A Lesson in Civics for Liberals

Discussion in 'Politics' started by BluePhantom, Nov 13, 2011.

  1. BluePhantom
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    BluePhantom Educator (of liberals)

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    Since I see the same argument happening on multiple threads I am going to post this as a separate thread so i can just link it up to the others. The common argument I see from many (I won't say all) liberals is stuff like "look what happened to the economy during Bush's term vs. Clinton's term." As I am a teacher, I am happy to educate you thoroughly on this topic. I am really going to spell this out for you too so there are no questions.

    Forget about who was president. The president doesn't control spending. The president doesn't pass laws. The president doesn't set interest levels. The president does not set economic policy that influences business and through it, the economy. Congress and the Fed do that. The president can ask Congress to do something, but it's ultimately up to Congress to say "yes" or "no". The president is only responsible when he has a Congress that is willing to do what the president says. This is basic civics. This is shit you should have learned in high school.

    Let's go back to January, 1993 when Clinton took office. At the time he had a Democratic Senate and a Democratic House of Representatives and they were willing to advance Clinton's agenda. That ended in January, 1995 when the Republicans took control of both houses of Congress. The Republicans were not willing to simply do what Clinton told them and they advanced their own economic agenda. This was the case throughout the rest of Clinton's terms in office. So from January, 1993 through December, 1994 it was Clinton who bore responsibility for the economy because Congress was doing what he told them. From January, 1995 through December, 2000 it was the Congressional Republicans that controlled the economy.

    Now when Bush took office in January of 2001, just like Clinton's first two years, the Republicans controlled both houses of Congress and they did what Bush told them to do until December, 2006. At that point the Democrats took over both houses of Congress and they told Bush to shove his agenda up his ass and did their own thing. That means from January, 2007 - December, 2008 it was the Congressional Democrats who ran the economy.

    When Obama took office in January, 2009 the Democrats still held both houses of Congress but they did what Obama told them to do. So Obama was in control of the economy until December, 2010. After the Republicans took the House of Representatives in January, 2011 no one has been able to control the economy because Congress is split.

    So let me give you a breakdown of who was in control of the economy and when:

    January, 1993 - December, 1994 = Bill Clinton
    January, 1995 - December, 2000 = Congressional Republicans
    January, 2001 - December, 2006 = George W. Bush
    January, 2007 - December, 2008 = Congressional Democrats
    January, 2009 - December, 2010 = Barack Obama
    January, 2011 - now = no one

    Now there are rare occasions when the president has to work with a Congress that is controlled by the other party and Congress is willing to do what the president says anyhow. This is VERY rare however. One example would be 1985 through roughly mid to late 1987. During this time the Democrats controlled Congress but Reagan was president. During Reagan's first term the Congressional Democrats had a tendency to play hard ball. After Reagan's landslide re-election; however, they did exactly what Reagan told them anyhow because they were absolutely terrified of public backlash due to his immense popularity. This is the exception; not the rule.

    Now if all you want to do is play the game of looking at a given stat and blaming it on (or giving credit to) whoever happened to be the president at the time to further your political agenda, knock yourself out, but you are basing your argument on a complete ignorance of how government works.

    If you really want to understand who is responsible for what, stop looking at the dates of presidential terms, and start looking at what happened with the economy according to the dates I just laid out above.
     
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  2. Cecilie1200
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    Cecilie1200 Gold Member

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    Very nice post.

    It is also helpful to remember that the economy does not turn on a dime. It usually takes a bit of time for the effects of a policy to start being felt, and can often show continuing ripples well after, depending on what the policy is.

    Out of curiosity, BP, what do you teach?
     
  3. Ernie S.
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    Ernie S. Platinum Member

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    Well done BP!
     
  4. jillian
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    jillian Princess Supporting Member

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    too bad it's all B.S.

    reality for the sad little o/p... bush took office with a surplus. he ran it into the ground by running two wars while being the only leader in history to cut taxes during wartime.

    the repubs then de-regulated the banks.

    THOSE two factors were largely responsible for imploding the economy at the end of bush's presidency. there were other exacerbating factors, but those were the largest ones.

    so you can keep your "civics" lesson to yourself.

    though apparently you do need a history lesson.
     
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  5. Ernie S.
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    Ernie S. Platinum Member

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    Presented with logic and facts, liberals always resort to "Bush did it".
     
  6. kiwiman127
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    kiwiman127 Comfortably Moderate Supporting Member

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    Well, it's an interesting analysis but the OP discounts the power of the veto when one party holds the presidency and the opposing party holds Congress.
    Bill Clinton had 37 veto's (1 pocket veto) and all were after the GOP took control of Congress. Two of Clinton's veto's were overridden.
    George W Bush had 12 veto's (1 pocket veto) and all were after the Dem's took control of Congress. Four of his veto's were overridden.
    If we look at history, the threat of a veto often lead to compromise that benefited both sides of the aisle.
    I can't quite claim that's true of late. When was the last time the Dem's came up with a budget and when was the last time there was compromise between the parties?
     
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  7. jillian
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    jillian Princess Supporting Member

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    not really, ernie. i just don't allow rightwingnuts like the o/p to revise history.

    everyone is entitled to their own opinion. they are not entitled to their own set of facts.
     
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  8. candycorn
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    candycorn Alis volat propriis

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    Moreover, the mechanisms of the government as laid out by the constitution are ignorant of political reality in the late 20th and 21st centuries.
     
  9. Ropey
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    Ropey Honey Badger Don't Give A Shit! Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    That takes too much work today. The politics of the pointed finger runs rampant. I remember when the US Congress did work.

    Thank you for your well prepared post BP and kiwiman. It makes the research that much easier. :thup:
     
  10. DDU
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    DDU BANNED

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