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Perry’s Insult to Veterans

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These days, what a politician says in public is like a parachute that has been deployed during a jump: it can’t be pulled back into its pack. It is something that plagues some politicians more than others, as it did Dan Quayle, Howard Dean and Sarah Palin. If the comment is benign enough, it gets referred to as a gaffe, as with Vice President Joe Biden. With his relative surge in the Republican polls, so it is with Texas Governor Rick Perry. His campaign managers and apologists must be staying up late.

A Texas reporter at the Iowa State Fair recently asked Perry how he thought he could beat former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney and Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann in the upcoming 2012 GOP nominating contest. “We’re running against Obama, that’s who we’re after,” Perry said. To that point Perry confirmed his position. But then he unzipped the parachute-pack by suggesting that U.S. military personnel do not respect President Obama.

Commander in Chief“One of the reasons that I’m running for president is I want to make sure that every young man and woman who puts on the uniform of the United States respects highly the president of the United States,” he said. “The military men and women respect the commander in chief, regardless of who it is.” he said. Then he added, “I think they’d really like to see a person who wore the uniform in that office.”

He did not use the word “veteran.”

Many observers took it as a political shot at Romney by the former Air Force captain. Perry’s campaign communications director Ray Sullivan explained, “The governor spends a great deal of time with active duty military and retired military… He’s heard a lot about concerns about the direction of the country.” That may be good procedure by a communications director after a comment is out there on the air. However, it begs a question.

Why did Rick Perry make a voter ID bill an “emergency” to fast-track it when it discriminates against Texas veterans? SB 14 passed the Texas legislature along party lines, 101-48. If approved by the Department of Justice, it would require that voters present a form of approved photo identification to cast a ballot. However, a Veterans Administration issued identification card is not an approved photo ID.

“There is no issue more sacred to me than protecting every Texans’ right to vote. I am deeply disappointed to learn that the implementation of the Republicans’ voter suppression law will not only have disparaging effects on our elderly, minorities, and people with disabilities, but now will ultimately discriminate against our veterans,” said Texas State Senator Leticia Van de Putte. “It is disturbing to me that this ‘emergency item’ will potentially disenfranchise those who have valiantly served our country with dignity and respect.”

Attorney General Eric Holder has been called to examine whether the current wave of GOP voter ID laws, such as Texas SB 14, violates the Voting Rights Act of 1965. That misses the point. Being a Republican Lone Star candidate and bludgeoning political opponents, including the commander in chief, for not “wearing the uniform” is one thing.

Disenfranchising veterans is another.

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About Tommy Mack

Tommy Mack began his career in broadcasting and is a US Army graduate of the Defense Information School. He worked in Army Public and Command Information and earned a BS in Liberal Studies from the State University of New York, Albany. A marketing communications executive, Tommy became a business management consultant for a major international consulting company and its affiliates before establishing Tommy Mack Organization, a business consulting practice specializing in organization and communications management. A professional writer and blogger, he writes about politics, business, and culture.
  • http://fpaxson.acndirect.com/default.asp David Paladino

    We need Voter ID laws in EVERY state to keep the Left/Democrats from stealing another election like they have attempted and done in the past. Veterans, like myself, have other forms of ID (drivers license, etc.) so that’s not an issue.

  • Clavos

    As a veteran (and VA patient for more than a decade) myself, I fail to see where Texas SB14 constitutes an “insult to veterans,” either conscious or unconscious, on the part of Gov. Perry or anyone else connected with the bill.

    Perry did not author (or sponsor) SB14, and his office notes on their website, that:

    SB 14 requires a voter to show as a valid form of photo ID, either a driver’s license, Department of Public Safety issued photo personal identification card, U.S. military ID card, U.S. citizenship certificate that contains a photograph, U.S. passport or Texas concealed handgun license. The bill creates a free election identification certificate with a photograph issued by DPS for registered voters who need a photo ID. (emphasis added). In the unlikely event that some tripwire Nam vet living in a tent out in the middle of the west Texas Guadalupe Mountain range wants to vote, and has no drivers license, the state, as noted above, will issue him a voter ID, free.

