The Graph the RNC Won’t Allow

Ezra Klein has again posted the following federal debt graph on WonkBlog, and I thought it was a good idea to put it up here. It is from the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities. The main thing that it shows is that the Republican obsession over debt and deficits is completely hypocritical. The only part of the debt that is truly unsustainable is the Bush tax cuts. And that is the only thing that the Republicans are committed to keeping.

CBPP Debt Time Series Graph

I watched a little bit of the RNC tonight. I saw parts of the Bob McDonnell and Scott Walker speeches. I know that I’m a partisan, but I still think I call my own side for its bullshit. I rarely see things that are clearly wrong or highly distorted by Democrats. But with these two guys at the RNC, there was almost nothing that wasn’t false or at least deceptive. One of the biggest things was this claim that we have a trillion dollar deficit. Everyone knows that the reason the deficit is so high is that the economy is bad so there is less revenue and more expenditures on safety net programs. But even apart from this larger context, there is the graph above. The biggest part of our deficit woes are due to the Bush tax cuts and this will only become worse as the decade continues.

I’m willing to admit that there are good ideas on what used to be called right of the political spectrum. But these ideas are all part of modern Democratic Party thought. The only thing that the Republicans have to offer are lies. The one consolation is that if the Republicans get in power, their economic policy will be the same as it always was—you know, socialism.

2016: Obama’s America

2016: Obama's AmericaI found this great review by Simon Maloy of the ridiculous right wing attack documentary on Obama, 2016: Obama’s America. It is by wingnut Dinesh D’Souza. I had heard about the film from my wingnut brother, who I assumed heard about it from Rush or Sean.

Anyway, Maloy should be canonized for not only watching the film twice but talking to the people who went to see it. He notes that the film, like all Obama haters, doesn’t actually have anything against Obama. It is all just a big plot. Give the man a second term and then we’ll all see.

What strikes me as most odd about this is that I’ve been hearing this for decades from conservatives when it came to liberal presidents. As I recall, this was the argument that the John Birch Society made against Kennedy when we didn’t turn communist on his inauguration.

After talking to a man who saw the movie, Maloy finds that the man doesn’t really buy many of the supposed facts in the movie. He does, however, accept the idea that Obama is this unknown (Unknowable?) quantity. And this is what D’Souza depends upon:

And that really gets to the point of 2016. The facts, the scholarship, the logic are all secondary to reinforcing the idea that—despite four years in office and a policy record to judge him on—Obama is still an unknown and threatening quantity. D’Souza’s exploitation of that belief is over-the-top and galling, but that’s clearly what 2016‘s target audience wants to hear.