Debunking the Top 10 Most Egregious Republican Lies
Photo Credit: Jamie Bernstein; Creative Commons / Wikimedia Commons
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I spend a lot of time debunking various myths, slogans and lies, and the undisputed champion of easily debunkable myths continues to be the Republican Party. But, until now, I don't think I've ever fully summarized the most glaring examples of GOP myths and lies. To be sure, this isn't to suggest that all Republicans are easily-misled simpletons. They're not. Yet their party consistently panders to its easily-misled simpleton base with the most egregiously dishonest ideas in American politics.
I hasten to note that this list obviously doesn't cover everything and I'm sure you'll have some additional examples for the comments below. But the following are definitely the 10 most mendacious things the GOP has attempted to foist upon the American public.
10) Obama Doubled the Deficit.
This was a favorite of the Mitt Romney campaign. Throughout 2012, Romney repeatedly said, "The president promised to cut the deficit in half. He's doubled it!" No. No he hasn't. First of all, this line depends entirely on voters not understanding the difference between the deficit and the debt. See previous "simpleton" remarks. Indeed, the president has absolutely cut the deficit by way more than half in his first five years. When he took office, the deficit for 2009 was projected to be $1.4 trillion. The deficit at the end of 2014 will be $514 billion, just three percent of GDP. That's a nearly $1 trillion reduction in five years. Not only that, but the administration boasts the lowest year-over-year increase in government spending since Truman, and it'll be one of just three administrations in the last 50 years that will have ended with a lower deficit than when it began. The last Republican do leave the White House with the same record was Eisenhower.
9) Man-Made Climate Change Is a Hoax.
According to a clearly liberal agency called "NASA," a full 97 percent of scientists with specific expertise in climate science agree that climate change is real and humans are causing it. We shouldn't really have to say anything else. Of course if you're Lloyd Christmas from Dumb & Dumber, and "one-in-a-million" means "there's a chance," then the three percent of scientists who aren't sure about climate change obviously indicates that it's a hoax.
8) Cold Weather Disproves Climate Change
Second in our trifecta of climate change myths is an annual favorite. Every time it snows, you know the drill. Whenever there's a snow storm everyone from Matt Drudge to Rush Limbaugh suddenly achieves nipple erections hard enough to cut glass. And out comes the myth that climate change can't possibly be real because it's snowing somewhere. What they fail to explain to their disciples is that New York City or Minnesota or Washington, D.C., isn't, you know, the globe. Climate scientists base their global warming observations on global temperature averages. So while it might be snowing outside Sean Hannity's house, average temperatures year-over-year are growing progressively higher.
7) Tax Cuts Do More to Stimulate The Economy Than Food Stamps and Unemployment Benefits.
- Every dollar spent on unemployment benefits generates 1.61 in economic growth.
- Every dollar spent on food stamps generates 1.74 in economic growth.
- But every dollar spent on rolling tax rates back to Bush-era levels only creates .32 in economic growth — that's a 68-cent loss on investment.
6) Cars Kill a Lot of People and No One Wants to Ban Them Like Guns!
Unlike firearms, cars aren't explicitly designed to kill or wound living beings (humans, animals, etc). They're designed to move you from one place to another. Yet unlike firearms, cars and drivers are heavily regulated by the government, from emissions standards to annual inspections to safety features, and so forth. You can't legally drive a car that doesn't feature seatbelts, or a car that spews too much exhaust into the air. You have to take both a written and a behind-the-wheel test to get a license to operate a car. You often have to renew that license at regular intervals and, if you're older, you have to prove that you're physically capable of driving a car. You can't drive a car while drinking alcohol or impaired by other chemicals. There are thousands of police officers patrolling our roads and, as most of us have experienced at one time or another, they will penalize or arrest you for improper handling of a car — with literally hundreds of laws to abide, and considerable penalties, ranging from fines to imprisonment to the government stripping you of your right to drive a car at all. So if the NRA and its supporters are going to keep using this car analogy, then let's talk about regulating guns and gun owners the same way we regulate cars and drivers.