Originally posted at American Thinker blog
Sunday, prepared for a cardio workout, I ventured to the gym. And lo-and-behold, I was just in time for Chris Wallace’s “Fox News Sunday.” Truth be told, I had prepared myself for the pain of jogging uphill on a treadmill, but what I hadn’t anticipated was the torture of listening to Barack Obama’s chief campaign advisor, David Axelrod being interviewed.
Alas, the grief was impossible to avoid. Just as I was warming up, Chris Wallace began the segment by showing a 2008 video clip of then- candidate Barack Obama criticizing John McCain for doing what he’s incessantly done since 2008 — “painting” the philosophy of his political adversaries as something the American voter “should run from.”
Now, in 2012, Obama is still insisting that “The [GOP] budget [is] so far to the right it makes the Contract with America look like the New Deal.” According to Rachel Weiner of the Washington Post, Obama is now warning of the Republican “radical vision” and citing “social Darwinism,” claiming that the Ryan plan, by “radically transforming social welfare programs, would pit Americans against each other for resources and let the poor and weak die out — ‘dog eat dog’ capitalism.”
Chris Wallace challenged the obvious double standard and was countered by Axelrod, who defended Obama as merely “tak[ing] a look at the proposals on the other side and critiqu[ing] them.”
Then, Axelrod shifted into his own brand of “scare tactics,” telling Wallace that with a Republican budget, “a decade from now we would have a third less spending for example on Medicaid and that will hit people with disabilities. It will hit people in nursing homes very, very hard.”
Right about then, the treadmill mysteriously shifted to an incline of 10+, which eased the growing pain I was experiencing listening to David Axelrod’s verbal gyrations.
Wallace then pointed out that Obama’s “Buffett Rule” doesn’t work out mathematically because “millionaires [would] pay a minimum tax of 30 percent [which] would bring in $47 billion over the next decade, while the president’s budget adds $6.4 trillion to the deficit over the next decade,” and that “according to one estimate — the money you would get from the Buffett Rule would cover just 17 days of the increased deficit under the Obama budget.”
A forceful Wallace challenged Axelrod, saying that Obama said the “Buffett Rule would, quote, ‘stabilize our debt and deficit over the next decade’ — that wasn’t true.” Axelrod responded, “No, what he said was that it’s part of an overall plan [to] stabilize our debt and deficit,” to which Wallace shot back, “That is not what he said.”
Chris Wallace had the audacity to insert logic and truth into the discussion?
On that note Axelrod, who, like Barack Obama, hasn’t a clue how to create an economic environment that benefits all Americans, wandered straightaway into “fairness” and “piece of a larger pie” territory, saying “But nobody can argue — nobody can argue, Chris — nobody can argue that it makes sense for people who are making $1 million a year or more to pay less than the average middle class worker in this country.” Then, predictably, David endorsed the need for more “fairness in our tax system.”
Axelrod never mentioned that in less than three years, Obama grew the national debt by $4.2 trillion; instead he asserted that the president’s plan would cut “deficits by $4 trillion over the next decade.”
Right then and there, for relief, I adjusted the treadmill to the grueling “Mt. Everest” setting. My blood sugar started to plummet when Axelrod somehow forgot to mention a predicted $500 billion Obamacare price tag while remembering to claim $800 billion in savings by eliminating the Bush tax cuts.
Axelrod’s fuzzy math was getting fuzzier, so in an effort to knock Chris Wallace off balance he tossed out the trusty Planned Parenthood/women’s health/Mitt Romney-hates-women hardball.
Those comments, along with the revelation that Obama “paid a tax rate of 20.5 percent, which is a lot less than the 30 percent he talks about…[and]… lower than what his secretary pays,” got me thinking: During the State of the Union address, why didn’t Obama sit his secretary in the gallery with the other secretaries who pay more in taxes than their bosses?
Then Wallace zinged Axelrod again, when he asked, “if the president feels so strongly about tax fairness, is he going to contribute money to the Treasury, and they have a special department just for this, to help with the deficit?” Ouch!
Whoa, and double whoa. Clearly miffed, spinning and spewing talking points like a carnival cotton candy machine run amok, an irritated Axelrod responded “Listen, Chris, first of all, the reason that his tax rate was so low was in part because 22 percent of his income was donated to charity.” Curiously, in an election year, Barack Obama’s charitable contributions suddenly skyrocketed to an impressive 22%.
Nonetheless, the always fair and balanced Chris Wallace reminded Axelrod that Mitt Romney contributes millions, making Obama’s recent philanthropic efforts a moot point. Axelrod’s response? A flustered “Yeah, but there’s no proportionality there.”
Gotcha Wallace then brought up that the “president has the worst unemployment rate and second worst growth rate” of four prior presidents who consequently only served one term. That hard truth was countered with “those numbers are coming down,” which is sort of like Axelrod insisting that it’s better to drown in 6 feet of water than 10.
After three-plus years of what Dick Cheney characterized as “unmitigated disaster,” the newest hopeful change pledge from Axelrod/Obama is a middle-class-friendly economy where stagnant wages will miraculously increase and hard work will no longer be punished and the irresponsibility-rewarding policy Obama spent three years nurturing will magically disappear.
Winding down, Wallace cited a Fox News poll after which, speaking in treadmill terms, Axelrod continued: “The choice in this election is between an economy that produces a growing middle class and that gives people a chance to get ahead … and … continues down the road we are on, where a fewer and fewer number of people do very well, and everybody else is running faster and faster just to keep pace.”
Clearly, the bigger issue for David Axelrod isn’t the President’s culpability for America’s Obama-induced problems, nor “where we’ve been,” but looking ahead to where we’re going. Strangely, as I watched David Axelrod’s lips moving, the ending of the movie “Thelma and Louise” flashed before my eyes.
In the end though, it wasn’t all that bad listening to David Axelrod’s twaddle. In fact, the President’s chief campaign advisor actually motivated me to run, not walk, to the polls this fall to vote for anybody but Barack Obama.