Should George W. Bush write for Wisebread?

by Paul Michael on 21 September 2007 9 comments
Photo: Brandie

I'm not sure how many of you watch the news or read the news blogs on a daily basis. I know I can't, it's way too depressing to do every day. But when I saw that George W. Bush, our President, claimed he was fiscally responsible I almost snorted tea out of my nose and onto my monitor. Fiscally responsible? Seriously?

In a press conference on Thursday morning (Sept. 20) our ever popular leader had this to say when asked if there was a risk of the United States economy going into recession.

"You need to talk to economists...I think I got a B in Econ 101. I got an A however in keeping taxes low, and being fiscally responsible with the people's money."

 

 

 

 

Hmmm. First up, I'm fairly sure that George W. Bush got a C in Econ 101 when he was an undergraduate at Yale. I've read that in the usual liberal rags and websites, like this one. Does that mean he was exaggerating in his favor? No, he'd never do that.

I also can't say I'm a great economist either but I do know a thing or two about fiscal responsibility. Regardless of your political affilliations it's hard to deny that George W. Bush has not been been spending our money without prejudice. In fact, you could very easily argue that keeping taxes low IS NOT being fiscally responsible, especially during a war when we need every cent we can get. Where is the responsibility? Where are the sacrifices? In other wars, people were rationed. In this one, Mr. Bush told us to go out shopping after the 9/11 attack.

In my opinion, and the opinion of many others, fiscal responsibility means reducing or eliminating debt, balancing a budget, controlling spending, not borrowing, and well, all that stuff you were taught in Econ 101 (ahem, sorry, couldn't resist).

So I'm not entirely sure what Mr. Bush means. If you go here you can see the US National Debt is enormous. I mean gigantic. It goes up so quickly I can't even put a figure here for you, by the time this is published it will be even bigger. I also recall that we had a surplus at one point, or was that just a big ol' fat dream?

Many people will argue that none of this is Mr. Bush's fault. The war was necessary (I could write a book on against that one), the economy sank due to 9/11, he's doing a great job, and yada yada yada. But whatever you believe can you really say that a President who's sunk this country into enormous debt and reduced the value of the dollar to that of the Canadian dollar (it hasn't been this low in decades) is fiscally responsible?

If so, then I wonder, should George W. Bush write for Wisebread? Maybe he can tell us all what we've been doing wrong. I for one thought I had the right idea, but now I'm thinking of getting 18 credit cards and buying a new Porsche. Screw it, my kids can handle the debt, I just wanna have fun!

Oh, and in case you missed it, here's the clip. You'll notice he stutters on the word "fiscally." Guilty conscience maybe?

 

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Andrea Karim's picture

That theorized that Bush speaks very clearly and concisely when he is talking about something that he believes in, but stutters when he is lying or being insincere. As someone who is obsessed with linguistics, this idea fascinated me.

I got in a recent argument at a family dinner about fiscal responsibility. It was my nuclear family, the liberals, against some in-laws, the conservatives, and me, somewhere in between, saying "Trickle down is a NICE idea, but... well, welfare doesn't always work the way it should... then again, the rich could afford to give more...." I'm torn, but I do know this: our President didn't have a Texan accent when he was running for governor. 

Guest's picture
David

"Many people will argue that none of this is Mr. Bush's fault." - I am not sure about "many". How about "a few"?

Guest's picture
ThePete

Hey there, just wanted to point out that the National Debt is different from the US government's budget--the budget, during the Clinton years had a surplus. In other words, they had more money in government than they knew what to do with. The National Debt is the amount of money the US has borrowed to fuel its economy. Any cash you might have in your pocket technically has to be paid back to the Federal Reserve (including any money in your bank account). That's where the frighteningly huge number (approaching $9 trillion as I type this!) comes from. Yes, our economy, as I understand it, is based entirely on credit (debt).

In fact, just recently, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson asked Congress to vote to raise the borrowing cap because the USG will run out of operating funds on October 1, 2007. Yipes!

BUT THANK GEORGE WE'RE SAFE FROM AL QAEDA!

Not.

Paul Michael's picture

You're right. The way I put those two together is confusing the issue. Our national debt hasn't been helped by GWB but it's not like it was at zero when Clinton was in office. However, he sure did spend that budget surplus pretty darned quickly.

Guest's picture
Steve W

Are you sure he can actually write?

But Yes on Greenspan. He actually understands economics.

Guest's picture
ThePete

Paul, true--the National Debt has been huge for a long time. But under Bush the government's borrowing cap has been raised something like five or six times on Bush's watch. If memory serves, I read someplace that previous occupants of the White House generally raise it once, maybe twice, while in office. So, you know you're on to something with this article! Fiscal responsibility is not exactly Bush's strong suit. :)

Guest's picture
River

...too busy spending my tax dollars in Iraq :P

Guest's picture
Joe

Can't we save such shrill acid-baths for ihatebush.com or such sites? Last I checked, this site was for advice about finances and frugality, not bomb-throwing political flame-wars (which are a dime a dozen, really easy to find, and something I endeavor to avoid.)

Besides, you'd never get me to agree that cutting taxes is a bad thing -- I'm a cut spending type of guy. Hence my presence on this site. :)

Guest's picture
Andrew Yu-Jen Wang

Speaking of George W. Bush:

George W. Bush committed hate crimes of epic proportions and with the stench of terrorism (indicated in my blog).

George W. Bush did in fact commit innumerable hate crimes.

And I do solemnly swear by Almighty God that George W. Bush committed other hate crimes of epic proportions and with the stench of terrorism which I am not at liberty to mention.

Many people know what Bush did.

And many people will know what Bush did—even to the end of the world.

Bush was absolute evil.

Bush is now like a fugitive from justice.

Bush is a psychological prisoner.

Bush has a lot to worry about.

Bush can technically be prosecuted for hate crimes at any time.

In any case, Bush will go down in history in infamy.

Submitted by Andrew Yu-Jen Wang
B.S., Summa Cum Laude, 1996
Messiah College, Grantham, PA
Lower Merion High School, Ardmore, PA, 1993

“GEORGE W. BUSH IS THE WORST PRESIDENT IN U.S. HISTORY” BLOG OF ANDREW YU-JEN WANG
______________________
I am not sure where I had read it before, but anyway, it is a linguistically excellent statement, and it goes kind of like this: “If only it were possible to ban invention that bottled up memory so it never got stale and faded.” Oh wait—off the top of my head—I think the quotation came from my Lower Merion High School yearbook.