Conservative economist Bruce Bartlett has written a recent column in which he states that GOP rage is misdirected at Obama; it properly should be directed differently. “The person they should be angry with left the White House seven months ago.”
He provides some pretty thorough evidence that the Bush admin screwed the pooch on the economy (and about everything else imo).
The following comment is interesting, “Until conservatives once again hold Republicans to the same standard they hold Democrats, they will have no credibility and deserve no respect.”
I’d argue the same is true for some conservative commentators on this board, although I hasten to add there are several I personally respect very highly, and I hope they contribute to this thread.
There’s a lot in the editorial to debate. For this thread, I’m sure people will pick and choose, but I’d like to bring up the following comments:
“… [C]onservatives have an absurdly unjustified view that Republicans have a better record on federal finances. It is well-known that Clinton left office with a budget surplus and Bush left with the largest deficit in history. Less well-known is Clinton’s cutting of spending on his watch, reducing federal outlays from 22.1 percent of GDP to 18.4 percent of GDP. Bush, by contrast, increased spending to 20.9 percent of GDP. Clinton abolished a federal entitlement program, Welfare, for the first time in American history, while Bush established a new one for prescription drugs.”
“Conservatives delude themselves that the Bush tax cuts worked and that the best medicine for America’s economic woes is more tax cuts; at a minimum, any tax increase would be economic poison. They forget that Ronald Reagan worked hard to pass one of the largest tax increases in American history… even though the nation was still in a recession that didn’t end until November of that year. Indeed, one could easily argue that the enactment of that legislation was a critical prerequisite to recovery because it led to a decline in interest rates. The same could be said of Clinton’s 1993 tax increase, which many conservatives predicted would cause a recession but led to one of the biggest economic booms in history.”
“In my opinion, conservative activists, who seem to believe that the louder they shout the more correct their beliefs must be, are less angry about Obama’s policies than they are about having lost the White House in 2008. They are primarily Republican Party hacks trying to overturn the election results, not representatives of a true grassroots revolt against liberal policies. If that were the case they would have been out demonstrating against the Medicare drug benefit, the Sarbanes-Oxley bill, and all the pork-barrel spending that Bush refused to veto.”
I think that paragraph is dead-on. I’ll add that I’m certain a component of the rage at Obama’s presidency from some is thinly-concealed racism, but he doesn’t make that point.
Anyway, it’s chock full of controversial morsels. Tuck in!