Republicans “pledge” to return to era of George W. Bush

The Republicans have a plan for governing, after all. Called the “Pledge to America,” the plan calls for repealing the health care law, extending tax cuts for the rich, freezing a wee bit of government spending, posting proposed bills online and citing the constitutional authority allowing any proposed legislation.

There are a couple of other provisions — including a promise to “respect life and traditional marriage” that appeals to the party’s base of social conservatives. Mostly, the entire pledge is standard boilerplate, repeating some parts of the Declaration of Independence and July 4th speeches about the greatness of America.

But the most fascinating thing about the document is that it has absolutely no credible ideas for creating jobs or eliminating the deficit. None. Not one.

The wretched condition of the economy is the single issue that stirs most voters. It explains much of the anger, anxiety and hopelessness abroad in the land. It also explains why Republicans stand a good chance of taking over the House of Representatives.

And what would the GOP do? Repeal health care, which would have zero effect. Correction: The WaPo’s Ezra Klein is right, while I’m wrong about health care. The law “bends the curve” a bit and reduces the deficit. so repealing it would increase the deficit by more than $4 trillion over the next 10 years.

The GOP would freeze just a bit of discretionary spending, which might increase the unemployment rate while having virtually no effect on the deficit.

But the dumbest and least credible part of the plan calls for extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest two per cent of Americans — the very tax cuts that led to the sea of red ink in which we are currently drowning. There are no — repeat, NO — credible economists who believe extending those tax cuts will lead to an era of prosperity and job creation.

We’ve already seen how those tax cuts worked. They created the “lost decade” of no net jobs growth. From a Washington Post story written in Jan. 2010:

There has been zero net job creation since December 1999. No previous decade going back to the 1940s had job growth of less than 20 percent. Economic output rose at its slowest rate of any decade since the 1930s as well.

Middle-income households made less in 2008, when adjusted for inflation, than they did in 1999 — and the number is sure to have declined further during a difficult 2009. The Aughts were the first decade of falling median incomes since figures were first compiled in the 1960s.

The following chart, from the WaPo compares other decades in recent US history:
GR2010010101701

I’ve read stories of ancient peoples who, faced with calamity, turned to spells, cast out demons, burned “witches” at the stake or killed all their cattle — all in a futile effort of do something, anything, to relieve their misery. The GOP is in such a moment, turning to voodoo economics.

774 comments Add your comment

Real Scooter

September 23rd, 2010
7:20 am

Real Scooter

September 23rd, 2010
7:20 am

Real Scooter

September 23rd, 2010
7:29 am

When all else fails,play the Bush card.

Booger Sandwich

September 23rd, 2010
7:38 am

Sounds like a plan!!

PS…I wonder what the next Unemployment numbers will be? Should be interesting.

Ahilq

September 23rd, 2010
7:38 am

I’m ‘exhausted’.

granny godzilla

September 23rd, 2010
7:48 am

Seems the link I tried to Red State won’t work….

I’d suggest y’all read Eric Erickson’s piece called the Pledge
dreck and paplum and best left to be forgotten.

JKL2

September 23rd, 2010
7:50 am

The Contract with America came out in 1994. I think that’s when the Republicans took control of Congress under Clinton.

I thought the White house said the economy was humming along beautifully? If that’s the case, why would the Republicans need to address it specifically?

Soames

September 23rd, 2010
7:50 am

No data from the 30’s CT? I’m pretty sure that would be another ‘lost decade’ of zero job growth.

Tony

September 23rd, 2010
7:51 am

“the very tax cuts that led to the sea of red ink in which we are currently drowning”

come on CT- I don’t care if the Bush tax cuts for the richest 2% expire but, speaking of percentages, have at least 1% of journalistic integrity.

granny godzilla

September 23rd, 2010
7:51 am

“I thought the White house said the economy was humming along beautifully?”

