An Analysis of the Tea Party Response to the 2011 US State of the Union Address by President Obama - a 2012 UPDATE [42]

UPDATING IS NOT REALLY NEEDED, JUST NAME CHANGES

I JUST REREAD MY HUB regarding Congresswoman Bachmann's response to President Obama's 2011 State of the Union Address. Guess what, if I were writing it today about the Mitt Romney campaign rhetoric, all I would really need to do is change her name to his. The virtually the exact same misrepresentations that were made 19 months ago are being made by Mitt Romney and his surrogates today.

I discuss six points Congresswoman Bachmann and Mitt Romney have and are putting forward as reasons not to re-elect President Obama. In the discussion I attempt to show why each of their claims is deceptive and/or and outright lie. It is not often something written that far in the past, given the dynamism of our society, is so applicable today, but then one of the characteristics of Conservatism is its penchant for everything to remain static and never change.

President Obama's 2011 State of the Union Address

I Was SOOOO Disappointed on SOOOO Many Levels

(Before I get on a roll, I would like to point out an interesting, to me at least, historical irony.  If the Conservatives and Tea Party movement members who recently were elected into Congress were voting on the ratification of the U.S. Constitution back in the the 1780's and 1790's in their respective states, I feel confident they would have voted against ratification!  I truly believe that if it were left up to the current crop of Conservatives, at best we would be living in the Confederation of the United States, at worst, we would be living in a European-style arrangement, before they banded together, constantly warring, one State against another.  I ask you, dear reader, to sit back and ponder that.)

My disappointment is not with the Tea Party. After my initial shock, I realized they came through with flying colors. No, my disappointment was with most everything else, no individual part all that disappointing, but, the sum adding up to all of those OOOOOs.

First was the President's speech. It was very good but not the stupendously great that we all know he is capable of, that we have seen him do on the campaign trail and in Tucson. He was inspiring but not mesmerizing, not original, not persuasive. President Obama was certainly much better than mediocre but not first rate.

I was happy to see so many Congressmen and women participating in the symbolic group kumbaya moment where members from opposite parties were sitting together. Even though most members were probably shamed into participating, some took it seriously. For me, it was a good thing, a very good thing. There is a world of visual, emotional, and empathetic difference between this configuration and what one saw four years ago. It doesn't make any difference that half the audience got up every so often and the whole audience got up at others, it looked so much better this Tuesday, January 18, than it did twelve months earlier. Twelve months ago, the division in the country was repeatedly seared into America's collective brain each time the Democrats stood up to applaud while the Republicans and Conservatives sat in stony silence, arms crossed, eyes staring straight ahead. It creates a sour mood in Congress from which to move forward and it creates an apathetic, resigned mood in the country. While this symbolic gesture certainly didn't change any minds, it wasn't supposed to, it changed the mood, both in the chamber and in the country. No longer did America see each side move to their respective corners, snarling at each other like rabid pit bulls. Instead, we saw a semblance of tolerance and camaraderie. At least it was a good way to start the day. (I guess this doesn't really fall into the disappointment category, does it?)

While the Conservative response was not unexpected, I was hoping it might have been more elegant, more thoughtful, less dogmatic presentation. Representative Ryan had plenty of time to prepare because his speech wasn't going change no matter what President Obama had to say.

My greatest disappointment came with the CNN commentators, especially David Gergen, whom I respect very much for his unbiased, honest, and insightful viewpoints, were totally, completely, unabashedly blase and neutral regarding the content of Tea Party spokesperson Congresswoman Bachmann's response to President Obama's State of the Union Address. Her presentation was so full of false innuendo, half-truths, and outright lies as to be laughable if it weren't so serious. I shattered my jaw when it hit the floor after I realized that none, zero, zip, nada of these supposedly rational, unbiased, fact-checking expert commentators had nothing, not one thing to say about a single misstatement out of the dozens that Bachmann made in that short speech.

