RUSH: Here is that Reagan quote. This is October 27, 1964. This comes from a speech that Reagan delivered in support of Barry Goldwater. The title of the speech is “A Time for Choosing,” and here is the actual Reagan quote that I was mentioning to Mindy on the phone mere moments ago.
REAGAN: So now we declare “war” on poverty. Do they honestly expect us to believe that if we add $1 billion to the $45 billion we’re spending, one more program to the 30-odd we have — and, remember, this new program doesn’t replace any; it just duplicates existing programs. Do they believe that poverty is suddenly going to disappear by magic? Yet any time you and I question the schemes of the do-gooders, we’re denounced as being against their humanitarian goals. They say we’re always against things, we’re never for anything. Well, the trouble with our liberal friends is not that they’re ignorant. It’s just that they know so much that isn’t so.
AUDIENCE: (laughter and applause)
RUSH: You know, somebody just said to me, “Rush, remember now what we’re doing here. We’re talking to low-information voters.” Frankly, folks, I have to keep that in mind because I know the bulk of this audience is not low-information. You are not low-information people. You are at the head of the class. But there are low-information people out there to whom $44 billion sounds much larger than $3.7 trillion. If you stop and think about it, remember, now: For low-information voters, that could be true, that $3.7 trillion sounds smaller than $44 billion.
So when I say, “Are you kidding me? We got a budget of $3.7 trillion, and we’re not gonna spend $44 billion, and there’s a panic that’s gonna ensue?” A low-information voter might go, “Yeah, sounds like a big deal to me.” Okay, here’s the proper context. Reagan just made the point here. He says, “We’re gonna add a billion dollars to the $45 billion that we’re spending…?” Boy, isn’t that that interesting? In 1964, we’re spending $45 billion on the War on Poverty, and LBJ and the boys are coming back and they wanted $1 billion dollars more to wipe out poverty.
Reagan’s point was, “Well, wait a minute. If we’ve spent $45 billion and we haven’t wiped it out, you think another billion is gonna wipe it out?” I know about inflation, and I know ’64 is a long, long time ago, but $45 billion. Do you know what we’re spending on poverty today (chuckling) and we haven’t wiped it out, and the percentages of people in poverty is the same as it was in ’64? So here’s a better way of expressing it to the low-information voter.
Do you really think that if we’re gonna spend $3,700 billion, that not spending $44 billion is gonna make difference? You see, $3.7 trillion is $3,700 billion. So it’s $3,700 billion versus $44 billion. Now, that may be a way of making a point, if it even matters. But we must explore all possible persuasive techniques. From TheHill.com: “Who’s Afraid of the Sequester’s Ax? — Not us, say Republican lawmakers. House GOP lawmakers say they do not fear political blowback if Congress fails to prevent $85 billion in automatic spending cuts from triggering in two weeks.”
Now, by the way, it’s not, again, $85 billion. That’s over two years. Actually this year, $44 billion is what we’re talking about, and that’s total. Again, half of that would be defense, the other half social. But the point is, The Hill says that Republicans are not worried about “political blowback.” “The cuts known as the sequester are almost certain to hit the Pentagon and non-defense discretionary spending on March 1, and congressional Republicans and the White House are focused more now on avoiding blame for the cuts than preventing them.
“That creates a challenging environment for House Republicans, given President Obama’s use of the bully pulpit, which he used to build pressure on them during last year’s fight over the ‘fiscal cliff.'” (chuckles) Y-e-es, we remember. It’s the same damn story. “Already the White House warns that the cuts will reduce loan guarantees to small businesses, end Head Start funding for 70,000 children and leave 373,000 seriously mentally ill people without treatment.” That’s… I’m sorry, folks. I have to stop.
That’s where I think we’re being played for suckers. Really. This is where I think our intelligence is being insulted, and we’re being played for fools. (chuckling) All this is gonna happen and more? We haven’t even talked about the 800,000 civilian Pentagon furloughs, but now no “loan guarantees to small businesses” and “Head Start funding for 70,000 the children.” The Head Start program doesn’t even work. It was just a story I had in the Stack this week (I didn’t get to it) about what an utter failure Head Start is no matter how you measure it.
The kids in Head Start don’t end up educationally, intellectually ahead of anybody. (interruption) Don’t tell me that. It was not positioned as “a babysitting program.” I know that’s what it is, but Head Start, people think that if they get their kids into it, they’re two or three years ahead of the learning curve, and this story proved that that doesn’t happen. Head Start, daycare… (interruption) What, you think they’re one and the same? (interruption) All right. Well, anyway, 70,000 children. No Head Start funding.
What is the Head Start school close? If you take away funding for 70,000 children with Head Start, then what happens? Where do they go? Where do they go? Where do they not go? What door gets closed? I don’t know. Where do you do Head Start? Seriously. Dawn, you have children. Snerdley doesn’t. Brian’s are too young. (interruption) Community centers and church basements? Okay. (interruption)
I know you’re not trying to insult the church by saying “basement.” I know what you mean. I did church socials in the basement and so forth. I know what that means. What happens in there? (interruption) The kid…? (interruption) Really? Okay, so the kids go in there, they eat breakfast, and they color, and they learn how to socialize? (interruption) They learn shapes and numbers and they learn to respect transgender people and they learn conflict resolution and stuff like that? (interruption) Babysitting.
RUSH: This is Lynette in Charlotte, Michigan. It’s great to have you on the program. Hi.
CALLER: Hi. Thank you for everything you do, Rush, from the bottom of my heart.