Suggest review of thought process as no such thing was ever said.

carlosgvv

September 23rd, 2010
7:52 am

The Republican Pledge to America is actually a Pledge to Corporate America, the masters the GOP bow down to. So, it’s no suprise this plan does nothing for the average American but keeps a great deal of money for the wealthy. This is exactly what you would expect from the party of the wealthy.

Peadawg

September 23rd, 2010
7:53 am

“But the dumbest and least credible part of the plan calls for extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest two per cent of Americans” – I agree on you with that statement.

” freezing a wee bit of government spending” – if you mean “wee bit” as in you can’t really tell a difference…that’s exactly what Obama’s done. Republicans need to cut A LOT more than just a wee bit.

“plan calls for repealing the health care law” – good. that hc “reform” bill is just going to make premiums go up that much quicker. this does need repealing

“respect life and traditional marriage” – good

smooveb

September 23rd, 2010
7:53 am

“But the most fascinating thing about the document is that it has absolutely no credible ideas for creating jobs or eliminating the deficit. None. Not one. ”

The government doesn’t create jobs, CT. It only creates regs that get in the way of creating jobs. There is 1.3 trillion dollars sitting on the sidelines (so I’m told) ready to be invested as soon as business knows which way the wind is blowing. BTW knucklehead, those top 2% you keep wanting to tax are the cats that create the jobs.

“Repealing health care would have no effect?” We’ve seen what’s in it and the job creators (the top 2%) aren’t willing to spend. I know this because I am one.

dougmo2

September 23rd, 2010
7:54 am

“But the most fascinating thing about the document is that it has absolutely no credible ideas for creating jobs or eliminating the deficit. None. Not one.”

Neither does our current president Cynthia. If he did his economic team would not be abandoning the sinking ship.

T-Town

September 23rd, 2010
7:55 am

Ah the rite of fall, the leaves begin to turn, the temperature begins to moderate, and the political signs begin to grow. We have my candidate is better than yours, tax the rich, give to the poor, it’s Bush’s fault, no it’s Obama’s fault, our side is more focused on the problems than yours, and the part I hate the most: those TV political ads at every turn. Thanksgiving can’t get here too soon, so if you want to, have a nice day.

barking frog

September 23rd, 2010
7:56 am

When you don’t have a new idea, repeat an old idea
using different words. This has been perfected by
journalists and stolen by politicians.

DebbieDoRight

September 23rd, 2010
7:56 am

Morning Granny!! So it seems like it’s Contract With America Redux. Why can’t republicans ever come out with something NEW? How about some New ideas, New plans, New incentives? Don’t you guys get sick and tired of the same old spin over and over again? This week let’s blame gays for everything….next week let’s blame Mexicans……week after let’s blame Obama….. week after that let’s blame Clinton……week after that let’s blame every Muslim upon the face of the earth……week after that it’s back to gays.

Good Grief

September 23rd, 2010
7:57 am

Wow, CT, why didn’t you just use the headline: Republicans plan to beat minorities and starve the poor.

DebbieDoRight

September 23rd, 2010
7:58 am

Neither does our current president Cynthia. If he did his economic team would not be abandoning the sinking ship.

Well, do YOU have any ideas? Pot meet kettle.

Barbara

September 23rd, 2010
7:58 am

If you change the beginning and ending periods you get a different result. Dishonest analysis, dishonest perspective. Notice that the utter failure of the Obama adminstration is not mentioned. Recovery summer tuned into stangant summer. The only democrat solution offered is to raise taxes. How many of you think that raising taxes will help unemployment? Can someone buy the progressives a clue.

In a few weeks there is going to be a referendum in America on whether Obama and the democrats have expanded the role and scope of the federal government too much. Have they been out of touch? Arrogant? Have they grown spending too much? Did they forget about appropriate constitional limits? Was the stimulus a disaster? Do you think Obmacare is a good idea? Is more government the answer to every problem?

Do you feel like your government is listening to you or jamming what they think is good for you down your throat?

Some people are going to love the democrats. And they should vote for them.

