Skip to main content

Bruce Bartlett was on Hardball today. If you missed his appearance it was simply amazing.

He destroyed every Republican fiscal talking point in 5 minutes.

He then ended the interview with this when Chris asked him how to end the debt issue.

CM: I feel like sanity has just walked into the door. Bruce, so great, now that I realize you're smart and have the numbers, give me two seconds. Any way to solve this kerfuffle?

BB: I think at this point, there's nothing that can pass the House of Representatives.

CM: Because it's too much of a zoo?

BB: Yeah, i think a good chunk of the Republican caucus is either stupid, crazy, ignorant or craven cowards, who are desperately afraid of the tea party people, and rightly so.

WOW.

He does let out a dirty little secret though.  

After the jump.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

They were discussing the infamous chart.

http://www.nytimes.com/...

On to the dirty little secret. Because I'm sure some will mention it.

Bruce Bartlett >> no, i think the dirty secret is that Obama is a moderate conservative. if i were a liberal democrat, i probably would be upset.

Hopefully this doesn't dominate the conversation.

Transcript.
.

CM: Bruce Bartlett is former Deputy Assistant Treasury Secretary under the first George Bush and a policy adviser to Ronald Reagan. Bottom line, let's look at the numbers right now. We've got a chart coming up. This shows the Bush tax cuts were responsible for increasing the debts. Now, we have about a $14 trillion debt right now, half came out since the turn of the century, and more than 40% of that has been from tax cuts.

BB: That's right. When Bush took office, we had a debt of about $6 trillion. The projections from the CBO were that we were going to run a $6 trillion surplus. By this point, if we had done nothing, we would have paid off the dead debt, but we added about $3 trillion of tax cuts. We lost about $3 trillion of revenue because of the slower economy and added about $6 trillion of spending, largely due to two unfinished wars and a Medicare drug benefits and a lot of other things. So, instead of getting -- paying off the debt--we ended up with about a $14 trillion debt.

CM: Some of these clowns, not all of them, running around saying Barack Obama is a Socialist, he drove up the national debt to $14 trillion and dance around in a circle and congratulate each other. That's not true.

BB: No, i think the dirty secret is that Obama is a moderate conservative. If I were a liberal democrat, I probably would be upset.

CM: The point is a $1 trillion debt, and another poring (?) is from the prescription drug bill. The whole rest of that is from a lousy economy under Bush and these two wars he came up with.

BB: That's right. The Republicans keep saying the tax cuts are the key to prosperity. The 2000s are evidence that that is not true. We had booming economies in the 1980s and '90s. If we went back to those taxes, we would be better off.

CM: What is the argument against the kind of tax policy-- let's just say it again. It seems like a heck of a great economy with the tax rate of about 39.6, as opposed to 35?

BB: Right.

CM: That's the ones the rich bitch about, to use a crude term. That helped balance the budget.

BB: That's right. Don't forget that Ronald Reagan raised the capital gains rate, and now it's only 15%, and of course the wealthier you are, the more of your income comes from capital gains.

CM: We showed the 400 richest people in the country. They pay about the same as a poor person pays, about 18%.

BB: That's right, of income taxes, that's right.

CM: Whereas the middle class, who think they are the majority of the country, they're paying a higher rate.

BB: That's right. I don't see think any question we would have positive economic effects if we went back to the tax rates.

CM: How come I need to drag you on the show -- the fact is, just a simple math, we have a $14 trillion debt, half came from the Bush era, almost, and the rest came from the prescription drug bill, and with a terrible economy and the two wars that he promulgated. That's simple math there.

BB: That's right, but in the Republican playbook, of course, the deficit is never caused by tax cuts--

CM: or wars.

BB: They go around saying they did not lose any revenue. A number of prominent officials, Mitch McConnell included, have said this. It's just mathematically ridiculous.

CM: And it's not Socialism, but if a Democrat says it, you can't go into the ER anymore for free, you have to kick in something, which to me is pretty conservative. The Republicans call it socialism, they would rather you go to the ER and get treated free. That's what's going on now.

BB: The Obama plan, the Affordable Health Care Act was essentially the same thing as the Reps themselves --

CM: Richard Nixon pushed an employer mandate. He wanted the individual not to pay any costs, all bosses had to pay the health care cost. That would have been the Nixon rule.

BB: The Heritage Foundation, much more recently than that, proposed an individual mandate, now all of a sudden --

CM: I feel like sanity has just walked into the door. Bruce, so great, now that I realize you're smart and have the numbers, give me two seconds. Any way to solve this kerfuffle?

BB: I think at this point, there's nothing that can pass the House of Representatives.

CM: Because it's too much of a zoo?

BB: Yeah, i think a good chunk of the Republican caucus is either stupid, crazy, ignorant or craven cowards, who are desperately afraid of the tea party people, and rightly so.

CM: I love it. Thank you. i can't add to that. Bruce Barlett. You use tougher words than I use. I just say a zoo.

Update: I posted this late last night and woke up to this being on the Rec list. 1st time. Thanks.  I also updated the transcript. Thanks to Sotto Voce.

Originally posted to SharksBreath on Wed Jul 27, 2011 at 11:45 PM PDT.

