Hillary's Barking Episode and the Great Clinton Recession

February 20th, 2016 10:48 PM

The clip went viral.

Hillary Clinton, recounting what she said was her favorite political ad of all time, involved a dog trained to bark when a politician lied.

HILLARY CLINTON: One of my favorite political ads of all time was a radio ad in rural Arkansas where the announcer said, "Wouldn't it be great if somebody running for office said something, we could have an immediate reaction to whether it was true or not. Well, we have trained this dog. Well, the dog, if it is not true, he is going to bark." And the dog was barking on the radio and so people were barking at each other for days after that.

I want to figure out how we can do that with Republicans. We need to get that dog and follow them around and every time they say these things like, "Oh, the Great Recession was caused by too much regulation," arh, arh, arh, arh!

Then she said: "(Republicans) actually, with a straight face, say that the great recession was caused by too much regulation on Wall Street. They actually say that."  

What made the headlines? Why, Hillary barking of course. It was looped. It was mixed. It shot everywhere and will doubtless remain as one of the classics from the 2016 election cycle -- and heaven knows there have already been a lot of those already and its only February.

What was not in the headlines were those lines that she used to illustrate her point, as cited above.

And there is Hillary Clinton at her disingenuous best.

Let’s return to this excellent resource on the Great Recession and its causes. That source would be the book Reckless Endangerment: How Outsized Ambition, Greed, and Corruption Led to Economic Armageddon  by New York Times business reporter Gretchen Morgenson and Joshua Rosner, a partner at the consultant company Graham Fisher & Co.

 Right at the very beginning of their book, Morgenson and Rosner start with this quote:

“More Americans should own their own homes, for reasons that are economic and tangible, and reasons that are emotional and intangible, but go to the heart of what it means to expand the American Dream.”

                       William Jefferson Clinton
                       Forty second president of the United States,
                       November 1994

The chapter begins from there with this:

The president of the United States was preaching to the choir when he made that proclamation in 1994, just two years into his first term. Facing an enthusiastic crowd at the National Association of Realtors’ annual meeting in Washington, D.C., Clinton launched the National Partners in Homeownership, a private-public cooperative with one goal: raising the numbers of homeowners across America.

Determined to reverse what some in Washington saw as a troubling decline of homeownership during the previous decade, Clinton urged private enterprise to join with public agencies to ensure that by the year 2000, some 70 percent of the populace would own their own homes.

An owner in every home. It was the prosperous, 1990s version of the Depression-era ‘A Chicken in Every Pot.’

With homeownership standing at around 64 percent, Clinton’s program was ambitious….
….the (Clinton) government enlisted help in 1995 from a wide swath of American industry. Banks, home builders, securities firms, Realtors - all were asked to pull together in a partnership made up of 65 top national organizations and 131 smaller groups.

The partnership would achieve its goals by ‘making homeownership more affordable, expanding creative financing, simplifying the home buying process, reducing transaction costs, changing conventional methods of design and building less expensive houses, among other means.’

Amid the hoopla surrounding the partnership announcement, little attention was paid to its unique and most troubling aspect: It was unheard of for regulators to team up this closely with those they were charged with policing….
…in just a few short years, all of the venerable rules governing the relationship between borrower and lender went out the window, starting with the elimination of requirements that a borrower put down a substantial amount of cash in a property, verify his income, and demonstrate an ability to service his debts.

Got that? As the book goes on to explain in detail, it was Bill Clinton who threw out “all of the venerable rules” that regulated the financing of homeownership. And while he wasn’t alone - Morgenson and Rosner list the entire seamy cast of characters, almost all associated with Clinton, Obama and the Democrats’ lobbying-industrial complex - it is a stark, documented truth that the Great Recession has Bill Clinton’s fingerprints all over it.

So when Hillary Clinton was barking about "(Republicans) actually, with a straight face, say that the great recession was caused by too much regulation on Wall Street. They actually say that”? What she leaves out is that the regulation on Wall Street was changed - by Bill Clinton.  Arf arf arf arf arf!

Where were the stories about this cute little game Hillary was playing?

Here's ABC:

Hillary Clinton Barks Like a Dog While Condemning Republicans

Here's USA Today:

Hillary Clinton barks like a dog, breaks Internet

Here's The Huffington Post:

Hillary Clinton's Barking Dog Impression Is Totally Paw-some

And of course, here's The Washington Post.

Clinton barks like a dog during campaign stop

And on and on it went with stories like this - with not a solitary word about the substance - the untruth - of exactly what Hillary Clinton was saying. There was nary a reference to Bill Clinton's role in the Great Recession.

Shocker, yes? It's enough to make a guy go barking mad.