It’s past time for us to explode right-wing economic myths: “raising taxes is ‘job killing’; we have a spending problem, not a revenue problem; tax-cuts pay for themselves by bringing in more tax money to the government.”

Our best path to clarity is for President Obama to use his bully pulpit even more vigorously. The poll numbers flipped on approval vs. disapproval on the recent debt crisis when our Educator-In-Chief began to explain what the debt ceiling really is, and what it would mean to the nation if it weren’t raised.

We’re now calling on our president to expand his role as the nation’s chief educator and explain to the American people how we really got into this debt — the debt that the GOP is attacking him with.

The right-wing attack message is that “under President Obama the debt has grown to $13 trillion — an additional $8 trillion.” The clear implication is that the stimulus has exploded our debt, when in fact the stimulus, at $787 billion, represents less than 7% of the debt — 7%!!!!!

So, where did all this new debt come from? In 2008, prior to President Obama taking office, the debt had grown under George W. Bush to $5 trillion. Obama took office in January of 2009 — when the economy was imploding — and between 2008 (under Bush) and 2010 the debt grew from $5 trillion to $13 trillion.

So, where did the $8 trillion in additional debt come from, if not from Obama’s stimulus? Most of the new debt is directly correlated to the financial crisis — which originated under George W. Bush. To be clear, $6 trillion of the $8 trillion is due to the collapse of the economy — clearly not Barack Obama’s doing.

The other $2 trillion of the $8 trillion in new debt includes not only the $787 billion of stimulus, but also the expense of the two wars that Republicans started; the Bush tax-cuts that not only ate up the Clinton/Gore budget surplus but also continues to pile onto the debt because these cuts have resulted in current tax revenues now at a 50 year low; and a new Medicare drug plan that the GOP didn’t bother to fund. This unfunded entitlement continues, to this day, adding billions to the federal debt and is an on-going expense — no matter who is president. And of course, the costs of the wars —waged off-budget by W.— also continues to be an enormous expense under this president’s more honest budgeting.

We MUST understand just how we got into this debt mess before we can prescribe the right solutions. Take a look at what the stock market did yesterday when the Dow plunged almost 300 points following the passage of the legislation that raised the debt ceiling. Reports are that though Wall Street is relieved our nation didn’t default on our debts, that the cuts-only legislation will actually harm the nation’s economy.

GOP talking points are provably wrong— “raising taxes is ‘job killing’; we have a spending problem, not a revenue problem; tax-cuts pay for themselves by bringing in more tax money to the government; and the debt is Obama’s fault.”

We just need to get our president out into the country and take the truth to the American people.

Add a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment