I seriously don’t know how right-wing sites come up with some of their ideas. The process appears to go something like this: “Here’s a picture of something bad. Let’s do a meme/story and blame it on Democrats.”
It’s not clear whether the clever folks at the right-wing site The Federalist Papers created the meme below, or just decided to exploit it. But like almost everything that you see on these low traffic sites, there is simply nothing factual about it.
According to the story’s headline, this meme explains everything you need to know about Democratic control of the government. “BRUTAL Meme Reveals What Happens When Liberals Run Things,” it says. There’s absolutely no explanation or evidence to support the meme’s claim in the story that accompanies it. The page goes from headline to meme to a story about Hillary Clinton which has nothing to do with either of the first two items.
Let’s set the record straight.
First up: Detroit.
It’s a popular claim among conservatives that Democrats run some of the poorest cities in the country. That much is true. But what they won’t tell you is that Democrats also run some of the richest cities in the country, because Democrats are in control in most of the country’s major cities. They also don’t want to tell you that cities aren’t islands and that they are affected by state and federal policies. When Republicans are in power, their attitude towards cities ranges from hostility to neglect.
In the case of Detroit, which has become the poster child of crumbling American urban areas, Republican policies have decimated the auto industry, allowing good paying manufacturing jobs to go overseas. The result is abandoned factories, large numbers of unemployed, and growing welfare rolls. All that gets blamed on Democrats. But while Democrats have dominated Detroit politics, the governorship and legislature in Michigan have not been completely controlled by Democrats since 1983 — and that control only lasted for one year.
As for the other part of this meme? It’s not clear what they mean by saying when you elect Democrats “you get California.” But since the meme is obviously talking about the economic problems of Detroit, you can assume that’s what they are referring to in California. The creator and the folks at The Federalist Papers need to see what is going on in the Golden State. Governor Schwarzenegger left the state in a mess. In fairness, part of his problem was the great recession of 2008, but the California economy sputtered under his leadership long before the national economy crashed.
Since the election of Governor Jerry Brown, California has not only seen an economic rebound, but the Los Angeles Times said last September that California’s economy is predicted to outpace the country as a whole through 2020. So while the part of this meme about Detroit blames the wrong people, the part suggesting that Democrats are somehow destroying the economy in California is completely counter to the facts.
As President John Adams said, “Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.” But hey, conservatives don’t need facts. They have the internet.
Featured image via The Federalist Papers