Cutting Through The Crap

Monday, March 26, 2012

SSDD


I really hope that, come the general election campaign, the issue of Republicans' constant lying is made front and center. I'm not naive enough to think that it would change much, because the pattern of receptive ignorance has been set in concrete like Jimmy Hoffa's feet (a historical presumption). But until and unless (a long time, and unlikely) R voters demand better from their leaders, showing themselves to be interested in facts, willing to make an election about actual issues and choices among approaches thereto (and, by inference, believing enough in their own ideas to have them fairly tested), why would their candidates abandon a winning strategy? Lies are easy, and, obviously, they work.

But the choice is as stark as it's ever been, and can be condensed to this: do we prefer our governing principle to be "every man for himself" (and, yes, excluding "women" is deliberate), or do we prefer a government that provides more than just a military? Do we consider maintaining historically low tax rates as the prime directive, or do we have regard for such things as education, access to health care, and the occasional dam or highway? And what does the future likely look like with each choice? By any measure, that's what this election is about. Which undoubtedly explains the lying by Rs: to get people to vote for their take-the-money-and-run vision, they must hide the truth, bury it under distortions and distractions. And that they do, brilliantly and shamelessly, every day. Here's one day's worth of news:

On Obama's environmental record, which has pissed off liberals for the reality of it, and conservatives for the lying about it:

The leading Republican presidential hopefuls have cast Obama as environmental extremist whose policies have put him out of touch with the needs of ordinary Americans. It's a characterization that may resonate with GOP primary voters, but it has surprised environmental activists, many of whom say they are let down by Obama's record on their issues.
[...]
"The environmental movement has been at odds with Barack Obama for much of his three years in the White House," said Bill McKibben, founder of the environmental group 350.org. "The president is very much in the center — far too much in the center for many environmentalists."



Then there's this:

Among Republicans, a punchy Rick Santorum declared that President Barack Obama's health care law makes the life of every single American dependent on the government.

Seriously?

However far-reaching, the law is neither life-giving, nor health-destroying, and most Americans probably won't feel a thing. (Which, clearly, is absolutely true: got health insurance you like? Keep it!)

Mitt Romney, for his part, continued to blame Obama for banning old-fashioned light bulbs even after it was pointed out thatRepublican George W. Bush was the president who made the decision crowding those energy-wasters from the market.


In fairness, the above article also contains this tidbit:
BIDEN on the bin Laden raid: "You can go back 500 years. You cannot find a more audacious plan. Never knowing for certain. We never had more than a 48 percent probability that he was there."

But there's a huge difference between overheated hyperbole and deliberate lying. What Biden said might have been dumb -- the article lists a bunch of military endeavors that deserve higher ranking, D-day being but one -- but, as opposed to blatant lying, it's a matter of opinion. If I say Edgar Martinez is the greatest DH of all time, it's not a lie, even if you think the honor goes to Frank Thomas. R characterizations of Obama's policies are on another plane altogether, deliberate falsehoods, and facts demonstrate it easily.

Claims that Obama is a socialist, like dingleberries with cheap toilet paper, are everywhere, and, for their stupidity, hardly worth mentioning. Paul Volker did, though, saying what needs to be said. But who'd pay attention to Ronald Reagan's Fed Chairman, right? Let the lies keep coming.

Speaking of which, there's Mitt Romney's claims about President Obama's energy policy, on which even his own advisors won't even back him up:

After Romney insisted that more drilling in Mexico and in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge could bring down the cost of gas, The Huffington Post contacted members of Romney's economic team -- two revolving-door lobbyists and two former chairmen of the Council of Economic Advisers under President George W. Bush -- to ask if they would vouch for the claim.

"I will pass. Sorry," prominent macroeconomist Gregory Mankiw, a Romney advisor, replied when contacted by HuffPost about an interview. Other queries were similarly denied or unreturned.

[...]

Other economists haven't been shy about debunking the claim, explaining that U.S. energy policy has very little effect either on oil prices or on overall U.S. employment. Recent studies have backed them up. The Associated Press' statistical analysis of 36 years of monthly, inflation-adjusted gasoline prices and U.S. domestic oil production found no statistical correlation between gas prices and how much oil comes out of U.S. wells.


We already know that since Obama took office, drilling operations have quadrupled from what they were under G.W. Bush, and now we also know this (excluding Foxophiles and teabaggRs, who clearly don't want to know):
Taken together, the increasing production and declining consumption have unexpectedly brought the United States markedly closer to a goal that has tantalized presidents since Richard Nixon: independence from foreign energy sources, a milestone that could reconfigure American foreign policy, the economy and more.


If ever there were a time when voters deserve, and ought to demand, an election that focuses on a true reckoning of what's at stake, of what actually is going on and what is not, of what the opposing plans of candidates represent, it's now. If ever voters should demand of all parties and partisans that they focus on what they want to do rather than lying about what the other has or hasn't done, it's now.

Because as long as they don't (how about stepping up, teabaggers!), what they'll get -- raining down nearly exclusively from the right -- is same shit, different day.


4 comments:

Anonymous said...

As I told you before Dr. Sid you need to get to Washington and straighten all these idiots out....Pat
p.s. Love to read all you have to say!!

Sid Schwab said...

Yeah, but you never respond when I address you...

Pieter B said...

It's sad. The Republican Party my parents belonged to would have laughed Rick Santorum off the stage months ago. Contraceptives are "a license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be"?! Are you high, dude?

The Catholic laity obviously disagree with the Vatican's official position on birth control; no longer does the typical Catholic family have four or more children, as was the case when I was growing up. Contraceptive use among Catholics differs little from the general population, and Catholics differ not at all from the average what they consider the ideal family size.

Anonymous said...

Birth control and abortion is none of the goverments business.....it's between the woman and her Dr. Why do all these old farts in Washington have to be sticking their noses in this? Do you know how many women agree with me? pat