Rush Limbaugh 1967 & 1979 Debt Ceiling Talking Points (Transcript)
RUSH: The editrix of the most widely read political newsletter in the world — that would be mine — the Limbaugh Letter, Diana Allocco… (interruption) No, no. No, no, no. It’s Italian. (laughing) Somebody asked, “Is that a nickname for being an idiot?” Not “a loco.” No, no, it doesn’t mean that. It’s not a nickname for being an idiot. Not “a loco.” No. A loco is a Democrat; a loco is just crazy. That’s her name: Allocco. It’s not a description, is her name. We’re working on the next issue of the Limbaugh better, and she found a couple of fascinating things. We’re putting together a timeline, which is one of our monthly features.
We’re doing a timeline on the history of the debt limit in this country. Now, last week and many days prior, I’ve called your attention to the Democrat Party Playbook, the Leftist Playbook about how class envy and certain elements. Like when Obama came out and said, “Social Security checks and checks for veterans, I can’t guarantee they’re gonna go out.” That’s the playbook. When Debbie “Blabbermouth” Schultz goes out and slimes Allen West on the floor of the House, that’s the Democrat playbook. Here’s a congressman from south Florida who is a prince of a man, and she accuses him of wanting to balance the budget on the backs of seasoned citizens and basically sending them off to their deaths by denying them Medicare and Social Security.
None of it’s true, of course. It’s just absolutely appalling but it’s from the playbook. But I have these two things had to show you what a game we are in the middle of, to show you how we are being played, to show you how Washington — both parties, both sides never, ever change. Although I really don’t want to lump the Republicans into this like that because we now have circumstances which are unique and separate from any previous debate on this subject, because what’s hanging in the balance is the country, and it’s not an overstatement to say that. This is the New York Times news service, January 30, 1967:
LBJ’s “Secretary of the Treasury Henry H. Fowler told Congress today that the government would be unable to pay all its bill if the ceiling on the national debt was not lifted within 30 days. Fowler ran into Republican hostility in day-long testimony before the House Ways and Means Committee… Fowler asked that the ceiling be raised by $7 billion to $337 billion to cover the period until June 30. Further legislation covering the period after June 30 will be needed later he said. Fowler said that payments for such things as old age benefits, veterans pensions, public assistance benefits, tax refunds, and the salaries of government workers would be threatened if the ceiling were not raised.”
I am reading to you from the New York Times 1967. It is identical other than the numbers to what we are being told today. “Fowler said unless the debt limit is increased by the end of February at which time our outstanding obligations would exceed that which we could legally borrow the possibility of an economic and monetary derangement will be a reality.” This is 1967 and they were threatening default. In 1967 the Democrats told us it was a crisis. They created chaos. The Democrat handbook can be traced all the way back to 1967, LBJ’s Treasury secretary. I have another example. Jimmy Carter’s Treasury secretary, April 3rd, 1979: “The US House of Representatives passed legislation yesterday that extended the debt ceiling. It came after the House rejected a Republican-led attempt to tack on a strong amendment calling for a balanced federal budget.”
Are you hearing this? 1979.
“The US House of Representatives passed legislation yesterday extending the debt ceiling … came after the House rejected a Republican-led attempt to tack on a strong amendment calling for a balanced federal budget. The House vote came after Carter Treasury Secretary Michael Blumenthal claimed in a letter that the Treasury was on the verge of a default and that retired persons would be hit first. ‘About $8 billion in Social Security checks already had been mailed to 35 million Americans,’ Blumenthal said, ‘and there would be no funds to cover them if the House failed to act.’ In addition, he said that the Treasury would not be able to pay civil service retirement benefits, veterans’ benefits, railroad retirements benefits. Blumenthal last week ordered that no further income tax refund checks be mailed until the House acted.”
