Our Sky-Rocketing National Debt And The Hypocrites

December 16, 2009  

HypocriteI suppose had I heard one — just one — single elected Republican official or just one ordinary die-hard Republican citizen talk about being fiscally responsible during the eight years of President George W. Bush, I could take them as serious-minded citizens and worthy of credibility. However, — I can not name one. How many can you name?

I have been writing about our national debt for more than two years now, and complaining about it for at least three decades. And it didn’t matter who was in the White House or in control of Congress. My values remain the same. Debt is debt, no matter whose running it up. But in today’s environment, it seems that the only time those of the Republican persuasion want to decry the national debt and our deficit is when the Democrats are doing the spending.

Democrats have long held a deserving reputation for spending tax dollars. They only have themselves to blame. However, beginning with the Clinton administration, a Democratic President tried to become somewhat fiscally responsible. Compared to the Reagan administration, under whose leadership the debt increased from $0.9 trillion to $2.4 trillion (167% increase) and the George W. Bush administration who increased debt from $5.8 trillion to $10 trillion (72% increase), Clinton actually tried to be a fiscally responsible President. The debt increased under him from $4.3 trillion to $5.6 trillion (30% increase; see documentation for all three). “Compared to”, I said. That doesn’t mean he didn’t spend, but when he talked about balancing the budget, he actually tried to do it. Not like the latter Bush, who chose to use a Sharpie and simply cross out his own $477 billion deficit in from of a bunch of TV camera’s and reporters, then threw the paper in the trash can and continued spending, as they say, like a drunken sailor.

Several people of the Republican persuasion, whose has suddenly discovered they were fiscally responsible, have said “well, we’ve got to begin somewhere”. “Well” — I certainly agree with them. But where we differ is I’ve been saying that under the last five Presidents, but these new-comers have suddenly decided to become fiscally responsible only since President Obama has taken office. Interestingly enough, there are a lot of Democrats — many who strongly supporting their party leaders’ agenda in the past — now talking about the importance of reducing our deficit and debt. But for the past month or so they have become very adamant about our financial problems. That was something you never heard from the Republicans during the Reagan and Bush years.

If you will, take a moment and consider what the last two Democratic Presidents faced when they entered the White House. No, I’m not talking about the financial crisis and the two wars we’re engaged in that has consumed Obama’s first year in office — I’m referring to the ballooning national debt he and Clinton both were saddled with. When Clinton entered office he immediately got attacked from the right by those who declared that the deficit and debt has to be seriously addressed. And now that Obama is in office, the exact same thing is happening to him. The right might as well have said, “we’re making you responsible for the fiscal mess our Republican Presidents made, and we’re not going to allow you to implement any of your programs until you’ve fixed that”. Pretty good strategy, I’d say.

An editorial in The Washington Post addresses the coming debt panic. The writer says only bipartisan action can avoid it. Truer words have never been spoken. But that is not going to happen — bipartisanship, that is. To begin with, the elected officials on neither side of the isle know how to work together any more. (Hell, they can’t even work together within their own party.) Long ago they decided the only way to come to power or stay in power or get bills passed, was to capitalize on how bad the “other side” was/is. Until candidate Barack Obama, no candidate since Ronald Reagan has offered anything tangible to be elected on. All the others have run on a “they’re bad” platform. Yes, there’s been a couple of exceptions such as Ross Perot in 1992 and Representative Ron Paul (on more than one occasion), but few people considered them Presidential material.

Should these modern-day advocates for reining in the debt want to attempt to regain any credibility, lets hear them speak out and lay the blame of an additional $4.5 trillion debt at the feet of man who created it — his highness, George W. Bush. And I don’t mean just a “by-the-way, under-the-breath, oh-yeah-him-too” kind of way — I mean speak out loud and clear; the same way you’ve been screaming about Obama the Democrats. Until you’re ready to do that, don’t expect anyone to offer any respect of credibility. Speaking with forked tongue want get the credibility job done.

