RUSH: Now the economy. I noticed after the debate last night, I did get home in time to watch the post-debate roundtables, the wastes of time on the Drive-By cable news networks last night, and I detected a theme. The Democrats are doing two things. They’re bringing back, not the Iraq war, but the surge. Nancy Pelosi has issued a press release yesterday proclaiming the surge to be a total failure, on the same day that we’re told we’re about being ready to be able to turn over Anbar province to the Iraqis!
Eleven out of 18 provinces in Iraq are soon to be turned over to the Iraqis, and yet the surge didn’t work! The second thing that the Democrats, the commentators on the Democrat side, are really pushing is the economy. It’s horrible, it is rotten, it is bad. Of course, the one guy on the Republican side that’s going right along with them and echoing that sentiment is Mike Huckabee — and this whole notion of angst (panting) and uncertainty and fear about the future of the economy has got people on edge. And, of course, the Democrats, the Drive-Bys are eager for that impression to take hold because even though for the last eight years the economy has not been an issue that will have an effect on elections, because Bush was the president, all of a sudden, guess what’s back? Iraq’s off the front page, the economy is on the front page, and guess what? The economy is rotten. The economy is bad. Let me share some things with you. You can turn on any financial news network or read a newspaper, and you can find what you think are disasters in the making. The price of gold is way up. The price of oil is way up. Stocks are plunging, the subprime crisis, banks having to refinance with foreign money and so forth.
‘Oh, my gosh, Rush! Look at people losing their homes, forecloses.’ Ninety-four percent of all Americans are paying their mortgages! I’ll just give you this in personal terms. Do you realize how cyclical all things economic are? Just like all things are cyclical in history, all things are cyclical in all of life. The idea of people in a panic over normal, since-the-beginning-of-time economic cycles is a little frustrating, and I want to try to do something about it. All of the panic-mongers try to make it sound as if none of this has ever happened before, and that creates panic. ‘Why, what are we going to do? We’ve never seen this set of circumstances before!’ Now, I know that there are new variables thrown in at all times, like the ChiComs and their economic growth, but these are all cycles and they’re all cycles in all of life’s activities. Nothing is new. The ChiComs may be expanding, but guess what? There are other parts of the world that are contracting. The EU is a nonfactor. I told you this a couple years ago. They’re soon to fall behind the ChiComs in terms of economic output and competitiveness.
So while the ChiComs are making up the balance… We’re always going to have competition from someplace, and just because it’s the ChiComs growing, it’s actually a probably pretty good sign the ChiComs are growing because the more economic power that their people amass, the tougher it’s going to be for the ChiComs to maintain a tight communist control on all areas of their society. It’s not going to change any time soon; it’s gonna take some time to roll out, but there’s good, there’s so much good on all of these things that happened, and nobody wants to try to find it. Everybody wants to focus on the negatives, start biting the nails — especially in an election year. Let me try to give you an example. I was 16 in 1967. When I got my driver’s license, you know what the price of a gallon of gasoline was? Take a guess, Brian. You weren’t even born in ’67, so I want you to just take a guess. This is a very good example. What was it? Give me a wild guess. It was 28 cents a gallon in 1967 when I got my driver’s license, my Pontiac LeMans. That was with taxes; that was with everything — and then there were gasoline wars, and sometimes the price would go to 25 cents. Stop and think about this.
Now, granted, you know, I was working my first job, and I was making I think a dollar and a quarter an hour. It didn’t matter. I was living at home. I gave my dad my paychecks, because I was 16. So 28 cents — and then we’d get to the seventies and, of course, all hell broke loose. We had Nixon, wage and price controls. We had contrived shortages of oil. There weren’t really any shortages. And guess what happened? The price of gasoline overnight doubled. It didn’t go from 28 to 31 to 35 to 37, all of a sudden it was 50 cents, and that was a huge shock, a dramatic percentage increase. And then it didn’t take long for it to get to a dollar, then we had the gas lines. We had gas stations open two or three days a week, alternate days you could go in based on your license plate depending on where you lived to gas up. We had people siphoning gasoline out of their neighbors’ cars. People have forgotten that. And look where we are today after all of that! We are prospering like never before; we are affluent like never before. Yet, people who were alive during those days and experiencing it for the first time and the price of energy jumping like that, it was Panic City.
