RUSH: February 23rd, 2009, President Obama said, quote, "And that's why today I am pledging to cut the deficit we inherited by half at the end of my first term in office. This will not be easy. It will require us to make difficult decisions and face challenges that we have long neglected. But I refuse to leave our children with a debt that they cannot repay, and that means taking responsibility right now in this administration for getting our spending under control."
That was Barack Obama on February 23rd, 2009.
Now, when you hear that, what is your reaction?
Your reaction is, "Man, Rush, I'm glad you're mentioning that because people find out what a liar Obama is, and people are finding what a failure Obama is! He promised to cut the deficit in half and he hasn't done it," and in normal times, that would be a perfectly logical reaction -- and in fact, if this were normal times, I would bring this story to your attention. I would have led off the program with it today and I would have tried to convince people, "See, this guy told you a bunch of stuff he didn't mean back in 2009."
But that's, sadly, not the way this is perceived. The vice president was at the White House today. Now, we already played the sound bite of the vice president saying, "The American people are tired of being tired. They just want to get up and get moving." They're tired of being tired? Well, "tired of being tired" of what? No job to go to? No prosperity to get? What are they tired of? He didn't say. So there's just a general malaise. People are fed up. They want to go out there and they want to do something.
"They're tired of being tired," in normal times, would be a huge indictment of this administration, but these are not normal times. In addition to the vice president saying people "are tired of being tired," the vice president said that Americans no longer worry about the economy. He said, " "The are no longer traumatized by what was a traumatizing event, the great collapse of 2008. They are no longer worried, I think, about our economy being overwhelmed either by Europe writ large, the EU, or China somehow swallowing up every bit of innovation that exists in the world.
"They are no longer, I think, worried about our economy being overwhelmed beyond our shores. But, and I don't think ... there is very little doubt in any circles out there about America's ability to be in position to lead the world in the 21st century. Not only in terms of our foreign policy, our incredible defense establishment, but economically." So, "The American people are tired of being tired," and "they no longer worry about the economy," and four years ago, Obama pledged to cut the deficit in half at the end of his first term.
He said he "refuse[d] to leave our children with a debt that they can't repay, and that means taking responsibility right now." But he hasn't taken responsibility, see? That's the key. He has remained an outsider. Even while occupying the Oval Office, Obama remains in campaign mode. But what the low-information voter makes of all this is that Obama has been trying for four years. The point that we haven't yet arrived at -- and I don't know that we ever will with Obama -- is people do not question his motives, and they do not question his intent.
They have swallowed all of that whole. They believe Obama really intended to cut the deficit in half. The reason he hasn't is that there are people who don't want the deficit cut in half, and who are they? They're the rich, and they somehow benefit from a big deficit. Because, as far as the low-information voter is concerned, the rich got rich off the government. The government allowed them to get rich or gave them the money or there was some sort of arrangement, and that's how the rich got rich.
What Obama is about is now taking it back, and when you take money from the rich, you lower the deficit. As far as the low-information voter's concerned, "You lower the deficit when you raise taxes on the rich, because the reason we have a deficit is the rich have too much money." I know this doesn't make any sense to you. It doesn't make any sense, period. It's not logical. But we're not deal with logic. We're dealing with emotion.
So the people who voted for Obama -- a majority of the voting public, by the way, low-information voters -- don't have any problem with hearing Obama intended four years ago to cut the deficit in half. They think he's still trying. They think he's been trying for four years. There are just some mean people standing in his way, mean people stopping him, selfish people who don't want to give up what they have unfairly and illegitimately received. That's the battle. I remember so many people on my side of the aisle thinking this class envy stuff stopped working a long time ago, and there may be an interval where it did.
But it's back, and it's roaringly successful for Obama now, to the point that the low-information voter is literally clueless about the source of prosperity. The low-information voter, I'm convinced, believes government is the source, and that's why it's not fair that the rich have so much money. Because the rich run the government, and the rich have been taking care of themselves and it was the rich who founded the country. "Obama, four years ago, pledged to cut the deficit in half.
"He meant it. He's been trying! But these people, you know, they're not gonna give away their money. They're just not gonna give it up. He's gonna have to go take it! He's gonna have to go take even more." What the low-information voter doesn't realize is... By the way, I happen to think... Correct me if I'm wrong, people. If you want to call me on the phone, correct me if I'm wrong. I think within a certain segment of the population -- I think it's rather large -- Biden happens to have waded into the truth.
I don't know if it's a majority or not, but I think there are millions of Americans who aren't worried about the economy. Now, there are millions who are worried -- and there are millions who are more than worried; they're petrified. They're petrified about what it means for their kids and grandkids. I had an interesting conversation. I played golf yesterday for the first time since July. I had this frozen-shoulder thing.
