Skip to comments.50 Shades of Bush Blame
Posted on 12/31/2012 8:41:08 AM PST by Kaslin
Our topic today is how George Bush destroyed America. Or, more precisely, how the Left says he did. Naturally, their solution is for America to join the ranks of European social democracies. Its the only way to not to repeat the mistakes that got us here in the first place.
The Left and their Old Media amplifiers tell a simple story: George Bush inherited from Bill Clinton a strong economy and a balanced budget. He proceeded to commit national arson by deregulating Wall Street, cutting taxes for the rich, and fighting two needless wars.
The long fuse of Bushs fiscal folly finally struck dynamite in late 2008, blowing Clintons Camelot economy to bits. President Obama has struggled boldlyagainst Republican obstruction-- to fix problems so bad not even a modest genius like Bill Clinton could have fixed them in a single term. Clinton modestly admitted this in his convention keynote. So, steady on the transformational path. Its the only way Forward to redistribution paradise and state allocated happiness.
Its a measure of the current mood that this narrative has yet to get much pushback from battered conservatives. Theyre suffering post traumatic stress from the election, and pre-traumatic stress, bracing for the preordained blame if America dives off the cliff a gleeful president seems to be gunning for.
Its a shame, because the tidy Bush tale is mostly false and grossly incomplete. Its little more than a team shout for Democrats, media cheerleaders, and partisan supporters. For that purpose, its quite effective, smearing conservative economic positions and providing perpetual cover for the cascading failure of Obamas liberal policies: The worse things are, the more it will prove how badly Bush screwed things up. Forever, says Madeline Albright.
The fog of national amnesia and unreason hides a lot, and denies the complexity that obviously exists. A nationsand presidents--economic success depends on many variables, including business climate, currency and credit strength, a reasonable fiscal balance of taxing and spending, and more. The president doesnt exclusively control any of the variables. He jockeys for influence among other factors, including Congress, the Fed, the business cycle, and unpredictable world events.
Viewing the big picture, Clinton was very lucky; Bush was very unlucky; and Obama is making it worse.
Clintons record cant be assessed out of context: six of his eight budgets were Republican documents (recall the pre-banana republic era, when Congress actually passed national budgets, and the media would have savaged congressional leaders who refused); his economy and tax revenues were buoyed on the twin bubbles of early dot.com euphoria and Alan Greenspans loose exuberance; and after his 94 rebuke by voters impelled him to declare big government dead, he generally governed moderately, playing strategic small ball, promoting global trade, and keeping largely out of the way of industry and the economy.
Also important, Clinton famously lamented he missed the kind of earth-shaking events that can lend presidential greatness, but his economic record plainly benefitted from serving in a relatively uneventful decade.
This is not to deny Clinton political credit for the prosperity America enjoyed. Thats how the game works. Presidents gain and lose stature for serendipitous reasons. But in debating policy choices, the Clinton years are no endorsement of the Obama agenda, far from it.
Too, if the charge is irresponsible deregulation, Bush deregulated very little. It was Clinton who signed the repeal of Glass-Steagall, allowing depository banks to participate in commercial banking and equity ventures. This broke firewalls that had protected depositors for decades.
Perhaps most critically, Clinton pumped risk and volatility into the finance and housing sectors. He pushed hard on banks to loosen standards and expand home loans under Carters Community Reinvestment Act. He authorized government sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac to buy subprime securities. That created a market for bundled mortgages. Thus, Clinton greatly expanded lucrative incentives for predatory lending that critics would in time blame fully on the private sector.
All of this contributed to the dynamite that exploded in 2008. The smoke and soot are on Bush, but the fingerprints are Clintons.
Far from the simple epitaph tax cuts and two wars, Bush presided over an extraordinarily turbulent and challenging time for America. The economy endured severe blows quite well. The early internet mania was already tapering, when, months into his term, Bush was called to lead the nation from the smoldering ruins of September 11. The consequences included economic convulsions. Travel and tourism stopped cold and were choked for months. The first surge of the internet bubble popped for good. IPOs that had pumped out garage-based millionaires dried up. Economic activity and tax revenues dropped sharply. Airports and travel resumed slowly and warily.
Its surprising that jobs and the economy were as resilient as they were. Critics charge the Bush tax rate cuts didnt create jobs. But there was job growth, and in context, they may have offered vital incentive for an economy reeling from so many body blows. They certainly have as fair claim to the Obama phrase of jobs created or saved.
