Friday, September 7, 2012
Randi Rhodes: Big Dog Beat Down!
Last night the Democrats showed what you can get done when you have a former president that you can actually invite to the convention. Bill Clinton gave the mathematical, fact-based argument that Republicans should have had Paul Ryan deliver. Of course, the problem with that is that none of the math or the facts supports what Paul Ryan wants to do. Explaining how he balanced four budgets, Clinton said “I always give a one-word answer: arithmetic.” The Republican answer to arguments based on arithmetic is to slash funding for education. If nobody understands math, nobody is going to be bothering them with those silly arithmetic arguments.
Obama came out on stage at the end of Bill Clinton’s speech. Usually when a candidate shows up before the climactic final night, it’s to kiss his wife. After that speech, Obama owed Bill Clinton a kiss. Bill Clinton is perfect for stumping for a Democratic President—he’s synonymous with economic prosperity AND Republican shenanigans. Some people say that Bill Clinton does a better job of explaining Obama’s policies than Obama does. That’s fine, as long as Bill keeps doing a better job of explaining Obama’s policies than Mitt Romney does lying about them.
Some of Bill Clinton’s best lines were ad-libbed. He was working on this speech for weeks, and he continued to work on it, even as he was delivering it. Clinton pointed out that no president “could have repaired all the damage he found in just four years.” Hell, it even took George Bush a full 8 years to cause that much damage!
Fact checkers working the Democratic convention were pulling overtime to find any facts that didn’t check out. Fact checking Bill Clinton basically boils down to “Yup, those were all facts, alright.” A Bill Clinton speech has almost as many facts as a Paul Ryan speech has lies. Fact checkers would be better off fact-checking the lyrics to the song the Democrats played when Obama got the votes for the nomination. Are Kool and the Gang really telling the truth in “Celebration”? In the song, Kool and the Gang make the assertion “Everything is gonna be alright.” That claim is not verifiable. Also, the blanket statement “We’re gonna have a good time tonight” is clearly based on pure speculation.
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