The Daily Switch

Posts Tagged ‘Bush’

Common Misconceptions

Posted by Ender on April 24, 2009

Recently, a commenter in this post voiced a few common misconceptions about Bush and Obama. Here is the quote: “As I said, taxes would have needed to be increased anyway as a result of the Bush’s spending. I know this sounds like I am saying [Obama’s] spending ok, Bush’s spending bad. I can’t deny that and I won’t back down from that argument. With [Obama’s] budget though you see the results of the country fighting 2 wars. W buried that and never had it reflected in his budget. So people need to take the wars into account when they see [Obama’s] budget.”

Deficits

Deficits

Aside from the glaring inaccuracies there are other problems with this statement. I think we have to address the tax issue. The commenter claims that taxes would have to be raised as a result of Bush’s spending. The purpose of raising taxes I would assume would be to get rid of the deficit. Please reference the chart on the right. These numbers include all war spending. Now if we look at this chart we can see that even including the wars Bush’s deficit was drastically less than the proposed Obama deficit. So, if the purpose of raising taxes is to reduce the deficit then I am thoroughly confused. What is the point of raising taxes if you are going to increase spending by astronomical amounts? Even with tax increases Obama’s deficit will be more than all previous Presidents’ combined.

The commenter also claims that Obama had to reflect the wars in his budget which is causing it to look so bad. Although it is true that Bush funded the wars through emergency supplementals; it is false to say that this is the reason Obama’s budget is horrible. The spending although not in the budget had to surface somewhere. It surfaced in the deficit. Riedl writes, “President Bush presided over a $2.5 trillion increase in the public debt through 2008. Setting aside 2009 (for which Presidents Bush and Obama share responsibility for an additional $2.6 trillion in public debt), President Obama’s budget would add $4.9 trillion in public debt from the beginning of 2010 through 2016.” So, forget about the budget and focus on the end result, the deficit.

Another similar misconception (not voiced by the commenter) is that Obama is creating $2 Trillion in savings with his plan. “During his recent address to a joint session of Congress, President Obama previewed his budget by asserting that the Administration has “already identified $2 trillion in savings over the next decade.”[9] This is simply not true. His budget increases spending by $1 trillion over the next decade, which he attempts to offset by reclassifying as “savings” $1.4 trillion in tax increases and $1.5 trillion in reduced spending in Iraq. However, gov¬ernment savings have always referred to spending cuts that save taxpayer dollars, not tax increases that feed the government. Furthermore, the Iraq “sav¬ings” are measured against an implausible spending baseline that assumes a permanent $180 billion bud¬get for the global war on terrorism, without any troop withdrawals through 2019. This is the equiv¬alent of a family deciding to “save” $10,000 by first assuming an expensive vacation and then not taking it. Without these false savings, only the $1 trillion spending hike remains, and that does not account for the extra $250 billion proposed for another round of financial bailouts in the current fiscal year.”

The poster also wrote “I don’t believe in a recession that giving tax breaks to the rich is the answer.” This is also hopelessly false. Firstly, the cuts benefit everyone. Secondly, “In the 18 months following the 2003 tax rate cuts, economic growth rates doubled, the stock market surged 32 percent, and the economy created 1.8 million jobs, followed by 5.2 million more jobs in the next 27 months.” The fact of the matter is that tax cuts encourage spending, investment and growth. Even extremely liberal and economically ignorant people like Alec Baldwin admit this. In an interview, Baldwin said “I’m telling you right now, if these tax breaks are not reinstated into the budget, film production in this town is going to collapse, and television production is going to collapse, and it’s all going to go to California.” The only thing Baldwin got wrong here is that the business will not move to California where the taxes are already worse and driving the movie industry to places like New Mexico, Montana and Canada. Taxes hurt business more than anything else. Reducing taxes on businesses as well as individuals will bring us out of the recession. To look back at the Bush years as having no economic prosperity is completely shortsighted and biased. Even taking into account the housing bubble burst; the economy is still better off then before.

Unfortunately, arguments based on false information never end well. The fact of the matter is that Obama has drastically increased unaccounted for spending to levels that will be detrimental to the economy. I’ll end with a quote:

Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.-John Adams

Posted in Capitalism, Conservatism, Economics, Obama, Politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Rush’s CPAC Speech

Posted by Ender on March 9, 2009

Recently Rush Limbaugh gave a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC).  If you would like to watch or read the speech you can go here.

Rush Limbaugh

Rush Limbaugh

In typical Rush fashion, he gave a speech that thrilled some people and infuriated others.  Anyone looking for a good explanation of what conservatism is, this speech is for you.  It ties right into Maker’s post on the definition of conservatism.  There are a few points I would like to make about the speech itself, but more importantly I would like to focus on the reaction to the speech.  If you pay attention to any media source (mainstream or alternative) you have probably heard several different criticisms of the speech. 

1.  From the Left:  Outrage over Rush saying that he wants Obama to fail.  The Left seems to be mischaracterizing this as wanting America to fail.  There are two problems with this:  One, you assume that Obama wants America to succeed.  Does he truly want America to succeed?  His policies and actions leave me unconvinced (this could be a whole article by itself).  I think Obama realizes that the only way he is going to advance his causes in socialized healthcare, enviro-fascism and a massive government state is to create this crisis.  He will then use the crisis to move America to a place that it would not normally agree to.  This is exactly what Rham Emmanuel (Obama’s chief of staff) meant when he said “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste.”  Two, you assume that the policies will actually work.  Well, guess what…they won’t.  None of these policies he is implementing have ever worked.  None of them ever will. They are based on bad economic theory and fallacious arguments.  Also, can you imagine if Bush had attempted a similar political slight of hand by campaigning against a private citizen? 

2.  From the Right:  Criticisms over Rush’s principles over policy.  Rush said that we don’t really need better policies right now.  Several Conservative media outlets like National Review disagreed with Rush on his point.  Their arguments consisted primarily of “we need to offer good alternatives to Obama’s plan…we can’t just be a party of ‘No.'”  I think that what Rush was getting at was that there is a large contingent of “conservatives” who don’t understand or articulate the conservative message.  These people are merely trying to get a tiny amendment here or there that slightly scales back Obama’s plan.  We need people out there who understand our principles first.  Good policy will spawn from that.

Bankrupter of California

Arnold: Bankrupter of California

3.  Also, from the Right:  Criticisms over Conservatism in general.  These are the people who are saying that we need to modernize conservatism.  We need to change its principles in order to succeed.  Ladies and gentlemen, have we not already tried this?  Isn’t that what Bush did?  He was a so called “compassionate conservative” and look where that got us.  Wasn’t Schwarzenegger a modern conservative?  Look what that has done to California.  The most economically successful state in the US is on the verge of bankruptcy.  This is what compromising conservative principles does. Part of the trouble the party is in is due to people labeling people like Bush and Schwarzenegger as conservatives.  They aren’t.

We need to articulate the conservative message.  We need to show America why it is critical to keep conservative principles alive.  This is why we have started this site and why we will share this message with anyone who will listen.

Posted in Conservatism, Liberalism, Obama, Politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments »