The Pelosi Chart That Inspired Rex Nutting?
May 24, 2012
RUSH: We're gonna start in Pittsburgh. It's Jim. Great to have out program. You're up first, and welcome, sir.
CALLER: Great, Rush. I called Rex Nutting Tuesday night in Pittsburgh. He was on a talk show on that article, and I called him on it. First thing I said is, "They use baseline budgeting." He goes, "What is that?" I explained --
RUSH: Wait, wait, wait, wait. Hold it a second. Hold it. You...? Rex Nutting was on a show in Pittsburgh last Tuesday. You called the show.
CALLER: This Tuesday. And I knew enough by listening to you about baseline budgeting and everything else to challenge him, okay?
RUSH: And this guy --
CALLER: He didn't know what it was. I had to explain it to him, and --
RUSH: Wait a second. We gotta digest this. You're flying by this. Don't worry. I'll hold you over.
CALLER: Okay, good. As long as I know I have more time, I won't rush through it.
RUSH: Right, right. I just want to make sure people digest this. The guy who wrote the piece claiming that Obama is not a big spender, that Bush really spent all that money, you had a chance to talk to him on the radio in Pittsburgh last week; he did not know what baseline budgeting is. You had to tell him.
CALLER: Yes. Exactly. Yes. Yes.
RUSH: Did he understand it after you explained it?
CALLER: Yes, he did. Here's the amazing thing about it, Rush. He did, and he admitted they probably use it.
CALLER: This is how crazy it was. And I even said to him, Rush, I said, "They off-loaded Obamacare 'til 2014," and after that I got cut off. Because the host even admitted that his Twitter account was going bonkers. No one called him on it because no one knew enough like I knew enough to challenge him on it, okay? But as a guy that really doesn't have half of a brain, I don't know --
RUSH: Well, this is why, Jim, I am convinced that this guy was inspired by a chart that Pelosi's office put out a year ago. With your story I am more convinced than ever that that's what happened here. Look, we have the break. I want you to hold on.
RUSH: We'll talk about this and take some breaths at the same time.
RUSH: Okay, we're back with Jim in Pittsburgh who ended up talking to Rex Nutting on a radio talk show, I guess, Tuesday in Pittsburgh last week, and he had not heard of baseline budgeting. You had to explain it to him. Nutting is the guy that has this piece out about Obama not being a proliferate big spender. But you pointed out that Obamacare was off-loaded to 2014, all of the spending, the, quote, unquote, benefits so that that wouldn't show up before Obama had a chance to be reelected. But then you said that the Twitter account was going bonkers and nobody called him. Whose Twitter account was going bonkers?
CALLER: It was the guy on KDKA, Robert Mangino, he has the six to ten.
RUSH: The host, okay.
CALLER: The host. He goes either way, conservative or liberal, but I think he goes more on the liberal side as far as politics. And he even liked my idea about baseline budgeting, but how he sold him on it, and he sells a lot of people on it, he says, "Oh, using real dollars," and he admitted, he goes, "Yeah, I think Jim's right, they use baseline budgeting." I think what it is, Rush, you know, I told him right off, I said, "Look, I have a degree in political science. I've been following things for years. He knew I knew more than he knew. And after I explained it to him, he admitted it was true, and then I got cut off because they were worried that I would blow the guy out of the water. If I had more time I would have blown him out of the water. My point is, Rush, these people are so stupid that write these articles, that I don't know if it's lies, deceitful or just stupidity.
RUSH: Well --
CALLER: Who knows. But the whole point is --
RUSH: It's probably a combination.
CALLER: Yeah, that's what I think it is. But if I would have thought about what you said about how he hadn't passed the budget, I wish I could have thought -- and that's why you're where you're at, but he admitted to -- he says, "Well, they have to start somewhere." But he did not know what baseline budgeting is. And I don't know if people outside of listeners to your show know, but you've explained it eloquently over the years, and I was able to easily explain it. And the host even was --
RUSH: When you explain that the Porkulus -- and this guy trying to blame Bush for the Porkulus takes the cake. But all of this spending that was off-budget, was added to the budget, gets added to the baseline because it is federal spending. So the next budget incorporates that new level as the new baseline from which all the new spending increases are tabulated. Therefore, the spending which followed 2009 increased almost at a geometric progression because the baseline had a trillion dollars added to it that was not on the budget.