Well, I am not going to be so kind for this brand of nonsense can not stand unanswered. In fact, I am going to be unkind, which I believe will be unique to my hubs and is something I abhor, for I am truly scared of what might become of this country if people who spew this type of Limbaugh entertainment rhetoric from legitimate platforms such as Congresswoman Bachmann had, becomes the norm. While the level of my sarcasm might rise, I intend not to lower the level of logic I use nor the quantity of facts to back up that logic, something distinctly missing from what I about to critique.

This woman, and if this is what the Tea Party truly believes as well, then the Tea Party movement needs to be exposed for the fraud that they are. They are a danger to this country because they now hold some of the reins of power and are attempting to grab more through there lies and deception. As you will see shortly, there was very little in what the Tea Party put forward as Truth, that actually was. It is false propaganda at its worst!

Tea Party Response to President Obama's 2011 State of the Union Address

BIG LIE # 1 - What did Bachmann Really Know?

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, in the third paragraph of the transcript, begins her campaign of deception. She says:

"Two years ago, when Barack Obama became our president, unemployment was 7.8 percent and our national debt stood at what seemed like a staggering $10.6 trillion dollars. We wondered whether the president would cut spending, reduce the deficit and implement real job-creating policies."

This one is a LIE! Why? She says "We wondered whether ...". There was no "wondered" about it. Throughout his campaign, BEFORE he became president, Barach Obama made it veryclear to everybody who was following the election, and we must presume Ms. Bachmann was following the election as every good American should be, what his plans were. The following is an exerpt from a January 21, 2009 article in Money Morning by By William Patalon III, Executive Editor, Money Morning, and Jason Simpkins, William Patalon III, Money Morning Editors

"The first 100 days of President Barack Obama's administration officially begin today (Wednesday). But the reality is that President Obama already has a solid head start, as he and his advisor have been working for months to establish the groundwork for one of the most ambitious – and most important – economic-stimulus plans in U.S. history.

President Obama's team was hard at work weeks before his Jan. 20 inauguration, crafting an ambitious $825 billion economic stimulus plan, parlaying with the U.S. Treasury Department and Congress to ensure its speedy implementation, and assembling the team the nation's 44th chief executive felt he needed to get the job done.

The current package, which has been endorsed by House Appropriations Committee, has yet to get overall congressional approval, but ultimately, the plan's focus on job creation, infrastructure development, increased regulatory oversight, tax relief for businesses and America's middle class, and aid to states struggling with budget shortfalls will remain intact.

In his inaugural address yesterday (Tuesday), President Obama made it very clear that he understands the scale of the challenge that his White House team faces. To a crowd that was repeatedly chanting "O-BA-MA, O-BA-MA," the newly sworn-in president detailed the broad-ranging initiatives his administration plans to pursue.

"The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act – not only to create new jobs, but to lay ..."

On October 13, 2008, the New York Times reported that then Senator Obama:

" ... proposed new steps on Monday to address the economic crisis, calling for temporary but costly new programs to help employers, automakers, homeowners, the unemployed, and state and local governments.

In an address here, Mr. Obama, the Democratic presidential nominee, proposed giving employers a $3,000 tax credit for each new hire to encourage job creation. ..."

I did pay attention to the presidential campaign from 2008 to 2009 and I do remember Barach Obama going into great detail about how go about trying to solve the crisis the Tea Party precursors left America in. With all of that information available to her how in the world could she be wondering "whether the president would cut spending, reduce the deficit and implement real job-creating policies.?" No, Bachmann wasn't wondering, she knew exactly what President Obama was going to do when he took office, the whole country knew. There is no question in my mind and I would hope there is now no question in your mind that Congresswoman Bachmann is not only trying to deceive you by lying to you but in doing so, she is violating her oath of office and being highly unethical in the process.

