Thursday, July 15, 2010

Limbaugh Applauds Economic Obstructionism

Rush Limbaugh ranted on Tuesday, July 14

The regime today says that they have "saved or created" three million jobs. Think about how deranged or delusional that is. We know for a fact that just last month alone 652,000 people gave up looking for work, and they want to try to tell us they've "created or saved" three million jobs? So liberalism, leftists, they know how to destroy. They know how to tear down. But they have no clue how to build back. They can't even manage their own disasters. They made their debt, let them lie in it.

A few minutes later Rush would claim "Democrats are in a screaming panic" about losing the House in November and contend

It woulda been worse if we hadn't done the stimulus, it would have been worse. That's all they got, that and bashing Bush. It could have been worse. They have to lie. That they created three million jobs, or saved 'em, or what have you.

That manipulative genius, Rush Limbaugh. He said Democrats claim "it could have been worse" and implies that it is absurd. Not so absurd, according to the Congressional Budget Office in May, as reported by that socialist communist Obama house organ, The Washington Times:

The stimulus law was responsible for funding between 1.2 million and 2.8 million jobs in the first quarter of this year and kept the unemployment rate lower than it would otherwise have been, the Congressional Budget Office said in a new analysis Tuesday.

The analysis said the gross domestic product, the measure of the country's economy, was between 1.7 and 4.2 percent higher than it would otherwise have been without the $862 billion program, which passed Congress in February 2009 almost exclusively on the strength of Democratic votes.

As for unemployment, even though the rate hovered around 10 percent during the quarter, CBO said that could have been as high as 11.5 percent without the stimulus.

In a prime example of circular logic, Rush maintains of Democrats (who else?) "They made their debt, let them lie in it."

Admittedly, if it is their debt, they are responsible for it. Unavoidably true- but completely irrelevant, except as manipulation. The implication (not statement) is that Barack Obama- or the Democratic Party- is responsible. (Limbaugh doesn't make it clear to whom or what he is referring. Specification, even mere clarification, is uncomfortable for conservatives, who usually prefer feeling to thinking.) But the Democrats/Obama/Pelosi etc. are neither responsible for most of the current deficit nor for what is expected in the future. Last year, The New York Times explained

Mr. Obama’s main contribution to the deficit is his extension of several Bush policies, like the Iraq war and tax cuts for households making less than $250,000. Such policies — together with the Wall Street bailout, which was signed by Mr. Bush and supported by Mr. Obama — account for 20 percent of the swing.

About 7 percent comes from the stimulus bill that Mr. Obama signed in February. And only 3 percent comes from Mr. Obama’s agenda on health care, education, energy and other areas.

If the analysis is extended further into the future, well beyond 2012, the Obama agenda accounts for only a slightly higher share of the projected deficits.

According to The Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, the Bush-era tax cuts account for over $700 billion — or nearly 55 percent — of the deficit projected for 2019 under current policies. According to the Congressional Budget Office (graph, below, via CBPP), Bush-era tax cuts will account for a greater share of the projected 2019 deficit than the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the recession, the stimulus, and TARP, Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac- combined.

Rush, then, could have altered his monologue a bit and made it accurate: The Obama administration has saved or created at least two million jobs. Still, there were 652,000 people who gave up looking for a job last month; many of them need an extension of unemployment benefits, which my party has been blocking. Conservatives know how to oppose; heck, we oppose anything President Obama favors, or which we can accuse him of favoring. We can help the president pull this nation out of the recession facilitated by the last president, end the latter's tax cuts for the wealthy, and then claim credit with the public for helping get the deficit under control.

Either this is good electoral strategy- or this Daily Kos blogger has a point.

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