Why are Republicans Wrong about Everything?


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Jul 30, 2013 - 12:44pm PT
John. Are you OK?
The greater the recession, the slower the recovery.

Recessions are not that simple. In 1937 when the republicans were trying to roll back everything FDR had done, we nearly slipped back into it. Here we are in 2013 and exactly the same scenario is playing out. I grew up republican and all I heard, and hear today is that FDR should be rolled back. Either we have a learning disability here, or the republicans should be listed as agents of a foreign power. Perhaps it is time to list them in this way.

Doing this is entirely reasonable in the global age where increasingly large corporations operate across all borders. Their purpose and intentions are not tied to the welfare of the US and of its people in any meaningful way.

Trad climber
Fresno CA
Jul 30, 2013 - 01:22pm PT
John, am I reading you correctly? The quote you have, above, was the logical conclusion from Norton's argument, not mine.

In postwar US, the greater the recession, the stronger the recovery, particularly initially. This recession is unique in postwar American economic history precisely because it has not rebounded sharply.

Furthermore, neither in 1937 nor in 2011 have the Republicans "reversed" what the Democrats have done. The 1936 election was a landslide for FDR, and the Democrats continued to control the House, Senate and Presidency. Since 2011, the Democrats still controlled both the Senate and the White House. No one has "reversed" anything, although I, for one, wish they would find a way to do so for the Affordable [sic] Care Act.


Trad climber
Jul 30, 2013 - 02:37pm PT
John posted this massive wall of text, which I will now parse:

How can I justify my statements? Rather easily:

1. The first thing the Democrats -- who had complete control of Congress from 2006-2010 -- did was try to re-inflate the housing market. Rather than recognize a necessary correction, and try to ameliorate the consequences -- they instead tried to recreate the bubble.

Complete control of Congress but not of the White House and I don't remember them having to override any vetoes to pass that legislation. Furthermore, the actual effects of efforts on housing have been extraordinarily weak outside of bailing out the banks. Your criticism is entirely ideological and not borne out in reality, since very few people were actually helped in any way that stymied any kind of "necessary correction."

2. When Option No. 1 didn't work, they tried to do the same thing with enormous "stimulus" expenditures. This gave us, among other things, concrete curbs on the road from Wawona to Yosemite Valley. Basically, the Democrats followed the script for trying to end the Great Depression, blithely ignoring the fact that the Great Depression was an entirely different matter.

When it didn't work? Are you kidding? The time between the two things you are describing is too short for any sane person to think ANYTHING would have worked. IN ADDITION to attempts to bring the housing market to a soft landing, they passed stimulus measures that demonstrably DID help the economy, the most obvious of which is that the recovery faltered as soon as the arguably weak stimulus ended.

Both Democrats and Republicans urged the Fed to keep interest rates artificially low with "quantitative easing," thus depriving savers -- largely people of the "Greatest Generation," from interest income.

Nothing says "economic boom" like elderly people getting their pensions gutted while being able to save at 4% instead of 2%. Great point.

3. None of this produced the results predicted by liberal economists, but instead produced the results predicted by conservative ones. When that happened, the liberal shrill voices like Paul Krugman's demanded(and still demand) to quadruple down on what didn't work before. Yes, Republicans have rightly resisted that effort, but that was after four years of Democratic economic quackery.

"Liberal economists" (ESPECIALLY Krugman...you see, he's "shrill" in that he keeps repeating the same thing and keeps being proven largely right) said quite explicitly it WOULDN'T work because it wasn't big enough and they point out my previous point as evidence thereof. And it was definitely not after 4 years it was essentially after 2. Congress passed the initial stimulus (which bipartisan support) and then Republicans made it quite clear that was it. That was the spring of 2008. They then spent the next 16 or so months trying to sh#t on the Republican plan for national health reform aka Obamacare.

4. When the Democrats had control of both Congress and the White House, they enacted what we must assume were their two highest priorities; Dodd-Frank, and the ACA.