BIG LIE # 2 - White House Promised Us Unemployment Would Stay Below 8 %

The next paragraph contains the next Big Lie and a LIE it is. The White House promised us no such thing, and Congresswoman Bachmann knows it! Here is what she lied about:

"The White House promised us that all the spending would keep unemployment under 8 percent. Well not only did that plan fail to deliver, but within three months the national jobless rate spiked to 9.4 percent. It hasn't been lower for 20 straight months. While the government grew, we lost more than 2 million jobs."

The only fact she has correct in context and innuendo in her statement is the length of time unemployment has been above 9.4%. While the "more than 2 million jobs" is also correct, tying it to Obama by implication is not, she got the wrong President. Yes, I know the next one is nit-picky but she deserves it, it wasn't a spike to 9.4%, it just lulled there briefly before continuing on.

OK. Congresswoman Bachmann knows the REAL facts. If she doesn't, she shouldn't be a Congresswoman. Here is what she knows or should know:

The genisis of the 8% prediction, not promise (I do hope Congresswoman Bachmann knows the difference), was the product of econoic estimates from two analysts on President-elect Obama's Campaign team, Christina Romer and Jarad Bernstein. On January 9, 2009, before President-elect Obama took office, they held a press conference where they predicted that, based on the ecomonic data that was available at the time, without a stimuls unemployment should top out at 8.5% and with a stimulus, it should top out at 8%. The fourth quarter 2008, results had not been developed yet and wouldn't be for another 15 to 20 days, nobody but those very close to sources knew the scope of the diaster that was about be unleashed on America because of a failed Conservative economic philosophy.

Christina Romer and Jarad Bernstien certainly didn't know it, otherwise they might have predicted 15% unemployment, not 8%. Ben Bernake and Henry Paulson had a good idea, that is why, according to President Bush, they scared the bejesus out of President Bush who, against every principal in his Conservative soul, approved TARP.

Now, when the 8% target came and went, I read and listened to the explanation of why the estimate (not promise Congresswoman Bachmann, they really are different you know) was so far off. Simple, the 4th quarter revealed the financial crisis was much worse than anybody had thought. And anybody who is rational knows, when the baseline changes, any estimates made off the old baseline go out the window. Also, if they are fair minded, they will not hold those who made the original estimates to those estimates. So, I will be direct here. This, of course, implies that neither Congresswoman Bachmann and, by extension since she is their spokesperson, the Tea Party movement are neither rational nor fair minded in this regard.

There is no question in my mind and I would hope there is now no question in your mind that Congresswoman Bachmann is not only trying to deceive you by lying to you but in doing so, she is violating her oath of office and being highly unethical in the process.

BIG DECEPTION # 3 - Painting an Unflattering Picture

The numbers Congresswoman Bachmann uses in the next paragraph are not wrong, it is the picture they paint and the insinuation they make and the shifting of blame they imply that is. It is deception at its best, Rush Limbaugh or Hannity could not have done better. She said:

"Let me show you a chart: Here are unemployment rates over the past ten years. In October of 2001, our national unemployment rate was at 5.3 percent. In 2008 it was at 6.6 percent. But just eight months after President Obama promised lower unemployment, that rate spiked to a staggering 10.1 percent. Today, unemployment is at 9.4 percent with about 400,000 new claims every week."

Now let me take this statement apart, point by deceptive point. First, let me ask if you notice that Congresswoman Bachmann didn't really say anything. She presented a chart that showed unemployment rates going up from 5.3% in 2001 to 10.1% in 2011. Then she notes that unemployment is currently 9.4% and new unemployment claims are running around 400,000 per week. ... and that's it. There is no statement of responsibility, she doesn't go into why this is so, she doesn't say if 400,000 is good or bad or neutral, she doesn't put anything into context, she simply doesn't say anything. The next paragraph goes on to a new subject. What she is doing is trying to make you jump to the conclusion that this is all President Obama's fault.

How does she do this? With the simple, statement which contains a truth and a big fat lie "But just eight months after President Obama promised lower unemployment ..." The true part is that unemployment did increase to 9.4% some eight months after he assumed office, which cooincides with is supposed "promise". The big, fat lie, of course, is that neither President-elect nor President Obama ever made such a promise. That is a figment of Congresswoman Bachmann's, the Tea Party movements, and probably the Conservative's mind.

