Depressing Right-Wing Revisionism

As you might imagine, I receive quite a bit of right-wing hate mail. Most of it is your standard off-the-shelf "STFU" loud noises, but, occasionally, I'll receive an email from someone who at least attempts to make a point. In and amongst a diatribe about how "robotic" and "laughable" I am, one emailer tossed this into the mix:

Oh yeah.. here's some questions... how many poor people do you know give jobs? Why are the so-called (Soros- Barack sponsored) Occupy 'losers' trying to destroy the golden goose? Hey... when they run out of our money, then they'll
really be in trouble. Seems to me, they should be storming the gates of the White
House, who's responsible for their plight.....

There are the usual far-right gripes. The poor don't create jobs. Uh-yeah. The Occupy Wall Street people are using this person's money somehow. Right, the "unemployed people are freeloaders" (even though they paid into the system via their former employer's unemployment insurance fund).

But here's the infuriating one: the White House is responsible for the economic collapse -- "the White House, who's responsible for their plight." How can anyone look themselves in the mirror, much less sleep at night, making up history like this? It truly confounds logic and reason. 30 years of Reaganomics and deregulation created this mess and the president has been trying like hell to fix it while the Republicans are trying to deliberately stifle economic growth for the sole purpose of making the president lose in 2012. When President Obama took over, the economy was hemorrhaging 800,000 jobs a month. Since the president passed the stimulus bill, the economy has been adding jobs. The reason the economy hasn't entirely bounced back is a testament to the depth and severity of the recession -- that, and the aforementioned sabotage. After all, the Republicans filibustered the American Jobs Act last week.

Sadder still, this meme is all over right-wing talk radio. There are literally millions of people who believe the recession and the unemployment crisis began on President Obama's watch. In 2009. This disaster has been brewing for 30 years and finally collapsed in 2008. The Bush tax cuts didn't prevent it. I repeat: tax cuts didn't prevent it. Further tax cuts won't fix it. Never in the history of America have tax cuts and spending cuts resolved a deep recession. Never. Ever.

It's so crucial now more than ever to work diligently to dispel these far-right myths. Even if it hurts. We can't let them rewrite history like this.

  • steven boivin

    Rick Santelli anyone? He was blaming “losers” for buying homes they couldn’t afford when the Bush administration was the one to encourage home ownership for practically anyone who could sign their name and (not) prove income status.
    Then the Teaparty was Wall St ‘s and Republicans way of diverting anger and blame for the economy tanking away from themselves and shift it over to BHO (the black guy). It has worked so far.

    side note – Chuck Todd, who bought the diversion, this morning was saying how it is BHO who is trying to divert blame onto Wall St after his last few jobs plan stumps…. IDIOT!

    • D_C_Wilson

      The most disgusting thing about Santelli’s rant is that he made it while surrounded by a bunch of Wall Street traders. Everyone around him knew they were getting a government bailout and their year-end bonuses. But they cheered his against the idea giving help (which was never even on the table) to ordinary Americans who got screwed by many of these same people as they traded in those bundled mortgages.

  • D_C_Wilson

    I don’t think even matters to them whether what they say is factually true. All that matters is that they repeat whatever talking point reinforce their worldview. I put the blame for this mentality squarely on Fox and talk radio. No one who listens to these outlets does so out of a genuine desire to be informed. They just want to be told what they already think about the world.

  • Tim Neuenhaus

    The emails you get say STFU? I get those too but last week I got a really neat one asking me about my car and told me some specific details about my home.

    I love those right wing tea baggers, who would think they’d be all concerned with my car and home. See they do care enough to even come and visit me when I’m sleeping.

    • nicole

      lol. I needed that laugh. Thanks. :)

  • nicole

    I agree that we can’t let them get away with the revisionist history, but I must admit, I am personally feeling very disheartened just now.

    Some days, I just want to throw up my hands and run. Far, far away. Back to sanity……….far away from the right wing.

    • muselet

      When you find that sane place without Righties, can I crash on your couch for a while?


      • nicole

        Absolutely, alopecia. Bring your swimsuit. :)

    • Rick Janes

      My unofficial barroom poll says that the public — left, right and center — isn’t buying what the GOP is selling. Only the fringe-right nutcases (less than 20 percent of voters) and our Quisling Corporate Media are taking the GOP candidates seriously, it seems. Most of America is wondering where all those jobs the GOP promised in 2010 are, and they are supporting the OWS 99% movement.

