, and the Mortgage loan problems, were in effect long before that. This is the kind of crap you would expect to see from Bill O’Reilly, Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity, not from responsible analysts. Sound bites notwithstanding, the mortgage bubble and the wall street fiasco were not government caused, but were caused by the private sector which had successfully convinced the government to stop regulating them, and allow them to “make money” during the Reagan, Bush Sr. and Clinton years. Then, Shrub decided to start a war, (actually two) which didn’t help (other than Halliburton and Cheney’s other rich friends). Now we’re in a deep hole, and it’s all the democrats fault, especially Obama, who has had less than two years to fix it? Sorry, I don’t buy that.
Gee maybe we should vote for the crazy Tea party people? I’m on board with Christine O’Donnell, and her anti-masturbation platform. If all the wankers would stop wanking and start working, the country would be fiscally sound.
This whole spam message can be seen all over the internet. It’s been floating around for a couple of months now, intact, with no one questioning it. It’s typical of the type of thing you see on both sides. Usually, there is nothing of substance behind it, with a mish mash of half truths and outright lies, combined with unsubstantiated conclusions, but it confirms established beliefs and makes people feel good. For instance, the allegation that Bush tried 17 times (OMG!!!) to “stop” Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (whatever that means) apparently was made up out of whole cloth. There is nothing to substantiate it, but it tends to make the rest of the so-called facts seem that much more insidious, to give credibility to the argument. The note that the Democrats and OBAMA (Horrors!!!) opposed the reform of Freddie MAC and Fannie Mae is also disingenuous. They are referring to the Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Reform Act of 2005, which was never passed, despite the Republicans having a majority in Congress at the time. It was referred out of committee, but never put on the agenda by the Republican controlled Senate, or discussed or voted on, so no Democrat really had the opportunity to oppose it.
See how this works?
Republicans will use it to confirm their beliefs, and those are beliefs, like religious beliefs, that can’t be shaken by even irrefutable evidence.
It’s pure mind candy.
Yes, I actually inserted an actual graph in an email to my wife. Doesn’t everyone do that? 😉