First Time Jobless Claims

Source

OK, just so I won't be accused of being guilty of the same thing let me offer the following:

  • Under President Bush, using Congresswoman's own figures, unemployment rose from 5.3% in 2001 to 7.8% by January 2009 (from her first substantial statement). This is a 2.5% rise during his terms as President when unemployment had been steady for the previous five years prior to his Presidency. From January 2009 to August 2009 (eight months) unemployment rose from 7.8% to a high of 10.1%, a 2.3% increase - .2% less than President Bush, and this from a running start coming out of the Bush presidency!! How about them apples, Tea Partyers? How do you explain that small relative increase?
  • I already covered Congresswoman Bachmann lying about Obama promising "lower unemployment". (Now, I am making an assumption that she is talking lower unemployment shortly after Obama takes office ... she really didn't say, only implied it.)
  • 400,000 new jobless claims a week could be a good number if the normal statistic is 500,000 per week. The point of course is that Congresswoman Bachmann never put it into context, she didn't compare it to anything, she just threw it out there hoping that 400,000 was such a large number that it scare the bejesus out of you and blame Obama for it. Well, the fact is, 400,000 is not a great number, but it is not terrible either. Normal first time jobless rates before the crisis averaged around 318,000 claims per week, something she forgot to mention. There is a huge difference between the 400,000 number the Tea Party wants to impress you with in their make-believe world and reality which is 82,000, using her numbers. Unbelievable, isn't it?
  • What was also left out is that the 400,000 (actually, the current average looks to be about 425,000) is part of down trend. As you can see from the chart, the high point was 650,000 claims per week around March 1, 2009, a mere 40 daysafter Obama took over from Bush and when he implemented his JOB CREATING stimulus. Of course. the Conservatives and Tea Partyers and Bachmann are doing their level best to pin that number on President Obama rather than President Bush. But I know that you, the reader, is a lot smarter than that. Now, follow the line to the right ... it keeps going down for a while, doesn't it. In fact, it finally levels off at around 475,000 from about October 2009 until about October 2010 (I looked at a larger version of the chart) where the chart ends. Today, it has fallen another 50,000 claims per week to around 425,000. All of this in less than two years from when President Obama introduced his stimulus and other job creating measures.
  • For comparison, which is what Congresswoman Bachmann SHOULD have done, in the Great Recession of 1981 - 1982 (Reagan) unemployment hit 10.8% for November and December of 1982. Unemployment stayed above 10% for eight long months.Unemployment stayed above 9% for 19 months. Unemployment didn't get back below 6% until the year before President Reagan left office!! Further, guess where first time unemployment rates got to? How about 670,000 claims per week!!! First time jobless claims didn't get permanently below 400,000 per week until after 1984. Also, keep in mind that the back drop to all of this, especially the time to recover, is that 4 million jobs were lost in 1982 compared to a whopping 8 million jobs in 2009. Do you think it would be fair to say that it might take somewhat longer to recover if twice the jobs were lost? Why couldn't Congresswoman Bachmann have presented something like this rather than trying to deceive America?

OK, now let's look at a table so we can make sense of all of these lovely numbers. Damn, I love this stuff, pure INTP :-)

 
Great Recession of 1981 - 1982 
Near Depression of 2008 - 2009
Maximum Job Loss
4 million
8 million
Highest Unemployment Rate 
10.8% 
10.1% 
Number of Months Above 10% 
 8
 Number of Months Above 9%
19 
21 and counting 
Number of Months Above 8%
27
24 and counting
Number of Months Above 6%
66
26 and counting
Highest First Time Jobless Claims
~ 670,000
~ 650,000
Months from High to 425,000 Claims
9
15
Months from High to 400,000 Claims
12
20
Maximum Job Loss
4.2 million
8 million

BIG DECEPTION # 4 - Spending Too Much

I think the next three paragraphs of her presentation are related so I will address them together.

