John Boehner’s Defense of the GOP Budget is Pure Fiction, if Lies Can be Called Pure

John Boehner has done it again, defending the Republican budget by making a Bartonian foray into speculative fiction. Completely bypassing reality, he held a press conference yesterday in which he asserted that,

For 53 of the last 60 years, the federal government has spent more than it has taken in – 53 of the last 60 years. It’s unacceptable.

To this day, now in his seventh year in office, the president has never proposed a budget that balances. Our budget will balance, but it’s also about growing our economy, growing jobs and building economic strength for our future.

* Note: For the record, the seven years of surpluses alluded to by Boehner are Eisenhower (2), Nixon (1), and Clinton (4).

So far so good. We mostly have deficits, not surpluses. But Boehner makes several claims that are not backed up by the facts. First a little background (inflation adjusted figures from the White House Office of Management and Budget):

  • The United States had budget deficits from 1970 through 1997;
  • This period includes deficits under Republicans presidents: 5 out of 6 years of the Nixon presidency, the entire Gerald R. Ford presidency, every year of both terms of Ronald Reagan’s presidency, and George H.W. Bush’s entire four year term in office;
  • In 1998, under President Bill Clinton, the United States experienced a surplus of +100.58 billion;
  • With Clinton still as president, this was followed by surpluses in 1999, 2000, and 2001 (+178.41, +325.17, +170.19 billion);
  • With Republican George W. Bush in office, the United States experienced a budget deficit in 2002 and every year of his presidency that followed;
  • In 2008, Bush followed his tax breaks and expensive wars by destroying the American economy, and that of the world;
  • From 2009 till 2012 the U.S. had large deficits as a direct consequence of the 2008 Crash;
  • In 2013, the deficit was half of what it was in 2012 (-691.06 vs. -1134.02 billion);
  • In September 2014, Obama truthfully points out he has cut the deficit by more than half;
  • In October 2014, the Treasury Department and Office of Management and Budget announced that the 2014 deficit as a percentage of GDP has reached its smallest point since 2007 at $483 billion, which also happens to be below the average deficit of the last 40 years.
  • In 2014, the deficit was -492 billion, almost a third of 2012’s deficit;
  • In February 2015, Obama told Republicans, truthfully as can be seen, “Since I took office, we’ve cut the deficit by about two-thirds.”

Boehner does not explain why, after all this time, a balanced budget is so essential, or explain how only a Democrat was able to achieve one since Nixon’s single surplus in 1969, or how George W. Bush’s destruction of the economy in 2008 put Obama in the position of having to bail out the economy to save us from a fate worse than 1929. It’s easier just to pretend Bush never existed, isn’t it?

We have already seen President Obama tear up the Republican budget in a brutal 60-seconds. But on top of this, and countering Boehner’s claims, we have The White House Fact Sheet On The House Republican Budget, which proves that the Republican budget is not about growth at all, but about enriching the wealthy on the backs of the middle class:

The proposals they specify would cut the tax bill of the average millionaire by more than $50,000, before even adding the proposed cuts to tax rates. Meanwhile, the House Republican budget does nothing to prevent a tax increase on 26 million working families and students.

Boehner is, to the surprise of nobody, flat-out lying. Again.

It is a fact – albeit an unwelcome fact to many – that the economy grows more under Democratic presidents. The history of the United States of the past 50 years proves it.

It is difficult to keep up with the Republican world of made-up facts, which we experience as endless talking-points (they can throw out these talking points faster than we can refute them).

On any given day I will be called a Marxist or Communist or, hilariously, I think, a “party drone” because I provide carefully cited and supported facts, while they provide dogmatic assertions which must be true because they believe them to be true, because ideologically, they must be true.

Who, then, is the real party drone?

We Democrats will be told that the United States is in trouble because of a misplaced faith in Keynesian economics. If we point out that austerity does not work, and provide, again, evidence to back this assertion up, we get things like (as I did the other day) the unsupported assurance (based on Republican talking points) that “austerity works if you do it right.”

More dogma. No facts. Just: If it’s not working, it’s just because nobody is doing it right. Gotcha.

Of course, nobody can point to an example of “austerity being done right” – in Kansas or overseas – because austerity does not work. Period. It’s impossible to do a wrong thing right. Can’t be done.

Our economy is being destroyed, I was assured the other day, because of a “weak dollar and high taxes.” I pointed out in response that our taxes in this country is are very low among advanced nations, and that the dollar is actually doing well.

The response to that is typically, “I don’t place any faith in the GDP.”

I will point out that unemployment is dropping, pay is increasing, the deficit is dropping, that in March we hit 48 straight months of job growth, and that as of December 2014 we were seeing the fastest GDP growth in a decade.

By every recognizable standard, the economy has improved under President Barack Obama. Each and every year it has gotten better. We are not back to where we were before Bush, but we are getting there.

The question naturally arises, what do you place faith in besides unsupported dogmatic assertions? You cannot simply disregard any facts you don’t like, solely on the basis that they don’t meet up with your preconceptions, and even pretend you are debating facts.