I didn't even know what that was, but starting last August I began to experience an increasing amount of pain in my left shoulder with a decreasing range of motion, and it just kept getting worse. It's one of these things that was nagging. It didn't hurt all the time, just with certain types of movements, but it kept getting worse. It's one of those things you think will just get better if you leave it alone. This didn't.
So finally my golf buddies, who amazingly were sad that I wasn't able to play with them, forced me to see a doctor. One of them actually arranged a doctor coming to me. That's how much I was missed on the golf course -- and my airplane. (chuckling) Anyway, so I got a shot of cortisone, and it's working, so I was able to play golf yesterday for the first time since July. I had a fascinating talk with one of my golf buddie, who is semiretired. He's been very successful.
He said to me, "You know, Rush..." I got the usual expressions of concern about the future for his kids but, more importantly, his grandkids. This man is petrified that if things don't change, his grandkids are never, ever gonna even have a chance at prosperity because nobody will. He's afraid there won't be enough money circulating in the private sector, that the government is just gonna grow and grow and grow, and then the debt is gonna pile up and pile up, and this is going to collapse at some point.
A United States collapse would be much different than a Greece collapse. Greece can collapse and there's a ripple. We collapse and the world feels it. But then he said this to me. "It's gotten to the point, Rush, I don't care about the social issues right now. I just don't care. Gay marriage? I don't care." He's a devout Catholic. You know, six months ago, he's adamantly opposed to it. He says, "I don't care. Abortion? I don't want to have 'em, but I don't care. That's not important. I don't care. I am 100% focused on fiscal things. This country is out of control."
I would suspect that there are millions of you feeling exactly the same way. The concern over the economic future, I don't know about the social issues. In this guy's case it was interesting he phrased it that way to me. I'm not endorsing it or disagreeing. I'm just passing it on as something I was told. I suspect that a lot of people are like that. His whole point was, "Look, I care about that stuff, but I don't want to lose focus here. I don't want anybody to dilute the energy that we put into saving the economy." That was really his point. If the amount of energy we've got to fight for the economy is 100%, I don't want 30% of it off on some social issue, another 10% off on another social issue, and we're down to 60% of our energy on the economy. I want a hundred percent of it on the economy, saving the economy.
I said, "In many ways, the morality that is incumbent in social issues can't be divorced from fiscal matters," but I didn't get much into that because this was before we hit the links. We were wrapping up a quick bite to eat before we went out. But I suspect, though, that there are a lot of people who feel the same thing way. At the same time, the vice president's right, folks. This is just a sense. I mean, I can't swear to this. And I could be wrong. But I think we've gotten to the point where a lot of people, if you've got your TV, you've got your food stamps, if you have your cell phone coverage, as long as you can get a pitcher of beer and a pizza, which, not for long if you live in New York, by the way. If you don't have much ambition to begin with, then the economy may not matter to you, and it certainly may not matter enough that you would fight or join a fight.
I don't know what the percentages are, but I suspect that Biden's got a point. I think he's also right, which is contradictory, that people are tired of being tired. And by that, I think there are also some people tired of waiting for the cycle to fix this. Some people just instinctively think, "Okay, recession. But we gotta come out of it sometime." And those people are totally clueless that this recession was created by Obama policies. This recession is sustained by Obama policies. They're totally clueless.
I think the people Biden's talking about who are not worried about the economy are also clueless as to why the economy is stagnant. But it's clear that this regime wants that perception of this economy, that there's nothing to worry about. Unemployment's cool, 7.8, 7.9%, this cool, this is the new norm, everything's fine, because it's going to get worse. So there are a lot of individual parts of the engine here that appear to be working, some in agreement and in sync, and others in total opposition to themselves. Something's gotta give at some point, but the one thing that we don't have anywhere as far as the eye can see is policies that engineer or make possible economic growth. That's the sad reality.
Not only do we not have that, we have a president who promised four years ago to cut the deficit in half who's done nothing but grow it faster than any president in history, not just the deficit, but the national debt, who is not tied to it. In fact, the view is he's trying to stop that. (voice of new castrati) "That's right, Mr. Limbaugh, he promised four years ago to cut the deficit in half and he fully intends to and he's still trying to, but it's people like you and others that are stopping him because you don't want him to succeed."
And then you add one final thing. Look at Bob McDonnell, the governor of Virginia. Look at Governor Rick Scott in Florida. McDonnell, what did he do to get elected? He had everybody thinking this guy was a movement conservative, right? He's totally caved now. He has totally caved. He has thrown in with the Democrats. He's thrown in with Obama. He's thrown in with expanding Medicaid, because of two things. He's up for reelection and there's this big pile of money Obama's promising, along with all the other governors.
The one thing I know that irritates you as much, if not more than anything, is it just appears that people on our side, way too many of 'em, not all, but way too many of 'em, don't know how to govern when they're in power and don't like to fight when they're out of power, or either don't know how. I suspect they don't like to. It's easier to go along, less friction.