facts are just cleverly disguised lies

GOP Senators Have Had Quite Enough Of Your ‘Research’ And ‘Economics’

If you look up "partisan hack" in the dictionary...Are you tired of petty partisanship, of red/blue bickering, of the enthusiastic embrace of blatant falsehoods generated for political gain?

Well you can cross another enemy off the list, because Senate Republicans have finally stood up to the reprehensible grandstanding of … the Library of Congress.

Yes, dear citizens! The library’s reign of terror is over! No more will they plague our government with “reports” of “findings,” especially when their “research” — if you can call it that — dismantles the entire economic ethos of half of the American political spectrum.

The report we speak of this time is one from the Congressional Research Service, a nonpartisan agency that analyzes policy and legal issues for Congress. It was founded in 1914 and employs more than 600 lawyers, scientists, librarians, and economists, all working to help legislators better understand the issues around which they are crafting laws.

You know what that means — they cannot be trusted.

They wrote up a report, see, about how there isn’t any measurable influence on the economy from changing the tax rates of the wealthy. That’s right: They found that increasing taxes on the rich “job creators” doesn’t harm the economy. What a buncha maroons!

And what “evidence” did they use to conclude this, New York Times?

The report received wide notice from media outlets and liberal and conservative policy analysts when it was released on Sept. 14. It examined the historical fluctuations of the top income tax rates and the rates on capital gains since World War II, and concluded that those fluctuations did not appear to affect the nation’s economic growth.

“The reduction in the top tax rates appears to be uncorrelated with saving, investment and productivity growth. The top tax rates appear to have little or no relation to the size of the economic pie,” the report said. “However, the top tax rate reductions appear to be associated with the increasing concentration of income at the top of the income distribution.”

Egad! Who do these economists think they are, using 65 years of data to inform politicians about the consequences of their policies? It’s almost like they want things to be decided using informed reasoning instead of pseudo-patriotic platitudes! It’s almost like… they hate capitalism. And eagles.

Don’t worry though, Republican senators gave ‘em the ol’ what-for:

The Congressional Research Service has withdrawn an economic report that found no correlation between top tax rates and economic growth, a central tenet of conservative economic theory, after Senate Republicans raised concerns about the paper’s findings and wording.

Well, they SHOULD be concerned about the findings, as they make the Republican rhetoric of the past decade or five look kind of ridiculous. But this is America, where we are well beyond economic research or labor statistics or believing people who are paid to research things. Everybody knows anyone who disagrees with Republicans is just a liberal in a labcoat. Plus, “evidence” sounds an awful lot like Sharia law.

So Sen. Mitch McConnell and a few of his pals “raised concerns about the methodology and other flaws,” and he should know, because if there’s anybody qualified to critique the methodologies of congressional research economists, it is a dude who graduated law school 45 years ago and immediately became a politician.

“There were a lot of problems with the report from a real, legitimate economic analysis perspective,” said Antonia Ferrier, a spokeswoman for the Senate Finance Committee’s Republicans. “We relayed them to C.R.S. It was a good discussion. We have a good, constructive relationship with them. Then it was pulled.”

Yes, there’s nothing like a government agency having a “good, constructive relationship” with a bunch of people who got elected by making lists of government agencies they want to blow up. At least everybody’s happy now, right?

A person with knowledge of the deliberations, who requested anonymity, said the Sept. 28 decision to withdraw the report was made against the advice of the research service’s economics division, and that [report author Thomas L.] Hungerford stood by its findings.

Ah, so the economist guy is kind of pissed, but who cares? He’s only the guy who knows what he’s talking about. Clearly he has no place in Congress. [NY Times]

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178 comments

    1. hagajim

      You know, I am an economist – unlike turtle boy, and upon first read that report looks pretty damn sound. I'd be super pissed if I were the economics lead on this as well.

    2. mormos

      The republicans are looking at this the wrong way. Since taxing the rich doesn't improve the economy, there is no reason to tax the rich, ever, right?

    1. Bonzos_Bed_Time

      Last I checked, Democrats controlled the Senate. That's the biggest WTF in this whole thing!!!

  1. actor212

    after Senate Republicans raised concerns about the paper’s findings and wording.

    This report is invalid because of Mrs. Crabapple noticing an extra "the" in the appendix, therefore totally invalid. Also, syntax, too. Also.

    1. BaldarTFlagass

      Since there are Senate Republicans involved, I'm sure there were a couple or many places where semi-colons should have been full colons, also.

  2. FNMA

    "It was a good discussion. We have a good, constructive relationship with them."

    Nice library you have there. Be a shame if something bad happened to it…

  3. kyeshinka

    First they came for the libraries, but I said nothing because I'm in line waiting for the new i-Pad mini…

    1. HouseOfTheBlueLights

      This is not actually funny. But then, most of my brain leaked out of my ears about 3 weeks back, so what do I know.

