Friday, February 27, 2009

Facts, not fiction, please

The Republican Party undeniably has outstanding, levelheaded members of intellect and noble public service. Unhappily, however, these men and women have been shoved aside by extremists who only add to the GOP's awful image.

In their impossible hope of changing the GOP's dismal public standing, these operatives are trying to rewrite history.

Consider the gambit of Idaho's senior U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo. In a meeting with editors of the Idaho Press-Tribune, Crapo insisted President George W. Bush is being unfairly blamed for the country's present economic crisis.


Fact: President Bush inherited a robust Treasury surplus from the Clinton White House.

Fact: President Bush attacked Iraq on fraudulent grounds and ran up war bills totaling nearly $700 billion.

Fact: President Bush and the GOP lavished tax breaks on the wealthiest Americans despite huge war costs.

Fact: President Bush drove up U.S. debt so fast and so high he needed to borrow record sums from foreign nations.

So, Sen. Crapo ignores this extravagance and claims facts are unfair?

Others in Congress and on rightwing radio have taken to claiming Republicans are the party of frugal government and are honor-bound to attack President Obama's "wasteful" spending. Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, a GOP presidential hopeful, pathetically proposes that no stimulus program is needed to rescue the Bush-crippled economy.

Fact: Republicans approved Bush spending and borrowing and expanding Iraq and Afghanistan operations.

Fact: President Bush expanded the size and power of big government more dramatically than any president in modern history with the creation of Homeland Security and various domestic spying services.

Bush Pentagon adviser Richard Perle simply dispenses with truth. In a Washington speech, the founder of modern neo-conservatism and architect of the Iraq war, denies he's neo-conservative, denies there's a neo-conservative policy and denies any influence on Bush war policies.

New Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele spouts the most pure nonsense. "Not in the history of mankind has the government ever created a job," Steele asserts.

One need not cite all of U.S. history to refute this addle-headed claim—FDR's Depression jobs program for millions, Eisenhower's interstate highways, etc. Bush's billion-dollar, no-bid contracts for Blackwater and Halliburton in Iraq should also be adequate evidence to the contrary.

Revisionism is a disservice to the nation. Only with the facts will America be able to plot a course to better days.

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