Also republished by ClassWarfare Newsletter: WallStreet VS Working Class Global Occupy movement.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

kos, grytpype, Rebecca, VA6thDem, Alumbrados, Angie in WA State, buffalo soldier, Joe Bob, Sylv, Dissento, Marek, RF, Joe Willy, PrahaPartizan, Val, DCMike, Sean Robertson, Chi, Ray Radlein, filkertom, LouisMartin, jotter, hester, Brainwrap, Catsy, lanshark, grollen, alyosha, Better Days, Subterranean, glitterscale, Detlef, Geenius at Wrok, Dave the Wave, lost, madmsf, emal, wytcld, DebtorsPrison, bosdcla14, superfly, Spinster, krwada, Shockwave, Craziel, Heimyankel, EdinPHX, Sherri in TX, Pescadero Bill, donna in evanston, Wintermute, SanJoseLady, hyperstation, Andrew M, jeremybloom, frsbdg, HootieMcBoob, x, dash888, musicsleuth, exNYinTX, davelf2, Paulie200, Dumbo, cinnamon68, Gustogirl, opinionated, TheMomCat, concernedamerican, bronte17, missLotus, 88kathy, EricS, DickCheneyBeforeHeDicksYou, fugwb, teresahill, Ian S, CoolOnion, boadicea, Bionic, Glic, tmmike, KS McCann, AndyT, roses, DesertCat, pedrito, greenomanic, Rujax206, MoonMonster, standingup, jalbert, PeteZerria, fumie, splashy, jted, Alna Dem, hopeful, sele, SnyperKitty, davis90, Eddie C, wader, Quege, jdmorg, Lilyvt, VexingEyes, tidalwave1, dejavu, Dube, Getreal1246, psnyder, TexDem, Dallasdoc, mrkvica, Dr Colossus, figbash, missliberties, sp0t, MA Liberal, mad ramblings of a sane woman, Noodles, johanus, JCPOK, peterborocanuck, downandout, DSC on the Plateau, dwahzon, Zed Storm, Sychotic1, Catte Nappe, RuralLiberal, whyvee, RebeccaG, LucyTooners, lcrp, walkshills, outragedinSF, bwintx, Exurban Mom, zdefender, KateCrashes, zerelda, glattonfolly, WV Democrat, side pocket, sgranger, demway, Hillbilly Dem, Wife of Bath, adguy, Pola Halloween, jcrit, poemworld, TheOrchid, xyz, Black Max, lyvwyr101, sbg, justmy2, boran2, Josiah Bartlett, rmx2630, llellet, gsbadj, Armand451, J Orygun, BDA in VA, Frank Vyan Walton, kevsterwj, sawgrass727, Gowrie Gal, Ohkwai, tea in the harbor, rapala, MKDanaher, Los Diablo, ExStr8, bobdevo, bloomer 101, radarlady, cetylovx, NoMoreLies, pigpaste, gerard w, Sam I Am, jarneys dad, JanetT in MD, CTPatriot, Lying eyes, OpherGopher, PBen, Jersey Girl, KnotIookin, Alice Venturi, dewtx, Brooke In Seattle, Dobber, ratzo, boofdah, Chaoslillith, GreenPA, wiseacre, Pam from Calif, Sun Tzu, jimreyn, Old Hippie, where4art, GreyHawk, Fury, lmariefrombama, Robert in WV, CompaniaHill, davidslane, ord avg guy, Cecile, rb608, AnotherMassachusettsLiberal, LostLibertarian, The Raven, pacotrey, sodalis, dazed in pa, churchlady, peacestpete, SocioSam, Box of Rain, mightymouse, xanthippe2, Alan Arizona, Snud, zozie, kathny, ChuckInReno, Jim R, accumbens, Jim P, begone, Reality Bites Back, barbybuddy, DisNoir36, Hirodog, atdnext, eire1130, BachFan, BalanceSeeker, LeighAnn, tarheelblue, vigilant meerkat, sherlyle, DrSpalding, Mr Bojangles, Clytemnestra, tung sol, SciFiGuy, cardboardurinal, Russgirl, Malachite, koNko, technomage, Below the Beltway, The Wizard, Texas Blue Dot, poichick, Wary, kck, neecie100, NBBooks, triv33, eglantine, global citizen, twigg, gpoutney, Libby Shaw, Terminus, JVolvo, joe shikspack, Sagebrush Bob, happy camper, Preston S, sceptical observer, middleagedhousewife, MBNYC, think blue, caraleescockers, anninla, rage, Unknown Quantity, TooFolkGR, CA Nana, profh, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, means are the ends, Statusquomustgo, jjellin, kurious, Bernie68, bstotts, Temmoku, AllanTBG, liberaldemdave, AntKat, Thinking Fella, clinging to hope, Sapere aude, darrkespur, pgm 01, North Central, pfiore8, donnamarie, TC MITS, Cronesense, Habitat Vic, oklacoma dem, byDesign, jhecht, camlbacker, ksp, milkbone, SemDem, ColoTim, offgrid, NovatoBon, vets74, yoduuuh do or do not, blue71340, unionboy, LillithMc, Mary