    No, Tommy, I think what you’ve created here is a sob story without merit, a strawman aimed not at the non-existent “Disenfranchising [of] veterans,” but at the whole idea of voter ID, which is anathema to liberals and other Democrats.

    It’s worth noting that these laws are not aimed at “disenfranchising” anyone, they are aimed at ensuring the integrity of our election process, which has come under fire several times in recent years, most notably here in Florida where the Democrats sued for recounts in the Bush-Gore contest a few years ago, and lost.

    Reason enough, one would think, for Democrats to support reinforcing the integrity of elections.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    We should all support the integrity of elections, Democrats or Republicans alike.

    Hell, I’d even let the illegals vote, especially if they’re Mexicans. The more the merrier.

    Sorry, Clavos, no disrespect intended. It’s just tongue-in-cheek, prompting Tommy’s response, I guess.

  • Corpsman up 2-4

    If I remember right the Texas Judiciary/Attorney General is now asking for an opinion to determine if the picture ID is acceptable. And by the way the law was crafted by the Legislature and signed by the Executive. I am not a Perry supporter, nor a Romney supporter. But, most of the military I know really don’t care about who occupies the Office of President. But, they do have more respect for those who served. Especially when they look at what candidates were doing when the candidates were the same age as they (service members) are.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    The strawman is the non-existent problem of voter fraud that wave of GOP voter ID bills allegedly solve. Voter ID laws have a disproportionate and unfair impact on low-income individuals, racial and ethnic minority voters, students, senior citizens, voters with disabilities and others who do not have a government-issued ID or the money to acquire one. The bills are cynical and violate the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

    I would think that the GOP would want more voters not fewer. That is before considering the cost of implementation of the voter ID bills, especially in states with existing economic shortfalls such as Texas.

    The insult to veterans is Perry’s “wore the uniform” line.

    Tommy

  • clyde h stagner

    This retired Capt respects and admires President Obama and is disapointed that you Mr.Perry do not respectthr President of the people of the United States

  • Clavos

    I guess I must be stupid, because I don’t see an insult in the “wore the uniform” line; we all did wear them. Upon my return from Vietnam in 1966, I was truly insulted by most citizens I met, and especially by the press. In fact, most of us who had served in Nam learned quickly to refrain from mentioning it, except among ourselves; particularly those of us who enrolled in college after returning, as I did.

    You say, “He did not use the word veteran.” And how is that an “insult?”

    I say you’re making a mountain out of a molehill.

    Actually, the real strawman in this whole issue is this statement of yours in #5:

    Voter ID laws have a disproportionate and unfair impact on low-income individuals, racial and ethnic minority voters, students, senior citizens, voters with disabilities and others who do not have a government-issued ID or the money to acquire one.

    Since the various states are providing free IDs to anyone who needs one, this is a non issue.

    And, with the possible exception of New Yorkers, nearly everyone has some form of acceptable ID these days.

    Once again, a mountain out of a molehill; and a deception on the part of the Democrats, whose objections as you outlined in #5 have nothing to do with their discomfort regarding voter ID laws.

    It’s also interesting that you say that voter fraud is non-existent in light of the clamor Democrats raised about the Gore/Bush results in Florida. Every Democrat in the land claimed fraud then, and all of you revisit it every chance you get.

    I reiterate: Strawman.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    The clamor Democrats raised about the Gore/Bush results in Florida” alleged vote counting fraud not voter fraud, especially since Florida had Jeb Bush as its governor.

    Voter ID legislation constitutes a change in state elections laws. As such that legislation is subject to “pre-clearance” by the DoJ under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. We will see what Attorney General Holder does with those changes in South Carolina and in Texas. What is more, the DoJ has to make sure that these laws are implemented in a way that does not discriminate against protected groups in violation of Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act.

    I wrote about the new voter ID laws back in March when I researched new GOP backed legislation in about half of the states which could require people to show identification or swear an oath of their identity when they vote. I am sorry, but those new laws are against the law. They are solutions is search of problems that do not exist.

