Why Conservatives Have No Credibility

Conservatives claim to have all the answers, and think that being able to recite a handful of simplistic talking points on economic issues is actually the same as having any understanding of economics. When things go wrong under their rule (as they generally do) they are also experts at shifting the blame and never taking responsibility for the consequences of their own policies.

During the Bush years everything was Bill Clinton’s fault. If that doesn’t work, more and more conservatives are even willing to abandon their previous support for Bush, claiming he was not actually a conservative.

Anyone have any doubt that they will try to blame the current economic crisis on Obama if they run out of ways to blame it on Clinton? One example comes from Michelle Malkin who points to the stock market declines since Obama was elected (not even when he took office) as if the problem occurred under his watch as opposed to under Bush.

I’m certain that in future years Republicans will speak of the economic crash as being an event of the Obama administration. The right has already been in total denial over how the 9/11 attacks were largely a consequence of the failings of the Bush administration to pay attention to the warnings both from the Clinton administration and in Bush’s own daily intelligence briefings.

The only remaining question is how they will rewrite history to shift the blame for the other major failing of the Bush administration. Will future conservatives rewrite history to blame Katrina on Clinton or Obama?

Update: You would think that not many people would be so ignorant as to how the stock market works to take this post by Malkin seriously, but apparently many conservatives do. I wonder how they explain the approximately 25% drop in the market while Bush was in office, and the overall trend even before Bush for the market to do better under Democrats than Republicans. Doug Mataconis and Steven Talor, neither of whom supported the stimulus bill, both debunk the idea that Obama’s policies are responsible for the stock market drops since election day.

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23 Comments

  1. 1
    jesse says:

    It as Obama that blocked the problems of frannie and freddie which started the housing crisis. When regulation presented itself to Obama he blocked it in the Senate

    http://www.butasforme.com/2009/02/17/rove-schools-matt-lauer-on-how-obamas-support-for-fanniefreddie-filibuster-proved-detrimental-to-the-economy/

  2. 2
    MattM says:

    “Will future conservatives rewrite history to blame Katrina on Clinton or Obama?”

    What a revealing comment.  Only a wackjob liberal could blame a hurricane on the political opposition.

  3. 3
    K Ashford says:

    The Dow was at 7,949 on 1/20/09, the day Obama took office.  That’s a 400 point “plunge”.

    By contrast, it was at 11,500 on September 1 and hovering around 9,400 the day before Election Day.

    Is Malkin being deceitful, or just stupid?

  4. 4
    bullet says:

    Please don’t use “conservative” as a synonym for “idiot reactionary  Republican”.   The word neo-con came about for a reason.   These douchebags are as conservative as Christians are Jewish.  Lots of lip service with no understanding or practice.

  5. 5
    Ron Chusid says:

    bullet,

    I have often wished, including in the writing of this post, that we had better terminology. As I’ve said many times before, posts such as this criticizing conservatives are directed towards those who now dominate the conservative movement, which is quite different from past conservatives (and those still holding such views).

  6. 6
    Ron Chusid says:

    MattM,

    Why is it that people who call others wackjobs are the ones who reveal themselves to be the most ignorant?

    I bet any intelligent reader would have no trouble understanding that reference to Katrina is shorthand to referring to the response to the situation by the Bush administration. This includes both ignoring the warnings before Katrina hit which correctly predicted what would happen and the response afterward.

  7. 7
    Ron Chusid says:

    jesse,

    Thank you for confirming my view that conservatives really will buy the line that Obama is responsible.

  8. 8
    Ron Chusid says:

    K Ashford,

    My suspicion is that she is being more provocative than either deceitful or stupid. She doesn’t actually blame Obama in her post, but she knows her readers will. (As evidence, see jesse’s comment.) She also knows how to excite the type of people who follow right wing blogs.

  9. 9
    "Nobama" says:

    What is happening right now is “Obama’s Fault.”  We are tired of hearing about “Bush.”  If you want a true indicator of what is being accomplished right now, look no further than the Stock Market.  Obama said the world would end if he did not have his spendulous immediately.  It was ready to sign last Friday.  This is an economic crisis, and our idiot president is more concerned about making this a media event than he is about getting his plan into action. 
    The market has dropped 2000 points since Obama took office.  The market knows, as we all know, that this is NOT going to work.  In times of financial crisis, you don’t go out and run up all of your credit cards.  That is exactly what “Obama” has done.  This defies logic and common sense. 

