Republicans, the gig is up. We are on to you. The truth: if Republicans say it, then the opposite is true. So stop repeating the lies, or just stop talking. Let us examine some well-known sound-bites that those on the right love to spout and repeat.
Republican Myth: We cannot raise the debt ceiling and incur more debt.
Answer: Sorry, this is money already spent. They seem to have this confused with budgeting. If we do not raise the debt ceiling, we will not be able to write the checks to pay for what was already spent -- thus, creating a default of the U.S. government. Most economists and most sane people agree this is a bad, bad idea, still, even since the last time you tried it.
Republican Myth: Rich people create jobs... therefore; we cannot raise taxes on rich people. We must cut taxes or risk stifling the economy.
Answer: This is the old "Trickle-down" economics, and it is just not true. The facts: the stock market has increased in value over 16 percent this year to date, and increased over 37 percent the last five years. So where are the jobs? How many new hires have the Gates, Buffetts, Kochs and Kochs made to help pull us out of the recession? (I know, easy targets, but Forbes top 10 list and you get the idea). The top 5 percent control over 60 percent of the wealth, which is up appropriately 20 percent over than the last generation. All taxed at the capital gains rate. Most manufacturing jobs have already been eliminated, outsourced or moved overseas. Rich people and companies doing most of the hiring currently do not pay a living wage and are not supporting the sluggish economic recovery by either hiring or spending.
Republican Myth: Paraphrasing that "the 47 percent are lazy bums," are the problem, and not interested in working....
Answer: This is part of the justification to cut $40 billion from the SNAP (food stamps) program. Sixty percent of the people receiving those benefits are children, the elderly, or disabled. Many of the rest, lucky enough to have employment, are the working poor -- those people working for companies like Walmart and fast food where their income is being subsidized by taxpayers because Walmart does not want to pay a living wage. Congress wants to cut off the poor from the luxurious benefit of $4.40 a day, while some congressmen complain that they cannot live on their miserly $174,000 salary.
Republican Myth: Eliminating women's rights benefits women!
Answer: Does that need an answer?
Republican Myth: Guns don't kill.
Rep Myth: They are coming for your guns.
Answer: Yes, that one is just as stupid as it sounds. It is hard to show evidence when there is no proof. What IS true is we have a gun problem in this country and it is much easier to buy a gun than it is to register to vote. While one of these continues to get easier and easier, the other is under attack and seriously being suppressed by the leadership of at least 28 states.
Republican Myth: We must suppress the vote because of fraud.
Answer: You must suppress the vote because you cannot win on your record.
Rep Myth: The Affordable Care Act (ACA) Obamacare is eliminating jobs, and leads to Death Panels!!
Answer: Full-time jobs in the private sector were being eliminated and replaced with many part-time jobs since the financial crash in 2008/09. Most jobs being created are in the service industry. Many employers have been using Obamacare as an excuse to cut costs, but their hiring practices can be easily documented and pre-dates Obamacare. And the truth is, ObamaCare is actually creating jobs, while reducing healthcare costs.
Rep Myth: ObamaCare is increasing costs and premiums, while reducing quality of care.
Answer: The truth is that healthcare costs are actually experiencing a three-year downward trend, mainly due to the ObamaCare provisions that encourage and reward quality over quantity or the volume of care. Most of ObamaCare has yet to be implemented. (Enrollment starts Oct. 1, 2013). Can we please apply some of that logic to curb college costs?
Republican Myth: Obamacare will cause you to lose your doctor.
Answer: Obamacare is primarily for those that did not have insurance. So those uninsured people have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
We should not, but we need more MythBuster-type stories to disprove stupid, untrue things that people say to get attention or votes. I know what you are thinking -- who would really believe these silly lies? Why aren't they called on it? But there are a lot of people believing the stupid and untrue things that are said. The right is counting on people to repeat this stuff to their friends. You know, if you heard it on TV, it must be fact?! But lies are creating serious division, mistrust, and hatred. It would be funny if people did not actually believe this stuff! Ask someone why they say such silly things, or ask if they can give you an example, they just look at you perplexed and say the silly, untrue thing louder. I know you all know someone like this! That's why we have to let people know, if someone on the rights says it, then the opposite must be true!
Care enough and vote!
Follow Leslie K. Stein on Twitter: www.twitter.com/LKSteinsWay