You could assume that. They "had control" meaning majorities in both houses but only 59 votes in the Senate for all but 2 months and less when you toss in Lieberman and others depending on the issue. They managed to get through what they could rally enough support for and even that was insanely difficult. Blue dog Democrats made it super clear that they wouldn't do more stimulus and even had they said they would Republicans had enough to easily filibuster it.

Dodd-Frank has done nothing to help the recovery, would have done nothing to prevent the housing bubble, and costs the economy untold amounts, with the biggest bill still to come.

It has done little to help anything because it took years for them to even start writing the rules and Republicans have moved to block and defund whatever aspects of it they could. Additionally, is this recession as "necessary correction" or isn't it? If it's a necessary correction, shouldn't we be making sure that as many sectors of the economy as possible are growing in ways that aren't hanging most Americans out to dry? This is like complaining that scrubbers on smoke stacks hurt the economy because of all the cancer they prevent that could be driving up GDP.

The ACA has already raised health insurance costs for private insurance dramatically. About the only place where it lowered costs was in Massachusetts, which was simply farther along the Obamacare curve. The ACA moved Massachusetts back a bit, so they will pay a little less.

And New York. And California. The places where it is raising rates it is doing so because it's actually requiring health insurance to COVER PEOPLE. The biggest potential problems are in markets where there isn't enough competition which is obviously something that Congress could fix but..oh right..Republicans refuse to let anyone fix anything about it that isn't completely defunding or repealing it.

5. The regulatory costs imposed on the economy by this administration have been extraordinary, but the Democrats' apologists pretend they don't exist. Only the fracking boom has shown much vitality in this economy.

So we're judging everything by the "wild, out of control growth" yardstick? If it's not a total bonanza boom then it's total sh#t? Also, which of the "f*#k you got mine" policies that Republicans have been pushing would have made this better? They got the "f*#k you got mine" cutoff of funding to state and local governments, thus pushing hundreds of thousands of government employees out of work. They got the "f*#k you got mine" sequester cuts which have ravaged all kinds of industries, gutted important research and added costs in many areas instead of cutting them. I suppose had the Senate passed any of the "f*#k you got mine" ACA repeals then that would have been a boom to...um...Republican egos. Really, not much else booms by Americans not being able to get affordable healthcare.

-- done virtually entirely on non-government land and with active opposition by the anti-corporatist,and the let-them-eat-cake Democrats --

It's funny because it lets Republicans pretend their FYGM policies would be the ones actually helping poor people even though the last 30 years has proven that to be totally false! Hahahahaha! Nice one, John! What a card.

6. Yes, governmental employment has fallen, but not as fast as non-governmental employment rose. That would not have happened but for Republican opposition to the Democrats' constant plans to expand the public sector and, consequently, wards of the state.

Insert information about massive expansion of US government being under Republican congress/president less than 10 years ago. Also, your paragraph doesn't even make sense. The drop in gov't employment has contributed both to the duration that people are out of work and to the loss of private sector jobs because a lot of people with decent paying jobs are now out of work. Additionally, there are fewer people to get the wheels of government turning so that it is actually able to do the things we require it to do in an efficient manner leading to slower private sector expansion. But that was all part of the plan, right? Complain about how slow government is, hamstring it and then point to it's limp as proof you were right all along.

Thomas Nast's cartoons from 150 years ago still speak truth today. The Democrats still haven't figured out that when you cut open the goose that lays the golden eggs, all you get is goose guts.

I once considered you a fairly contemplative poster, but if you really think that political parties have retained their character enough over the last 150 years for broad generalizations to still ring true then I was sorely, sorely mistaken.

Trad climber
Fresno CA
Jul 30, 2013 - 02:44pm PT

I'll post some Thomas Nast cartoons when I get home and we can judge the extent to which the political parties have maintained their character.

[Krugman] said quite explicitly it WOULDN'T work because it wasn't big enough

I remember his saying that they DIDN'T work, but I don't recall his saying that the WOULDN'T work. In fact, I quite distinctly remember the White House predictions of what the unemployment and employment would be after the enactment of the "stimulus." The "It wasn't big enough" argument arose to explain the discrepancies between the predictions and the reality.