  4. Not_So_Much

    As long as the tax money to do the research was spent wisely, I'm cool with Cecil Turtle killing it because it gave him a sadz.

    1. HouseOfTheBlueLights

      "Lie- brairies" is excellent (one might say "spot on"). Get this woman a job with the right-wing word machine, immediately.

  5. LibertyLover

    This doesn't have anything to do with trumped up allegations about Benghazi… so move along, nothing to see here.

  6. elviouslyqueer

    “There were a lot of problems with the report from a real, legitimate economic analysis perspective,” said Antonia Ferrier, a spokeswoman for the Senate Finance Committee’s Republicans. “We relayed them to C.R.S. It was a good discussion. We have a good, constructive relationship with them. Then it was pulled.”

    Translation: "Pull this report or kiss your agency's funding goodbye forever."

    1. lulzmonger

      If you want to imagine the future, picture a wingnut looking at E=mc² & scratching their head – FOREVER.

      1. SorosBot

        http://www.conservapedia.com/Relativity

        "The media-promoted equation E=mc², implausibly suggests a relationship between typically unrelated concepts of energy, the rest mass of a body and the speed of light. "

        The whole article is insane pseudo-scientific ramblings. Oh, and "Other engineers and scientist have written about problems in the basic set of special relativity equations" – yes, engineers and scientists, as if engineers are on the same level as actual scientists. Almost all the "scientists" Conservapedia claims are against relativity, like those pulled out to deny global warming, aren't scientists at all but engineers.

        1. gullywompr

          Unfuckingbelievable.

          The primary inference appears to be that, being just a theory, relativity suffers from "a lack of evidence", which of course leaves only God.

          Again, unfuckingbelievable.

  7. OneDollarJuana

    I'm guessing McConnell mused that he was thinking of putting the new Silverfish and Bookworm Research Institute in the basement of the Library.

    1. tessiee

      OK, so I interviewed for a job at one of the local colleges a few weeks ago (didn't get it, but anyway…).
      The interview ended with a walking tour of the campus where the tour guide pointed out the Fine Arts Building, the Computer Science Building, etc.; and one building in particular where they had an animal lab in the basement for mice and bats.
      Me: Cool! It's THE BAT CAVE!!

  8. MonkeyHamlet

    Those 600 "lawyers," "scientists," "librarians," and "economists," need a good schoolin' from almost ghost Billy Graham to know the only research tool they need is the 66 books of blahble. And a binder full of women.

  9. SorosBot

    And that's how you know the Randian worship of the Free Market is a religion; when facts contradict the dogma, they reject the facts.

  10. freakishlywrong

    They were upset about the "tone". Jesus, for a pile of bomb throwing bullies, you assholes have some thin skin.

  11. Oblios_Cap

    “There were a lot of problems with the report from a real, legitimate economic analysis perspective,”

    They must not have parroted the University of Chicago tenets, then. Those guys are "economists" in name only. I'd rather have an Economics degree (and I do!) from Florida State.

    1. Ducksworthy

      Isn't the University of Chicago Econ Dept. a subsidiary of the Austrian School of Economics (and Cosmetology).

    2. hagajim

      Chicago School is the biggest fucking crapfest ever thrown at Americans. It's as legitimate as Ron Paul's Austrian School. Complete crap, and yet we've bought into the bullshit for almost 35 years now.

    3. fuflans

      in defense of my twice over alma mater i must say i never had any austrian.

      though of course i majored in shakespeare and early modern europe with a concentration on france and italy.

    4. tessiee

      Which has always puzzled me, because in all the years I worked in academia, the University of Chicago has long had a reputation as a good, tough school, and the other departments are reasonably progressive; however, the School of Economics is retrograde in a completely inconsistent way.

  12. Schmannnity

    Why doesn't the entire Republican senate caucus just put their fingers in their ears and repeat: nananananananana I can't hear you?

    1. Gleem McShineys

      I believe they've gone one better and put their fingers in everyone else's ears, saying "nanananana nobody can hear YOU now" to the Congressional Research Service.

      1. Biel_ze_Bubba

        Well, except that this obscure research report, and the dickheaded Repbublican reaction to it, is now all over the news. Like the parade of climate reports that they just don't want to hear about. Funny thing, though: despite GOP efforts to squelch the topic, people seem have been noticing the weather lately.

  13. FakaktaSouth

    Yes, Fuck the EPA because obviously the environment and weather are not impacting America, the Library of Congress because the economy is great, and any kind of healthcare because we are all have the care we deserve. Why are people trying to screw with perfection? USA USA USA, and so forth.