Bush was not a significant deregulator. Apart from a prow-growth tax policy, he wasnt a fiscal conservative. Movement conservatives chafed at his big spending, big government initiatives. Importantly, though, Bush and some congressional Republicans raised concerns about the growing risk of Fan and Fred. For their trouble, they were bitterly denounced by Chris Dodd, Barney Frank and others.
If Bush wasnt a limited government conservative, neither was he a credit balloonist. The fury hit in 2008, on Bushs watch. He, and his party, understandably answered for it at the polls. But the disease that hit us was not mainly a symptom of the deficit spending liberals denounce Bush for. Rather, the infection flowed from bad loans, inflated portfolios, inflationary fed policy, and the moral hazard of a tax-backed safety net for bad bankers.
The stigma for our credit crisis and slow recovery now falls not on fiscal moderates like Bush, but on tea partiers, populists, and free market advocates who just want government to tax and spend less and take its boot off the economy. Meanwhile, the banker friends of Bill and now Barack, the Bob Rubins, Jon Corzines, Tim Geithners, and Goldman Sachs of the world are covering for, and slapping each others backs, and laughing all the way to the tax-payer backed bank.
The mistakes that got us here, indeed.
His passage of the Patriot Act will haunt all of us, Kaslin.
However, the left has done an excellent job of labeling GWB as the bad guy. He wasn’t overall, but he did make serious mistakes like the Patriot Act.
What it really comes down to: the rats control the media.
My complaint about Bush was he was worthless. He made no progress on any of the existential threats to the Republic.
Poppy restarted the decline that Reagan had momentarily halted and turned in the right direction direction.
The economic turnaround was all a Reagan illusion. Voodoo economics don't work, doncha know, so elder Bush and all who have followed have systematically undone those reforms and taken us to where we are now, admiring the view from the fiscal cliff.
If you're going to blame Bush, start with the original. All things flow from the source.
Bush is Emmanuel Goldstein. He caused aids, global warming, and Hurricane Katrina. Teen pregnancy is a result of Bush additives to the public water supply.
Only Obama can save us. But he needs to be freed from legal and constitutional limitations, so that he can ‘kick some a**’ and punish the greedy.
There. Newspeak isn’t so hard.
When you know the nature of a thing, you know what it is capable of.
super bureaucracy with super spending...just wait till TSA unionizes.
You are mistaken it did not start with President Bush 41. He did not renege on his promise not to raise taxes, but war forced by the rats to do so, and that is a fact whether you like it or not. Maybe you didn’t pay attention but I did
You might not like it, but I believe the Patriot act was necessary, because of 9/11, and tell me what rights did you lose? We are losing more rights now with this administration than we ever had or ever will
All I am saying that is our opinion and you are entitled to it. He was a million times better than that arrogant pos occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave
and .......... Thank you, again!!!
The state of the GOP, and in large part the state of the nation and its economy, flow from the Bush family. It all is as much their legacy as it is the demonrat party's.
Reagan was the idealist, non-establisment odd man out and they have made sure the era of Reagan ended in the GOP and elsewhere. Their hostility toward the TEA party republicans adds more supporting evidence. I believe it is more than just appearances that Clinton is a welcomed part of their family. Just ask Babs.
I thank you for standing by me
Here’s the big conservative Bush, just a few years prior to the housing crash, pushing home loans for totally unqualified minorities. “You can have as good of home as anyone else”.
Are you joking? Simply because 'you' or I haven't been prosecuted or suspected of doing anything does not dismiss the point that the Pat Act greatly dismissed the role of the 'accused' citizen.
Secondly, like almost ALL things Bush did. It laid a template for another President to expand the State. Either in the form of Gov't bureaucracy or for economic purposes. When we look back at recent precedences, it wont be Obama who expanded the role of the State, but Bush. And for the that, the Republic will never be the same.
The Left and their Old Media amplifiers tell a simple story: George Bush inherited from Bill Clinton a strong economy and a balanced budget. He proceeded to commit national arson by deregulating Wall Street, cutting taxes for the rich, and fighting two needless wars.Partisan Media Shills ping, and from the FRchives:
Bush made Obama possible.. but thats not the worse thing he did..
The worse thing Bush did WAS.... making it possible for democrats to blame all THEIR spending on HIM..
And they did it quite well so well that America elected Obama AGAIN..
He spent like a democrat in his second term.. AND did nothing about massive voter fraud..
The Shrub should be awarded Hero of the democrat party..
It may take a few years but he may yet get that distinction..
And YES he’s a dead ringer for Alfred E. Nueman... i.e. Madd Mag..
The republican “elite’s” must still having a great Yuk about that.. foisting that ringer on us..
I know the Dumbocrats are..