Kurt Eichenwald tweeted this graph and added these words:
If you cannot explain this chart, you do not understand the magnitude of what happened last night and why this disaster might be irreparable.
I would argue that irreparable damage was already done by the Iraq war, which cost $1.06 trillion officially, though the true cost may be $6 trillion
. Many forget -- and many younger people never learned -- that one key question during the 2000 presidential debates was: "What do we do with the surplus
Bill Clinton got this country out of the red
and started us down a path which, if followed, would have completely eradicated the national debt by 2015
. This outcome would have erased the red part of the chart above. No debt = no need to pay interest payments. Yes, there would have been a period of moderately higher taxes, paid only by those best able to pay. That period would have ended years ago (if Clinton's plan had been followed to the letter); by now, everyone's tax bill would have been lowered -- safely, painlessly and permanently. Moreover, the eradication of debt would have given us greater freedom to borrow in times of true emergency.
This forgotten history helps to explain the relentless effort to smear the Clintons. If the younger generation understood what he really
did (as opposed to what the Redpillers, the conspira-freaks and the BernieBros say
he did), we would be carving Bill's face on Mount Rushmore right now.
The current tax bill will cause our debt to skyrocket. For the Ayn Randroids, that's a feature, not a bug. Very soon, the propagandists will swarm all over teevee and the internet, telling us that we have no choice but to slash Social Security and Medicare. I have no doubt that, even now, they are already testing the most insidious ways to word that message.
Will people fall for this ploy? Of course they will. Should any congressperson do an effective job of reminding the country that Trump and Dubya caused the debt to skyrocket, you know damned well what will happen next. If the congressperson is male, some woman will shriek: "That bad, bad man touched my rear end in 1997, so don't listen to anything he says about the national debt!" If the congressperson is female, other tactics will be employed. Perhaps this: "That bad, bad woman said something back in 1991 that might be construed as racist, so don't listen to anything she says about the national debt!"
Yes, your fellow citizens really are dumb enough to fall for these tactics. One-quarter of Americans don't know that the earth revolves around the sun.
Democracy cannot work in an ignorant nation. I've been saying it for years: Disenfranchise everyone too stupid to understand the meaning of the word "disenfranchise" in this sentence.
To a large degree, Roy Moore has transformed the Alabama election into a debate over Gloria Allred
. In effect, Allred -- deeply unpopular in that state -- is now Doug Jones' unwanted running mate.
Told you so. I knew
this would happen.
From the very first day, Beverly Young Nelson (Allred's client) has showed all the signs of being a ringer. I'm not talking about any other
accuser; I'm talking only about Nelson. She has served only to help Moore get elected. And frankly, I think that it is telling that the Republicans are dying to test the yearbook supposedly signed by Moore. It is also telling that Allred won't hand over this piece of evidence. I'm increasingly persuaded that the signature is
fake and that Allred may now suspect that she was scammed.
On several previous occasions, I've quoted these words of Lord Alistair McAlpine, Margaret Thatcher's good friend. (Although he spoke about corporations, the same strategy is used in the political realm.)
First, create a situation where you are wrongly accused. Then, at a convenient moment, arrange for the false accusation to be shown to be false beyond all doubt. Those who have made accusations against both the company and its management become discredited. Further accusations will then be treated with great suspicion.
The trick works every goddamned time