Ladies and gentlemen, we are being paid for the biggest saps on the face of the earth. We are being insulted and treated like the biggest dolts. This is the way the Democrat Party has been doing things since at least ’67. BREAK TRANSCRIPT
RUSH: I’m struck. You know these things instinctively. You know, you’ve heard it all before: The debt ceiling? “Social Security checks will be the first thing to not go out, followed by veterans.” You read the New York Times from 1967, and it’s (aside from the numbers) word for word what’s being said today. Even as recently as 1979. Plug in the Republican demand for a balanced budget amendment. One big difference between 1979 and today is a lot of the conservative media is opposed to a balanced budget amendment. Back in ’79 it wasn’t; it was pretty much unified, conservative media, conservative movement.
Now it’s been fractured all over the place out there, but it’s just striking. It hits you upside the head, a cold ice shower. You realize what suckers they think we are. You realize the patterns — the playbooks, the tactics, the scare tactics, the fearmongering, crisis mongering, all of this — are written down. It’s taught. This is not instinctive. This stuff, I guess, is what these people learn at Harvard and Yale and the Kennedy School of Government, wherever else they go to get educated or how they’re mentored. Not one shred of difference. The difference now is that we’ve reached a point of real crisis. All these years in the past where we said, “Okay, we’ll kick the can down the road. We’ll deal with it later.” We’ve gotten to the point we’re running out of road. We really are. This is different.
Now, no matter what happens here, the country is not going to collapse tomorrow, but if this current regime gets four more years, all bets are off. Because the steps necessary to remedy this will be so profound. Folks, Michael Boskin wrote a piece in the Wall Street Journal while I was gone, former economic advisor for George H. W. Bush, and he ran the numbers. He added up the federal tax rate, what it’s projected to be (just eliminating the Bush tax rates, just going back to Clintonwith the top marginal rate of 39.6%), current state tax rates, then adding up everything Obama wants. Obama wants no ceiling on earnings that are taxed for Social Security. Right now it’s $106,000 a year.
Once you go past that you stop paying Social Security deductions. He wants to go past that as Medicare is, Medicare is now, what, 2.5% or 3% of every dollar you earn. Social Security is about 12.5% when you add it all up, 15% of everything up to $106,000. Obama wants to eliminate that. The states are gonna raise their income tax rates. By the time all of this happens in the next five years, a school teacher in California earning $60,000 a year will have an effective marginal tax rate of 69-point-something percent on all income, counting all taxes. So when you hear Obama and the Democrats say that the middle class isn’t gonna get taxed, and when you hear them say that only people 200, 250,000 a year or more are gonna pay the tax increase, it’s not possible, folks.
There isn’t enough money there to run this government for very long if you confiscate all of the wealth of people who make $250,000 a year or more. Those of you who earn $60,000 and live in California, New York, Massachusetts, and some other states? You are looking — very soon if this man gets his way on everything, and if there isn’t any spending reform, and if there’s no entitlement reform, and if there isn’t any tax reform. This is the difference between 1967 and today. This is the difference between 1979 and today. To just service the debt, we’re gonna add $13 trillion of debt the next ten years if Obama gets what he wants. A total aggregate national debt of $27 trillion in ten more years, and everybody is going to be paying a combined tax rate of 70%.
This doesn’t count your property taxes. This doesn’t count all those little fees in your phone bill and your cable TV bill and all that other rotgut hidden stuff that’s in there. It’s not going to be productive to work, which is just fine with Obama. This is really point-of-return time here. Now, this Gang of Six business is an absolute joke. All I need to do is look who’s for it. All I need to do is see who’s praising it. When I see Obama saying, “Now, there’s balance,” okay: Gang of Six bill, done. When I hear Jim DeMint oppose it, that’s it: Gang of Six bill, done. It’s that simple, folks. It’s that easy. You think of the news media’s role in this. They report all of these quotes from all these people, all this crisismongering stuff, all the end of the world stuff. The Social Security checks not going out, the veterans checks not going out. They breathlessly report this as though it’s unprecedented. It’s not unprecedented. It’s the rule of the day. It’s status quo. It is how the Ruling Class in this country has always achieved what they want. That’s what we learn from this. No, that’s what we confirm or how we confirm what we’ve always known about how the Ruling Class gets what it wants, about how it manipulates public opinion. You know there was an interesting story. I sent this to some friends. I did have a moment while I was away (sigh) to do some show prep. When was this? What is this, Wednesday? Yeah. So it was Monday night. For the first time I really had chance to sit down, uninterrupted, and do some show prep.
