Former President Bill Clinton returned to bask in the national spotlight, giving the Democratic National Convention nomination speech for the current White House occupant.
Not surprising for a speech coming from someone impeached for perjury by Congress, the speech, while delivered with Slick Willie’s signature “I feel your pain” polish, was riddled with falsehoods.
While it would be instructive to do a point by point rebuttal to Clinton’s lie filled rambling, few people have the time to invest in listening to one of Slick Willie’s exercises in verbosity, much less reading a rebuttal of the entire rendering. Hence only selected portions are to be found herein.
The lies began with: “We think ‘we're all in this together’ is a better philosophy than ‘you're on your own.’”
That statement is a straw man argument, pure and simple.
Conservative Americans point to America’s long history of family, community, church and private charities, not government, successfully tending to the needs described in the phrase “we’re all in this together”. Only those with the “progressive” collectivist mindset believe relying on the private sector for solutions equates to “you’re on your own.”
Clinton then stooped to a not so subliminal ad hominem attack on Conservative Americans: “It turns out that advancing equal opportunity and economic empowerment is both morally right and good economics, because discrimination, poverty and ignorance restrict growth, while investments in education, infrastructure and scientific and technological research increase it, creating more good jobs and new wealth for all of us.”
In one sentence, he elevates “progressives” to the “morally right” position while lowering Conservative Americans to the level of being ignorant, discriminatory, and in favor of poverty. Not only is this smear factually unsubstantiated, it is carefully phrased to tug at the heartstrings of “progressive” followers.
What the sentence also misrepresents is that in reality, more Washington spending on education has only reaped diminished results. Infrastructure spending has created precious few jobs. Scientific and technological research has been far most productive and successful when done in the private sector economy. Just ask Silicon Valley, where private capital and the private sector free market, not government, created new wealth.
He then attacked Congressional Republicans with: “When times are tough, constant conflict may be good politics but in the real world, cooperation works better. After all, nobody's right all the time, and a broken clock is right twice a day. All of us are destined to live our lives between those two extremes. Unfortunately, the faction that now dominates the Republican Party doesn't see it that way. They think government is the enemy, and compromise is weakness.”
The “faction that now dominates the Republican Party” does not view government as the enemy. They view government that promotes government dependency by being too large, too expansive, too expensive, too controlling, too overreaching and too intrusive into the private lives of free American Citizens as the enemy. They do not see compromise as weakness. What they understand is that “progressives” are incapable of and uninterested in compromise. The “faction that now dominates the Republican Party” understands that bargaining with those whose negotiating position begins and ends with “what’s mine is mine and what’s your is ours” is a fool’s errand.
Clinton then returns to a “progressive” staple, the straw man: “In Tampa, the Republican argument against the President's re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn't cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in.”
This attack employs the long term “progressive” strategy of repeating the lie that Republican policies created the economic crisis of 2008.
The Glass-Steagall Act had stringently separated commercial banking from investment banking. Its repeal contributed to the 2008 credit crisis by allowing mortgage back securities to be traded in the investment commodities market. The “progressive” left loves to blame the repeal of Glass-Steagall on Republicans. Gramm-Leach-Bliley, the 1999 law that repealed Glass-Steagall, passed in the Senate by a vote of 90-8. Thirty eight Democrats, including Joe Biden, voted for the final bill. Bill Clinton signed the bill into law.
Clinton actively favored reductions in housing market standards by government-sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. He can also be blamed for encouraging bad loans to be made and promoting regulations that incentivized banks to make risky loans to unqualified home buyers through expansion of the Community Reinvestment Act.
The facts show that the 2008 economic crisis was a product of “progressive” social engineering in the American housing market. The constant repetition by “progressive” politicians that it was caused by failed Republican policies is a flat out lie.
Being able to lie convincingly has always been Bill Clinton’s special gift. He was in typical Clintonesque Academy Award winning form during his DNC speech.
The story continues: “The Recovery Act saved and created millions of jobs and cut taxes for 95 percent of the American people. In the last 29 months the economy has produced about 4.5 million private sector jobs. But last year, the Republicans blocked the President's jobs plan costing the economy more than a million new jobs. So here's another jobs score: President Obama plus 4.5 million, Congressional Republicans zero.”
The pork filled stimulus bill “saved jobs” in fiscally irresponsible states and communities that without a taxpayer funded bailout could no longer sustain the costs of government sector union pensions, benefits and other wasteful government spending. It did not create private sector jobs. Of the alleged “4.5 million private sector jobs” that have been created “in the last 29 months”, most are low paying jobs. The Survey of Consumer Finances found that median wealth for American families has plunged by 39 percent. Those same families have experienced an average median loss of $4,000 in income.
The Republicans who “blocked the President's jobs plan”, a plan that failed in the Senate by a vote of 50 to 49, included Democrats Ben Nelson of Nebraska and Jon Tester of Montana, who also did not support the measure. The facts show that it was the loss of those two Democratic votes that doomed the plan.
Those tax cuts “for 95 percent of the American people” were cuts in the payroll tax, which funds Social Security. For purely partisan political gain, those cuts created the illusion that workers were getting a real tax cut while defunding the Social Security trust fund depended upon by retiring Baby Boomers.
Clinton saved his most egregious lies for Medicare: “Both Governor Romney and Congressman Ryan attacked the President for allegedly robbing Medicare of 716 billion dollars. Here's what really happened. There were no cuts to benefits. None. What the President did was save money by cutting unwarranted subsidies to providers and insurance companies that weren't making people any healthier. He used the saving to close the donut hole in the Medicare drug program, and to add eight years to the life of the Medicare Trust Fund. It's now solvent until 2024. So President Obama and the Democrats didn't weaken Medicare, they strengthened it.”
The truth is, obama”care”, a gigantic tax increase on all Americans, that for partisan political reasons remains hidden from voters by the institutionalized “progressive” left, robs $716 billion from Medicare to help pay for obama”care”. This was necessary because despite all the hidden taxes, “progressives” could not successfully manipulate the numbers to make it appear cost neutral without stealing from Medicare. The “progressives” then double count that money by saying it is also going to close the donut hole in the Medicare drug program. Paul Ryan’s plan takes that $716 and puts it in a trust fund that actually will extend the life of Medicare.
Clinton attacks the GOP candidates on a multitude of topics, but the most unbelievable assertion he made in his entire speech is that the current Chief Executive “is still committed to cooperation.” Barrack Obama has never been committed to cooperation.
On his third day in office, when challenged by a Republican Senator about his plans, replied: “I won.” He, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid then isolated Republicans from the legislative process by holding their meetings behind closed doors.
Why was it possible for Clinton to stand on the DNC stage and lie about the Republican Congress doing nothing? Because Harry Reid continues the lock out process, preventing a plethora of jobs and economic recovery bills passed by the Republican House from even being debated, much less voted on in the “progressive” Democrat controlled Senate.
If Americans believe in an all-powerful, manipulative, micro-managing, centrally planned big government run by liars, whose negotiating stance is “what’s mine is mine and what’s your is ours” they will vote to re-elect “progressives”. In that case, they will be co-signing America’s death sentence.