But we don’t learn that there was no need to panic. That was 1967. Now of course the gasoline figure, what, a little over three dollars a gallon since 1967? This is 2008. What is that, 40 years? That’s not really bad, is it? From 28 cents a gallon to over three bucks a gallon in forty years, and yet look at the panic the Drive-Bys are able to inspire and instill in people. Despite this, we are booming. All of these cycles, up and down, do not kill us! We adapt and we prosper. Prices for everything will always increase; prices always go up. Phone bills get more expensive. Now, people are immune to it. You will have the introduction, say, of high-tech electronics at ridiculously high prices, but that’s to recoup the R&D because they know there are suckers like me who will go buy the first version, and thanks to suckers like me who will go out and spend 1,200 bucks on the first Betamax, the price comes down to 200 bucks in a short period of time. These things happen to work, because markets work. People always want cheap stuff. Every holiday season (grave news announcer voice), ‘People are waiting here to find the best deal.’
When do they not try to find the best deals? News out of China, by the way: the Chinese global trade surplus, up 50% last year. Numbers came out overnight last night. So all this talk about boycotting ChiComs toys and so forth, it didn’t happen. All the lead content, it didn’t matter, because people want to pay as little as they have to for things. That has never changed. It does not mean that there are economic problems ahead because people, consumers, are trying to find deals. When have you not tried to find a deal on a car? The only exception is when you buy a house you love to tell people how much you spent for it. When you buy a car you love to tell people how you screwed the dealer. All of this stuff is just cyclical. It happens all the time. There’s nothing new here. And guess what? Because people want low prices, we got Wal-Mart. We got Wal-Mart, and Wal-Mart is so successful, the Democrats are trying to destroy it.
Why are they trying to destroy it? Because Wal-Mart has created a bond and loyalty to its customer base that Democrats want government to establish. Democrats want low-income people, middle-class people to look at government with the respect, the loyalty and love that they look at Wal-Mart with. (sigh) You know, I watch all this and have all these economic stories of people in panic and I cringe, because it just isn’t necessary. I’ll tell you, one of the things… See, the problem is that there are people — Madeleine Albright is one — throughout the US government who don’t like the fact that we’re the only world superpower, both militarily and economically, and they want to do everything they can to bring us down. There are some people, like Albright, who, would love the ChiComs to become a competing economic superpower because of their perverted view. Lacking the concept of American exceptionalism, they think the world would be more stable because they think the US is evil and that we need to be counterbalanced. This is a serious problem, and that’s who’s telling you things are bad.
RUSH: To finish off this business on the economy, there are a number of people in this country, folks, you’ve seen them in action trying to secure defeat in Iraq. Madeleine Albright has said countless times, the Clinton secretary of state, that it’s bad that we’re the only superpower in the world because it promotes instability, it makes the rest of the world hate us. Of course, to believe that, you must not, if you’re Madeleine Albright and other people like her, you simply cannot accept the concept of the US as the good guys. If you want there to be a competing super power, particularly a competing economic superpower and a competing ideological superpower — for example, if you want a country like the Soviet Union or the ChiComs to be a competing superpower, then it’s ideological. So you want an enemy. You must not have the concept of the US as the good guys. You must believe that we’re evil; you must believe that we are the cause of many of the so-called problems that exist in the world. These people are getting a toehold now on the economy.
