Great. Just great.
Earlier this evening I was watching ‘Jeopardy!,’- a show I used to enjoy watching regularly until the constant barrage of BS-laden nonsense political ads during the 2010 elections forced me to give it up. I’ve only watched the show a handful of times since American voters gleefully handed over control of our country back to the conservative nutjobs who were so upset they didn’t win the 2008 elections that they threw a two-year tantrum in response. But I decided to watch it tonight because, after all, it’s the middle of summer in a non-election year. It stood to reason that I’m clear of any political ads full of misleading dog-whistle Koch-brothers approved talking points, right?
Boy, was I wrong. You see, half way through the show I got a chance to see Karl Rove’s ad targeting Representative Kurt Schrader. Here it is, in all its glory (on the jump)...
Yep, the same tired talking points trotted out on behalf of Scott Bruun- which resulted in Schrader getting re-elected for a second term, preventing a Congressional seat from being flipped during the GOP’s wave of election-winning idiots. But given the attention that is given towards the debt-ceiling manufactured scandal these days, Karl Rove disingenuously attempts to connect Representative Schrader with our nation’s fiscal mess. (Of course this is done in a disingenuous manner. We are, after all, talking about Karl Rove here.) This pathetic attempt on behalf of Crossroads GPS is out-right laughable as we consider the following points made in this thirty-second piece of propaganda.
The parade of ridiculousness begins by saying to Rep. Schrader: “You voted for skyrocketing debt…” accompanied with a graphic pointing out that the debt has increased by $3.9 trillion since 2009. Now, let’s take a second and reflect upon 2008. Something occurred that year, and I’m not referring to the Presidential election. Oh, right! An unregulated, over-leveraged financial sector burdened with trillions of dollars in credit-default swaps and securitized sub-prime-mortgage backed derivatives melted down the economy. As a result, is anyone surprised that revenues took a big nose dive in 2009, resulting in over a trillion-dollar deficit? Nope. It’s all Kurt Schrader’s fault for voting for the “wasteful spending”- which was pretty much the same amount of government spending passed in every budget passed during the George W. Bush presidency. Besides, the 2009 budget was the last budget submitted to Congress by President Bush, and the deficit turned out to be one trillion dollars more than estimated. But, no, the reality is a bill came along to Schrader’s desk about increasing our nation’s deficit by trillions and Schrader enthusiastically exclaimed “Oh boy, I can’t wait to vote for this thing…!” (I can’t tell- is my sarcasm coming through?)
The nonsense continues with “You voted for a failed stimulus…” accompanied with a graphic that reads '$830 billion.' Wait a second, the “failed” stimulus? What, exactly, did the stimulus fail to do? The stimulus that stopped the hemorraghing job losses, which decreased by one-third two months after the stimulus was signed into law, and by nearly 50 percent two months after that? Every day I go around Portland and I see projects underway- and people working- due to the stimulus. The Multnomah County courthouse is getting a seismic overhaul due to stimulus funds. Of course, all of this work is being performed by robots or imported child slaves, which explains why the stimulus has failed. I mean, that’s the crux of it, right? That the stimulus is a failure because no jobs were created, other than all these people working due to the stimulus? Or is it because Obama said the stimulus would prevent unemployment from topping eight percent, and the country’s current unemployment rate is over nine percent? I mean, Christina Romer- Obama’s own economic advisor- admitted that the stimulus was a failure, right? Never mind the fact that she said it was a failure because it was too small and too much of it was tax cuts opposed to spending, those are just inconvenient points. Besides, as forty percent of the stimulus was tax cuts and conservatives claim that it “failed,” is that an implicit admission that tax cuts fail to stimulate the economy? Or are they saying that part of the stimulus worked but the spending side- and as we all know, moving money around is bad- BAD!- for the economy- “failed” to provide any stimulus?
