rhetoric vs reality

Theres a nice little piece at the Center for American Progress tonight, outlining Bushs 2000 campaign promises and then showing, one by one, how the reality of what was delivered was quite different from what was promised. Granted, priorities changed for the country after 9/11, but that doesnt explain how widely divergent the rhetoric and the reality really are. Heres one example from the CAP report:

“In an act of foresight and statesmanship, [Senator Lugar and Senator Sam Nunn in 1991] realized that existing Russian nuclear facilities were in danger of being compromised. The next president must press for an accurate inventory of all this material. [George W. Bush will] ask the Congress to increase substantially our assistance to Russia in dismantling as many of their weapons as possible, as quickly as possible.” [Source: Bush-Cheney 2000 Foreign Policy website]

Despite repeated claims this spring that he favors further expansion of the successful Nunn-Lugar program, Bush’s proposed budget for FY 2005 cuts funding for Nunn-Lugar by 10 percent and cuts the Department of Energy’s Russian nuclear security funding by 8 percent. [Source: Carnegie Endowment for Peace, 3/3/0/04]

Its an interesting read. Check it out if you get a chance And maybe even send the link out to a few non-MM.com-reading friends. (Do any of you have non-MM.com-reading friends?)

While were on the subject of nuclear proliferation, you might also want to check out this article on our recent diplomatic failures in North Korea and Iran. I don’t want to give anything away, but it’s not a pretty picture.

Oh, while were on the subject of unpretty pictures, did you see Paul Krugmans piece comparing the rhetoric and the reality of Bushs tax cuts? Heres a clip:

Finally, many apologists have returned to that old standby: the claim that presidents don’t control the economy. But that’s not what the administration said when selling its tax policies. Last year’s tax cut was officially named the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 – and administration economists provided a glowing projection of the job growth that would follow the bill’s passage. That projection has, needless to say, proved to be wildly overoptimistic.

What we’ve just seen is as clear a test of trickledown economics as we’re ever likely to get. Twice, in 2001 and in 2003, the administration insisted that a tax cut heavily tilted toward the affluent was just what the economy needed. Officials brushed aside pleas to give relief instead to lower- and middle-income families, who would be more likely to spend the money, and to cash-strapped state and local governments. Given the actual results – huge deficits, but minimal job growth – don’t you wish the administration had listened to that advice?

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