    As to uniforms, I threw mine away as soon as I could, brass and all.

    Tommy

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    No, the bill doesn’t discriminate against veterans, most of whom, I’m fairly confident, will be able to locate a driver’s license or some other form of state-issued photo ID if they rummage through their wallets for long enough (i.e. about 1 second).

    Quite why a veteran’s card isn’t considered valid ID is anyone’s guess, but I suspect the lawmakers simply forgot to include it on the list.

    The insult is to active military personnel for suggesting (obliquely) that they do not respect their commander-in-chief, which is a slur on their loyalty and professionalism.

    Veterans, especially those who have been in combat, have earned the right to disrespect anyone they choose.

    However, as Tommy himself says, it was merely a gaffe – one of those purgings of liquid verbal poo that escapes from every politician’s mouth now and then.

  • REMF(MCH)

    “Many observers took it as a political shot at Romney by the former Air Force captain.”

    But couldn’t he also have been referring to Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, Mike Huckabee, Rudy Giuliani, Bobby Jindal, Jeb Bush, Charlie Crist, Sarah Palin or Chris Christie?

  • Baronius

    I think this is Tommy’s thing – headlines that aren’t really about the article, and imprecise raising of suspicions without closing the deal. Tommy says that the insult in question was against Romney, not veterans. But by tacking the veterans’ ID story on the end, in which he doesn’t show any culpability on Perry’s part, he makes it appear that there’s a connection.

    The law probably doesn’t let you use Blockbuster Video cards either. That’s an insult to movie fans!

    And why would a Republican be plotting to disenfranchise veterans? It doens’t even make sense on the face of it.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    I wrote, “Many observers took it as a political shot at Romney. . .” It is a shot people who are not veterans in the primary campaigns, to be sure. My objection is the inconsistency of such a stand and signing an “emergency” bill that disenfranchises veterans and other groups.

    “Come and take it,” “throws Israel under the bus,” “military option with Iran,” that Texas could secede if it wanted, Social Security is a Ponzi scheme, and the ever popular shot at Ben Bernanke are well covered gaffes. It is no wonder he is doing so well in the polls, especially with the absence of Sarah Palin’s remarkable mouth.

    Tommy

  • Clavos

    My objection is the inconsistency of such a stand and signing an “emergency” bill that disenfranchises veterans and other groups.

    As american citizens, you (and we all) have the right to “object” to anything any government does, but as I and others said upthread, Perry is not “disenfranchising” anyone because:

    1. It’s not “his” bill; he didn’t write it or sponsor it.

    2. A number of government-issued IDs ARE acceptable for voter ID, including such universal ones as drivers licenses, so the mere absence of a VA card as ID for voting falls far short “disenfranchisement,” especially because:

    3. The bill provides for FREE issuance of a state ID card to ANYONE on request.

    Nice try, Tommy, but this bill (and certainly Governor Perry) “disenfranchises” nobody.

    As for the sound bites you’ve plucked out of context from his speeches:

    Social Security IS a Ponzi scheme. I’ve long since been paid back all I put into it; at this point, those who are paying into it now are paying me, and that’s the very definition of a Ponzi scheme.

    And frankly, the country (as established) is a confederation of individual and independent states; if one of them chooses to secede, it’s their right IMO — it’s certainly not without precedent in the country’s history.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    Perry made the bill and emergency item and signed it. I doubt if it means anything to him as long as it sounds good and is a political expedient. Knowledge is dumb.

    Yes, if you ask for a “free ID” you can get one. So much for voter registration drives that cannot ask for you and get you one. That free ID will cost the state extra bucks, though. That’s interesting in a state with a $10B budget hole, but knowledge is dumb.

    A Ponzi scheme is criminal. It is fraud. The charge may sound great to some, but it is as irresponsible as suggesting that the idea of secession is alright.

    Tommy

  • Baronius

    Clavos, you know perfectly well that Rick Perry steals veterans’ driver’s licenses.

