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Posted at 7:01 PM ET, 02/15/2011


By Ezra Klein

Recap: The White House's two theories of how to remake social policy; the death of the gas tax; and the case for thinking Obama might well have his signature on a big deficit-reduction bill by this time next year.


1) Steve Waldman takes on "The Great Stagnation."

2) A good insurance conglomerate would insure against the risks of climate change.

3) How presidents really make policy.

4) I'll be talking jobs and the economy on "The Rachel Maddow Show" tonight.

Recipe of the day: Julia Child's beef bourguignon.

By Ezra Klein  | February 15, 2011; 7:01 PM ET
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Next: Wonkbook: GOP promises their budget will include entitlement reform


Some here (vision, krazen) have insisted that revenues did not fall under Bush.

However, history disagrees.

And though I have showed them proof, they cling to their dogma.

Well, there are charts in that link above that shows revenues fell twice under Bush.

Indeed, if I'm looking at those charts correctly, revenues at the end of Bush's 8 years were LOWER than when he started.

At one point in his first term, revenues as a percentage of GDP were the lowest they've been since the Great Depression. That is a historic low. And if you scan the charts, you will see an abrupt and historic reversal to long-term, steady revenue growth in 2001 after the Bush tax cuts.

So, why are conservative commenters here allowed to repeatedly lie, and instead say I am lying when I say revenues fell under Bush?

The fact that no single conservative reading this blog never chastises or disagrees with other conservatives when they blatantly, and repeatedly, and in a disruptive manner, lie about facts that are easily verified and pointed out to them, calls into question the integrity of every conservative on this blog and everything they say.

Posted by: lauren2010 | February 15, 2011 9:06 PM | Report abuse

Several interesting developments this afternoon.

First, New Hampshire passed its Right-To-Work statute by a margin sufficient to override the anticipated veto by the state's obstructionist governor. Workers in states like New Hampshire and Wisconsin are increasingly rejecting union control... and that's a very positive step.

Second, US News and World Report offered a great recap (at of the ever-growing cost of the Obama/Pelosi PPACA. As stated in the report, "The Internal Revenue Service
says it will need an battalion of 1,054 new auditors and staffers and new facilities at a cost to taxpayers
of more than $359 million in fiscal 2012 just to watch over the initial implementation of President Obama's healthcare reforms." Much to the chagrin of PPACA groupies, this new actual budget number can now be compared with CBO estimates issued last year.

Finally, ABC News has begun to question the reasoning and ramification of Obama's state-run media policies. The report (at quotes Heather LaMarre, University of Minnesota journalism professor, as stating that "They're opening the door to kicking the press out of historic events, and opening the door to having a very filtered format for which they give the American public information that doesn't have any criticism allowed" and quotes David Perlmutter, director of the University of Iowa School of Journalism and Mass Communication, as stating that "If Nixon had announced he was going to start the 'Nixon channel' and said they were only going to put up stuff he approved of, people would have said, 'Oh my God, this is like Communist Russian state media!'"

Note that comparisons of Obama to Nixon are becoming more common, which is interesting: in his last campaign, Obama made yet-unfulfilled promises of transparency which must now be reconciled with citizens' expectations.

Posted by: rmgregory | February 16, 2011 12:57 AM | Report abuse

"LaMarre and other political communication experts say the Obama White House is continuing the policy started by President George W. Bush, who famously vowed to "go over the heads of the filter and speak directly to the people," and capitalizing on new media and social media to do so more easily than ever before."

Rmgregory, you forgot that part didn't you?

The whole point if that abc whining is that Obama is utilizing twitter and blogs and YouTube, etc, to reach out to people. And the big media just can't stand it.

Your post on this is intentionally deceptive

Bush held fewer press conferences than anyone.

He also planted false stories in prominent news outlets, such as the nytimes, then cited them as proof of the need for their agendas.

Bush rigorously guarded access to all of his public events so as to keep out anyone who might hard questions.

Posted by: lauren2010 | February 16, 2011 5:32 AM | Report abuse

Your IRS article wasn't clear on whether they are hiring new agents or realigning old assets. It didn't provide links to the mentioned budget comments it based the story on. And the entire article had an anti gvmt attitude that makes you wonder if the story correctly interprets the budget items.

It also made mention the IRS enforcement of the new tax laws would result in net gains, just as the CBO predicted, and not net losses or costs as you implied.

But don't worry.

The budgets won't pass and we will instead be operating on continuing resolution and that means the gvmt and IRS will be operating very lean.

ACA is going to be defunded or repealed, and instead the savings will most likely be diverted to the DoD and the wars.

Posted by: lauren2010 | February 16, 2011 5:55 AM | Report abuse

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