Sunday, November 04, 2012

Keeping Track of Willard's Lies

Unless Willard wins the Presidency, this will be the last of these. I doubt Benen thought he'd do FORTY-ONE of these.

It's time for Willard's Lies of the week.

Once again, I will point out the site on the blog roll: Romney The Liar: because there are Liars, Damn Liars, and then there's Mitt Romney.

Steve Benen, now at The Maddow Blog:. Here's last week's entry of Chronicling Mitt's mendacity:

The opening:

Chronicling Mitt's Mendacity, Vol. XLI

By Steve Benen

Fri Nov 2, 2012 2:45 PM EDT

In a way, I blame my friend Greg Sargent. In the first week in January, he noted, almost in passing, that Mitt Romney seemed to be making a lot of false claims, and someone "really should document them all." That struck me as a good idea, so I decided to tackle this on my own.

After all, I thought at the time, how hard could this be? Once a week, I'd let readers know about Romney's whoppers, which I assumed would total about a half-dozen a week, and maybe after the election, I'd do a top 20 list of my favorites. The project would be a nice little Friday-afternoon feature.

Little did I know at the time that Romney would become an ambitious prevaricator, whose rhetoric would come to define post-truth politics. Nearly 11 months after Greg Sargent's harmless suggestion, I've published 40 installments in this series, which, before today, featured 884 falsehoods. (If you include today's edition, the new total is 917 falsehoods for the year.)

I wish that were a typo. It's not.

The outcome of next week's election remains in doubt, but regardless of who wins, I suspect this will be the final edition in the series. If President Obama wins, the project will have run its course. If Romney wins, I rather doubt I'll be able to keep this going every week for four years. So, with that in mind, enjoy the 41st and probably final installment of my weekly series, chronicling Mitt's mendacity.

1. At a campaign event yesterday in Roanoke, Virginia, Romney again suggested the president is to blame for the fact that "gasoline prices" have "gone up."

This is wildly misleading. It's true that when Obama took office, gas cost about $1.81 a gallon, and it's more than double now. And how did gas prices get so low in late 2008 and early 2009? Because there was a global economic catastrophe -- gas was cheap because the economy had fallen off a cliff, and demand crawled to a stop. As the economy improved, demand went up, and the price of gas started climbing. It's Economics 101.

2. In the same speech, Romney said he should be elected in order to prevent "four more years of trillion dollar deficits in Washington."

According to the budget plan Romney endorsed, we'll have four more years of trillion dollar deficits in Washington anyway.

3. Romney added he has a "five-point plan ... that'll get this economy going."

The five-point plan -- oil drilling, trade, privatizing K-12 education, vague assertions about debt reduction, and ambiguous promises about doing nice things for small businesses -- is a rehash of Bush/Cheney promises. No credible analysis of the vague agenda has found it capable of boosting the economy.

4. At a campaign event in Doswell, Virginia, Romney said "Obamacare" is "crushing small businesses across America."

There is literally no evidence to support this claim in any way. Indeed, a a significant portion of the ongoing cost of the Affordable Care Act is to give small businesses a tax break.

5. In the same speech, Romney also argued, "The president wants to raise taxes on small business."

In reality, Obama has repeatedly cut taxes on small businesses -- by some counts, 18 times -- and if given a second term, his tax plan would have no effect on 97% of small businesses.

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