This avoidance of facts is a disease that extends from the very top of Republican party leadership all the way down to the rank and file, and all along that path there is a great reliance on what must be true based on ideological dogma. And that, as you can see here (Republicans won’t see it, trust me) is what John Boehner is selling each and every day. Not facts, but dogma.

Unfortunately for Republicans – and the rest of us – you can’t run a country based on what you want to be true. If you do, you end up in 2008 again. And that is where Boehner insists on taking us.

21 Replies to “John Boehner’s Defense of the GOP Budget is Pure Fiction, if Lies Can be Called Pure”

  1. It always depresses me when they talk budgets, I should say how they double talk, because the average american has no idea what is going on with the budget, add the fact that the right wing media always parrots the rethug talking points, and some of them still think Obama caused the great recession.

  2. Sober him up, clean him up, memorize his script. Big Money told him get out their and sale the big lie. And let the prestitute handle the rest.

    And for next 2 weeks media will make this tradegy something that is logical and Pres. Obama the tyrant, who want to distribute wealth.

    FACT: The richest 4,000 multi-millionaires, 572 billionaires do not pay taxes and will do anything to not pay the government, no matter how many Americans are suffering in poverty … estimated at 222 million in 2014. Bush tax cuts for the 1%wiped out $6.6 trillion in personal income.
    FACT: The corporate tax breaks: $3 Trillion dollars a year, twice as much as Social Security and Medicare. (100 billion in oil subsidies and 82 billion in bank subsidies) 1. Tax Expenditures: $1.25 trillion 2. Tax Underpayments: $450 billion 3. Tax Havens: up to $250 billion 4. Corporate Taxes: $250 billion 5. Financial Transaction Tax (FTT): $500 billion 6. Payroll Tax: $300 billion 7. Estate Tax: $100 billion. Corporate Tax Breaks

  4. Our congress is filled with Bill O’Reillys. They say it is true, therefore it has to be true. No data to back up their contention, you just have to accept their word.

    My understanding is there are a number of spending cuts which have not been identified. It is a little difficult to make ANY budget without specifying where the cuts are to come from. And as near as I can figure, all the cuts the Republicans are proposing are coming on TOP of the 10% cut required by sequestration. Nothing in their budget gets rid of that.

    Their budget is unsustainable.

  5. We must realize that all the Reich Wing has IS Lies! It’ would be comic karma if their noses grew every time they told a lie.

  6. There are those who will use this over and over again in the next election cycle, to enforce the belief the rethugs are the only ones who ever have a balanced budget.
    IF the Dems are smart, they would take out full page ads, road side signs, all with this info on it..
    The thugs repeat and repeat until it becomes true in the eyes of their followers..
    The Dems need to counter that with everything possible.
    Advice to the Dems, use some of that money you collect to spread, the word of truth

  7. One of the problems, and one which, unfortunately the Dems assist in creating, is the idea that any budget deficit is bad. Deficit spending is not, in and of itself, bad.

    A lot of deficit spending now, i.e. on infrastructure, education, etc., actually will creat a higher level of government income down the road.

    But the public has come to believe that deficit spending is always bad and since very few people really understand economics, they believe those who preach it the loudest, even when those preachers are lying through their teeth.

  8. Wow! They feed the public a bunch of lies,and refuse to give credit for the recovery to whom it is due. Rethugs may want to check out Europe, and ask the people in some of those countries,how austerity has worked for them. This of course won’t happen, because the truth may come out,and spoil their lies!
    By the way if you watch the clip of Boner above, his hair now is a subtle shade of green. I imagine it couldn’t break through the orange on his face.

  9. Oh come Francie, it was ST Patrick’s day, great day for drinking green whiskey with ol’ Johnny. Not Johnny Walker, johnny Beohnor.

  10. Many tea bag/repubs believe the ’08 crash was due to the Dodd-Frank bill which was signed by president Obama in ’10.

    We just can’t fix the permanently stupid.

  11. Most of them get confused between DEFICIT and DEBT

    DEFICIT = bills we pay to run this country
    DEBT = credit card debt with interest

  12. You know the one thing I haven’t read? Any of our conservative friends defense of this Budget. Maybe if you included Hillary email in the headline then they would speak up.

    Just goes to show you they are not very serious people

  13. Pffft, there are people who blame Obama for the response to Hurricane Katrina! No about of truth willever reach those “morans”.

  14. Boehner will say about the budget. The house has done its job now the senate must do their job and pass the house budget. Its all scripted. As long as he has ignorant teabaggers he can and will get away with doing nothing.

  15. For Republicans, there are certain economic beliefs that they hold religiously, and refuse to consider that they are erroneous.

    Specifically, all Republican economics is discredited 18th century Classical Economics (not even 19th century neo-Classical Economics). Classical Economics has two articles of faith: Minimal to No Taxes, and Balanced Budgets (these two are mutually contradictory, BTW).

    For those who worship at the altar of Balanced Budgets, I suggest Genesis 41. If deficits and surpluses were good enough for God, they’re good enough for me.

  16. A government deficit is an annual excess of spending over revenues. A government surplus is an annual excess of revenues over spending.The debt is the grand total of all deficits and surpluses since government accounting started.

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