    And so far, Tommy has said that Perry’s comment was a shot at Romney, at veterans, and at non-veterans in the race. Two of those make sense. Unfortunately, the one that doesn’t make sense is the title of the article.

  • Baronius

    Tommy! Come on! Can political actions be criminal or not? You said in a previous article that politicians who misrepresent the budget are guilty of securities fraud. Now you’re saying that Social Security couldn’t be a Ponzi scheme, because Ponzi schemes are criminal.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    In the words of Charlie Brown, “Oh, good grief!

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com/haveno handyguy

    When Baronius feels the need to resort to word games, you’ve already won the argument, Tommy.

    The underlying point is that Perry is a shameless huckster pol who will do anything to create red-meat applause lines for red state voters. He has not a sincere bone in his body.

  • zingzing

    “He has not a sincere bone in his body.”

    i’ve heard rumors…

  • Clavos

    He has not a sincere bone in his body.

    You’re surprised? He’s a pol.

    Like Obama.

    They ALL lie.

  • Clavos

    …a shameless huckster pol…

    Class, this is a perfect example of a tautology.

  • Clavos

    A Ponzi scheme is criminal. It is fraud.

    Like a lot of what comes out of Washington.

    Amerika the fraudulent.

  • REMF(MCH)

    “And why would a Republican be plotting to disenfranchise veterans? It doens’t even make sense on the face of it.”

    Karl Rove/G.W. Bush, John McCain, 2004 GOP Primary…

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    @13

    If the original intent wasn’t to defraud, then it wasn’t a scheme. It may have a structure of a “Ponzi scheme,” but that still doesn’t make it a scheme (any more than any kind of insurance policy is a scheme).

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    As usual, Baronius speaks from both sides of his mouth.

  • Clavos

    @#24:

    Point taken, Roger. I am, of course, speaking of the structure into which SS has evolved.

    And, on that point, it’s worth pointing out that as the boomers reach retirement age, we are inexorably reaching a point where retirees drawing SS will outnumber workers paying for it; a situation which will unfairly place an enormous burden on the younger workers and which is likely to exacerbate discord between the generations.

    On top of that, as we all know, the current administration’s spending is bankrupting the country.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Then, and you may be factually right, the government should step forward and say it is insolvent, and stop withholding.

  • Igor

    A Ponzi Scheme is designed and intended to defraud. Social Security is not.

    A Ponzi Scheme is designed to fail and there is no way it can succeed. That is not true of SS.

    Your Auto Insurance policy or your Home insurance or your life insurance are closer to a Ponzi scheme (financially) because they have much larger ratios of unfunded liabilities. You didn´t think that your lovely auto insurance company kept a hoard of $100 bills in a safe somewhere just ready to pay you if you have an accident, did you? No, they invest your premiums in whatever risky investments deliver the biggest kickbacks to the officers and result in the biggest bonuses. All that money is gone when you come around to file a claim.

    Your claim, if they deign to pay it (and they often will, during good times, to encourage others to pay premiums) will be drawn from current premium payments.

    Yes, auto, life, home and health insurance are closer to Ponzi schemes than SS.

    And so are the private pension plans that Perry advocates. Just ask any old-timer who worked 20-30 years faithfully for a company, looking forward to retirement, only to have the pension plan rescinded with the paltry reserves reverting to the officers of the company.

    At least with SS YOU can vote to protect the SS funds and YOU can extract justice on crooked politicians at the polls, and finally, as citizens, you can advocate for criminal charges against fraudsters who try to steal money from a fund that you are paying premiums into.

    Don´t let rightist manipulators convince you to abandon SS or you will probably find yourself homeless and penniless in old age.

  • Clavos

    Don´t let rightist manipulators convince you to abandon SS or you will probably find yourself homeless and penniless in old age.

    Don’t know if that was addressed to me Igor, but I can tell you I’m already drawing it — to the point I’ve already been paid all I put into it, such that I am now being paid what younger people are putting into it.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com/haveno handyguy

    SS can feasibly be adjusted to allow it to continue paying for itself, as it does right now. It wouldn’t become a “Ponzi scheme” until the money actually falls short…something that is unlikely to be allowed to happen.