I was reading some of the coverage of what’s happening to Rupert Murdoch and his family over in the UK with this phone hacking scandal. Now, this was profound to me, and it opened my eyes about a lot of things — and I’m not too proud to say that at age 60 my eyes can still be wide opened and I can still learn things that I thought I knew. I can still be shocked at what I don’t know. I’m not ashamed to admit that, and I can still be shocked and a little embarrassed at how I miss something that’s right in front of my face, that’s so obvious. I’m not too proud to admit that at age 60 that can still happen to me. This was a piece about why Murdoch is in trouble. And it described the business model for Murdoch’s British news entities, the newspapers he owned and even broadcast entities.
Murdoch, or let’s not say “Murdoch,” the name of the company is News Corp or whatever the… No, ’cause he doesn’t do this worldwide. This is specific business plan for the UK. Whatever the News Corp subsidiary name, I can’t think of it right now, but it’ll come to me out there. The point is that for the longest time Murdoch had everybody in the ruling class in Britain thinking that his publications shaped public opinion, but he never cared about shaping public opinion. He followed it. Murdoch’s ability to shape public opinion, this story said, was never tested because his papers editorially never took a position contrary to the majority public opinion in the UK. Whatever the majority, according to focus groups and polling data, public opinion was, turned out to be the editorial positions of Murdoch’s newspapers.
This created the illusion within the political class that Murdoch was to be feared because he shaped public opinion. But what it really allowed him to do was to exercise and wield power over the political class. Well, when I go back and I read this garbage here from 1967 and 1979 in the New York Times, we realize what the game is here. Now, in this country the media does try to shape opinion. I’m not trying to say that they don’t, but there are elements of that same business practice taking place here. The illusion of shaping public opinion when it really doesn’t happen, when public opinion is simply followed. The symbiotic, almost incestuous relationship between our mainstream media and the Democrat Party is thus explained. So these guys in our media breathlessly report…
News International is the subsidiary in the UK. News of the World was the paper, but all the papers are owned the umbrella News International. The Ruling Class cannot even come up with new threats! They recycle the same old threats for 40, 50 years, almost, now — and the media willingly, breathlessly plays along as though this has never happened before, as though politicians have never faced this kind of crisis. When in fact this is precisely how the Ruling Class gets what it wants. It is how the Ruling Class successfully manipulates public opinion, and I don’t care what issue it is. Global warming, the collapse of the United States economy when it came to TARP, whatever it is.
It is now the only way: “Armageddon or else! We get our way or it’s Armageddon.” As I mentioned at the top of the program, the way this heat wave is being portrayed, it’s right out of the playbook. “It’s never happened before. There are people dying because of the heat!” They create this crisis mentality, and it’s designed to get us to cave. The real effort here is to get you to cave — along with the Republicans, of course, in Congress. But we are the ones that are supposed to be under the boot. We are the ones that the jackboot on our throats with all this, and it’s smoke and mirrors. To these people, folks, I guarantee you, this is just the game — and it’s the way it’s played, and the fact the country’s at a crossroads that we’ve never been at before, the fact that the country’s existence as we know it is something paramountly important to us?
It’s not to them. They don’t see it that way.
This is just the latest, greatest attempt — out of necessity — to get what they want by making us believe that it’s the best thing for us, when in this case it’s nowhere even close.