I’m betting that many, many of us do not. Many of us are sickened by what we have seen in Washington with our congress voting on bills they have not read and don’t understand. Many of us are revolted by the hyper partisan rhetoric coming from a man who promisd to be post partisan. Many of us feel like the country is spinning out of control, driven by elites who don’t think they ought ot be accoutable to the rest of us.

We heard Rham Emmanuel say that they were not going to “waste a good recession”. We watched as the democrats used a difficult economy to implement their vision of massive government, instrusive control and ov erreaching regulation. We reached the conclusion that our leadership does not care about us… they care about their ideology, about remaking the United States in some other mold. No Thank you!

The people who are concerned are going to turn out in massive numbers. They are going to vote against the democrats at every level of government. The only tool we have, our only voice is our vote and we fully intend to do our part to stop the slide.

Azazel

September 23rd, 2010
8:00 am

How much spending is reduced by the missle defense system?

Jimmy62

September 23rd, 2010
8:01 am

Time for the Tea Party to rise up and throw these fools out of the GOP.

DebbieDoRight

September 23rd, 2010
8:02 am

We heard Rham Emmanuel say that they were not going to “waste a good recession

You also heard Cheney say that Deficits don’t matter — why weren’t you up in arms about that?

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 23rd, 2010
8:02 am

Why CEOs can’t stand Obama

Corporate leaders are slamming the president over taxes and the uncertain effects of his policies, and the executives’ siege mentality is holding back the economy.

By Michael Brush

Is fear of President Barack Obama one reason we’re stuck with sluggish economic growth?
That’s the message the CEOs of several major companies are sending out.
In unusually vitriolic attacks on a sitting president, including references to communist Russia and Adolf Hitler, CEOs have complained they can’t predict what Obama will do next — and how his new regulations and taxes might hit their companies.
—————-

Heckuva job creating that healthy economic environment, Idiot Messiah!

Good Grief

September 23rd, 2010
8:05 am

Here’s an idea concerning the deficit, and I’ve written this here several times, but apparently it’s a dumb idea. If you do NOT have any money, then you cannot keep spending money. I’ve even used the example of myself.

In my early twenties, my checking account had only $2. I could’ve continued spending money in the hopes that more money would magically appear… or I could’ve done the reasonable thing and cut my expenditures. By cutting my spending, and saving the money I was already making, I was able to get beyond that point.

Our government needs to do the same thing. But, when I listen to the liberal side, I get the impression that cutting spending is just not an option. What we need to do, according to many of these liberals, is increase revenue. I mean, Jim Moran, D-Va, has told us that we have a simplistic notion that people with wealth are entitled to keep it.

godless heathen

September 23rd, 2010
8:05 am

Lest we forget, the decade of zero net job growth was bookended by two, actually three events. 9/11 precipitated a recession and the decade ended with a very tough recession, neither of which can be blamed on tax cuts for the rich. And the other event that came at the end of the decade? The election of Barack Obama was pretty much a known thing by mid 2008. Not something that boosted confidence in the business community.

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 23rd, 2010
8:05 am

Looks like the Idiot Messiah agreed with John Boehner…his failed economic team DID need to go. Orszag, Summers, Romer. All gone.

Kamchak

September 23rd, 2010
8:06 am

I thought the White house said the economy was humming along beautifully?

Ummm, no.

That was Arthur Laffer in 2006.

-”The United States economy has never been in better shape!”

-”Monetary policy is spectacular!”

-”This economy…is working beautifully!”

-To Schiff: “I’ve never heard so many mistakes!”

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 23rd, 2010
8:07 am

Wow, Kamchak, that was lame! Can we get some quotes from THIS decade?

Tony

September 23rd, 2010
8:08 am

Debbie- we look forward to you coming back to earth at some point- safe landing and share the hookah next time you have it.

granny godzilla

September 23rd, 2010
8:10 am

What is it about economic advisors and a two year time frame?

Bush lost Larry Lindsey and Paul O’Neill in the same time frame.