Jim, thanks for the call. He is making the point that he talked to the author of this story, and he came away with the belief that the writer may really not have known all he was talking about, that he got hold of a little bit of information and thought he had a scoop. He thought he had something that nobody else had figured out, and writes a story about it. And I had the same impression when I read this piece yesterday, that I sent around to all my friends. I put it too far down in the stack, and, frankly, I forgot that I had it in the stack yesterday. And when I sent this around to my friends, I said, "Get ready, this thing is gonna blow up pretty soon, wait 'til the Drive-Bys, the rest of them get hold of this in the regime," and that happened. I spent a lot of last night kicking myself for forgetting to mention it. So I have to now go back and tell you in hindsight.
But as I read this piece, I thought to myself, something about this just doesn't carry any authority with it. It read as something that was cut-and-paste, hopeful rather than authoritative. And then when I got here today and I started the intense show prep for today's program, then I discovered Pelosi's chart. Her office puts a chart out one year ago, May of 2011, which has this exact point in it. It's a bar chart, vertical bars that shows Obama spending barely exists and Bush's is skyrocket high. Reagan as the number one spender. And I said, "This has to be where this guy got the idea." Somebody saw the Pelosi chart, and this guy got hold of it, and that's where he got the germ of his idea. Well, he's on the staff at MarketWatch. And, by the way, the Wall Street Journal, which I think now owns MarketWatch, CBS did at one time, I believe, but the Wall Street Journal ran a variation of the story that somebody at the Journal wrote. But they didn't fact check it. I mean the story contained all the data.
If you wanted to believe this, if you're of the mind-set that you have to defend Obama -- look, most of the media, their number one job is to shape the news. That was Bozell's point yesterday in his column about how the media are not covering the massive lawsuit against Obama and the government by the Catholic Church and related organizations over the imposition of their religious freedom and liberty. It's a huge story. The media's ignoring it. Instead, the prism is, does it help or hurt Obama's reelection? If it hurts, it doesn't get reported. If it helps, it does. You want to know how does it end up at MarketWatch? How does ABC run and NBC doctor a 911 tape in the Trayvon Martin story, how does that happen? How does the Duke lacrosse case get reported as a lie for a full year?
You know what we learned today, speaking of Trayvon Martin. Guess what we've learned. There's a story, I can't remember the source. It's major. I just can't remember which one. A year ago, at some town council meeting or public meeting in Sanford, Florida, George Zimmerman ripped the cops for covering up the beating of a black homeless man by a white cop. He ripped the police department because they covered up the fact that a white cop beat up a black homeless kid. A white Hispanic George Zimmerman ripped into the Sanford cops for being racially discriminatory in not pursuing the fact that a white guy had beaten up a black homeless guy. He did this at a public meeting. So a picture further emerges of Zimmerman as not anti-black, not racially motivated in that way.
The whole narrative of the Trayvon Martin story has gone out the window. You asked me how does MarketWatch publish this. Well, how does the Trayvon Martin travesty happen? How does the Duke lacrosse case happen? How does NBC take a 911 tape and purposely edit it to make it look like Zimmerman is a black-hating racist? It happens because that's who the media is.
Financial reporting. So did sports reporting, didn't it? Snerdley, financial reporting, it used to... have you ever watched CNBC? Why does Rick Santelli stand out? He's the only one. This is another myth. Snerdley, you think business journalists understand and they're pretty much straight down the middle, don't find a whole lot of libs there. Right. Then how come all these CEOs give money to Obama and the Democrats, if they're so down the middle conservative Republican? All of these things are giant myths.
The only thing that matters right now as far as the media is concerned, will a story hurt Obama's reelection or help? They saw this Nutting piece. This is why I say they've taken the bait. Unwittingly, they've taken the bait. Our premise is Obama is an out-of-control spender. Up 'til now Obama hadn't even addressed that. Now all of a sudden Jay Carney, the White House, Obama himself cited the Nutting story last night at a fundraiser. "See? See? I'm not the big spender." As though he doesn't have the guts to say his own administration figured out that they're not big spenders, this guy in the media did.
