Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Michele Bachmann Gets Caught In Too Many Lies To Count

The latest lie that Ol' Crazy Eyes has spouted is a sneaky one:
"Well, I think the one thing we have to do is reject the new normal level of spending under the Obama administration, because President Obama amped up spending to never-seen-before levels. . . . I mean, one example I'll give you is, we had one employee at the federal Department of Transportation that made $170,000 a year at the beginning of the recession. We had the trillion-dollar stimulus, and 18 months into the recession, we had 1,690 employees making over $170,000. Government has really been growing at — a lot of largesse, but the people in the real world aren’t. And that’s what has to change. Government has no conformity at all with the real world."
She is technically correct that spending took a turn for the worse when the recession began, and that the President approved crazy raises for government employees without heeding the signs that it wasn't economically feasible.  What makes this a lie, however, is her assertion that the President in question was Obama.  The Washington Post points out that it was, in fact, 2007 when the recession began, under George W. Bush.
In other words, Bachmann gives the impression that she is talking about something that Obama did, but in fact, the big increase in government pay that she denounces started under Obama’s Republican predecessor, George W. Bush. 
In fact, the apparent source of Bachmann’s claim, a 2009 article in USA Today, made it clear that Bush recommended across-the-board raises that, after they got through Congress, resulted in boosts of 3 percent in January 2008 and 3.9 percent in January 2009. By contrast, Obama in 2010 recommended the smallest federal pay raise since 1975 — 2 percent — and then froze salaries in 2011.
One of the major memes of the rat-race for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination is pinning the economic crisis on the current administration.  Immediately following Standard and Poor's downgrade of America's credit rating from AAA to AA+, all the candidates for the GOP nomination immediately laid the slightly-worse rating squarely at the feet of the President, with one cleverly calling for "downgrading Barack Obama from president of the United States."  Oh Pawlenty!  We'll miss you.
“It happened on your watch, Mr. President,” Michele Bachmann, the Minnesota representative and Tea Party caucus leader, said, drawing applause at an afternoon rally here. “You were AWOL. You were missing in action.” 
She criticized the president for spending the day at Camp David. 
“I’m calling on the president of the United States to come back to the White House,” Mrs. Bachmann said, “address the American people before the markets open on Monday and give us his positive plan for putting the ratings back up to the AAA rating.”
Let me get this straight:  S&P downgraded the US because the President was at Camp David that day?  Hmmm.  She continued to state that S&P proved her right and that we shouldn't have raised the debt ceiling at the Ames, Iowa, GOP debate:
We just heard from Standard & Poor’s, when they dropped our credit rating and what they said is we don’t have an ability to repay our debt. That’s what the final word was from them. I was proved right in my position. We should not have raised the debt ceiling.
Of course, just about everyone knows now that that S&P actually downgraded our credit rating due to politicians holding our economy hostage and refusing to find new sources of revenue-- ahem, taxes on the mega-rich-- to bolster our deepening deficit.
Without specifically mentioning Republicans, S&P senior director Joydeep Mukherji said the stability and effectiveness of American political institutions were undermined by the fact that “people in the political arena were even talking about a potential default,” Mukherji said. 
“That a country even has such voices, albeit a minority, is something notable,” he added. “This kind of rhetoric is not common amongst AAA sovereigns.” 
The statement seems likely to bolster one Democratic line of attack, that it was tea party intransigence — not a shortcoming of leadership by President Barack Obama — that is to blame for the U.S. downgrade, from AAA to AA+. Obama himself called on Republicans to “put country ahead of party” Thursday — a dig at conservatives in Congress who are blocking his agenda.
So on just about every count related to the economy, Michele Bachmann has lied, attempting to pin a crisis on Obama when it appears to have been a problem rooted in the intractability of GOP politicians unwilling to solve this crisis in the easiest possible manner: asking those with tons of money to pay their fair share.

Of course, as we all know, this woman is freaking crazy and will lie about just about anything, to include her attendance at her own family reunion.  So who is surprised?

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