    Medicare, on the other hand, could expand to take over the whole budget at some point. Higher taxes plus cost controls on unnecessary, overpriced tests and treatments could allow it to remain solvent for decades. The GOP would prefer to dismantle it, as they have wanted to do since, oh, about 1965.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    We do not know, Handy, whether higher taxes are going to be approved by US Congress. As to SS, the bulk of the US population is nearing the retirement age; if the job situation will not improve drastically and soon, there may not be enough money coming into the general fund to be making the disbursements. So this is a legitimate concern.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com/haveno handyguy

    In the most recent forecasts, the year SS runs into trouble is 2036. So we are not talking about next month. There is time to phase in some adjustments. The real danger is that the cynical attitude expressed by Rick Perry, Clavos and Cannonshop will become widespread among younger people, further deteriorating trust between generations.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    #26: as we all know is the fallacy of common knowledge. Group think lives on that kind of fodder. We don’t know that and you cannot prove it.

    Tag, you’re it.

    Tommy

  • Clavos

    My original statement (#26):

    On top of that, as we all know, the current administration’s spending is bankrupting the country.

    In #33, Tommy counters with:

    as we all know is the fallacy of common knowledge. Group think lives on that kind of fodder. We don’t know that and you cannot prove it.

    And, from a “rules of debate” POV, he’s right.

    But here, from the January 25th edition of The Weekly Standard, in an opinion piece about the upcoming (at that time) SOU speech by Obama, are some facts regarding spending by the Obama administration vs the RINO George Bush administration spending:

    In light of the President’s expected rhetorical nod to fiscal responsibility, it’s worth keeping in mind his record on deficits to date. When President Obama took office two years ago, the national debt stood at $10.626 trillion. It now stands at $14.071 trillion, a staggering increase of $3.445 trillion in just 735 days (about $5 billion a day).

    To put that into perspective, when President George W. Bush took office, our national debt was $5.768 trillion. By the time Bush left office, it had nearly doubled, to $10.626 trillion. So Bush’s record on deficit spending was not good at all: During his presidency, the national debt rose by an average of $607 billion a year. How does that compare to Obama? During Obama’s presidency to date, the national debt has risen by an average of $1.723 trillion a year, or by a jaw-dropping $1.116 trillion more, per year, than it rose even under Bush. (emphasis added)

    And it gets better:

    In fairness, however, Obama can’t rightly be held accountable for the 2009 budget, which he didn’t sign (although he did sign a $410 billion pork-laden omnibus spending bill for that year, which is nevertheless tallied in Bush’s column). Rather, Obama’s record to date should really be based on actual and projected spending in fiscal years 2010 and 2011 (plus the $265 billion portion of the economic “stimulus” package, which he initiated and signed, that was spent in 2009 (Table S-10), while Bush’s should be based on 2002-09 (with the exception of that same $265 billion, which was in no way part of the 2009 budgetary process).

    How do Bush and Obama compare on closer inspection? Just about like they do on an initial glance. According to the White House’s Office of Management and Budget, during his eight fiscal years, Bush ran up a total of $3.283 trillion in deficit spending (p. 22). In his first two fiscal years, Obama will run up a total of $2.826 trillion in deficit spending ($1.294 trillion in 2010, an estimated $1.267 trillion in 2011 (p. 23), and the $265 billion in “stimulus” money that was spent in 2009). Thus, Bush ran up an average of $410 billion in deficit spending per year, while Obama is running up an average of $1.413 trillion in deficit spending per year, or $1.003 trillion a year more than Bush. (emphasis added)

    But in retrospect, I think Tommy is probably right when he says, “we don’t know that;” most of the ignorant american public is oblivious to all this. Many of them, as Jay Leno constantly proves on his “man in the street” interviews, haven’t even a clue as to who their president is, much less what a spendthrift he is.