Okay, so they've accepted the premise now, and they're on the defensive. They may think they're on offense with this, but they've been placed on the defense here. I think this is profound in any number of ways, 'cause this story turns out to be nothing more than a rehash of a Pelosi chart which is factually incorrect. All you have to know is that whoever did this... Nutting, I think, is just following something he saw somewhere else with this idea that all the spending in 2009 had to be George Bush's because the budget for 2009 was Bush's, not Obama's.
Obama's first budget wouldn't have started until October of 2009. This is the Bush budget. Therefore all spending... You gotta be (and this is Jim from Pittsburgh's point about the guy), really uninformed and a little ignorant about how things work to believe that Obama originated spending is actually Bush's. "Because the budget for 2009 was actually done in 2008! Obama couldn'ta done it! Therefore the nearly trillion dollars in spending that Obama did actually you have to count that as Bush's."
That's indescribably ignorant, and by ignorant I mean uninformed. But the editors see it, and they say, "This will help Obama's reelection," and so that's all the editor needs. Whether it's true or not, doesn't matter. When did truth start mattering in news coverage? Truth hasn't been a factor in I don't know how long. Truth isn't what gets stuff done. It's like I've always said about how dumb and naive I was early in the history of this program in 1990, '92. I'll admit it.
I would read a profile of somebody in a newspaper and think, "Wow, that profile's written because this person has accomplished something or done something really great to warrant this." No. That's not how that stuff happens. There are PR agents and flacks who are out there hustling this stuff, and by hook or by crook these profiles and laudatory stories of people get written not because anybody's earned it or achieved it, but because of other extraneous factors.
So truth -- which to many people is a moving target, anyway. Truth is a subjective thing to a lot of people. But that's why I'm the mayor of Realville. I look at this and I say, "When was the last time truth mattered in journalism?" If truth -- and, by the way, journalists will tell you: They're not interested in anything other than "fairness." That's their excuse now. "We have to be fair. That's what our objective is in journalism: We've got to be fair." Fair to who? That's a moving target, too.
Who gets to decide that?
Who gets to decide what income equality is?
Who gets to decide all this?
That's the power that the left assigns to itself or wants to have for itself. But just like I point out: If you're gonna blame Bush for the stimulus, then all that credit Obama and Biden are running around taking for it has gotta go to Bush. We gotta credit Bush for all the job creation. We have gotta credit Bush for the end of the recession. We have to credit Bush for moving the country forward and transforming it away from the mistake that it was as founded. That's how it ends up in MarketWatch: The guys think it will help Obama's reelection. That's the only thing that matters.
RUSH: Your guiding light through times of trouble, confusion, murkiness, tumult, chaos, lies, deceit, stupidity, ignorance, and even the good times.
Here's John in Columbus, Ohio. Hi, John. It's great to have you, sir, on the EIB Network. Welcome.
CALLER: Hi, Rush. It's an honor to talk with you.
RUSH: Thank you, sir.
CALLER: When you were talking about all the money that Obama spent that he blames on Bush, you forgot one big chunk that happened in 2009. In March of 2009, Obama signed the 2009 omnibus bill. That was $410 billion that added to Bush's budget because Pelosi couldn't get Bush to sign off on it.
RUSH: You know, that's right. I forgot the $410 billion omnibus spending bill that included tons of spending. It's a catchall. An omnibus is a catchall for all kinds of discretionary spending. You're right. So that adds $410 billion, and that brings a total up to $1.465 trillion of Obama spending that Rex Nutting wants to be tied to George W. Bush. That's a good catch.
CALLER: Yeah. Well, in addition to that, you know, we had this thing called TARP that gets blamed on Bush. But of course the money that went to banks supposedly got repaid plus profit, according to Geithner.
RUSH: Right, and that shoulda brought the federal deficit down, and I didn't see where it did that.
