Clinton’s barefaced fabrications just piled one on top of another. Obama cut four trillion from the deficit. Suuuure. Obama created 4.5 million jobs. Where, on Mars? Obama created 500,000 manufacturing jobs. Maybe in China. Inflation in medical costs is going down because of Obamacare. Or perhaps it is the miserable economy?
But why does it matter what Clinton says, anyway? Sure, he’s a former president, but Democrats weren’t lining up around the block to hear Carter speak in years past. I believe that Clinton’s drawing power stems from the myth that he was responsible for the impressive financial success of the 1990s.
It would be difficult to be more wrong.
First off, I would like to say that I personally do not believe that presidents have as much say over the course of the economy as we would like to believe. They do not write tax code or federal budgets, so how could they single-handedly control something like that? Still, both parties like to tout that their guy was responsible for the country’s financial success, and at the convention Bill Clinton was hailed as a demigod for his supposed fiduciary magic, so I figure his inflated ego is fair game.
The Clinton administration’s supposed success is centered on two lies. One is that he produced a budget surplus, and the other is that he was not responsible for the housing crisis. Both of these lies are craftily linked together, and it is when you pull on one of them that the other comes tumbling down.
To understand how this works, we need to go back to Nixon and his move to take the United States off the gold standard.