    Sadly, H.L. Mencken was right. It’s impossible to underestimate the intelligence of the american public.

    So, point to Tommy: you don’t know that.

  • Igor

    None of our economic distress is due to SS.

    Our distress is clearly caused by financial extravagances during the Bush regime, so:

    1-lapse the expensive tax gifts

    2-get out of Afghanistan

    3-get out of Iraq

    4-rescind the Medicare D gift to the Pharmas

  • Clavos

    None of our economic distress is due to SS.

    I didn’t say it was. I said that I’m (and anybody who’s been on SS more than a couple of years) being paid from money taken from current workers because I’ve already been paid all I put into it, which is why it resembles a Ponzi scheme, irrespective of whether or not it was set up that way. Incidentally, in response to your comment above about winding up “homeless and penniless,” if I were relying solely on the paltry amount SS pays, I would already be there, even with SS.

    Our distress is clearly caused by financial extravagances during the Bush regime…

    As the The Weekly Standard article I cited and quoted from in #34 above proves using the government’s own figures, far more of our “economic distress,” as you so quaintly put it, is far more due to Obama’s spending than Bush’s, though both have been among the most spendthirft presidents in our history. Additionally, Obamacare will acutely exacerbate an already severe problem over the coming years, again according to the government’s own calculations.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com/haveno handyguy

    Clavos, a large part of “Obama’s spending” is Bush’s spending, continued: wars, Medicare prescription [part D], TARP, and the “spending” of the Bush tax cuts. There is also the ‘cost’ of reduced tax revenue during and after a severe recession. The decrease in revenue obviously affects the budget in a negative way.

    The largest parts of Obama’s spending so far have been temporary, not to be repeated [the stimulus, $1.2 trillion total approx.].

    The Bush tax decreases have cost the government 150-200 billion each year, and will continue to do so unless/until they are rescinded.

    And you should stop repeating that falsehood about health reform costing so much money. The total cost through 2017 is estimated at $152 billion. It could go up after that if the cost of healthcare itself is not controlled.

    You have quoted that exact same article at length before, and I refuted you before as well.

  • Clavos

    You have quoted that exact same article at length before…

    No I haven’t, but I have quoted the numbers, because they come from the government itself.

    and I refuted you before as well.

    No, you haven’t. You have disagreed with me, but of course, that’s not a refutation.

    …a large part of “Obama’s spending” is Bush’s spending,…

    Obviously, you didn’t read the citation, which dissects just how much is “Bush’s spending” and how much is Obama’s, and concludes with government numbers as proof, that, even taking “Bush’s spending” into account, Obama is spending at a much faster pace than Bush ever did.

    And you should stop repeating that falsehood about health reform costing so much money. The total cost through 2017 is estimated at $152 billion. It could go up after that if the cost of healthcare itself is not controlled.

    But you see, it’s not a falsehood. According to redstate.com, Obamacare doesn’t get fully implemented until well after the election (done deliberately so as not to further jeopardize Obama’s chances of reelection); therefore, much of the expense is deferred until indeterminate future dates. Also, such prestigious business analysts as McKenzie and Co. have come up with very different numbers from those announced by the administration:

    …And according to recent congressional testimony provided by Rep. Joe Pitts (R.-Pa.), during a hearing of his health care subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, the Department of Health and Human Services expects roughly half of all employers and as many as 80% of small businesses to give up their existing health plans in the next two years as their existing plans lose their grandfathered status.

    Losing grandfathered status will drive up costs for employers as they are forced to cope with having to offer the array of coverages required under the law. More affordable health care insurance packages such as high-deductible plans and their accompanying health savings accounts will largely become a thing of the past.