I will admit, though, that there's a saying in the economic forecasting world: "You can given 'em a date, or give 'em a number, but never give 'em both."


Jul 30, 2013 - 02:50pm PT
John. I repeat. Are you OK? What you stated was not even vaguely implied by Norton's post.

Your claims appear outrageous to me. That's not like you.

Trad climber
Fresno CA
Jul 30, 2013 - 03:21pm PT
John, I contended that Democratic policy led to a weak recovery. Norton's response was that the recovery was so anemic because the recession was so deep. That's what led to my statement that Norton's argument implied a positive, rather than a negative, correlation between the size of the recession and the vigor of the recovery.

I've been busy, so I may well have read less than carefully. If so, what did I miss?


The Granite State.
Jul 30, 2013 - 04:43pm PT
Have you seen this video yet? Crazy!

Terry Gross interviewed him a week or two ago, and it's worth listening to.


Sometimes LA
Jul 30, 2013 - 06:29pm PT

That's the Fox News religion correspondent.

I think they're just ripping off the Onion at this point.

Trad climber
Is that light the end of the tunnel or a train?
Jul 30, 2013 - 07:22pm PT
I used to think John was one of the few reasonable and intelligent voices of the conservative platform here in TacoTown. Now it is clear he is just a party shill. Embarrassing.

Jul 30, 2013 - 07:33pm PT
It is puzzling how based upon both the events of 1929 and 2008 one can assert the Democrats are responsible for the "weakness of the recovery". This implies one could quantitatively predict what the strength of a recovery SHOULD BE. You cannot. All you can say is that under Hoover there was little recovery and the republicans fought every effort by FDR. The fact that recovery began after FDR became president is not proof that there was a causal relationship, mind you. However the absence of any recovery under Hoover makes it a plausible inference. Plausible enough that George W. Bush (even) came up with TARP. Of course TARP delivered the money directly to the CEO's of large financial corporations. That could be a causative factor but about that we may only suppose.

Hopefully "sequestration" will not lead to a replay of 1937.

I used to think John was one of the few reasonable and intelligent voices of the conservative platform here in TacoTown. Now it is clear he is just a party shill. Embarrassing.

I continue to think John is not your "average republican". It would take a prefrontal lobotomy to cause that.
Dr. F.

Boulder climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 30, 2013 - 07:43pm PT
Since 2011, the Democrats still controlled both the Senate and the White House.

after a 1000 times of repeating the same thing, JE willfully ignores the facts, and just blatantly blames the Dems for the Republican Obstructionism

He refuses to believe that the Republicans have filibustered almost every bill since 2006. The ones that did pas, took 60 votes, meaning some Republicans had to be bribed into voting for it with favors and poison pills
it takes only the Threat of a filibuster from McConnell to require 60 votes for the bill to be brought to the floor

60, the Dems don't have 60 votes... get it.. meaning that the dems could not pass the recovery package that they wanted, there was no bipartisan support for any aid to the economy, that's why it is so slow
Obama could make it recover in 2 years, create 6 million jobs, and pay back the debt in 10 years if he had a Dem congress, but he doesn't, he has a bunch of hypocritical tea baggars that want blood, and they want Obama to fail, so they will not allow him to repair America, because then he would get the credit
It treason IMO.

JE keeps harping on the Dem. policies, yet in reality we all know there where no polices of the dems that hindered the economy, the Only hindrance has been Republican Obstruction.
And of course you guys are in total lockstep with what your right wing mafia are obstructing to, why? because your right wing media already muddied the waters to make sure everything the Dems want to do is ideologically bad in your mind.

for example:
we need stimulus (which JE will say doesn't work, but it did when Reagan and Bush 1 and 2 did it)
Jobs bill (JE will say the Gov can't spend the money now)
Putting the Veterans to work (can't spend money)
infrastructure rebuilding, (ditto)
student aid (they should get their parents to pay for it)
raise the minimum wage (it will kill jobs!!)

so in other words, the Republicans aren't for anything, except for keeping the pedal on the metal in the Race to the Bottom for America, as the banksters rake in the profits

we need to invest in America, like the golden days, when America was strong and bold
Vote out all Republicans, they are the Problem.