Mike, yowsta, HeartlandLiberal, Jimdotz, terabytes, LamontCranston, anagram, Nick Lento, Unbozo, Strabo, bnasley, malharden, mbh1023, Orange County Liberal, jayden, ubertar, cyncynical, bobswern, millwood, Moderation, Bridge Master, jhop7, carpunder, RudiB, fallina7, skod, cloudbustingkid, zorp, Azubia, aseth, Empower Ink, Cjagmoore, gizmo59, Mighty Ike, Send Rahm a Cheesecake, JDWolverton, 123man, MKinTN, GANJA, rogerdaddy, bkamr, KLS, revm3up, mconvente, glutz78, flowerfarmer, Captain C, wayoutinthestix, ScottyUrb, Youffraita, Senor Unoball, 1983sedge, Involuntary Exile, urban raptor, bythesea, elwior, skohayes, John Barleycorn, wonderful world, KJG52, jamess, monkeybrainpolitics, Happy Days, Calamity Jean, Lujane, NYmama, pamelabrown, demoKatz, Jake Williams, pickandshovel, carver, Jeff Y, catly, envwq, mofembot, Seamus D, Pogyak, royalscam, phrogge prince, tsqd, venger, MarkVA71, Uncle Bob, punkdavid, allie123, Nica24, Ellinorianne, dmhlt 66, vmdairy, princess k, statsone, Leo in NJ, squarewheel, GustavMahler, humanunit, oldliberal, legendmn, R Rhino from CT4, dreamghost, tarheel74, artmartin, gigigirl, rubyclaire, cybrestrike, loftT, J M F, Leftcenterlibertarian, Rick Aucoin, ARS, emboyo, mjkellett, lostinamerica, juca, bobatkinson, banjolele, tiredofcrap, Mislead, Methinks They Lie, Partisan Progressive, Grey Panther, bigmikek7, VoteAqui, CamillesDad1, RASalvatore, manucpa, obiterdictum, MKSinSA, NWTerriD, TheOpinionGuy, Kalex, bfitzinAR, MySobriquet, lastman, kw7777777, IreGyre, carlylu, stevenwag, jfromga, astral66, futureliveshere, deviant24x, Larsstephens, Nalepoc, Clyde the Cat, Railfan, MT in Austin, Amber6541, JNSD, Renie57, confitesprit, FogCityJohn, p gorden lippy, icemilkcoffee, flitedocnm, roadbear, NJpeach, Observerinvancouver, georgia gal, catwho, piers, kjoftherock, biggiefries, citizen31, Crabby Abbey, Polly Syllabic, ATFILLINOIS, Eddie L, gosoxataboy, gulfgal98, pixxer, ItsSimpleSimon, paradise50, Hoopgreen, jojothecat, fl1972, Grumpy Young Man, sharonsz, mideedah, Dalarna, The Poet Deploreate, Maverick80229, elengul, science nerd, rasfrome, soaglow, stevenaxelrod, Its a New Day, HylasBrook, new10, Actbriniel, mallyroyal, slice, lion heart wind, Quantumlogic, TheHalfrican, Jane Lew, kktlaw, Jasel, kerflooey, ozsea1, Old Jay, Oldowan, tosimmonds, nervousnellie, sostos, nicethugbert, Quackerz, Buckeye Nation, AuroraDawn, cv lurking gf, Mr MadAsHell, freesia, Possiamo, OldGrammy, robizio, THirt, BillyElliott, asterkitty, mikejay611, pbgv23, Teiresias70, CoExistNow, Paula68154, princesspat, trumpeter, tkwasny, Haf2Read, marleycat, zukesgirl64, thomask, dle2GA, BarackStarObama, RfrancisR, floridablue, tardis10, LSmith, CherryTheTart, createpeace, jgnyc, Joe Hill PDX, peregrine kate, yaque, MinistryOfTruth, sound of progress, Imhotepsings, poliwrangler, blue aardvark, jolux, MattYellingAtTheMoon, Anthony Page aka SecondComing, Nightshade Q, googie, Regina in a Sears Kit House, aerie star, Auriandra, ParkRanger, Davui, No one gets out alive, Azazello, Mathazar, tennegirl, Rejoinder, ready for change, davryanna, neaguy, Only Needs a Beat, nominalize, chmood, ettajamesfan, WesEverest, wretchedhive, Flying Goat, DeanNC, TheLizardKing, greenbastard, Siri, molecularlevel, Citizenpower, IndieGuy, docrocktex, rexxnyc, BlueBlackDog, S F Hippie, oneshot, Annie Oakley, AnnieR, FreeSpeaker, childrens DO learn, congenitalefty, swedepi, Celtic Pugilist, IProfess, supercereal, Ruh Roh, progressivebadger, radical simplicity, beefydaddy18, qitqat, MartyM, ClutchCargo, qannabbos, New Minas, sexgenderbody, Margd, TheTruthIsOutThrere, Vote4Obamain2012, splintersawry, fritzi56, CitizenScientist, Dolboeb, history first, Artandscience, wasatch, pashber, Sue B, codobus, Michelle Tiffany, Wes Lee, Eric Twocents

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site