Republican Lies

Honestly, I could fill a book, or several, with examples of Republican lies.  But for now, let me begin with a couple of those told at last week’s Republican convention.

Let’s start at the top of the ticket with this claim from Mitt Romney:  “I wish President Obama had succeeded because I want America to succeed.”

Really?  So, we’re to believe that Governor Romney was on board with the Obama vision for America?  Perhaps somewhere we can find on record a repudiation by Romney of Rush Limbaugh’s fervent and oft-repeated desire for Obama to fail?  Maybe there is evidence that he dissuaded the group of Republicans, to include his running mate, Paul Ryan, from advancing their plan to make President Obama a one-term president, meeting to discuss their plan on Inauguration Day and working single-mindedly toward that goal to the exclusion of everything else?

At what point did Governor Romney approach Sen. Mitch McConnell and suggest that his threats to filibuster every single piece of legislation put forth by the Obama administration might not have been in the best interests of America?  How many times did he meet with Speaker John Boehner to urge compromise so as to help “America . . . succeed”?  How many speeches can we find where Governor Romney pointed out that America was not likely to “succeed” if Congress continued to be hamstrung by the Party of No?

If Governor Romney wished success for President Obama, how come he never publicly encouraged the House of Representatives to take up the President’s jobs bill, presented to Congress one year ago?  How many people might be gainfully employed today if Speaker Boehner put America’s success ahead of defeating Barack Obama?  When the jobs figures are released tomorrow, how much of that can be blamed on a do nothing Congress, and how often might we hear Governor Romney tie the lack of American success to the Party of No?

Moving down the ticket to Representative Paul Ryan, his is perhaps the most well-known lie from last week, the claim that Barack Obama is responsible for shutting down a GM plant in Wisconsin, when, in fact, the plant shut down in December of 2008, before Obama was even sworn in as President.  And although Obama did express a desire to see the plant stay open, he specifically said it would require government help to do so.  The Republicans expressly do not want government to intervene to prop up sagging industries and refuse even to acknowledge that there is not a single business in America, large or small, that has not benefited from the government in some form.  Apparently Republicans believe in an Infrastructure Fairy that builds power grids, constructs roadways, and leaves fire and rescue crews under the pillows of ambitious entrepreneurs.

Of course, Congressman Ryan tried to walk back his remarks after those irritating fact checkers pointed out, well, the facts.  He then told another lie by saying he wasn’t trying to blame Obama for the plant closing but only for the fact that it remains closed to this day.  Well, maybe there was something in the President’s jobs bill that would have helped reopen the plant.  But to be fair, even if there was, Mr. Ryan can’t be expected to know about it.  Neither he nor any of his Republican brethren ever bothered to read the President’s jobs plan.

The biggest lie of all, as noted in The Nation this week, is that the wealthiest nation on earth cannot afford to fund school lunches or Pell grants but is not so broke that we could possibly ask billionaires to pay taxes or consider trimming the Pentagon budget.

The Romney campaign has said publicly they can’t be bothered with the facts.  Specifically, according to a Romney aide, “We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers.”  As Bill Clinton pointed out last night, this is one of the few bits of truth that has slipped through the Republican spin machine.

But let’s recall just for a moment where Republican lies have led us in the past:  Trickle-down economics was going to pave the way for American prosperity.  Remember that one?  Writes Professor Susan J. Douglas of the University of Michigan, “In 1982, the Congressional Budget Office found that taxpayers earning under $10,000 lost an average of $240 from Reagan’s 1981 tax cuts, while those earning more than $80,000 gained an average of $15,130. By that fall, the jobless rate hit 10.1 percent–the worst in 42 years, and a year later 11.9 million were out of work. In 1983, the country’s poverty rate rose to 15 percent, the highest level since the mid-’60s. In 1984, a congressional study reported that cuts in welfare had pushed more than 500,000 people–the majority of them children–into poverty. Then-Attorney General Ed Meese’s response? ‘I don’t know of any authoritative figures that there are hungry children … people go to soup kitchens because the food is free and that’s easier than paying for it.’”

Keep in mind, the current crop of GOP candidates worship Ronald Reagan.

George W. Bush told so many lies, I could dedicate an entire volume of the aforementioned “several” books to his fabrications and deceit.  By far, of course, the most well known and egregious are the lies used to justify the U.S. invasion of Iraq, which directly resulted in the deaths of more than 5,000 U.S. military and more than 150,000 Iraqis, to include men and women, children and elderly.

In the course of my life, I have met people who had become so skilled at and accustomed to lying, they began to lose touch with reality.  Every thought and perception is filtered through the lens of how they can benefit or use it to advantage, and by the time the thought reaches the light of day, it has been chewed up and reshaped by their own personal spin machine.  One can conclude that it must be some form of mass hysteria that has allowed this happen to an entire political party, and they even have their own so-called “news” network with which to broadcast to the mindless sheep blindly following the herd.  I shudder to think what kind of “success” Governor Romney “wishes” on America and to what lengths he will go to visit his vision upon us.  I hope we never have to find out.

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