    If you take the speculative goal stated by DHHS above, and couple that with the McKinsey survey and the Holtz-Eakin report to Congress, federal subsidy costs for public health insurance exchange premiums were grossly underestimated by roughly $4 trillion dollars over ten years and possibly even more. (emphasis added)

    Another point to consider is that if this progresses very quickly, the next step in the process would be implementation of the public health insurance exchange. If you take the speculative goal stated by DHHS above, and couple that with the McKinsey survey and the Holtz-Eakin report to Congress, federal subsidy costs for public health insurance exchange premiums were grossly underestimated by roughly $4 trillion dollars over ten years and possibly even more. (emphasis added)

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    More than once in your attempts to detract from statistics I’ve posted, you’ve used the old saw that “figures don’t lie, but liars figure”. Problem is, you never, ever, EVER apply that same cynicism to the conservative talking points you rely upon.

    For instance, your quote:

    Thus, Bush ran up an average of $410 billion in deficit spending per year, while Obama is running up an average of $1.413 trillion in deficit spending per year, or $1.003 trillion a year more than Bush.

    What’s wrong with that? Anyone with a clue about recent history should be able to quickly realize that beginning in 2002 – the first budget that Bush submitted – he had not yet completely demolished our economy…but he had certainly ended the surplus that Clinton handed him. On the other hand, did Bush hand Obama a surplus? I could probably find a few Republicans who would say he did, but you know better.

    Rather than comparing the averages of their total deficits over the course of their presidencies, the BETTER METRIC would be to see where the economy and the deficit were when they started out, and where the economy and the deficit were when their terms were done.

    For instance, what was our deficit when Reagan took over, and when he ended? And what about Bush Sr.? And how was the deficit when Clinton took over, and how was it when he was done? And what about Dubya?

    After looking at the above, what was the deficit when Obama took over, and what is it now, and what is it estimated to be in the years to come? Has the deficit been increasing as it did almost every year that Reagan, Bush, and Bush were in office? Or has the deficit been DECREASING as it did almost every year that Clinton was in office?

    Hm?

    Who is it that has been leaving the deficit in WORSE shape than when he took over, and who is it that has been leaving the deficit in BETTER shape than when he took over?

    ANY career military man knows instinctively that he’s supposed to leave his watchstation in better shape than when he found it. Clinton did this (if only in terms of our deficit), and Obama IS doing it. Reagan, Bush, and Bush ALL left the economy in worse shape than it was when they took over.

    Figures don’t lie, but liars figure, indeed. And who is it that bought into the lying figures about “average deficits”?

    YOU.

    These – and NOT the overall averages

  • Clavos

    The figures are from the government, Glenn, redstate merely published them.

    But you are right on one score:

    The government — all of it, including Obama, Bush and every elected official in DC, lies.

    All the time.

    Always.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    You didn’t address what I said – you didn’t even try.

    YOU bought into the “average deficit” argument, and I showed you that that’s a false argument…

    …and you flatly ignored what I said and went on with the old false equivalency that everyone in the government is somehow equally as bad as all the rest. You KNOW better than that…but it makes for good rhetoric and provides another offering to the altar of cynicism.

    I just wish you’d challenge yourself – for it’s obvious that when you’re presented with an argument you can’t refute, you either ignore it or throw in some non-sequitur as you did in comment #40. Challenge yourself, Clavos, and you’ll gain understanding that you never expected.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    And Clavos –

    Redstate didn’t just publish the figures, they interpreted them…and wrongly. Their wrong interpretation is what you bought into, and what I exposed for you.

  • Clavos

    Redstate didn’t just publish the figures, they interpreted them…and wrongly

    A matter of opinion; they took the gummint figures and averaged them — that’s just math, not interpretation.

    You didn’t address what I said – you didn’t even try

    You “expressed” an opinion as to which is the better metric. I disagree with your opinion.

    There. Now it’s addressed.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    No, it’s not. You’re being intellectually lazy, and you know it.

    And that’s the sad thing – you KNOW you’re avoiding owning up to being suckered in by “liars figuring”. I know you know it – you’re too smart not to know it.

    You see, that’s one problem with having higher-than-average intelligence as you certainly do: you can’t claim continuing ingnorance. You can admit mistakes, but you can’t claim ignorance once you are shown your error.

  • Clavos

    Sorry, Glenn.

    An opinion is just that — an opinion.

    I don’t agree with you.