Last Night, All the Pundits, Propagandizers, Postulators and Commentators Weighed in on the Various Networks about WHAT the Debt Ceiling Increase Bill Means for America: What DAMAGE it will Do to Us, as well as the Benefits(if Any) we accrue from it's Passage. I did my best to Monitor everything being Said by the Right, the Left, and the "Centrists". A Number of Salient FACTS have Emerged from this Rotten Fiasco that we the PEOPLE have been PUT Through the Past few Months.
For Openers: At this Particular Moment, with a Fragile Recovery DYING Out, - There is NO ONE in Washington who's Number One Mission is to FIX the Economy, Increase Growth in the Economy, PUT People Back to Work, Increase DEMAND in the Economy(THE Biggest Problem, Momentarily), or In ANY Way....Get Things ROLLING in America Again. EVEN the President has Drunk the Kool-Aid of "The Most Important Thing we Must DO this Year is CUT, CUT, CUT"...and Not ONE DIME of New Revenues. And ONLY Simpletons who Have NO Comprehension of How ECONOMIES Actually Work Believe that "Cut, Cut, Cut!" with NO Revenue Increases of ANY KIND will Lead us to a BETTER Place. NO Nation in HISTORY Ever "Cut! CUT! CUT!" (Only) their way to PROSPERITY! It's NEVER Happened! It WON'T Happen THIS TIME! We MUST HAVE REVENUE INCREASES, in COMBINATION with Spending Cuts, to Ever Get ANYWHERE NEAR...a Balanced Budget! This ISN'T Someone's OPINION...it is an Undeniable, HISTORICALLY Provable...FACT! And ONLY Those with NO Knowledge of HISTORY, or UNDERSTANDING of BASIC ECONOMICS...would EVER BE - So FOOLISH as to BELIEVE that it Might Work. If ALL you DO...is CUT! CUT! CUT!...ALL you DO...is Put LOTS of PEOPLE OUT OF WORK! PERIOD!!! And DRIVE your Economy into a MUCH DEEPER HOLE Than where you Began!
HISTORY is Alive and Replete with ENDLESS Examples of HOW this Approach has Failed MANY, Many Times. Most Recently, in Japan a Few Years Ago. ALL it DID for Japan was KILL GROWTH for Nearly a Dozen YEARS! But Right Here in the US, we Only Have to Go BACK to 1937: It was a Moment Eerily VERY SIMILAR to the Environment we Have NOW. FDR had Thrown a Bunch of Capital at the Depression, and Somewhat Shored up a Very Depressed Economy, but in 1936, the Population was Persuaded to Give Republicans a Much Bigger Share of Control, and when they Came in to Office in 1937, they SLASHED Spending, and we Plunged RIGHT BACK into the DEPTHS of Depression, where we Would Remain until we were FORCED to SPEND Money to REV UP the War effort in 1941 and ON from THERE: It was THAT BIG Spending, to Arm and Equip Ourselves to Destroy Germany and Japan, that FINALLY Brought us OUT of Depression. Then AFTER the WAR was Over, we were Left with a BIG Inflation and COST problem, and Spending was Lowered Dramatically to Bring us Back to Fiscal Survivability. This is HISTORY. This is What HAPPENED. And EVERY Single Living Economist(And MANY that have Passed ON) Understood this to Be the SIMPLE FACT of the Matter.
ONE Thing ALL of this Really TELLS US: In Bad Times, you SPEND to Get the Economy Going Again. In GOOD Times, when Tax Revenues are HIGH because of Prosperity...THAT is the TIME to CUT SPENDING. So, - Looking at Recent American History, WHERE did we REALLY Go Wrong???
The Right 's Head Explodes when we SAY it, But it is PAINFULLY Obvious: At the EXACT Moment we SHOULD have STAYED on the COURSE we were ON, in 2001...a PATH that had Brought us Balanced Budgets AND Several Surpluses in a ROW...we Committed Fiscal SUICIDE! We Reduced Revenue to the Treasury Dramatically, while Simultaneously Ratcheting up Spending Irresponsibly to Create NEW Federal Agencies we DID NOT NEED(Like Homeland Security-(Cost$400 Billion!), First an Afghanistan War Effort(which Probably WAS the Right Thing to Do at the Time), and then a BOTTOMLESS Money Pit Called IRAQ, where we THREW away over a TRILLION Dollars(So Far!), and then to COMPOUND the Insanity, we Threw away $500 Billion or MORE in a Giant GIVEAWAY to Big Pharma...Marketed as "Help for Seniors". The Combined CUMULATIVE Effect of ALL these...Was an OVER -$3 TRILLION Hit to Our Fiscal Well Being, when you Factor in the INTEREST that Had to Be Paid on these 7 Straight Deficits(2001-2008), and that INTEREST is STILL an Albatross Around our Neck Today! In FACT: A Big CHUNK of Change Obama has HAD to Spend in 2009-2011 is in FACT Interest on the Debt George W. and Cheney RAN UP - ALL through the Previous Decade. Terrible Decisions have TERRIBLE Consequences, and we are STILL Paying for their VERY BAD Decisions, and we WILL BE for Years to Come.