Once again, we are presented with a set of facts but little in the way of analysis of them. Here are the assertions and claims she makes regarding budgets and deficits:

"After the $700 billion bailout, the trillion-dollar stimulus, and the massive budget bill with over 9,000 earmarks, many of you implored Washington to please stop spending money that we don't have. But instead of cutting, we saw an unprecedented explosion of government spending and debt. It was unlike anything we have seen in the history of the country.

Well, deficits were unacceptably high under President Bush, but they exploded under President Obama's direction, growing the national debt by an astounding $3.1 trillion.

Well, what did we buy? Instead of a leaner, smarter government, we bought a bureaucracy that now tells us which light bulbs to buy, and which will put 16,500 IRS agents in charge of policing President Obama's health care bill."

Again, bear with me as I rehearse each implication, innuendo, or assertion made without any substantiation what so ever to back up her positions.

  • She says "After the $700 billion ... But instead of cutting, we saw an unprecedented explosion ...", What Congresswoman is talking about, of course, is President Obama and the Democratic Congress' response to the, to use her words, "unprecedented" financial crisis created by her parties economic philosophy. According to President Bush, he signed the $700 billion "bailout" TARP after being persuaded by his two top economic advisers, Ben Bernanke and Henry Paulson, that in not doing so will, without a doubt, lead to a depression the likes of which the world has not seen. --- Of course, Congresswoman Bachmann doesn't want to tell you that. In fact, I wonder if she is one of the those economic savvy Conservative politicians who thought that going through a depression might be a good thing for America. --- Even if she wasn't one of those politicians, her statement clearly implies that she, and the Tea Party she is spokeswoman for, are now! What she states is that she would have preferred what the Democrats should have done, is turned the TARP money back in (which, by the way, all but $35 billion may be returned), not spent a dime on stimulus, and compounded the problem by cutting government spending even further. The Tea Party wanted a Depression, don't you see! Are these the people you really want in control of your government?
  • Bachmann talks about the national debt growing an "astounding" $3.1 trillion, implying, of course, that the Democrats are a terrible manager of the public's money. That is a 30% increase, by the way. I wonder why she didn't mention the fact that under President Bush, the national debt grew an even MORE astounding, $4.4 trillion, a 79%increase! I do realize that she took President Bush to task as well, but she should have put it perspective. She should also have told the American public that it was a mistake to spend all of that money to end the financial crisis, that it would have been much better to have suffered through the depression. Oh, I forget, she wouldn't do that, she is not honest with the American public, is she?
  • I am not sure what she is talking about with the light-bulb thing, maybe one of you can enlighten me. But I do know about the 16,500 IRS police force. It is a figment of the Conservatives imaginary world. They sat down and backed into that number based on some estimates of how much additional funding the IRS would need. Their simple math and assumptions went as follows.
  • 100% of the proposed funding would be used to hire IRS enforcement officials
  • One IRS enforcement official costs 'x' dollars a year in salary
  • Divide the proposed funding by x and voila, you have 16,500.

The problem is the IRS says this is bull-pucky and that somebody was smoking something illegal still in Texas. They said it is absurd on the face of it for this would DOUBLE the number of enforcement agents already on the books just to do this one job and 100% would never go to enforcement, most is needed for administration. Their testimony on the Hill refutes Congresswoman Bachmann's assertion.

BIG LIE # 5 - Obamacare May Force Companies to Stop Offering Health Insurance

The following is the next paragraph in her statement. I underlined the portions that I want to address.

"Obamacare mandates and penalties may even force many job creators to just stop offering health insurance1 altogether, unless of course yours is one of the more-than-222 privileged companies2or unions that has already received a government waiver under Obamacare. In the end, unless we fully repeal Obamacare, a nation that currently enjoys the world's finest health care3 might be forced to rely on government-run coverage4. That could have a devastating impact on our national debt for even generations to come."