RUSH: Well --
CALLER: That must mean that somebody spent that money after it came back in.
RUSH: Yes, including the interest that was paid on that. But interesting about TARP: Not all of it was spent by Bush. Obama asked for $200 billion of discretionary TARP spending that had not been spent. He asked for that before he was immaculated. It was after he was elected. But before he was inaugurated, and Bush gave him the money, that was on the auto bailout. I'm factoring that in.
So there's $1.465 trillion of spending in 2009 by Barack Obama that this guy, Nutting, says needs to be categorized as Bush spending because it was Bush's budget.
Now, if we want to take this out to the absurd... Snerdley, when did they tell us the recession ended? They tell us, even though there is no recovery... By the way, this is Thursday. There's supposed to be unemployment news, right? There is unemployment news. Are you wondering why nobody's talking about it, folks? Are you wondering why nobody's talking about the unemployment number this week or the number of jobless claims? It's because it hasn't changed.
In fact, last week's were indeed revised up by 2,000 again. No change. Anyway, they tell us -- Obama and the media tell us -- the recession ended in June of 2009. Now, according to Rex Nutting, Obama wasn't responsible for anything in the 2009, until October. Therefore Obama is responsible for nothing. He's not responsible for ending recession. He's not responsible for any job creation. He's not responsible for anything that happened in 2009, including the recession ending. If that's what they want to tie themselves to, we are more than happy to let them.
RUSH: This is the chart. This is the Pelosi chart about who increased the debt, and this chart is sourced to "The Treasury department and the office of the Democrat Leader, May 19, 2011." Now, you can see (well, maybe you can't) that Reagan, according to Pelosi, is the big spender: 189% is how much his debt increase was. Next was George W. Bush at 86%, followed by George H. W. Bush at 55%. The two smallest-spending presidents or the two presidents that added the least to the debt were Clinton and Obama at 37%, 35%.
That's from Pelosi chart.
And I'm convinced that this is where this Nutting guy at MarketWatch was first turned on to this concept.
I think that's where he got it, and he built off of this thinking he had a scoop.
RUSH: On all of this spending business, I want to read to you a little paragraph here from Jim Pethokoukis, who is among the many who have tackled with numbers and analysis the claim by Rex Nutting that all of this Obama spending is really Bush's. Pethokoukis pointed out: "f Obama wins another term, spending -- according to his own budget -- would never drop below 22.3% of GDP. If that forecast is right, spending during Obama’s eight years in office would average 23.6% of GDP. That’s higher than any single previous non-war year" in American history.
"Until Barack Obama took office in 2009, the United States had never spent more than 23.5% of GDP, with the exception of the World War II years of 1942-1946." So the facts undercut Rex Nutting every which way possible. It simply isn't possible to say, accurately, that Obama is not a big spender. In fact, this is the Nutting story, the way it opens -- just the way this is written -- is what made me think that something's not right here about this. And I always trust my instincts.
Let me read this to you: "Of all the falsehoods told about President Barack Obama, the biggest whopper is the one about his reckless spending spree." Of all the falsehoods about Barack Obama? Okay, so everybody's lying about President Obama. And of all the lies people are telling about Obama, the biggest one is "his reckless spending spree. As would-be president Mitt Romney tells it: 'I will lead us out of this debt and spending inferno.'
"Almost everyone believes that Obama has presided over a massive increase in federal spending, an 'inferno' of spending that threatens our jobs, our businesses and our children’s future. Even Democrats seem to think it’s true. Government spending under Obama, including his signature stimulus bill, is rising at a 1.4% annualized pace -- slower than at any time in nearly 60 years."
That's the premise.
Well, yeah, you get to $1.4 trillion if you don't count any of Obama's spending in 2009. If you're only gonna count two of Obama's three years and then play some other games, you might get to that number. But then, again, what Nutter does not address here (in addition to misattributing spending to Bush rather than Obama) is the levels of spending. Okay, 1.4% annualized pace? That's 1.4% above what. We already have more debt added during the three years of Obama than all the previous presidents combined.
It's indisputable, undeniable. The MarketWatch piece really is a joke.