Sport climber
mammoth lakes ca
Jul 30, 2013 - 07:45pm PT
JEleazarian...I know a lot of people , friends and family , who are still groveling as a result of Bush's wreckless fiscal policies ...Hard working , honest Americans have lost their jobs , homes , and dignity...As a result of this nuclear swindle by your home boys , the working class have been turned into scapegoats and expected to work for less so that the Roves and Bushes of the world can pay less taxes...Blaming the Democrats is only mis-directed anger...have a little compassion..

Trad climber
Is that light the end of the tunnel or a train?
Jul 30, 2013 - 08:17pm PT
Now the Retardlicans are having Gop mouth pieces use FuX noise to claim that Obama is threatening to shut the Government down.

So, you know, that must be true.
Well at least after they say it enough times.

Trad climber
Fresno CA
Jul 30, 2013 - 08:59pm PT
Dr. F's misinformation to the contrary, the Democrats had virtually complete control of economic policy from 2006 through 2010. Blaming Republican filibusters is ridiculous when one considers how the Democrats used their power.

Again, the recession came about because housing prices had inflated far beyond the ability of the average American who did not already own a house to buy one. This led inevitably to a market correction. The conservative economists said then, and say now, that there would be no substantial recovery until the housing correction finished. The liberal economists said we could tax the rich and spend our way out of the problem. They were wrong, as shown by the vast divergence between their predictions and the reality.

And Norton, it actually appears that we're saying the same thing. I talked about the recovery, you countered with the recession, which is not an argument for the strength of the recovery.

You can repeat your side of the story all you want. The fact remains that this recovery stinks, just like the conservative economists said it would, and in contrast to what the liberal economists predicted.

With that I'm through on this topic.

I did, however, promise that I would post some Thomas Nast cartoons showing that the Republican Party of Thomas Nast is not particularly different from the Republican Party now.

Unfortunately, my scanner broke down, so I resorted to taking pictures of the cartoons. I apologize for the quality, but since I said I would post them, here are a selection:

Nast on Class Warfare:

"I aimed for him" [meaning the wealthy]
"I aimed for him" [meaning the wealthy]
Credit: JEleazarian

The caption was "Will he dare do it?" but the theme was saddling the p...
The caption was "Will he dare do it?" but the theme was saddling the productive to support the unproductive.
Credit: JEleazarian

Nast on Income Tax:

"Peace with a war measure"
"Peace with a war measure"
Credit: JEleazarian

Nast on Voter Fraud:

"As long as I [Boss Tweed of &#40;Democratic&#41; Tammany Hall] count ...
"As long as I [Boss Tweed of (Democratic) Tammany Hall] count the votes, what are you gonna do about it?"
Credit: JEleazarian

Nast on National Defense:

"Our Army and Navy as it will be."
"Our Army and Navy as it will be."
Credit: JEleazarian

Nast on the Mainstream Media:

"Diogenes still looking.  [The mainstream press:] 'We are the gentleme...
"Diogenes still looking. [The mainstream press:] 'We are the gentlemen you are looking for.'"
Credit: JEleazarian

Nast on Inflation and Democratic Monetary Policy:

"Fine-Ass Committee"
"Fine-Ass Committee"
Credit: JEleazarian

Again, I'm sorry the quality of these isn't better, but the cartoons belie the liberals' assertions that the Republican Party has morphed out of touch with its former self.

There is, however, one area where Nast would not recognize today's Republicans, namely the tolerance of today's Republicans for coziness between church and state. Nast feared a country controlled by the Papacy. The only religious fear I see in modern Republicans is anti-Islamic bigotry.


Trad climber
Fresno CA
Jul 30, 2013 - 09:20pm PT

I do blame the Republicans, who are my party, for the housing bubble and the for the consequences in the form of the recession, and I blame the Democrats for our staying there.

When the Republicans controlled Congress and Clinton was in the White House, we actually had pretty good government. When Bush II became President, he failed to control his own congress. As a result we had unfunded wars, unfunded prescription drug benefits, and a government-induced housing bubble, among other bad policy (e.g. McCain-Feingold).

