Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Here "Lies" Bush's Nation

A grateful nation breathes a sigh of relief.... last night was the last time they'll have to endure The Decider's Misstatement of the Union.

The Washington Post unravels some of the untruths and half-truths in Bush's speech in "Fact Checking Key Assertions in the State of the Union." Here are a few examples.....

Bush asserted that "The Iraqis launched a surge of their own.... and today, this grass-roots surge includes more than 80,000 Iraqi citizens who are fighting the terrorists.

The "grass-roots" surge by citizens are actually Sunni neighborhood-watch groups that have been hired by the U.S. military for $300 a month. Officials aren't sure what will happen when these "citizens" are no longer paid.

The "coming together" of Sunnis, Shia and Kurds doesn't exist. In Baghdad, once heterogeneous, the Sunnis and Shia now live in separate enclaves while the Kurds have congregated in northern Iraq as an almost separate state.

The new de-Baathification law The Decider bragged on as one of the "encouraging signs" of reconciliation in many ways is more punishing to former Baath Party members than the much-criticized earlier law.

On the economy The Decider proclaimed that "Some in Washington argue that letting tax relief expire is not a tax increase. Try explaining that to 116 million American taxpayers who would see their taxes rise by an average of $1,800... This budget will keep America on track for a surplus in 2012."

Of course, since the tax cuts targeted the wealthy, they would be the ones most impacted by letting the tax cuts expire. Actually, the median American household would pay less than half of Bush's "average" $1,800 in 2011, while the richest 1 percent would pay an extra $64,154.

In truth, the Congressional Budget Office this month projected that the budget deficit will grow worse. In projecting a surplus by 2012 with his budget, Bush isn't counting the long-term cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan which his administration has repeatedly underestimated. In 2009 it has budgeted $70 billion, just one-third the cost this year.

What was most discouraging about Bush's performance, was his lack of new ideas or a call to action. The closest he came was his repeated assertion that the border cannot be secured against illegal crossers unless the U.S. increases channels for foreign workers to enter legally.... but he didn't make any new specific proposal for them to do so.

Aside from the medoicre content and hectoring-Congress tone, Bush's lackluster performance didn't even attempt to energize a dispirited nation. This stood in sharp contrast to the stirring speeches earlier in the day by Patrick, Caroline and Sen. Ted Kennedy with their endorsement of an inspiring Barack Obama for president.

The Decider's I'll-show-you-daddy plans lay in disarray at his feet. Shattered by his own misconceptions, arrogance and mismanagement. All he has left are lies.

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