Here’s where the triple-jeopardy of hypocrisy comes in. When the next Presidential election rolls around and if a Republican big-spender wins the White House, that will be the last time we’ll from this modern-day fiscally responsible group. “Tea partiers” of today have one objective in mind, and it is not turning the deficit around or reducing the national debt. It is simply a tool to obtain their objective. If they can run the Democrats out of the White House (and Congress) and replace them with Republicans, their means will be justified. There’ll be no more tea parties or talk about deficit and debt reduction. Except, of course, how removing all tax burdens from corporations and the wealthy will fix everything, including the deficit and debt.



Our Sky-Rocketing National Debt And The Hypocrites — 6 Comments

  1. The 2-Santa Claus Theory

    Thank you Coffeelady for reading and your comments. They are right on target. I visit my home town in another state several times a year, and that area is the epitome of hypocrisy. And I see locals all the time standing in line to get government handouts, and I’ve seen several of those signs you referenced. And many of the people working those projects during the week are attending the tea parties on the week-end. How two-faced can one get?

    And “yes”! This mess started escalating big time under Reagan. These tea partiers conveniently ignore the fact that more than $ 4 trillion of our current debt was accumulated under three Republican Presidents. And that number does not include mandatory spending such as Medicare and Medicaid. All together those three Presidents account for $8 trillion of our debt.

  2. I absolutely agree with this article and the comments. I’m sick to death of the lies and distortions of the republicans, right wing and tea partiers. Look at the ARRA or stimulus bill. All of the republicans who screamed and voted against this bill were later shown holding the big checks for projects funded directly by this bill. Talk about hypocrisy. Then they still say this bill is not creating jobs. I know for a fact this is BS. We have at least 6 ARRA projects within 30 miles of our house. I laugh every time I see the signs because I know this really ticks off the republicans who wanted to prevent the signs from announcing the projects. All I want is a level playing field. If you’re going to scream about deficits and debt, do it under republican OR Democratic leadership. Our (liberals) problem is we aren’t loud enough or verbose enough to get our message across as effectively as the republicans. Republicans are practising the 2 Santa Clause theory (look it up). Reagan blews up the deficit like no other president in history. Voters need to be much better informed with FACTS instead of rhetoric.

  3. Amen and Amen, Butch. Your words reflect my feelings then and now exactly as if I had written them myself. Thanks, again, for participating in this blog.

  4. On the night of the election, Nov, 2008, my concern for our Nation’s future under Bush/Cheney/McCain/Palin, was so deep and fearful, I wept for joy when Obama was confirmed the President Elect on MSNBC. I was overcome with happy tears to see Obama, Biden, and their families greeting the people in Chicago’s Grant Park. I naievely believed our Nation had made a giant leap forward. Sadly, how wrong I was.
    Despite the current situation, I remain hopeful that people will wake up and realize it was indeed a terrific choice for President. Together with my initial choice for President, Joe Biden, I think Obama will prove his worth, moving our Nation in the correct direction. It will take a little longer than we had hoped for, but I think things will improve.
    Having said all that, the danger from the right is dramatically clear. We can only hope they fail in their efforts to bring this great American down.

  5. Thanks for stopping by Butch. I too am a 67 year-old white man. And I can confirm that Obama being black is the driving force behind the attacks on him. I have seen it personally and up close. For years I thought the strongest of racism had faded, but the election of Obama has proven me so wrong. I receive several emails each day from those who think they know me and feel the way they do. But what I find the most amazing is a very large percentage of those people who damn Obama (and the Democrats) are benefiting greatly from the programs the Democrats put into place – programs the Republicans have been fighting since inception. Some people I know have their entire existance dependent upon those programs. And if you look upon those tea partiers, you will find many who fit that description. Very sad indeed.

  6. All very true!! The only think you left out is that the tea partiers and republican and conservatives are motivated by the fact we have a black President. I’m 67; I can attest to the fact no President, not one in modern times, despite the right wing’s denials, has been so viciously, relentlessly attacked and obstructed in his agenda. I’m am ashamed of my fellow white citizens who openly, or worse, covertly just cannot abide having a black man in the White House.

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