    1. Chet Kincaid_

      “next to of course god america i
      love you land of the pilgrims’ and so forth oh
      say can you see by the dawn’s early my
      country ’tis of centuries come and go
      and are no more what of it we should worry
      in every language even deafanddumb
      thy sons acclaim your glorious name by gorry
      by jingo by gee by gosh by gum
      why talk of beauty what could be more beaut-
      iful than these heroic happy dead
      who rushed like lions to the roaring slaughter
      they did not stop to think they died instead
      then shall the voice of liberty be mute?”

      He spoke. And drank rapidly a glass of water

      – some horny guy poet with teeny initials

          1. FakaktaSouth

            I love his voice, I love this – this in particular,

            why talk of beauty what could be more beaut-
            iful than these heroic happy dead
            who rushed like lions to the roaring slaughter
            they did not stop to think they died instead

            It reminds me of the other day when prommie and I were reading some essays and talking about the great Maj Gen Smedley Butler – it's a shame that so many REALLY terrible people are in charge of such important things, and are able to convince so many to go along so willingly with their terrible agenda. ee is a win for the whole day.

          2. FakaktaSouth

            Oh man, that's exactly what I said about Butler, and he and cummings were peers, of course, I love it, derision and mockingly false sincerity are some of my favorite devices.

    1. SorosBot

      They're already on that; just look at all the hate they're dumping on Nate Silver, and at the "unskewed" polls.

  14. calliecallie

    Maybe Mitch McConnell's efforts would be better spent pulling something a little closer to home, if you catch my drift.

  15. Disassembly

    Let's also retract all those studies linking the consumption of red meat to health problems. I happen to enjoy steak.

  16. Hammiepants

    What a pack of feckless cowards. For people who like to spew crap about "socialism", if they had their way the government would have as much transparency as Stalin's did.

  17. MissTaken

    Tax cuts for the rich don't stimulate economic growth? Next you're gonna tell me that deadly hurricanes are not God's punishment for gay marriage and abortion. As if!

  18. Come here a minute

    The Republicans also requested that the Congressional Research Service withdraw their report on the effect of the guillotine on nineteenth century French job creators.

  19. mavenmaven

    They call Obama a "socialist" but the true ideological absolutists in the face of all evidence, akin to 20's leninists, are today's republicans.

  20. Ducksworthy

    Under Rawmoney, the Congressional Research Service will be replaced by the Legitimate Rape, Flat Earth and Global Warming Denial Service.

  21. Disassembly

    I read a report a while back saying cigarettes cause cancer. Turns out they used the wrong font so there's actually no correlation.

    1. tessiee

      I sure hope you're kidding. If I went through the aggravation of quitting smoking for no reason, I'm gonna be pissed off for real.

  22. ttommyunger

    Considering Yertle's is the Minority Party in the Senate, just how do they get away with this shit? Oh, right. The Dims are a bunch of incompetent, spinless dicks, sorry, I forgot for a minute there.

  23. actor212

    “There were a lot of problems with the report from a real, legitimate economic analysis perspective,” said Antonia Ferrier, a spokeswoman for the Senate Finance Committee’s Republicans.

    And those problems would be…what, precisely?

    Cuz, you know, history indicates that tax cuts below a certain level do nothing for the economy, but once Democrats take over and incrementally increase taxes, we have economic booms.

    1. bikerlaureate

      1. Big Republican donors didn't like the analysis.
      2. Paul Ryan and other fans of his budget proposal didn't like the analysis.
      3. Democrats liked the analysis and would've found useful ammunition.

    2. tessiee

      "Problems" = "Our corporate masters didn't like these findings, because they feel they don't have quite enough yet"

    1. mrpuma2u

      There you go again, citing statistical organization systems devised by LIE-beral LIE-brarians. That system will help you find books on Marxism, atheism, sexuality, etc… and is therefore clearly a tool of Satan and his whore of Babylon LIE-brarian sexually loose minions.

  24. dopper0189

    Remember Limbaugh said the Unabomber had to be a liberal because he was a mathematician! If economics were a good thing God would have put them in Leviticus!

    1. Biel_ze_Bubba

      I'm sure the Congressional teabaggers, good Xtians all, take to heart Jeebus' instructions to "give unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's." Like, you know, taxes.

    2. tessiee

      Silly child-raping pill addict Rush!
      There are conservative mathematicians; they just have to confine themselves to numbers smaller than 20.

  25. OzoneTom

    “The purpose of studying economics is not to acquire a set of ready-made answers to economic questions, but to learn how to avoid being deceived by economists.” — Joan Robinson

  26. hagajim

    Mitch "fucking" McConnell wouldn't know shit about economics if it hit him in the ass! With both hands!

  27. calliecallie

    Thank you, Wonkette, for provided a link to said report, also. It is part and parcel of the way their brains work, these old school republican dimwits, that they don't realize that with the internet you can't really pull it back once it's put out there.

