Fiscal Conservative vs. Tax & Spend Liberal

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30 Responses to Fiscal Conservative vs. Tax & Spend Liberal

  1. Jack says:

    Clinton was also never president during war time (regardless of how warranted it was or not), and he turned over less of a surplus than people like to believe.

    I’m not sticking up for all of the conservatives, but I’m definitely saying that reducing the past two decades of presidents into a stupid comic is exactly that.

  2. Jacob Hume says:

    Jack, that’s a nice supporting argument you have there. 🙂 Perhaps not being in a war isn’t such a bad idea?

  3. vorian says:

    Don’t forget to mention the record tax revenue for the federal government under GW. (I wonder if that’s related in any way to the record oil profits…)

    Besides, the Surplus enjoyed by Pres. Clinton was a result with the Contract with America.

    Maybe the Savior of the Universe, Barak, Will save us from our financial woes!

  4. tab gilbert says:

    I saw it on Bartcop. I think it is a great cartoon. Provides information that is usually difficult to grasp in an easy to understand manner.

  5. Adriano says:

    “Clinton was also never president during war time”
    So? Warranted or not, the latest war the US got in was _decided_ by Bush & co, not forced upon them.

    Then again, _any_ surplus compared to 200, 300 or 480 billion deficit will look surprising, stupid comic or not.
    From a quick wiki’ing, “Based on Congressional accounting rules, at the end of his presidency Clinton reported a surplus of $559 billion.”
    There are many things to bash Clinton, sure enough. DMCA for one. Still, his economic policies didn’t seem one to me.

  6. Casey says:

    Gotta love how in an election year the “suplus”/”deficit” is ALWAYS the president’s fault or boon. I laugh my ass off at people who just plain forget something….its the congress/senate and their majorities that affect things more than the one guy in the oval office.

    That said, NONE of the bozos in office are really “A fiscal conservative”.

    Dem or Republican, inside the beltway its a different world than the rest of this country…and that my friends, is just pitiful.

  7. will_in_wi says:

    The logical problem with this graph is that it takes more than 8 years for policies to shape an economy. Also, the graph should include the previous few “Tax and spend liberals”.

    Just for the sake of argument, consider the following two possible factors, War, and the theory that Clinton inherited an economy on the rise due to previous Presidents and turned it into a deficit quickly enough for Bush to have.

    Also, Bush was on track to go into a surplus by 2009 despite the war, but was then hit with a tax and spend congress which has turned around this trend despite his veto.


  8. Ryan says:

    Clinton was also a very conservative president on the whole.

  9. that_guy says:

    Um, shouldn’t we be discussing Linux-related things? Why not mosey on over to HuffPost or LGF or RedState or Daily Kos for this sort of thing?

    It’s not as if the Internet is hurting for another political forum/cesspool . . .

  10. Ben says:

    This is great, thanks for posting.

    Jack: Clinton had wars with Iraq and Serbia. Also, I don’t think that Bush’s Iraq folly is included in his deficit yet; it is mostly due to his ridiculous “tax breaks.”

  11. jdub says:

    @that_guy: Welcome to my blog where I write about stuff that I care about. You may have found this on a Linux-related community aggregator, but keep in mind that what you read there is the product of individuals first and foremost.

  12. Vadim P. says:

    Welcome to the internet where personal blogs are aggregated on planets… and people are failing to filter.

    Don’t try and press this issue, just scroll down. You’ll always get the “whaah! this is my blog! my opinion!” from the OP.

  13. jdub says:

    @Vadim P.: You realise the first Planet site was created specifically to reflect the personal lives of project contributors, rather than being simply a news feed about the project itself? What you complain about was precisely the original intent, so please suffer in your jocks and allow the rest of us to enjoy the personal bond and sharing between contributors that Planet was designed to encourage.

  14. Really, I think this comic highlights what could be a simple, good policy. Elect a fiscal conservative Congress to create a small government, and a liberal President to faithfully execute what remains.

  15. Russ says:

    Budgets come from the house? no? 1980-1994 democrats 94-2006 republicans, 06 – current, democrats. I’m seeing a slightly different pattern than you.

  16. jim says:

    Russ, of course you see a different pattern. Everyone sees what they want to see. Politics is not a cut and dry issue. There is not right and wrong, good and bad. The right thing could be bad and vice versa. The trick is to pull your head out of your a– and think about what is best for the world, not each of us as an individual. What is bad is blood on your hands. Bad presidents have lots of it, better presidents have less. Of course Washington and Lincoln probably had the most but those were different times. Then, we fought for OUR nation. Now, the blood tends to be linked to oil and money. Right now, today, America is hurting and GW’s failed politics got us into it – he focused on oil, money and revenge. Now the rich are richer and the rest of us are taking it in the rear. God help us if McCain is elected but then again if he is then we deserve what we get.

  17. Casey says:

    WordPress database error: [Illegal mix of collations (latin1_swedish_ci,IMPLICIT) and (utf8_general_ci,COERCIBLE) for operation ‘=’]

    what in the hell is this? (keeps pushing this at me when I try to post here.

