It seems like we’ve been talking about the debt ceiling for an awfully long time. Probably because we have been talking about the debt ceiling for an awfully long time. President Obama made a primetime appearance on Monday night to address the nation over this impending financial doom.
I disagree with the president on a lot of issues. That’s ok. But lying is not. There were so many mistruths coming out of our leader’s mouth during that speech that I’m throwing any shred of political correctness out the window and calling him out.
I’ll be awaiting my invitation to the White House for a Wine Summit.
1. For the last decade, we’ve spent more money than we take in. In the year 2000, the government had a budget surplus. But instead of using it to pay off our debt, the money was spent on trillions of dollars in new tax cuts, while two wars and an expensive prescription drug program were simply added to our nation’s credit card.
Obama is clearly trying to blame Bush for all the problems he so famously ‘inherited.’ The president misleads the public here in a couple of ways. First off, he implies that the Bush tax cuts caused revenue to the federal government to shrink. Not true. Revenue was increased, because businesses had incentive to create more jobs which led to more taxpayers and therefore more increased tax revenue.
As for the comments on spending too much on wars and health care ... really, President Obama? For better or worse, you have not ended the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq, and you’ve even started a new one in Libya. And then there’s Obamacare. I did not agree with Medicare Part D, but to say that’s the problem is like calling a burning match a problem while standing next to a bonfire.
2. I won’t bore you with the details of every plan or proposal.
This line is to make you think the president has been working super hard on the budget. He did propose one in May. It got shot down 97-0 in the Senate. Yeah, I don’t like boring people with my defeats either.
3. Let’s make modest adjustments so that Medicare is still there for future generations.
President Obama’s health care plan defunds Medicare of half a trillion dollars over the next 10 years. Is that what he calls modest? I haven’t seen any Republicans advocating for those kinds of draconian cuts to senior health care. Yet he still continues to tell the public that it’s the Republicans that want to metaphorically throw Grandma off a cliff?
I’m going to channel my favorite villain ever, Dr. Evil, and respond to that with, “Riiiiiight ...”
4. [A] significant number of Republicans of Congress are insisting on a different approach. A cuts-only approach. An approach that doesn’t ask the wealthiest Americans or biggest corporations to contribute anything at all.
Would these be the same wealthy Americans and corporations that earn 19 percent of the income but pay 37 percent of the taxes? They really don’t contribute anything at all? You know who doesn’t actually contribute anything, Mr. President, is almost every other American. Nearly half of us don’t pay a single dime to Uncle Sam. They are the ones not contributing, not the wealthy (or as I like to call them, the employers).
5. We all want a government that lives within its means.
Obviously not, Mr. $1.5 Trillion Deficit.
6. Under a balanced approach, the 98 percent of Americans that make under $250,000 a year would see no tax increases at all. None.
Correct. Now where can they pick up their unemployment checks when they are let go because their employers can no longer afford to pay their salaries?
7. What we’re talking about under a balanced approach is asking Americans whose incomes have gone up the most over the last decade, millionaires and billionaires, to share in the sacrifice everyone else has to make.
See #4 above.
8. Understand, raising the debt ceiling does not allow Congress to spend more money; it simply gives our country the ability to pay the bills that Congress has already racked up.
Well yeah, if you’re not going to cut any spending, we won’t be able to pay the interest on the loans we already owe to China. But there’s more than enough revenue to pay the important bills like the interest on our debt and the entitlement programs like Medicare and Social Security.
Those bills, by the way, are the ones that get paid first. As insolvent as they are in the long run, the money is there for them right now. And in the event of a government shutdown, Grandma will get her social security check.
9. We have to [raise the debt ceiling] by next Tuesday, August 2, or else we won’t be able to pay all of our bills. Unfortunately, for the past several weeks, Republican House members have essentially said that the only way they’ll vote to prevent America’s first-ever default, is if the rest of us agree to their deep spending cuts-only approach. If that happens and we default, we would not have enough money to pay all of our bills. Bills that include monthly Social Security checks ...
Don’t forget to specifically fear-monger the elderly! Don't be scared, Grandma, Social Security checks will be sent out, even if the government shuts down. And correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t that happen in 1995? Or was that a government shutdown and not a default? Even so, Social Security entitlements were still paid.
About halfway into the 15-minute speech, the president starts repeating himself. He talks again about the mean Republicans that don’t want to raise taxes on the corporate jet owners, and how average Americans are sacrificing so much while the fat cats are giving nothing and blah blah blah there’s only just so much a person can take.
So I’m turning what was going to be a 10-point article and making it a 9-point article. Unlike the president, I don’t like to repeat myself.