Home > Economics, Election 2012 > Once Again, A Reminder of Where the Deficit Really Comes From

Once Again, A Reminder of Where the Deficit Really Comes From

May 16th, 2012


Answer: the policies and failures of George W. Bush, the same policies still being pushed by the GOP today, toward the same failures. Under a Republican administration, the cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan might be replaced by expanding and extending our presence in those countries, plus maybe a new war in Iran (or who knows where else); the Bush tax cuts would not only be extended, but would be expanded.

Of course, all other costs of government could be put up there as well, but this does quite well to demonstrate what a huge difference the cessation of the wars and the repealing of the Bush tax cuts would make.

Not that this, even were it to come from an unbiased source, would make an impression on those opposed to Obama. They still think he’s not a Christian, for chrissakes, or even not born in the U.S. Even more moderate people have accepted the idea that the deficit is “his,” which it may be in a political sense, but clearly is an artifact of Bush and continued GOP pressure.

The problem is, voters seem far more interested in blaming whomever is in office when bad stuff is happening than they are in figuring out whose policies would lead to a better result.

It’s as if we had a babysitter who turned out to be a child molester, and after we got rid of him and hired a qualified babysitter, the kids are still suffering severe trauma, made worse by the molester hanging around, so we blame the current sitter and start looking at hiring back the molester.

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  1. Troy
    May 16th, 2012 at 15:26 | #1

    spam trap?

  2. Luis
    May 16th, 2012 at 17:12 | #2


    Eh? Could you be more specific? What’s a spam trap? Did you visit this page but get redirected? What happened?

  3. Tim Kane
    May 17th, 2012 at 00:52 | #3

    I think the Democrats should turn this graph into a flag.

    Waive it everywhere.

    The economic collapse is the result of too much supply relative to too little demand. Those conditions were impelled by the Bush Tax cuts, the Bush wars, and other gifts he gave to the rich and/or corporations

    (by other I mean lax enforcement of tax code, regulations, blind eye towards illegal immigration to undermine worker bargaining power, hiking H1B visa quotas to do the same, all to help the rich essentially capture more of the rents a corporation draws in… and this other shouldn’t be under estimated. The greatest single expense for corporations for going on several decades now has been information systems – there corporations still have to pay a lot of people middle class wages. [In the 80s Republicans said workers needed to go back an learn computers, in the 90s they did, in the naughties they outsourced that work anyway]. Since the bulk of rents are captured at the margins, by importing H1B visas, in huge numbers during the Bush administration, many workers, like yours truly, couldn’t find work, but many many more, though they found work, had to accept a much lower wage as their bargaining power had been undermined. These rents went to corporations, their executives and if any left over, then their stock holders – and in the aggregate caused massive shifts allocation of societies resources, to the ‘supply side’ of the economy.

    The long of the short of it, is the concentration of wealth during Bush’s administration, represented in the RED in the graph, caused the economy to collapse, causing or necessitating the BLUE in the graph. Essentially, then Bush and Republican policies own all it then… that is, they own, they created, almost all the debt in that graph.

    Thus, Democrats should take an abstract of that flag, and make it their 2012 campaign banner (similar to the Obama Hope banner).

  4. Troy
    May 17th, 2012 at 03:15 | #4

    I posted a comment but it did not show up.

    Then I removed a link from it but it still didn’t show up.

    I will try again:

    minor quibble — the “economic downturn” is just due to the unsustainable boom Bush inherited.

    We got out of the dotcom bust of 2001 thanks to the mortgage debt bubble of 2002-2007, and when we lost that, we got the “downturn”, ie went back to the 2001 recession.

    The Bush tax cuts were entirely suicidal. Stupid doesn’t even begin to describe it.

    If Obama wins, I predict colossal gridlock in 2013, way worse than the summer of 2011.

    But if Romney wins, I predict the House will get all they want wrt tax cuts and spending cuts, and shifting the burden of taxation off the 1% completely.

    I also think they will inflate the absolute s- out of everything to cover their tracks here.

    Not sure how they can screw up the economy worse than they already have, but they’ll find a way.

    Need to find me a Japanese mamacita and get the hell out of here. Timing is difficult, LOL. Not sure I can paradrop into Tokyo like I did in 1992 and again have my visa paperwork in process within 3 weeks . . .

    Japan does have a new ‘high-skilled visa’ point system for a 5-year visa . . .


    I’ve got 30 points already, just need 40 more. . .

  5. Troy
    May 17th, 2012 at 03:19 | #5

    @Tim Kane

    good comment, but I would add that NAFTA and MFN with China did the same to our manufacturing wage base, and these, while Republican initiatives, were passed on Democratic watches.


    this chart:


    speaks for itself.

  6. Tim Kane
    May 17th, 2012 at 03:41 | #6


    Good points. But that doesn’t necessary make the point. The decline in labor in the 1980s, the ascent of Corporate/Big Money in politics traps and limits the Democrats in their progressiveness.

    Patronage is the mother’s milk, the blood, the oxygen, (pick your metaphor) of politics. Its the link between economics and politics.

    98% of the time (or something like that) the guy with the most campaign money wins. Only 4% (or something like that, and probably less) of Americans contribute more that $400 (or something like that, and probably less) to electoral campaigns. That means money is power is politics.

    For a Democrat to get elected, progressive or not, he must first get money. The decline of unions pretty much set progressive Democrats adrift. “Enterprising” democratic politicians simply compromised them selves to court money (See Bill Clinton).

    This also means, that Big Money, in addition to owning the Repubican party, owns enough Democrats so that, Big Money ALWAYS has a majority, even if the Republicans have a minority.

    48 Republicans + Liberman, Nelson, Conrad, Landreau = Big Money Majority.

    You can taint Democrats for compromising themselves but the compromise is the symptom of a bigger problem, and not the problem itself. If there were no compromising Democrats, there would be far fewer Democrats, if any, in Congress. Republicans, don’t have that problem. They don’t have to compromise themselves to get money. Instead, they do the opposite – the get money and then mislead the public into voting for them.

    Corporations = Personhood, is the downfall of the U.S.A.

  7. Luis
    May 17th, 2012 at 09:52 | #7


    Sorry, I didn’t see what you meant by “Spam Trap” initially; I was worried that the Pharma Hack jerkwads had inserted a redirect or something.

    All you have to say is, “My comment went to spam,” and I’ll go get it and clear it.

  8. Troy
    May 17th, 2012 at 10:41 | #8


    actually that was a comment to test if I could still post, LOL

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