Myths About the Debt Ceiling

This Q&A with former Reagan adviser Bruce Bartlett is a must read. Some choice items:

Q. Why are the Republicans so militant now while they voted seven times to raise it during the tenure of George Bush ?

A. Bruce Bartlett : Obviously, because there is a Democrat in the WH.

Q. Why have you rejected conservatism in the last few years?

A. Bruce Bartlett : I still consider myself to be a conservative in the tradition of Edmund Burke, Russell Kirk and William F. Buckley. I don't think most of today's conservatives have any idea who those people were.

Q. Mr. Bartlett, Your book about the huge Medicare drug costs that President George W. Bush pushed the Congress to accept was very interesting. Do you believe that Obamacare will really save any money for the US taxpayer or just add more levels of bureaucracy to the system?

A. Bruce Bartlett : The Affordable Care Act was not designed to reduce spending. It's purpose is to expand health insurance coverage without increasing spending.

Q. I think that's a factor but not the only one. From my reading about the GOP freshmen, the tea partiers, a great many of them seem to have little experience in any sort of lawmaking, and little knowledge in economics beyond the home or small-business level. They don't seem to realize that government economics doesn't work the same way. Instead of a coherent philosophy on the size of government, they espouse simple reactionary stances as if they ran for office as protest candidates. That's my impression, anyway, and whatever the cause, it's sad that this faction is holding the mainstream GOP and the government hostage to prove a point.

A. Bruce Bartlett : I think the vast bulk of Tea Party members are ignorant fools when it comes to understanding how government really operates. I have thought so for 2.5 years and see no reason to change my opinion.

Q. "Specifically" who benefits from failure to raise the debt ceiling?

A. Bruce Bartlett : Those who shorted government bonds, like Eric Cantor.

Q. Do tax cuts truly stimulate? If 10 years of tax cuts are supposed to stimulate the economy and create jobs, where is that economy and where are those jobs?

A. Bruce Bartlett : The Bush tax cuts were economically worthless.

Just a small sampling. Upshot: the Republican Party is controlled by uneducated, ignorant hooples who are willing to destroy the economy in order to score political points.

  • Joe Moran



  • QueenTiye

    I thought the most criminal part was where he mentions some people “shorted” government bonds. I.e., betting against the government’s ability to make its payments, while being in power to make sure that result occurs… isn’t that illegal?

    • What’s conflict of interest to people who have no sense of ethics?

  • D_C_Wilson

    A. Bruce Bartlett : I think the vast bulk of Tea Party members are ignorant fools when it comes to understanding how government really operates. I have thought so for 2.5 years and see no reason to change my opinion.

    I want this on a T-shirt.

    • likala

      While you’re at it, might as well add “far left” to that t-shirt
      with any apt description of that group you prefer 😉

      • (oops, wrong thread) (removed)

        Have a nice day.

  • Zen Diesel

    As the doomsday clock ticks towards financial destruction, the Republican Ass Clowns have no intention of doing the right thing. It’s mind blowing that this clusterfuck has been allowed to go this far. The sheeple who follow the wingnut rhetoric are brainwashed to the point that the Republican party has become almost cult like. I hope our president and democrats hold firm and don’t blink.

    • incredulous72


      It STILL amazes me that people voted others into office that are anti-government. Their whole purpose is to abolish the government and they seem to be succeeding.

      And the people thought that was a good thing.

      • Zen Diesel

        I argue daily with a friend of mine who finds no fault with the Fox News or the Republican party. Although I consider myself an independent he keeps trying to paint me as tree hugging hippy librul…lol. One of the things, besides the articles posted here at Bob’s Awesome Blog, is that I have started researching and reading a lot of conservative literature to truly understand why the current crop of Republicans are such jackasses. I am currently reading this book written by Frank Schaeffer “Sex, Mom and God”. The book has been absolutely fascinating as Frank explain how he helped his father and others promote the evangelical Christian point of view into the Republican party. I don’t know if everything in the book is the Gospel truth so to speak, but I can tell you, it has definitely helped me understand that the current crop of ignorant fools driving the clown car has successfully found a way to trick conservatives to vote against their own interests.

        • incredulous72

          You know what I’m most concerned about at this point, Zen? Whether there’s more of US than THEM. I hope so.

          • Zen Diesel

            I think there are more of US than THEM, because the funny thing it was cool to rail against Obama, until the ass clown GOP started attacking pensions, unions, and social issues. The Republicans are excelling at alienating, minorities, women and gays. So I believe there is hope.

  • incredulous72

    Insightful, hilarious and utterly sad all at the same time.

    Are there anymore of these “sane” republicans left?

    • The Right Wing has driven old-school Republicans to the outer Rubicon.

    • TalkieToaster2

      For the most part, they became Democrats.

      • Yup. In 2008 I kept a list of the prominent Republicans who announced that they would support Obama. It became quite lengthy. 🙂