  • gescove

    I concur w/@graf and @justin. Thanks for being a bulwark against the vile stupidity that informs so much of our body politic today.

  • Justin Cohen

    Thank you, Bob, for keeping up the good fight.

    While there is a category of people that appear impervious to facts and reason, much in the same way a diehard Redskins fan could never be swayed to root for the Cowboys, there will always be a category of people that are open minded and who may be influenced by the informed commentary of you, Maddow, and other brave souls.

    I’m happy to support you in your fall fundraiser.

    Keep up the good work!

  • GrafZeppelin127

    Bob, they started blaming the economic collapse on Obama before he was even elected. Remember that? It was “the Obama recession” by October 2008.

    There is no set of facts, observations, studies, inquiries, examinations or explanations that could convince the typical GOP fan that this country’s economic problems are the fault of any person or entity other than Barack Obama and the Democrats. They are incapable of believing otherwise. The facts don’t matter.

    The stimulus (a.k.a., the Recovery Act) was “trillion-dollar big government spending porkulus bill” no matter what it actually cost or what was actually in it, and it “failed” no matter what the actual results were. “Obamacare” (a.k.a., the Affordable Care Act) was a “trillion-dollar job-killing government takeover of health care with death panels” no matter what was actually in the law or how it was meant to work, that was “rammed down our throats” by Democrats no matter what actually happened in Congress during the nine months of debate leading up to its passage. Obama’s foreign-policy speeches are “apologizing for America” and “anti-Israel” no matter what he actually says.

    They have to believe these memes; their very existence depends on it. When one needs to believe that the world is flat, everything can be taken as proof that the world is flat. Especially when the conversation goes something like this:

    Obama: “The world is round.”
    Generic Republican: “The world is flat.”

    Liberal blogger: “Science proves the world is round.”
    “Conservative” blogger: “Science has liberal agenda, you hate America, fag.”
    Far-left-liberal blogger: “I’m never supporting Obama again because he is not saying the world is round often or loudly enough. And hasn’t closed Guantanamo. And hasn’t ended all the wars. And hasn’t fought hard enough for gay marriage. And……”
    Huffington Post: “Bad News for Obama.”

    I agree that “We can’t let them rewrite history like this.” As tiresome and repetitive as it gets, we can’t let more people get sucked into the Fox/talk radio wormhole that carries people to the alternate universe where the GOP and its various fan clubs live.

    • Brutlyhonest

      Beautifully laid out example. Here’s a no-shitter from the local news yesterday and today (regarding the President visiting Hampton, VA): Sunday they report the President will be here and for “balance”, they play a clip of little lord cantor disparaging the President with chris wallace. Today, the report on the President again and the “balance” is to run about half of the latest crossroads superPAC’s anti-Obama screed.

      With the entirety of corporate media afraid to tell/against the truth we’re all fooked.

    • bphoon

      “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!”

      * Upton Sinclair, I, Candidate for Governor: And How I Got Licked (1935)

      A new burst of rage swept over him — What did it matter whether it was true or not — whether anything was true or not? What did it matter if anybody had done all the hideous and loathsome things that everybody else said they had done? It was what everybody was saying! It was what everybody believed — what everybody was interested in! It was the measure of a whole society — their ideals and their standards! It was the way they spent their time, repeating nasty scandals about each other; living in an atmosphere of suspicion and cynicism, with endless whispering and leering, and gossip of low intrigue.

      * Upton Sinclair, Metropolis (1918)

      The American People will take Socialism, but they won’t take the label. I certainly proved it in the case of EPIC. Running on the Socialist ticket I got 60,000 votes, and running on the slogan to “End Poverty in California” I got 879,000. I think we simply have to recognize the fact that our enemies have succeeded in spreading the Big Lie. There is no use attacking it by a front attack, it is much better to out-flank them.

      * Upton Sinclair, Letter to Norman Thomas (25 September 1951)

      American capitalism is predatory, and American politics are corrupt: The same thing is true in England and the same in France; but in all these three countries the dominating fact is that whatever the people get ready to change the government, they can change it.

      * Upton Sinclair, Letter to John Reed (22 October 1918)

      • Rick Janes

        Thanks for that, Graf. Always good to be reminded of what Upton Sinclair went through and his writing.