  10. 10
    Joe the Liberal, licensed Plumber says:

    Who really cares what the republicans say or do? They are relegated to the party of whiners for the next 12-16 years. Let them pop OXY’s and listen to Limbaugh for their misguided ventures. Remember it was Limbaugh who said he hopes Obama FAILS. I wonder if the right-wingers that listen to him even realize that he’s wishing his listeners lose their homes, their jobs, their health care? That he wishes their home values plunge? That the value of their saving and investments become worthless, and so on? End of thy lesson. To wish failure upon Obama is un-American and your either with us REAL Americans wanting to stop this country from sliding into a GREAT DEPRESSION brought forth by republican “family values”, or your with the Terrorists in wanting to bring down America. Decide, you sick Republicans.

  11. 11
    Ron Chusid says:

    Joe,

    It is dangerous to ignore what the Republicans say and do. The right wing noise machine might put out a lot of nonsense, but they are effective at conning the poorly informed into thinking they are right and influencing votes. Look at jesse and Nobama as evidence of this.

    It is difficult to predict how long the Republicans will be out of office. If they can con people into thinking that Obama is to blame for the current economic problems they might wind up coming back sooner than you expect.

  12. 12
    Shelly says:

      Ever since the conservatives mounted the government saddle during the Reagan years, they have borrowed and spent the country into ruin. They accuse democrats of  “taxing and spending”, which, even if true, is less pernicious then their borrowing and spending sprees.
       Why? Because after taxes are raised and the money spent, it’s over. But borrowing and spending is only the beginning. There is interest to be paid, perhaps into the infinate future. The one time opportunity costs of taxation are multiplied by long-term interest payments when the game is to borrow.
        When Raegan came to power the national debt was just over a trillion dollars. When he left it was over 4 trillion. When W. took the reins it was just over 5 trillion. Now it is about 10 or 11 trillion, depending on what one counts. Remember, he lowered taxes during 2 wars  — the first time in our history –and paid not a dime for either.
        For that 8-9 trillion of added debt we did not get a national highway system, as we did under Eisenhower,;we did not rebuild infrastructure, modernize our health-care system or invest in our schools.
        The conservative ethos — the fictional Ayn Rand ethos spouted in Atlas Shrugged — has proven itself as bankrupt as Lehman Brothers. A few people have waxed very fat at the expense of the rest of us. The bill they’ve left will cripple us for more than a generation.
        And these “conservatives” call themselves patriots?

  13. 13
    Charles Bombaugh says:

    You don’t have to be stupid to be a conservative; BUT IT HELPS!

  14. 14
    Alicia says:

    For people who label themselves, as conservatives, let me explain the”Katrina” situation so even you who are
    educationally challenged,  & pack minded can comprehend it:  Katrina, the Hurricane, cannot and is not blamed on ANY administration…however, the RESPONSE  to the situation created by Katrina was dismal, pathetic, and downright embarassing and falls squarely, and absolutely on the shoulders of the Bush Administration.   Hurricane Katrina was, and still is an act of nature.  Failure to act, and come to the rescue of AMERICANS  is completely the fault of the Bush Administration.

  15. 15
    Ron Chusid says:

    Alicia,

    Thanks for connecting the dots for the intellectually impaired.

    Normally when writing a post I assume that readers will understand what I mean with a quick reference to Katrina. I didn’t count on the number of readers from Malkin’s blog. I guess that if someone is so impaired as to believe that the stock market performance since November reflects Obama’s actions as opposed to the underlying weak economy they are also likely to have difficulty understanding what is meant regarding Katrina. They might not even recognize that the handling of Katrina was a problem.

    The primary problem was the lack of adequate response afterward, but I also have my questions about not being better prepared before. I recall hearing warnings about what could happen on NPR, and then seeing the predicated devastation a few days later. Why wasn’t anyone in the government paying attention to these predictions?

    Ok. Dumb question. If Republicans aren’t going to pay attention to warnings over a potential global crisis as with climate change, why would they pay attention to warnings about one city? It just didn’t fit into their repertoire. There was no way they could say that either the free market or a tax cut for the ultra-wealthy would solve the problem, and therefore they didn’t know how to react.