  18. Chris says:

    Hand that man another cigar …..

  19. oomu says:

    so ? yes, Clinton was a good president for the U.S and Bush (junior) is a good president for the European Union. (thanks Bush)

  20. It’s a nice cartoon. The point is made more finely by this sample sparkline showing the US budget deficit (1983-2003). (Courtesy of

    Each president continued as they started.

    (Hey, politics, Tufte, and a graphical display module! What’s not to like? PHP? Oh well… not going there!)

    (Posted this earlier, but your site decided I was inconvenient!)

  21. jdub says:

    Speaking of sparklines, check out the blog history sparkline I’ve been playing with on my tag cloud page.

    I’ll probably turn this into a plugin at some point, but haven’t 100% figured out what the best way of doing that would be. I don’t think it would be quite as cool as a widget on my site… but maybe it would elsewhere. Hmm. 🙂

    (Bonus: The colour of the sparkline changes with the hourly colours of my blog theme!)

  22. marku says:

    what does this have to do with linux, or gnome, or anything related?

  23. James D says:

    Only problem is that the ‘surplus’ under Clinton wasn’t a surplus at all: he simply raided the Social Security Trust Fund:

  24. It’s an interesting point.

    The article comments: Interestingly [borrowing from social security], this most likely was not even a conscious decision by Clinton.

    So, what did Clinton do, that the others did not?

  25. Jon Smirl says:

    Congress authorizes all spending, the president can only veto it. The president submits budgets to the House which are then ignored. House also has to authorize the war spending. You’re looking in the wrong place, the House is where the problem is.

  26. marku says:

    gents, despite what you have heard from the drive-by media and your goofball professors, jon smirl has given you some insight toward the true situation. marku.

  27. John McLaughlin says:

    Truth Hurts! Correction though, W’s number is way low. Also, it does not include the war(s) because a lot of that money is off balance sheet. Also, W’s number is greater that the total of all, and I mean all, previous presidents. Love those fiscal conservatives!

    Sorry, there does seem to be an ideological difference. The neo-conservatives are the “Spend and don’t pay for it party”. They leave it to future generations. Seems to be OK with them. So, wonder who is benefiting from this “spend and don’t pay for it” philosophy? Ummmmm.

    Notice I didn’t use the word Republican. They don’t exit anymore – their party has been hijacked. You gotta love greed.
    John in Denver

  28. Rick in Oxnard says:

    Yep can’t wait for McSame to take care of those crooks on Wall Street He will be jailing all those lobbyist that have persuaded congress to eliminate the safe banking regulations enacted after the Depression to prevent this mess we find ourselves in today oh wait sorry he is not jailing them he hired them they are all of his advisors to the campaign now including Sen Phil (bunch of crybabies) Graham! Oh brother lets get some real change in Washington not more of the Keating Five McSame!

  29. Tony G. says:

    Whenever Republicans start talking about “big government” and how bad it is, they like to point fingers at taxing and spending and try to convince us that these matters are better left for the individual states to reconcile. With that in mind, perhaps Republican voters, in their respective states, would be better served by considering the following facts in relation to the level at which the 22 red states (as well as they’re own) contribute to the national gross domestic product (GDP), and how much Federal aid they actually receive by way of the 28 blue states as our government taxes and spends.

    Based on U. S. Census & U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reports, we know that the residents of red states make up only 30% of the U.S. population and a meager 18% of the national GDP. Furthermore, the most recent U.S. Census Bureau’s; Tax Foundation’s “State by State Tax Burden Allocation Model” shows us that the folks in the red states are in fact and by far the most fortunate recipients of government spending.

    Here is how it works and no matter what any politician on either side of the aisle say’s to the contrary; these are the stone cold facts. The states send federal taxes to Washington and receive federal spending in return. However, some states benefit more from federal taxing and spending policies than others. Some “beneficiary” states receive a positive return from Uncle Sam, making other states “donors” who pick up the tab.

    The average blue state receives only 99 cents in federal spending for every dollar spent in federal taxes. Only 13 out of the 28 blue states (less than half) receive one dollar or more. The average red state receives $1.41 for every dollar spent in federal taxes and a whopping 20 out of 22 (over 90%) receive more than a dollar. Eight red states receive more than $1.50 as opposed to only two blue states. To look at a spreadsheet with all the numbers stated thus far, is truly an eye-opening document to behold.

    Perhaps Republican voters should examine numbers such as these to better understand exactly where it is that their bread is buttered in terms of true stimulus, instead of holding on to economic theories and mistruths that still drive them to vote against their own interests.

    Each time some Republican representative of Congress or Senate stands to address their respective body or some under informed and misleading entertainer like Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity brazenly preach the same principles that got our country in trouble to begin with, Republican voters might ask themselves the same question that Democrats have been asking for years: Just who are Republican politicians talking to?

    Hubert Humphrey once said something like: “How many times do you have to be hit over the head before you realize who it is that’s hitting you?” All of that reaching out to Republican politicians stuff was a nice and all, but maybe this is the dose of reality that voters in this country need to stomach before any true healing can begin.

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