  1. I think this is either a deliberate lie, or, at the very least, some really twisted logic. As is her style in not being very precise, I presume the mandates Congresswoman Bachmann is talking about are the ones that require all citizens to purchase health insurance and all companies who employ more than 50 peopleto provide health insurance or face penalties. (This requirement is needed, as every thinking person knows, in order to keep insurance premiums low and not let the cost of the uninsured get passed on to the taxpayer.) Now, what is extremely confusing to me is how Congresswoman Bachmann jumped from a mandate for a company who doesn't provide insurance to provide the insurance to a conclusion that a company, who already provides insurance and isn't impacted by the law, will find it necessary to drop their insurance. That simply doesn't make sense to me, does it to you? What does this say about Ms Buchmann's ability to analyze a situation and draw proper, defensible conclusions?
  2. To say one out of 222 companies and unions(?) is one thing; 222 sounds sort-of like a big number but in reality the proper number, to put it in perspective, she should have provided would be "less than .00222% of companies got waivers" (assuming there are 10,000,000 companies in America). Doesn't sound quite as impressive does it.
  3. America lost the status of the "world's finest health care" decades ago when hospitals became for profit, bottom-line oriented organizations instead of patient-centered care oriented organizations and the insurance companies got to determine if you would live or die.
  4. Does Congresswoman Bachmann mean "government-run coverage" like the military health care system or Medicare or, when properly funded, the VA or federal health care system (to which I belong) or to the Congressional health care system (to which she belongs)? All of these programs are government-run and, when properly funded, do quite nicely thank you, especially hers. The government-run system that President Obama preferred and pushed for was a variation of the one I belong to (I selected Blue Cross/Blue Shield from those competing for my business) but even this benign and well run plan was too much for the Conservatives.

What this paragraph really was is a vehicle to parade out another flurry of Conservative scare-words that seem to resonate with Americans even though they don't mean what they say. She managed in three sentences to get in "Obamacare" three times and "government-run" once and use unsupported negative phrases such as "... force .. job creators to stop ..." and "... 222 privileged companies ..." and "... devastating impact on ..."

Again, we have nothing factual, cogent, intellectually honest, or logically consistent in her message.

BIG LIES and DECEPTIONS # 6 - Bachmann's Plan

Son-of-a-gun, we have our very first true statement without misdirection, dogmatic unsupported accusation. See if you can find it, I will get to it in a minute.

"For two years, President Obama made promises just like the ones we heard him make tonight. Yet still, we have high unemployment, devalued housing prices and the cost of gasoline is skyrocketing. Well here are a few suggestions for fixing our economy:"

I wonder what it is that Congresswoman Bachmann doesn't understand about exactly how hard it is to reemploy 8 million people forced out of work because of her parties economic philosophy. Roosevelt didn't do it in two years after the Great Depression and Reagan didn't do it in two years in 1982 where only 4,000,000 jobs were lost? She seems to have thought that Obama was Superman and is distraught to find out he isn't.

OR

Could it be that Congresswoman Bachmann understands the dynamics of the economic and job crisis perfectly, she is intelligent, she has advisers after all. There is no reason she shouldn't understand why it is impossible for Obama to, first stop the avalanche of job losses that was just starting when he took office, and then reverse it.

To have put a million plus people back to work in the two years he has had to repair the Republican disaster seems quite an achievement to me, doesn't it you? So, what would be the reason for Congresswoman to pretend not to understand why unemployment is still high and make such inflammatory and degrading statements? My guess is she wants to deceive you, to get you to believe something that is not true to further her, and her parties, own end's. Does that make sense to you?

