There is nothing more disappointing about liberals than their historic unwillingness to fight back when the right wing uses every trick in the book to gain political advantage and despoil legitimate policy reforms. President Obama pledged to “call out ” those Republicans who indeed did lie, but so far neither he nor his surrogates have had the desire to fight back- not with partisan invective but just the facts.
So here is my modest attempt to help the much too kind liberals, “call out” the far right and set the record straight on an ever growing list of misstatements, commonly called lies.
Death panels are a fiction of the Republican naysayers who claim that the government is intent on speeding the demise of grandma and grandpa; in reality death panels are groups of insurance company executives sitting around a table in corporate headquarters going over the claims of a patient who is in serious trouble or may in the future be in serious trouble, and then denying them coverage. That is a death panel.
Socialism is an economic system in which the government takes over most, if not all, of the major economic assets of the country, provides cradle to grave personal security programs and supports high taxes in order to pay for these generous benefits. Temporarily helping banks and car companies get out of hock with government intervention, providing a public OPTION in health care to those without health care and providing modest tax CUTS to the middle class is not socialism, it is just plain and simple crisis management to help a country avoid another Great Depression.
Deficit Spending and National Debt have become the rallying cries of the right. But you’ll never guess who created mountains and mountains of deficits and debts over the last 30 years; it was the Republicans from Reagan to Bush to Bush. Just in case memories are short, the only surplus to occur in the national budget was in the final years of the Clinton administration. Everyone of these fiscal conservative presidents jacked up the deficits and took this country further and further into national debt. Now all of a sudden when it suits their fancy, the right is concerned about deficits and debts. Just remember, they are the experts on how to get this country into a financial sinkhole.
Tax increase fear mongering has always been the ace in the hole for the right. Give them credit, the Republicans have been masters at scaring the beejesus out of Americans on taxes. Of course, the Republicans conveniently fail to mention that cutting taxes is really about helping the rich and that during their time in power wages and personal wealth for the middle class flatlined. When the right is faced with taxes on the rich, they shout out “class warfare,” but when they stick it to the middle class, it’s all about helping the economy grow at some distant and unnamed future date.
When Congressman Joe Wilson of South Carolina yelled out ” You lie ” at the President, he was rightly admonished by the House of Reprentatives and even some embarrassed members of his own party. But Wilson’s outburst was just one sad episode of bad manners, while everyday the right bends the truth or simply lies to get back into the game. It’s time for liberals to call a lie what it is – a lie.