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GOP Will Vote to Criminalize Reagan

July 18, 2011

If nothing else, you have to hand it to Congressional Republicans for sheer "choot-spa" when it comes to the national debt. Not content to destroy the U.S. economy rather than raise a dime of revenue from the wealthiest Americans, Republicans will vote Tuesday for the "Cut, Cap and Balance Act" making draconian spending reductions inevitable and future tax increases virtually impossible. As it turns out, the Ryan budget that 235 House Republicans and 40 GOP Senators just voted for would fail to meet the targets they will endorse tomorrow. More ironic still, with their new balanced budget amendment, Republicans would turn the sainted Ronald Reagan into a constitutional criminal.
Before they bless the emerging McConnell-Reid "Plan B" proposal to boost the debt ceiling and avoid a U.S. default, Republicans leaders will first give the default deniers and debt kamikazes of their Tea Party zealots another chance to grandstand. As The Hill reported, different House and Senate versions of the balanced budget amendment are set to come up for a vote this week:

The balanced-budget amendment needs a two-thirds vote in each chamber and cannot pass without at least 48 Democrats in the House. It is much more stringent than a balanced-budget amendment from the 1990s in that it caps spending at 18 percent of GDP and requires a two-thirds vote to raise taxes.

Of course, neither version will pass. Which, ironically, is actually good news for its GOP supporters.
Leave aside for the moment that Americans overwhelming disapprove of the Republicans' handling of the debt ceiling crisis they manufactured or that the Cut, Cap and Balance Act doesn't lay out what spending cuts they would make. (As Utah Senator Orrin Hatch put it, "When the time comes, I'll name them. I don't want to do it right now, because we have to pass that amendment.") As it turns out, the 98% of Republicans in Congress voted for Paul Ryan's budget plan would fail their own Cut, Cap and Balance test.

As Ezra Klein explained in April:

House Republicans voted to make the Ryan budget law. But the Ryan budget includes $6 trillion in new debt over the next 10 years, which means that to become law, the Ryan budget would require a substantial increase in the debt ceiling. But before the Republicans agree to increase the debt ceiling so that the budget they passed can become law, Republicans are demanding the passage of either a balanced budget amendment that would make the Ryan budget unconstitutional or a spending cap that the Ryan budget would, in certain years (and if you're using more realistic numbers, in all years), exceed.

Sadly for the Republican slash and burn crowd, outlays by the federal government haven't been as low as 18% of GDP since 1966. (That's why the Simpson-Bowles Commission created by President Obama and opposed by Senate Republicans set a still-difficult 21% target.) Which means that if a reanimated Ronald Reagan were president today, Congressional Republicans would have to impeach him.

It's not just that the supposed icon of small government never reduced federal spending below 21% of GDP. If today's Republican extortionists needed any more inspiration to back down from their debt ceiling blackmail scheme, Reagan provided it in 1983:

"The full consequences of a default -- or even the serious prospect of default -- by the United States are impossible to predict and awesome to contemplate. Denigration of the full faith and credit of the United States would have substantial effects on the domestic financial markets and the value of the dollar."

Reagan knew what he was talking about. After all, the hemorrhage of red ink at the U.S. Treasury began on his watch.
As most analysts predicted, Reagan's massive $749 billion supply-side tax cuts in 1981 quickly produced even more massive annual budget deficits. Combined with his rapid increase in defense spending, Reagan delivered not the balanced budgets he promised, but record-setting debt. Forced to raise taxes eleven times to avert financial catastrophe, the Gipper nonetheless presided over a tripling of the American national debt. By the time he left office in 1989, Ronald Reagan signed a stunning 17 debt ceiling increases into law and more than equaled the entire debt burden produced by the previous 200 years of American history. It's no wonder the Gipper cited the skyrocketing deficits he bequeathed to America as his greatest regret.
Politico summed up the irony of the GOP's looming Cut, Cap and Balance vote:

But Republican congressional leaders still want a 10-year, $1.8 trillion cut from nondefense appropriations and have added a balanced-budget constitutional amendment that so restricts future tax legislation that even President Ronald Reagan might have opposed it in the 1980s.
Indeed, much of the deficit-reduction legislation signed by Reagan would not qualify under the new tea-party-driven standards. And even the famed Reagan-Tip O'Neill Social Security compromise -- which raised payroll taxes -- passed the House in 1983 well short of the 290 votes that would be required under the constitutional amendments being promoted by the GOP.

Of course, Reagan's red ink is no problem for Republicans this week, provided they pretend it never happened. (The same is true of much of the RINO Reagan record, which if acknowledged by today's Tea Party purists would lead them to cast him into wilderness as a Republican in Name Only.) Paul Ryan and every Republican who voted for his budget this spring would also run afoul of the GOP debt legislation.
All of which shows the pathetic theater of Tuesday's GOP debt votes. To "cut, cap and balance" is not only to make a mockery of the Republicans' own budget, but to slash, burn and bury the legacy of Ronald Reagan.