Yes, we still have devalued housing prices, but she is, once again, pointing the finger at the wrong President, She knows very well, but pretending not to of course, that housing prices will not rebound to normal levels until all of the foreclosures in or about to be in the pipeline have been settled. Foreclosures, I might add, that occurred (as they did prior to and during the Great Depression for the very same reason) because her party and her President removed the safeguards that were put into place in 1937 to prevent just such an occurance from ever happening again. Well guess what, as soon as I read the news in 2000 that the Glass-Stegall Act had been repealed, I told friends and family that we were heading for another depression. I am not a professional economist but I do have common sense and a reasonable understanding about human greed, which fuels all economic-type crises. Once again, Congresswoman Bachmann knows all of this but chooses to say just the opposite to deceive, through lies and deception, her listening audience in order to further her own, the Tea Party, and the Conservatives agenda.

As to laying "skyrocketing" gas prices at President Obama's feet, I am scratching my head over this. I am not sure of the connection other than it sounded neat to say and generally rhetorical points work well in threes. If today's rise in gas prices is "skyrocketing" I wonder what she termed it durning Bush's presidency when gas prices almost quadrupled during his term?

"The president could stop the EPA from imposing a job-destroying cap-and-trade system."

A lie, I believe. I couldn't find any credible reference to EPA monitored "cap-and-trade" policies destroying any jobs. If anybody has any examples, please leave them as a comment, I would be very interested. Until then, I will mark this down as another Bachmann-Tea Party BIG LIE.

The president could support a Balanced Budget Amendment.

Not a lie, not a deception, it is a real debate. My research shows me that an Amendment mandating Congress to pass a Balanced Budget each year would ultimately be counter-productive. The main reason is it puts government in a straight-jacket and leaves it unable to respond to emergencies. Even if exceptions are written into the amendment, they cover all possibilities. Also, the argument that the government should run their budget like most Americans do is a sham. If you take the Conservatives at their word, then that is what is happening now. The American family has lived off credit cards for decades. They charge them up, they pay them down, the same as Congress. Congress just does it on a much larger scale.

Well, Congress never brings its debt down, American families do, Conservatives would argue. That is not true either, there have been several times the President and Congress either eliminated or reduced, in real terms, the national debt. The latest example is President Clinton. A combination of tax increases on the wealthy and spending cuts enacted at the beginning of his first term resulted in two years of budget surpluses in the final year of his second term and the first year of President Bush's term. While the national debt did not decrease in real terms, its increase almost stopped. The numbers indicate that even with 9/11 and the invasion of Afghanistan the magnitude and momentum of the budget surpluses would probably have resulted in a real decrease in the national debt. Unfortunately, the double-whammy of an unneeded tax cut and the invasion of Iraq put a stop to that and led us into biggest increase in the national debt in American history ... this is Bush, not Obama.

"The president could agree to an energy policy that increases American energy production and reduces our dependence on foreign oil."

I am confused, didn't President Obama talk about exactly that in his State of the Union address?

"The president could also turn back some of the 132 regulations put in place in the last two years, many of which will cost our economy $100 million or more."

???? 132 regulations in two years? Really? Boy, he has been busy, hasn't he. But, on a more serious note, Congresswoman Bachmann didn't say what these regulations were and sense she didn't she makes a clear Conservative case that any regulation is a bad regulation. I would presume, given the blanket scope of her condemnation, that she would be against a regulation that prevents baby food manufactures from lacing their product with arsenic and packaging it in lead-lined containers! Give me a break, 132 regulations?

"And the president should repeal Obamacare and support free-market solutions, like medical malpractice reform and allowing all Americans to buy any healthcare policy they like anywhere in the United States."

As President Reagan once said, "Here we go again!". When are the Conservatives going to understand that it is the "free-market" system that got us into this predicament in the first place. (Before I go further, let be deal with her other two statements about medical malpractice reform and allowing Americans to buy any health care policy anywhere in the US. Well, let me say this about that - President Obama agrees with you, he has stated such many times.)

"We need to start making things again in this country, and we can do that by reducing the tax and regulatory burdens on job creators. America will have the highest corporate tax rate in the world. Think about that. Look no further to see why jobs are moving overseas."