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 23rd, 2010
8:10 am

BTW Kamchak, the Dow was around 14000 during that time frame you referenced.

dougmo2

September 23rd, 2010
8:11 am

Debbie@7:58

It is not my job to fix the mess Obama has gotten us into. I have enough problems raising my kids. However it is Obama’s job to find solutions to the problems he has created.

Let 'em die

September 23rd, 2010
8:13 am

Do away with insurance covering preexisting conditions – vote republican.

granny godzilla

September 23rd, 2010
8:13 am

Morning Debbie

I am so glad to have you join us.

Kamchak

September 23rd, 2010
8:13 am

2010 is the last year of this decade, lil’ bb brain.

Joel Edge

September 23rd, 2010
8:13 am

“it has absolutely no credible ideas for creating jobs or eliminating the deficit. None. Not one.”
So, it’s like the current administration. No change is good. At least it’s not change for the worse.

Peadawg

September 23rd, 2010
8:14 am

Do away with insurance covering preexisting conditions, which will cause premiums to rise at a much faster rate for everybody – vote republican.

FYT

Tony

September 23rd, 2010
8:14 am

Granny- you are correct- two of the the worst presidents re: economic policies. Thank you for affirming.

Booger Sandwich

September 23rd, 2010
8:14 am

After a spectacular retaking of the Congress and overthrow of the Republicans presidency it is so very rewarding/satisfying to see The Imam Obama going down in flames like a Japanese Kamakazi…his entire presidency is, at this very minute imploding…his appointed rats are leaving him, his stupid ideas and miserable efforts twisting in the wind for all to see.

Ahh yes…Hope and Change have been grounded on the rocks of reality.

Keep up the good fight!

September 23rd, 2010
8:15 am

Well I certainly want no one to blame Bush for the return to Bush era. It’s got to be Clinton’s fault….I mean he did things in the oval office. No wait, let’s make it Carter. Can we go back to Roosevelt?

Credible ideas? This is from a party that takes credit for everything it opposes when it turns out to work. Stimulus bad but stimulus checks to hand out good!

And the great news today is that many of the critical aspects of health care reform go into effect! No lifetime caps. No denials for preexisting conditions for children (or the wrongful denials by insurance companies who falsely claim that a “preexisting” condition for a newborn baby was not disclosed).

Contract to Screw America was a lot of failed promises the first time….it will be even more the second time.

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 23rd, 2010
8:16 am

Two words: Recovery Summer.

Too fkn funny!

Peadawg

September 23rd, 2010
8:16 am

Ya, Joel, I’ve asked Cynthia many times about Obama’s plan to create jobs and and cut spending that actually makes a dent, but all I get are crickets……

Booger Sandwich

September 23rd, 2010
8:16 am

The Obama Express has jumped the tracks.

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 23rd, 2010
8:17 am

I thought the Idiot Messiah wanted to be a REALLY GOOD one term president?

Liar.

MRJ

September 23rd, 2010
8:17 am

Let’em die, I agree. Republicans have the REAL death panels. Vote for the Republicans!

granny godzilla

September 23rd, 2010
8:18 am

Tony

“two of the the worst presidents re: economic policies.”

1/2 right.

Whether you or Joel or our troll du jour want to admit it or not,
the Obama Administration pulled us out of the whole YOU created.

That’s affirmation dude.

Bubba Bob

September 23rd, 2010
8:18 am

“But the most fascinating thing about the document is that it has absolutely no credible ideas for creating jobs or eliminating the deficit. None. Not one.”

I thought you were talking about Obama’s speeches.

Booger Sandwich

September 23rd, 2010
8:18 am

The USS Ayetollah Obama is taking on massive amounts of water and taking the democratic party down with it. Hollywood couldnt have scripted a better story…its a BLOCKBUSTER and worthy of a Oscar!

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 23rd, 2010
8:18 am

MRJ, if you want health care, go and get some. It’s all around you.

Now, if you want to help yourself to the property of others, that’s a different discussion…