2 comments on “GOP Will Vote to Criminalize Reagan”

  1. REAGAN FIRSTS eulogize this
    -RONALD REAGAN RECORDS AS FIRST---------------------------
    (Peggy Noonan pay attention)
    1.First to turn America into a DEBTOR nation in Peacetime
    2. First to increase DEBT faster than growth of national income in eight years
    3. First to increase DEBT faster than growth of gdp over eight years
    4. First to double the deficit in just eight years
    5. First to “almost”: triple the national DEBT in just eight years
    6. First to increase SPENDING by 80%--over 8 years.
    7. First to SPEND more in eight years than was spent in prior 50 years.
    8. First to have “real” INTEREST RATES of 8% after averaging 1% over 35 years.
    9. First to keep PRIME INTEREST RATES at 20%.
    10.First to over value the dollar to the yen at rate of 262 yen to 1 dollar.
    11.First to have served as Governor and increase STATE SPENDING by 112%
    12.First to have HOME LOAN INTEREST RATES as high as 16%
    13. First to CUT TAXES by 60% for his rich pals
    14. First to allow the SAVINGS AND LOAN INDUSTRY to be raided after signing a deregulatory bill and proclaiming “I think we have hit the jackpot”. Come and get it the vaults are unguarded.
    15. First to deal with TERRORISTS
    16. First to send an AUTOGRAPHED BIBLE to a man he called “The Satan of Terrorists”.
    17. First to have an ADMIRAL plead the Fifth Amendment.
    18. First to have a stealing, lying, gutless wife abusing MARINE LT. COLONEL plead the Fifth Amendment.
    19. First to have a “sitting” CABINET MEMBER INDICTED
    23. First to have more members of his administration charged with crimes than CUMULATIVE TOTAL OF ALL OTHER PRESIDENTS in the twentieth century
    24. First to set a record for the LARGEST ONE DAY PERCENTAGE DECLINE in the DOW in history. 10-19-87
    25. First to have over $10,000,000 INCREASE IN WEALTH from serving for 8 years as president.
    26. First to testify ”under oath” 130 times that ”I DON’T REMEMBER” .
    27. First to have an Admiral with a photographic memory testify 128 times “ I DON’T REMEMBER”.
    28. First to undergo BRAIN SURGERY a few months after leaving office. No pain no gain.
    29. First to, repeatedly, FALSIFY HIS WIFE’S AGE. As tho anyone cared.
    30. First to promote his religious faith and never have an ACTIVE CHURCH MEMBERSHIP.
    31. First to rarely use the term JESUS CHRIST in speeches.
    32. First to seek GUIDANCE FROM THE STARS not from God
    33. First to have had a SHOTGUN WEDDING.
    34. First to have worked as a lead-on in Las Vegas.
    35. First to call a Stealing, Lying, Psychotic, wife abusing Marine a “LIAR.
    36. First to have been OPENLY ALIENATED from his children.
    37. First to have served with ALZHEIMERS
    38. First to have UNEMPLOYMENT AT 10.8% since great depression.
    39. First to attack a small unprotected nation with 88,000 inhabitants and 10,000 bb guns then PROCLAIM -“America stands tall again”— “we have whipped the Vietnam Syndrome”-we have defeated communism”. Gosh! What if we had whipped Cyprus?.
    41. #1-In BANK FAILURES
    43. #1-In Percent increase in PERSONAL BANKRUPTCIES
    44. #1-In recorded MISSTATEMENTS
    45. #1-In never having a single press conference in which he did not make at least one or more INCORRECT STATEMENTS.
    46. #1-In needing a staff person standby during press conferences to tell the press “WHAT HE REALLY MEANT”.
    47. #1-In having SERVICEMEN KILLED during peacetime.
    48. #1-In largest DROP IN POPULARITY in one week.
    49. #1-In being first to HONOR NAZI STORM TROOPERS by calling them” Innocent Victims”
    50. #1-In being first to be labeled “BRAIN DEAD AFFABLE DUNCE’ by this writer.
    51. First to lie-over and over-to reporters “I DO NOT DYE MY HAIR my barber uses a special shampoo”
    52. First to have a wife who ”forced” him to WEAR THREE SUITS in one day
    53. First to boast “Not bad for a DUMB GUY who worked only 20 hours per week”.
    54. First to have his wife sit nearby and WHISPER ANSWERS to questions
    55. First to FALL ASLEEP while the Pope spoke
    56. First to invite the Pope to visit the White House and “BRING THE WIFE AND KIDS”
    57. First to have his press secretary remove him from the microphone because he could not answer questions. Then, as the reporter
    yelled out “answer my question” he replied “MY HANDLERS WON’T LET ME SPEAK”. Quick get the white coat.
    58. First 20th Century president to have historians RATE HIM BELOW every president of the 20th except for Richard Nixon. 1994 Poll.
    59. First to give us a First Lady with a past reputation for giving the BEST BJ in Hollywood.
    60. First to suggest his eldest son undergo PSYCHIATRIC examination
    61. First to have been voted in British polls (twice) as the ”MOST FEARED LEADER IN THE WORLD” sic em Rambo.
    62. First to serve as Governor on a ”conservative” platform and INCREASE SPENDING BY 112%.
    63. First Governor TO INCREASE personal income taxes by 60%, tax increase on cigarettes by 200%, state tax collections by 152%.
    64. First Californian Governor to INCREASE TAXES BY ONE BILLION in one year.1967.
    65. First to have a Special Assistant say on national TV “sometimes you had to HIT HIM ON THE HEAD with a 2 x 4 to get his attention”
    66. First to have his official biographer state on national TV ‘After he was shot in 1981he GOT SLOWER AND SLOWER EACH YEAR. His speech got slower. He deliberated more and he hesitated more when he spoke. He lost his physical quickness and would not make decisions on the spot. It was a very, very slow and steady mental and physical decline”.
    67. First to have a POPULARITY RATING OF ONLY 35% after his first two years in office.
    68. First president to have been DIVORCED
    69. First president to have the Geriatrics Department of a major
    university study his behavior and conclude that AFTER THREE YEARS IN OFFICE HE HAD ALZHEIMERS.
    70. First president to have been known to, before presidency, SHACK UP with the love of his life while his wife was in the hospital giving birth to their first child.
    71. First president to have applied for PERMANENT DEFERMENT from the Draft.
    72. First to increase CORPORATE TAX RATE from 46% to 51% in 1986.
    73. First to replace strict regulator volcker with non regulator greenspan and create recessions in 1991-1992-1992-2007-2008-2009 plus big market crash 10-19-07
    74. First to Tax Social Security Benefits-50% of income in 1984—big tax hater???
    75. First to whup Soviet single handed—read debunking of myth in book-“Way out there in the Blue: “Reagan, Star Wars, and the end of the Cold War” by Frances Fitzgerald 2000
    76. First to talk tough and one of first acts in office was to lift Carter sanctions on the evil empire which was still in Afghanistan.. Sic em Rambotongue.
    77. First to promote Apartheid
    ------------------------------------ THE TRUTH SHALL SET YOU FREE----------------------
    I ask only prove me wrong-I will correct
    [email protected]