Her grammar aside, we finally get to some real truth, almost. She had to destroy a good thing with her last sentence. Yes, America does have one of the, if not the highest corporate tax rates in the industrialized world and Obama has stated many times he wants to bring it down ... smartly. Regulations, of course, are a separate issue. Regulations are what keep this country's citizens safe from manufacturers who could care less about who they hurt in the manufacture of their products.

What is a very big lie and a very big deception is Congresswoman's assertion that the corporate tax rate is the cause of jobs being shipped overseas. Rubbish and she knows it!! There are two primary reasons that America loses jobs overseas, 1) cheaper labor costs and 2) tax incentives put in place by the Republicans. Reason number 1 is by far the primary reason.

This is the end of Congresswoman's response as it pertains to her challenges to President Obama. I will summarize what has been presented in the next section. In the final section, I will use this speech as an example of what makes up Right-wing Authoritarian followers and Social Dominators.

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OpinionDuck profile image

OpinionDuck 5 years ago

Mr. Esoteric

I am sorry but I don't listen to speeches, even the State of the Union. It is not like an oral contract is being entered into with the people. It is really rhetoric.

Secondly the results of what we have today are facts, and it really doesn't matter how we got here. We can't unwind the tape and go back to a strong economy. So the speeches are meaningless by either side. What is important is action that solves problems, and that is lacking.

In addition, you can't compare the 1929 or even the 1981 depressions with 2008. The fundamentals, the global structure and the intensive use of computers making decisions on the economy. This has caused speculation to be a major factor in the economy. To the point that it can manipulate the economy. The oil speculation is a prime example.

The number of foreign corporations and the number of corporations doing global business is different today than in 1929 and 1981.

The interest rate in 1981 was over twenty percent, while the interest rate in 2006 was very low. NASDAQ didn't exist in 1929 and day traders didn't exist in the numbers that they exist today in 1981.

In 1929 and 1981 there wasn't global manufacturing replacing the might US manufacturing. Today we are a service industry company, and China is the super manufacturing entity that we were once.

The size of the US government has significantly increased from 1929 to 1981 and then to now. The government workforce is paid substantial benefits and pensions and they don't contribute to the GDP.

It wasn't a war that brought us out of the 1980s bad economy, it was the dot com scam that caused a boom, only to be followed by the bust.

While still reeling from that bust, the scammers came up with the bad loans that caused the housing boom and then the bundling of the bad loans all to be followed by the bust.

All of these scams were built on greed and no one asks questions on the ride up profit mountain, and everyone is speechless on the ride down from profit mountain to the poor house.

It took extraordinary mechanisms to puff the economy up, and it will take extraordinary counter mechanisms to recover the economy.

None of the efforts or attempts by government in the last two years has resulted in a recovery, even a weak one.

If the US Economy was a person, it would be on life support with a bad prognosis. They might even be calling for the time of death.

my opinion of course.

The fact that these hub topics don't generate comments is a problem in and of itself. So who cares about the economy, apparently most of the hubbers.

Thanks.


OpinionDuck profile image

OpinionDuck 5 years ago

It should have been most of the hubbers don't care


My Esoteric profile image

My Esoteric 5 years ago from Keystone Heights, FL Author

Christ, I am going to have to quit my job to have time to craft answers to all that you write, lol. I just hope that the hubbers are reading what we are writing because I think the back and forth brings out of lot of information and ideas.


OpinionDuck profile image

OpinionDuck 5 years ago

Mr. Esoteric

Where have all the hubbers gone?

I wouldn't quit your job, the government needs your tax money.

Thanks


Jeremey profile image

Jeremey 5 years ago from Arizona

Lots of valuable info here, and good perspectives and thoughts regarding it.


My Esoteric profile image

My Esoteric 5 years ago from Keystone Heights, FL Author

Thanks Jeremey.


My Esoteric profile image

My Esoteric 4 years ago from Keystone Heights, FL Author

I appreciate your comment, Niall.tubbs.

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