There are people who want the US economy to become less important to the world and in the world, and the reason they say this, it’s a very seductive reason. They say, ‘Well, if there was another competing economy, another competing financial center out there that could wrest control from us, then it would cushion our down cycles. But when we’re the lone economic superpower, if we go down, the world goes down with us. That’s not fair, Mr. Limbaugh. That’s being egotistical. We must protect the world, forgot the short comings–‘ this is the new castrati-speak, by the way. ‘We must protect the world, Mr. Limbaugh, from the shortcomings of the US capitalistic system.’ So they run around and tell people, ‘Yeah, it would be good if there were another major economy that would absorb the blows for the rest of the world when we have a down cycle.’ Is that not perverted? You start allowing that to happen, we’re eventually going to be eclipsed. If you think the economy is bad now, I mean, everything’s a product of expectations. Only in the United States of America, where there is American exceptionalism and high expectations, could some klutz making a hundred thousand dollars a year whine about having to take public transportation. And he doesn’t live in New York. No. A hundred thousand dollars in New York is one thing, a hundred thousand dollars, say in Atlanta, a hundred thousand dollars in Biloxi, is a different thing.
Complaining and whining about a hundred grand and how the economy is forcing hardships on him. Only in America could that happen. And then, of course, ready to ride right in and capitalize on this is your Democrat Party, which wants to portray all of this misery as the result of George W. Bush’s tax cuts for the rich, which, in fact, were tax increases for the rich. The rich tax increase went up, the amount of dollars they pay, top 1%, top 5%, top 10% up. Their rates may have gone down, but they’re paying more of the income tax burden than ever before. So the Bush tax cuts were actually Bush tax increases. I’m spending time on this because the Democrats, I noticed after the debate last night, just couldn’t stop talking about how rotten and horrible the economy is. They’re trying to take it off of a Pew poll that showed that 84% of the American people are very happy with their lives, very comfortable with their lives, but 70% of those same people said that America is heading in the wrong direction. How in the hell can that be? How in the hell can that be? It’s precisely because, while 84% think things are hunky-dory, they think they’re not for everybody else. They’re hearing about the subprime problem; they’re hearing about mortgage foreclosures; they hear that stupid comment from John Edwards that every night in America 200,000 people are sleeping under bridges or on grates, and that most of them are US military veterans. Flat-out lie. They hear all this, ‘Oh, that’s terrible, in America, veterans, we must be headed in the wrong direction,’ even though their own evidence, their own life’s evidence is expressly counter.
So let me just grab you this economic story I keep referencing here. Oh, and, by the way, the Washington Post also on the case here: ‘Economy Slumps to the Top of the Campaign Agenda.’ But then on page two, they ask, ‘What is the economy? Different voters have different anxieties about the economy. For some, it may be jobs.’ Really? Statistical full employment for how many months, years now? ‘For others it’s housing.’ Really? We have a housing crisis, a housing shortage. You try to find the good in everything. Do you realize that, as this housing bubble splits and the mortgage crisis goes on, do you realize what’s happening in house prices? They’re coming down, which is going to aid who? First-time home buyers. Yeah, it’s not going to help existing home buyers, their equity may be awhile in returning. That’s a cycle. It happens. Go back to the eighties.
Let’s go back to the eighties again in oil. Oil got down to $10 a barrel in the eighties. Oh, that was great for consumers, domestic oil business. Bottoms up. Plant ’em dead and plant a flag because they had to cap all the wells. They couldn’t make money bringing oil out of the ground at ten bucks a barrel. Great for the consumer. You think things have never been worse. Those of you who were alive, do you remember the Carter years? They were so bad we had a misery index to measure it, interest rates at 21%, inflation was, what, 14%. Jimmy Carter created the modern Islamic Republic of Iran with the Ayatollah Khomeini by getting rid of the Shah of Iran. You think things are bad now? They’ve been much worse. The point is, we came out of it. You go back to any point in time, Great Depression, all these so-called recessions, look where we are now, better than ever. Every day in America is better than the day before.