  16. 16
    d smith says:

    I wondered if people who are conservative, who exposed the beliefs that they inherent from their parents truly understand what conservatives truly believe.  First of all there main argument are against big goverment and govermental spending, and they especially hate the social programs that the democrats/liberals spend money on, yet these same programs are used and enjoyed by conservatives, for example, how many so call “young republicans” go to college, with schools loans and grants from the goverment, yet it is the conservative agenda to cut educational funding when they are in office, (go figure),  liberal cut taxes for the lower and middle class, and those tax cuts goes to those conservative middle class  individual also, we don’t see them donating the money back…how bout school lunch programs, their kids go to school and enjoy school lunches, how bout job retraining programs offered by state agencies who get goverment funding for these programs, those conservatives who have lost their jobs are utilizing the programs also, the same ‘social program” that they are against in principal..how bout if they lost their insurance because of job loss, and had a major medical problem, we can go on and on, endowment for the arts and museums, that they go to also and enjoy…, the rhertoic of the conservatives is very hypocritical if they plan to utilize and enjoys or take part of the social programs that librals spend money on.

  17. 17
    Ken says:

    Based upon all of the “love” I see being shared here and on most political blogs by liberals, conservatives, progressives, neo-cons, Democrats, Republicans, etc., it’s apparent that the American version of the French revolution is on the horizon.  Off with their heads!  You (choose your word here: liberal, conservative) hate-mongering, idiotic, dumb SOB!

  18. 18
    Andrew says:

    Shelly,
    You are right on.  I had never really framed it that way in my mind but it makes a lot of sense.  At least at the end of the day, after the Obama administration has spent billions of dollars, we will have something to show for it.  And as far as this “generational theft” thing that McCain likes to spout… try this on for size… A war, started on false pretenses, that will probably cost over a trillion dollars on its own (as we will have to pay for it on layaway), that has cost the lives of many of our soldiers, and the countless Iraqi dead… that has served no purpose whatsoever….  This is the true “Generational Theft”. 

  19. 19
    Agent 28 says:

    Conservatives are very wrong and will always be wrong they think that tax cuts will solve the problems of the country and they make it worse. they claim they are against gay marriage but they have lots of gay senators in the republican party.Dick cheaney has a gay daugther and republicans looked the other way for him because he is cheaney had it been somebody else its wrong on their part. They say Cuts are better than spending but how many people can built roads and highways on cuts. The republican party does not care about the middle class or the poor all they care about is that the rich get richer that why now they are at the bottom where they belong.(Go Democrats)   

  20. 20
    Provocative says:

    Everyone here is listening to Michelle Malkin? The same woman that wrote a book  saying that the Japanese American Internment camps in WWII were necessary and even voluntary? Um, We didnt lock up the Germans, Italians or even the Muslims and the world kept spinnin’…

    I’m just saying…

  21. 21
    Ron Chusid says:

    Provacative,

    No, only the conservatives are listening to Malkin. The rest of us are just pointing out the absurdity of her post after it received a lot of coverage in the blogosphere.

    Most likely her main goal was attention as opposed to making any meaningful points, and we are playing into this. I see she has yet another post up today which is more to create noise and excite her more fanatic followers. I might change my mind later as time permits but for now I will probably ignore this one.

  22. 22
    Ron Chusid says:

    Ken,

    No, no French Revolution is coming. While on the surface this might seem like an all out war between liberals and conservatives, as bullet points out above, the people we are objecting to are not real conservatives in the historical sense.

    The real dispute is between a combination of liberals, moderates, and true conservatives versus the Limbaugh/Coulter/Hannity/Malkin mentality now dominating the Republican Party. A revolution was not necessary. It took a little time to get past the inertia of people who always voted Republican in the past but ultimately we saw in 2006 and 2008 that when one party gets dominated by such a group of extremists they will be peacefully voted out of power with no need for beheading anyone. The far right extremists are increasingly being limited to the deep south and some sparsely populated states in the west. While they might get a dead cat bounce in the short run, ultimately the GOP will either change their positions or go the way of the Whigs.

  23. 23
    nomoreGOP says:

    mattm:
    if you had half of half of a quarter of the brain of this “wackjob liberal” you would realize that he is talking about the REPUBLICAN GOVERNMENTS reaction to the hurricane and not the hurricane itself.
    Go play on the freeway.

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