RUSH: Thank you. I appreciate that.
CALLER: The other thing is, you know, weekends get kind of long without you.
RUSH: I really appreciate that. I do, more than you know.
CALLER: Well, I got a question, and it has to do with sequestration. We know the country’s in trouble. We’re overspending. We’re overregulated. Things are kind of falling apart, and somewhere down the road it’s gonna get worse. Do you think Obama can get away with then saying, “Well, it all started with sequestration, and you know that was a Republican thing.”
RUSH: Actually, the sequestration was an Obama idea, but are you asking me if he can get away successfully with blaming the Republicans —
CALLER: With blaming them and with saying the sequestration was the start of all the trouble.
RUSH: The sequestration is the start of all the trouble? Obama’s saying that?
CALLER: Saying maybe a year or two down the road, things get worse.
RUSH: Oh. Oh. Oh. I see. So you’re talking about down the road when the collapse happens, when it can’t go on anymore.
RUSH: Do you think Obama might say this all started with sequestration and it’s the Republicans’ fault?
RUSH: And will he get away with it?
RUSH: As long as he has the media where he has ’em, he’ll get away with anything he wants. I mean, the safe answer to your question is, the Republicans are going to get blamed regardless. This is why, Lynette, I have wished, I have urged, cajoled the Republicans to do the right thing anyway because no matter what happens with Obama in the White House, who is not governing, the Republicans are seen as the focus of evil. The Republicans are seen as the instigators of all this trouble, and Obama is seen as simply fighting it. He’s an outsider seen as trying to fight this mess that got started long before he got to Washington and he’s working as hard as he can.
And it’s working. He’s got a job approval number, 55%. And in the same poll, his agenda has no relationship to the mess the country’s in. So, yeah, he’s gonna be able to blame the Republicans and will. That isn’t new, actually. That’s been going on for decades. Go back to Reagan’s speech in 1964. You change the numbers and it’s identical to what we’re talking about today. This is actually profound.
So now they declare war on poverty. They honestly expect us to believe if we add one billion to the $45 billion we’re spending, they believe poverty will disappear? What they’re telling us now is we’re spending $3,700 billion. This year we might spend $22 billion less, and the sun isn’t gonna rise, the moon isn’t gonna rise. The sea levels will rise. We’re gonna be flooded. There won’t be any airplanes because air traffic control is gonna shut down. There won’t be any military because all the people are put out of work. It’s identical, 1964, it’s the same argument that the left is using and the same villains, the Republicans. The anti-big government people.
RUSH: I’m going to violate one of my own policies and talk about numbers here, because if I can pull this off, it’s fascinating. Ronaldus Magnus, back in 1964, said that we’re spending $45 billion on poverty. That was a year. Now, in 1964, $45 billion was the equivalent of $326 billion. Actually, let’s round it up, $45 billion in ’64 is about $327 billion in today’s money, a year. Now, according to the Cato Institute, which is a Libertarian think tank, in 2012 the federal government spend more than $668 billion to fight poverty.
So we have doubled — remember, now, the equivalent, in 1964, we’re spending $327 billion. In 2012, we spent $668 billion, so we have doubled the amount of money we spend on poverty since 1964. And yet as a percentage, more people are living in poverty today than in 1964 when the great War on Poverty began. But let me close the loop on this. All told, we have spent $16,000 billion on the War on Poverty since 1964. Sixteen trillion of wealth has been redistributed. Sixteen trillion has been taxed and then redistributed to people in poverty, $16,000 billion, and yet poverty is still winning. In fact, we haven’t even made a dent in it.
So $16,000 billion this year, $668 billion to fight poverty, and instead of $668 billion, it’s gonna be $648 billion, if the sequester happens. Now, seriously, folks, does spending $648 billion instead of $668 billion sound like it’s gonna make a major difference to you? I have here a graph. Let me turn off the Dittocam while I do the appropriate zooming in here. I have the remote control, and I’m gonna zoom in tight so that you can see this.
This is a chart. Federal spending without and with the sequester cuts. If you’re watching on the Dittocam, the blue line, as you’re going to see here in a moment, the blue line is spending without the sequester. The red line is spending with the sequester. And I’m turning it on. You can barely separate the two lines. On an 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper, they are separated by a 16th of an inch. Again, the blue line is spending without the sequester; the red line is with it. And I’m telling you, there’s no difference. There certainly is not a crisis looming. There certainly is not Armageddon looming over this. And this is what I mean about this is all part of how we are being played. And we’ve been played since 1964 on this.
Now, I know you’re all shouting at me, “Okay, so what do we do about it?” My thought all along, since I started this program, has been informing people. Simply having a more educated and more informed group of people who would instinctively know when they’re being played, and who wouldn’t buy it, who wouldn’t fall for it. But the left has not been silent while we have been informing and educating. What the left has been doing is continuing to wage war on the private sector, and they’ve been creating more need and more dependency among people. And now today there are more people than ever before who need, not want, who need benefits from the government in order to survive. And so they don’t care about any of this.
All they care about is that not one penny of it be taken away. That’s all they care about. No matter what else they know. And so while we’ve been informing more and more people, they, with the real power, because they control the money, they have been creating more and more dependents. So even though we’ve ramped up the knowledge base, even though we’ve ramped up the universe of knowledgeable people, they have been ramping up the numbers of people who can’t and do not provide for themselves. And they have made themselves, the left has, the Democrats have made themselves totally needed by an increasing number of millions of people.