  28. JustPixelz

    I didn't need a fancy report with analysis and math to know tax cuts don't create jobs. I just needed to live through* Dubya's administration.
    ________________________________
    * unlike some, sadly

  29. LesBontemps

    Wouldn't it have been easier to just shout "USA! USA! USA!" at the report until it burst into flames?

  30. BigSkullF*ckingDog

    So all it takes to get a study pulled is for the minority leader of the senate to have a poopy-pantsed tantrum? Jesus Fucking Christ.

  31. AngryBlakGuy

    …if NASA utilized Republican "math" every rocket they launched would meltdown on the launching pad! We should give Republicans their own fukking island wear they can go and do whatever the fukk they want using whatever smurf based math they want and see how quickly they vaporize themselves. If you think science and math have a liberal bias, then chances are you were dropped on your head or were fed asbestos laced paint chips as a child

  32. Wadisay

    …[report author Thomas L.] Hungerford stood by its findings.

    Thomas L. Hungerford linked to Saul Alinsky, Rev. Wright, Pol Pot, Al Quida and Smersh…tonight…on Fox News.

  33. boskolives

    My basic math research shows me that every dollar those Kochsuckers and Shelley Addeledson pumped down that ass-hole in the ground Mittscarriage is the same as a dollar that didn't go into helping the next Rick Santorum or Michele Bachmann crawl up the slime ladder. That's my math, and I'm sticking to it.

  34. rickmaci

    "I know what I believe even if I have no basis in reality for what I am saying so don't be trying to contradict me with your godless facts." Mitch McConnell

  35. hagajim

    McConnell: "We have no need for ancient ways, our world is doing fine…forget about your silly whims, it doesn't fit the plan!"

  36. An_Outhouse

    Since Mitt thinks empoyers should tell their employees how to vote, just like Putin, all government reports will have to conform to the standards of party dictated truth, just like Lysenko did for Stalin.

    (Hitler was not mentioned in the construction of this comment).

    1. GeorgiaBurning

      Any evidence contrary to their ideas are immediately denounced as treason, disloyalty and heresy. There's got to be some old Soviet propaganda hacks turning out Republican talking points. Either that or the Repubs home schooling is turning out home-grown zampolits

  37. SorosBot

    Remember when the Bush administration forced NASA to remove all references to both global warming and the Big Bang from its reports? Good times.

  38. CommieDad

    Another shot in the Republic war on reality. Seriously, the republican party is becoming a parody of itself. "Truthiness" was funny because it described the right wing radio wackos so well. Now it describes every thing that leaves every republicans mouth. If a fact doesn't fit their world view, it is a lie and a conspiracy.

    The thing is, I think they believe this for a simple reason: it's what they do. If every fact that you spout is made up, it is easy to believe that everyone else does the same thing.

    Americans! Friends! REPUBLICANS LIE. THEY LIE AND LIE AND LIE.

  39. Biel_ze_Bubba

    The GOP don't need no steenkin' facts! The GOPpers want the methods "adjusted", to the point where Reagan's policies appear to be correlated with the Clinton boom years. Once that's accomplished, the methodology is obviously perfect, and Republicans will never shut up about what wonderful proof they have that tinkle-down economics works.

    The plain and simple fact, which they can't/won't face up to, it that over the past 20 years, the rich have gleefully taken the billions they've saved thanks to lowered taxes, and banked it.

  40. mrpuma2u

    Mitch McConnell is a Douche bag extra-ordinaire. It's a fact in the Library of Congress. You can read more about douche bags in your local library.

  41. poorgradstudent

    I know that quoting Orwell is one of the most obvious things a liberal can do, like threatening to migrate to Canada or Britain or running afoul of Godwin's Law, but dammit, really…

    "How can I help it? How can I help but see what is in front of my eyes? Two and two are four."
    "Sometimes, Winston. Sometimes they are five. Sometimes they are three. Sometimes they are all of them at once. You must try harder. It is not easy to become sane.”

  42. HistoriCat

    problems with the report from a real, legitimate economic analysis perspective

    A) legitimate as in "Al Capone, legitimate businessman"?
    B) "real, legitimate"? Almost like you're full of shit and trying to pile up words to make it all sound better.

  43. Chet Kincaid_

    I thought he was dumb,
    I said he was dumb,
    Yet I've heard him cry.

    First faint scream,
    Out of life's unfathomable dawn,
    Far off, so far, like a madness, under the horizon's dawning rim,
    Far, far off, far scream.

    Tortoise in extremis.

    – D. H. Lawrence, horniest of guy poets

  44. slowhansolo

    I endeavor to whatever: The NYT noted the blasphemy received "wide notice." So my question is where? Among fellow know-nothing eggheads? Or among regular folks forced to believe anything that preserves their souls?

    Either way, let's go bowling.

  45. barto

    Next thing you know they'll be pushing a report correlating hurricanes with a need for publicly funded disaster releif. OFF WITH THEIR HEADS!

Comments are closed.