Let's go on shall we? “...and Obamacare…” with a graphic of ‘Healthcare Takeover: $1 trillion.’ The Affordable Care Act- or ‘Congresscare’ as I like to call it, due to the hands-off approach the President took during negotiations which maddened every single liberal in the country- was a badly needed piece of legislation that addressed one of the largest contributors to our nation’s long-term debt. Although John Boehner released his version of health care bill- which would’ve covered fewer people and been even more expensive then the ACA- the reality is a 800-piece of legislation was necessary to deal with health care reform in a systemic fashion. Pre-existing conditions are covered in this bill, along with lifetime caps, along with children under the age of 26 being able to remain on their parents’ health care. But what is perhaps most laughable is the term “takeover” of health care. Has everyone else realized that the same people are providing health care after the ACA was passed are the same people who were providing health care before the ACA was passed? (Everyone except the makers of this commerical, I guess?) So, uh, there was a takeover by Obama somewhere, and Kurt Schrader helped out? When did that happen? I must’ve missed it. (And yeah, yeah… the individual mandate thing. But considering the Constitutional powers granted to Congress regarding Commerce, Tax, General Welfare, and federal pre-emption, the only way it would be overturned is if you have a right-leaning Supreme Court that is in the pockets of corporate interests. Oh, wait….)
Lets (not!) continue: “…you voted for reckless spending” accompanied with an image of money falling from the sky, as if money grew on trees or something. So clever! What does Crossroads mean by “reckless spending?’ Does he mean drug-fueled orgies between lobbyists and government regulators? Oh, wait….
How long does this thing go on...!?!?! “…and billions in new taxes and trillions in crushing debt…” accompanied with a graphic which points out that Rep. Schrader voted to raise the debt limit three times. OH NOES!!!!! You mean Schrader took the fiscally responsible step and voted for the United States to protect its full faith and credit by paying the bills that the country all ready spent? When, exactly, did not paying off your credit card bills become a fiscally conservative trait? I’m a little confused. And keep in mind Schrader has only been in office since 2009, as opposed to other Republican congressmen who all cast “aye” votes to increase the debt ceiling seven times while George W. Bush was in office. And I know the regular Blue Oregon reader knows this, but just in case you’re a casual reader or surfed over from NW Republican, it needs to bear saying: Increasing the debt ceiling does NOT mean we will go deeper in debt. We could cut government spending by 100% and guess what? We’d STILL have to increase the debt ceiling, as this goes towards spending that has all ready occurred.
As for taxes, unless you’re a smoker or have an otherworldly orange tint to your skin I’m having a hard time seeing any tax raised by Obama or Schrader in the past few years. Feel free to point out a tax increase if you see one.
The ad finally comes to an end with Schrader saying: “Good fiscal restraints.” Finally, after 25 seconds, we get a sound bite that reflects reality. Stimulus? Check. The stimulus was a badly needed injection of liquidity at a time when markets were moribund and banks weren’t lending- just like today. If the government hadn’t stepped in at that particular moment there simply wouldn’t have been any sort of economy at all. And don’t fool yourself, Republicans. McCain would’ve done the same thing, except it wouldn’t have been called a “stimulus” and you wouldn’t refer to it as a “failure.” Health care reform? Check. Health care reform provided a badly needed systemic overhaul of a system that seemed more intent on gouging customers and rewarding stakeholders then, you know, actually providing health care. Once we take on the abuses in the system created by large pharmaceutical companies, an even larger step will be achieved towards retaining some semblance of sanity to our health care system. Raising the debt limit? Check. The debt limit has been raised 78 times prior to this current “scandal.” Should our country go into default just because the Tea-stained Republicans have decided that Jesus told them not to pay the debts our country has accrued?
The most ironic thing about this commercial is that it seems to stem from a mindset that is advocating fiscal responsibility. At the same time, it is $250,000 spent based on the premise that Oregonians are stupid. Well, take a memo Karl Rove: Oregonians aren’t stupid. Take your BS Crossroads ads full of lies and get them off the airwaves in our state.
Oh yeah, and did I mention that Kurt Schrader has recently come out with a proposed Constitutional amendment to ban unlimited special interest money in elections? This amendment is the only option available to overturn the damage done with the Supreme Court's Citizen United decision. Little wonder that the big money came after him big time.
Finally, am I the only one who thinks that Crossroads is a totally appropriate name for an organization founded and run by Satan, I mean Karl Rove?