I've been working on an action called "Don't Get Fooled again," which would feature George W. Bush and his cohorts over his presidential reign to remind America that it was his morally corrupt administration that led our country into the abyss. Who could have predicted that the GOP would kick-start it for me? Really, thanks guys and Bachmanns.
Back in January, I wrote a post called The Big Conservative Con Begins in 2010...."Don't Get Fooled Again" to point this out.
Typically con men feed on dishonest people, but in politics they focus on the unsuspecting. What we've learned from the previous decade is that conservatism is a total failure when it comes to governance. Under Bush and Cheney we've had a massive terrorist attack, two wars, torture and a global financial meltdown. We've had Hurricane Katrina expose how conservatives respond to Americans after a natural disaster hits two states. We've had government corruption at the highest order, which resulted in Cheney's chief of staff being convicted of multiple felonies. We had the horrendous Terry Schiavo affair. We had a news network actively become a propaganda arm of the GOP. We had Wall Street inflate a mortgage bubble that almost turned into another Great Depression.
I can go on and on, but because of a timid media, they will be allowed to perpetrate their newest con. "Only conservatism can save America," will be their motto. If the media actually acted like an independent monitor of the news, we might stand a chance against the new scam, but we know better. Drudge rules their world.
The GOP is brilliant at one thing, and that is tearing people down. Because they left this country in such tatters it's an easy scam to pull off, because hard-working Americans are vulnerable pickings. They have to try and survive in a world destroyed by conservative values. The con is easy. Just blame everything on President Barack Obama. All your job woes, all your fears about how your life will recover and the future that it holds for your children. If we had a real media that would expose the Bush regime for the manifest failure it was, it would be a much harder task, but we don't, and instead news programming has turned more into endless right/left opinion discussions.
"Don't Get Fooled Again" should be our national slogan, because even if we disagree as liberals in the way our president has handled the situation he was elected into, we are engaged enough to know what conservatism has done to this country...read on
Bush's conservative ideology, and the right-wing propagandists planted in D.C. who enabled him led us into two wars. We attacked a country named Iraq who posed no threat to us at all after a terrorist attack on our soil. Under his leadership -- with all the tax cuts he could deliver to the rich, and all the deregulation of every financial institution in sight -- he helped create a near-catastrophic economic depression which spread globally. Let's face it, his policies were totally awesome for the uber-wealthy and they milked it for all it was worth. But ironically, it was those same grand poobahs have who have tried to banish Bush into the cellar for the last few years so America wouldn't have to see his face or hear his voice, which frees conservatives up to blame Obama for all the problems we face now, including unemployment.
Because Bush is so reviled by America, I've pitched it a number of times within our Blue America PAC, but we haven't had a chance to fully explore it. And then, a gift comes along: Republicans chose to remind America for me. It was almost as if John Cornyn was caught shopping at Tiffany's and sending me an early Christmas gift.
Here's what Cornyn said:
But look, I think President Bush's stock has gone up a lot since he left office. People appreciate his resolve and commitment in the face of a national security threat like 9/11. He had his challenges, no doubt. We have, I think, learned a lot about things we could have done better as Republicans in terms of fiscal responsibility, but when he left office, the deficit was 3.2% of the gross domestic product, today it's about 10%. We've added $2.3 trillion to the national debt since President Obama got there. I think a lot of the people are looking back with a little, with more fondness on President Bush's administration and I think history will treat him well.
Oh man, let's have that discussion. After I return from Netroots Nation this week, I will dig into C&L's archives and bring back the greatest hits of Bush and his comrades in arms. The DNC jumped on this immediately. I wish The Who would give us permission to use a snippet of their great song in some ads.
Conservatives are like chameleons. They adapt to their surroundings by changing colors at will so they can appear to be part of the landscape, no matter what they have done in the past. But ultimately, they're still that same lizard, just prettied up in different colors. They're good like that. Bush was a "Compassionate Conservative." George was supposed to be a much more caring man. But his caring only extended to helping out his buddies, not the country.
I've been calling on congressional Democrats to always label Republicans with Bush. It's the truth, but for some reason they do it sparingly and even President Obama has not brought up the name of George W. Bush often enough. He doesn't even have to blame him for our situation. By just injecting him into the conversation, America will have a visceral reaction to one of the worst presidents in history. Chris Cillizza has some polling data that shows what happens if you let the man who helped destroy our great country slip into the darkness. Please, grab him by the neck and pull him out of the basement. Why hasn't Bush done an hour on Meet The Press yet? Or This Week, maybe Wallace News Sunday? Have the media even asked him for an interview since he's left the White House?
Steve Benen covers the new DNC ad at the top of the post.
The notion that Democrats would gain traction this year by tying Republican candidates to George W. Bush's failed presidency has always seemed implausible to me. The GOP's lack of popularity still stems from the previous administration's catastrophes, but it seems challenging, at best, to keep connecting the party to Bush two years later.
Fortunately for Democrats, Republicans are making it easier. In recent months, leading GOP candidates and officials have made no real effort to hide the fact that the Republican agenda in 2010 is effectively identical to the agenda of Bush/Cheney. They're even praising the failed administration while embracing its policy ideas.
This culminated over the weekend with National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Pete Sessions (R-Texas) suggesting on "Meet the Press" that his party wants to "go back to the exact same agenda" they pursued during the Bush/Cheney years. A day later, the DNC put together this video, highlighting not only Sessions' remarks, but the consequences of a return to policies we already know don't work.
"Republican candidates should expect to see this ad on a television station near them this fall,"a DNC official told Greg Sargent. "Republicans have given us an opening to tie them back to Bush and have also helped us frame this election as a choice -- between Obama and Bush."
I don't doubt that Democrats face a very challenging cycle, and have every reason to be nervous, but the easier Republicans make it to tie them to George W. Bush, the better off Dems will be.