Now, after WALL STREET did THEIR Part to DESTROY the American Economy, in 2008, and THAT Cost US well over $2.5 Trillion, MUCH of which was Approved and Funded , or at least Legislated BEFORE Bush left Office....we were DOOMED.
RIGHT THERE: With the TARP Bailout, on top of ALL the Folly of the Previous 7 years, the Certainty of our FALL, - was ASSURED.
DOES EVERYONE ... UNDERSTAND this SIMPLE MATH? It's NOT Complicated, or CONFUSING. It's CRYSTAL CLEAR and Undeniable. SOME even Believe THEY DID IT TO US...On PURPOSE, as Part of a Scheme to Break us so Thoroughly, that we would HAVE to Agree to Destroying the "Safety Net" (Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, Pell Grants, and Food Stamps, etc.). I, nor Anyone Else can Prove what the Motives of these People WERE in Doing what they CLEARLY DID to Us, but the EFFECT of their Actions is Clear and Undeniable. They TOOK a Country with Successive Balanced Budgets, and HURLED US - into the worse Economic Disaster we have Seen in 80 Years, and the Worst...MAY still be Yet to COME!
Now...EVERYONE, including ME - Can (I Sometimes DO) Question Whether The Current President was the BEST Choice for WHO we Needed to Take ON this Disaster...and Repair the Damage, and Put us on a Sound Footing: We Can Have a Conversation about That, and Surely WILL over the next 15-16 Months. But This Monumental Disaster we are STUCK IN, was Fashioned from 2001-2008, ending with the DEATH of Bear Stearns, Merrill Lynch and Lehman Brothers, and a CREDIT COLLAPSE Worldwide, that we(and the Global Economy!) have NOT Gotten PAST - YET.
NOW...more than EVER...WE, the American People, the Working Stiffs of this Country who KEEP the Infrastructure of this Nation GOING Every Day...MUST RISE UP and CALL OUT the INSANE FOLLY of what The Far Right is DOING in this Country: RATHER than Working NIGHT and DAY to Revive our Economy, they are Killing themselves to PUSH it DOWN farther: They Believe that the More they Damage us Economically, the BETTER their Chances of Killing the Things they HATE MOST about America(The Safety Net, and Help for the Poor and Sick).
I Keep HEARING one Teapublican After Another...Say"This is What I Was Sent Here to DO!". Lies! Lies! And DAMN LIES!
I Listened VERY Carefully, last Summer and Fall to WHAT...they were SELLING the Sheep. "Obama has FAILED to Create JOBS! But WE WILL Create Jobs! WE...will Turn This Economy Around, and Succeed where this Awful President has FAILED!!!"
THAT was what the Voters HEARD, and the NUMBER one THING they Thought they were Voting FOR!
BUT...the Simple, INESCAPABLE FACT IS: Since the Republican Majority TOOK OVER the House, in January of this Year....they have Not Introduced ONE SINGLE PIECE of Legislation which will EVER LEAD to ONE SINGLE JOB being Created!!! NOTHING! NADA! ZILCH! The Big GOOSE EGG!
CAPICHE??!!! This IS NOT Rocket Science.
Another FACT: That the Koch Brothers, the Walton Family, the Murdoch Empire, FOX TV, or EVEN the Regular Media WANT YOU to KNOW: Are the BASIC Relative FACTS of our "Debt Crisis", which IS bad, But NOWHERE NEAR as Dire as the Press has Led you to Believe. In the Reagan Period, our % of Debt Service to GDP ran @ 2.5-3.0%. That is a Historical, ACTUAL - FACT, America. You Want to Know what it IS right NOW? It's...1.6%! Now That MEANS that it(Due to a Tripling of GROWTH in our ECONOMY) is LESS PAINFUL Right NOW to COPE with Our Debt Service...than it WAS in the ERA of REAGAN. Again...JUST the FACTS, Here. Another Ratio that Sheds LIGHT on the ACTUAL Situation: DEBT as a % of GDP. This Probably is MORE Important, and JUST as Revealing: We are Right at THIS Moment, Knocking on the Door of Even Parity, - Debt to GDP. @ $15 Trillion in Debt, and a Little OVER $15 Trillion in GDP. And while BAD, and it IS a Number that is TROUBLESOME, it Was WORSE in the Late 1940's(Fact), and it was Nearly this Bad a Few Years ago Under Bush the 1st. Specific NUMBERS are NOT what matter MOST, what MATTERS is That You Have to KEEP the DEBT Number Considerably LOWER than the GDP Number, Year in and Year OUT. And we HAD that Going for us REAL GOOD! - when George W. Bush Walked in the Door and THREW it ALL AWAY within a 7 Year Span!! And of COURSE, we are WILLINGLY letting over a TRILLION DOLLARS of POTENTIAL GDP slip through our Hands by Allowing "Cayman Island Headquarters" for Thousands of American Corporations. To Call the Cayman Office they Keep - their "Headquarters"; as well as the Hundreds of Billions of Uncollected TAX Dollars from Individuals and Corporations who Take Advantage of ALL the Tax Breaks and LOOPHOLES to Pay, in MANY Cases-NO TAXES, Whatsoever!(In Numerous Cases- WE the People, are GIVING Giant Corporations...REFUNDS!!!) And ALL the Subsidies to Mega Wealthy Cash Cow Corporations that DON'T Need it, but WE the People DO(Our Treasury)!. It's OBSCENE to SHOWER Huge Corporations with PUBLIC CASH, Taken from Taxpayers and GIVE it to Corporations to FATTEN their Bonus Checks Every Year, while SIMULTANEOUSLY, we Have 2 Million People Living on the Street, and Millions of Children Not Getting the Nutrition or Health Care they DESPERATELY NEED!