While the Democrats must share at least some of the blame for the housing bubble, those of us crying, Cassndra-like, about the dangers to the economy of Fannie, Freddie, very high deposit insurance and the consequent moral hazard, found that neither Democrats nor, sad to say, Republicans, paid much attention. It was only after the ship of state hit the economic iceberg that either party paid attention.

However belatedly, the Republicans at least realized that there was no real option but to allow the market to correct housing prices. The Democrats, as far as I can tell, still haven't figured it out. The California Legislature just last year passed the so-called "Homeowners' Bill of Rights" that simply delays, and adds costs to, the foreclosure process.

I know that won't satisfy you, but I'm under no illusion that my party did a particularly creditable job of managing the economy in the 21st Century.


Jul 30, 2013 - 10:04pm PT
I know that won't satisfy you, but I'm under no illusion that my party did a particularly creditable job of managing the economy in the 21st Century.

With all due respect

I think you need to expand that time frame to include at least one additional century.
Ken M

Mountain climber
Los Angeles, Ca
Jul 30, 2013 - 11:31pm PT
The interview with Reza is shameful.

It would be like saying the interviewer is not competent to interview a man, because she is a woman? How biased is that?

She is clearly not a muslim, so how is she competent to interview one?

What kind of BS is this????

Trad climber
Jul 31, 2013 - 05:25am PT
John said
I remember his saying that they DIDN'T work, but I don't recall his saying that the WOULDN'T work.

No, there were many who said very explicitly "this is not big enough but better than nothing." The Keynesian model has a pretty clear formula for how much stimulus to inject based on the overall loss of economic activity and we did not follow that model, we just made up a number that sounded huge and WAS huge in our minds but not in relation to our actual economy.

Furthermore, we have been doing austerity ever since and even moreso now. We are have also been watching austerity in Europe the whole time. It definitely isn't working.


Here are Krugman's actual columns from early January, 2009, describing his dismay that the stimulus proposed by Obama wasn't going to be big enough and spelling out exactly why:



They might sound kind of "shrill" because they use things like "facts" and "arithmetic" and have proven to be "correct." I apologize that none of this comes in cartoon format since that seems to be the medium of choice in this thread and I realize that undermines the potency of my post.
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Jul 31, 2013 - 06:25am PT
JEleazarian what a breath of fresh air you are, even if you DO live in Fresno!

The greater portion of the American electorate is moderate, by vast numbers. Why we allow extremists as#@&%es and special interests to control our voting blocks isn't a mystery. But its high time we told the Fringers of both parties to F*#K OFF.

That's right. Left, right, I don't f*#king care... you all or nothing folks can rightly F*#K OFF.

Yes ParitSAN, I mean YOU. Go f*#k off.

Dr. F.

Boulder climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 31, 2013 - 10:40am PT
Dr. F's misinformation to the contrary, the Democrats had virtually complete control of economic policy from 2006 through 2010. Blaming Republican filibusters is ridiculous when one considers how the Democrats used their power.
John's knowledge of the current politics is shamefully lacking

I'm not really sure he knows anything about what's going on, and relates everything back to the golden oldies that he is familar with.

What filibusters did the Democrats pull?
the answer was none.
it was 51 votes wins, no games, no constitutional crisis

Show me an example of How the Democrats used their power from 2006 to 2010, please.

3 bills, Obamacare, The Stimilus, and Dodd/Frank all had Republican votes to make the 60 votes

Everything else has been shut down, except a few insignificant bills that had nothing to do with the economy

It's hopeless I know, John will never accept that His Party are the root of all that is bad in America, so he has to blame it on the Dems or his head will explode!

The point of all this is: that Obama has not been able to impliment any policies to help the recovery, they have all been filibustered, so You Can Not Blame this economy on the Dems or Obama, the blame rests soley on the Republicans,
They do not want the economy to improve, they want it to get worse, and for people to starve and die, so that wages will decrease, and their base can make more money.
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