  2. Peggy Noonan Eulogize this
    Comparing Democrat’s hero-CLINTON—versus Republican’s hero--REAGAN
    1.JOBS—grew by 43% more under Clinton.
    2.GDP---grew by 57% more under Clinton.
    3.DOW—grew by 700% more under Clinton..
    4.MARKET CAP INCREASE—Clinton + 330%--Reagan + 136%
    5.NASDAQ-grew by 18 times as much under Clinton.
    6.S&P500—grew by 370% under Clinton and 140% under Reagan
    7.SPENDING--grew by 28% under Clinton---80% under Reagan.
    8.DEBT—grew by 43% under Clinton—187% under Reagan.
    9. DEFICITS—Clinton got a large surplus--grew by 112% under Reagan.
    10.NATIONAL INCOME—grew by 100% more under Clinton.
    11.PERSONAL INCOME—grew by 110% more under Clinton.
    12.MEDIAN FAMILY INCOME-grew by 75% more under Clinton
    13. DEFENSE BUDGETED-Clinton -2311B—Reagan-2062B (current $)
    14.UNEMPLOYMENT—AVG—Clinton 5.2%--Reagan 7.6%
    (I admit averaging averages can be dumb. I dumb.)
    SOURCES—Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.BLS.Gov)--Economic Policy Institute (—Global & World Almanacs from 1980 to 2003 (annual issues) (chart taken from NY Times)
    National Archives History on Presidents.
    LA Times 10-11-00 on Market--www.Find
    Federal Budget.Com 2009
    A vote for a Conservative is a vote for Less Success.
    A vote to reduce the Standard of Living for all Americans.
    Recall 1920’s and Wall Street under Conservative control?
    Recall 2000-2008 and Wall Street under Conservative control?
    Want more of those years? It will take many years to recover.
    [email protected]
    political historian
    Lifeaholics Of America
    “All American Party”
    How Democrats created a great Middle Class
    and Conservatives are determined to destroy it


Jon Perr
Jon Perr is a technology marketing consultant and product strategist who writes about American politics and public policy.

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