Now, here’s this story I keep referencing. It’s out of the Los Angeles Times: ‘Public Senses an Economy Going South.’ Dateline, Sedalia, Colorado. ‘The numbers stopped adding up some time ago, and every month, Shane Covelli gets angrier. He sells heavy equipment on commission, and construction firms aren’t buying. Covelli has sold his Corvette, stopped taking his wife out to dinner, pulled his son from the ski team. He has withdrawn nearly $50,000 from his retirement accounts and started taking extra work, laying carpet and pouring concrete evenings and weekends. Still, he owes more than he earns, and he can’t seem to fix it. ‘It’ll take the country four or five years to dig out of this,’ said Covelli, 44. ‘By then, I’ll be bankrupt.’ … In Atlanta, Bernadette Smith, 31, has watched her credit-card debt climb to nearly $40,000.’ Yeah, she was sitting there minding her own business, folks, poor woman, just sitting there doing her best to make it happen in this rotten economy known as the United States of America, one day, while she was minding her own business trying to be a great citizen, the credit card bill comes in and, lo and behold, her credit card debt is 40 grand. She just watched it climb to 40 grand. She had nothing to do with it, according here to the LA Times. Just watched it climb. That’s more than her annual take-home pay. What a sucky country.
This is not fair, ladies and gentlemen. The woman’s credit card debt magically enlarges to the point it’s larger than her take-home pay? ‘She works 13 hours a day at two jobs. Once obsessed with the latest style of designer jeans, Smith now shops for clothes only at Wal-Mart, or maybe Target.’ The embarrassment, why, the indignity. What a rotten country! ‘She has come to consider dinner at Ruby Tuesday a splurge.’ This is embarrassing. These people, apparently proud to have their names in the Los Angeles Times, with these details attached. Just watched her credit card debt climb to nearly 40 grand. Has that ever happened to you Mr. Snerdley? You been watching your credit card debt every month, it comes in and gets bigger, you just watch it happen and say, ‘How did this happen? This is not fair; this is not right, now I gotta go to Wal-Mart?’ The credit card debt goes up, you usually have something to do with causing it, do you not? You weren’t just sanding idly by.
‘The faltering economy costs Leslie Garza, 18, nearly an hour of sleep each morning; her mom won’t spend the gas money to drive her to downtown Los Angeles for her job scooping ice cream. So she sets the alarm early and takes the bus. Garza recently canceled her cellphone service to stretch her $450-a-week paycheck.’ I tell you, what are we doing to our children, folks? What are we doing to our children? She’s 18, and she has to get up an hour early to go scoop ice cream? Losing an hour of sleep in the United States of America! ‘Enoch Brown, 49, a data-entry worker in Atlanta, said his annual household income is about $100,000. Yet he’s riding public transportation to work so he can save on gas and parking.’ So? He’s making an economic decision. Doesn’t mean the country’s horrible, doesn’t mean the economy’s in the dregs. This is the Drive-By Media, and this is what they want you to think. And, of course, they’re trying to evoke sympathy for this. Now, some of you people waste money. We all waste money. Do you know what one of the largest areas of wasting money is? It’s right in your own home. If you own a home, and you have one of these age-old conventional water heaters, the big tank, you are wasting your money. It’s heating hot water you’re never going to use. It does! And then half the time the hot water is not there, if you got guests in the house.
You talk about wasting money, well, I’ll tell you what you can do about that, you can get a Rinnai tankless water heater, that’s what you can do. It’s a little up-front cost, but you will stop wasting money because the hot water will only be there when you need it, always be there when you need it, but it won’t be there when you don’t. Would you still drive a Model A? No. We haven’t changed technology on water heaters in homes in a hundred years or 80 years. You have to admit this is a brilliant transition. Not too many broadcast specialists can do this. They’ve got a savings calculator on their website, ForeverHotWater.com. Folks, this really is revolutionary, you’ll have all the hot water you need whenever you want it and you won’t have it when you don’t need it, and so you’re going to save money like you can’t believe. Just go to ForeverHotWater.com and see what I’m talking about.