What Particularly GALLS me about the Disengenousness of the Far Right...is that in 2009, to Shore up the Economy, Obama Passed a "Recovery Act" that was $787 Billion, OVER HALF of which was ACTUALLY...a TAX CUT for the Middle Class. What's Up with This Criticism, Tea Party??!...I THOUGHT Tax Cuts were ALWAYS GOOD, According to YOUR Religion?!!!?
So...HERE we ARE, ALLOWING David Koch, Karl Rove and Rush Limbaugh, two VERY Rich Millionaires, and One VERY Elite Wealthy BILLIONAIRE...to DICTATE - WHAT we Should THINK about WHAT'S been DONE to us, and WHAT we Should Want to DO Now. Even as the PLANET Gets HOTTER every Year, and we Do NOTHING about Climate Change(Ask ANY TEXAN); EVEN as EVERY SINGLE WEEK, Thousands and Thousands of your Fellow Citizens Slip into Permanent Poverty, and we DO NOTHING to Improve Economic Conditions in this Country. EVEN as Millions MORE of Americans will Join the Ranks of the UNINSURED this Year, because we STILL haven't HONESTLY Solved the Health Care Crisis in America. EVEN as State and Local Governments Everywhere Lay off Hundreds of Thousands MORE Workeres This Year, because the Bubble Bursting, Speculation CAUSED Derivatives CRASH on Wall Street in 2008, Completely Devastated the Portfolios of EVERY State in the Union, Throwing them ALL, Practically, into Monstrous Deficits, and RUINED the Housing Market for Years to Come. Even as a Million new Citizens become HOMELESS this Year and Next.
We Have ALLOWED - BIG MONEY...to Call the SHOTS in America for WAY TOO LONG. Increasingly, MORE and MORE and MORE, starting @1981. It has LITERALLY...NEARLY Killed our DEMOCRACY, and our Future. We are NO LONGER a Nation "Of the PEOPLE, BY the People, and FOR the PEOPLE". We have Become a Nation that is BOUGHT and PAID FOR by the Highest Bidders, and the DEEPEST Pockets. In our Current Situation, that is The Kochs, the Waltons, the Murdochs(Through their Prpaganda Machines Called "Freedom Works" and "Americans for Prosperity" and "The Crossroads Group", and the OTHER Members of Their Greedy Cabal, the Cato Institute, The Heritage Foundation, The US Chamber of Commerce)...ALL of WHOM are HUNGRY to Destroy Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, the Unions in America, The Minimum Wage, and Help for America's Neediest Citizens.
There is a WAR going ON...for the Soul of America. WHO Wins that War, - will Determine whether we Go the Way of a Banana Republic, a Protected, Insulated Aristocracy Comprising the TOP 1-2% of our People, RUNNING EVERYTHING and EVERY Politician in WASHINGTON, as they DO Currently, or whether we are going to PULL BACK from Plunging into the ABYSS, Maintain a FAIR, DEMOCRATIC Society, and RECOVER from the Wounds that Dark Forces, BAD Decisions, and Excessive GREED have Inflicted Upon Us.
How this ENDS..is In YOUR Hands, America. If We Don't FIGHT to Save our Country, we WILL...Lose it, I Promise You. Karl Rove's Propaganda Machine(Crossroads Group), and the Koch Cabal's Lie Machines(Freedom works and Americans for Prosperity) Have an INEXHAUSTIBLE War Chest of CASH, and They will be BOMBING your TV Screen NIGHT and DAY for the Next 16 Months with Endless LIES and Distortions. WILL You Listen to these LYING, Destructive ADS, or WILL you LISTEN to the Voice of REASON, and HELP us RIGHT the Ship, and SAVE this Country???
You Can CALL, E-Mail, Text, and Tweet, and Write our Elected Officials through the Mail(The Old Fashioned Way, but STILL the Most Effective, Really). But TELL the People in Power, that you DON'T Want these Greedy Billionaires BUYING and Controlling EVERYTHING that is Happening in our Country, to the Detriment of the BOTTOM 90% of our Population. Because That's EXACTLY What is Going ON in this Country at this VERY MOMENT. WE...are Doing NOTHING, while David Koch and his EVIL Cabal are VERY Busy, Night and DAY...Destroying this Nation.
If We DON'T Fight...we WILL Lose, I Promise You. PLEASE Help us Save this Country for our Children and THEIR Children, before it is TOO LATE!