Limbaugh revisits early 2009

Among his other problems, Rush Limbaugh appears to have a poor memory.

On Monday’s show, Rush Limbaugh attacked Obama for purposefully ruining the rosy economy he inherited from president Bush.

No, really “Well, he inherited a AAA credit rating, an unemployment rate of 5.7%. Does anybody doubt that this is on purpose?”

OK, so in Limbaugh’s mind, President Obama wants a poor economy. I’m sure there’s a very creative explanation for this bizarre argument, but I just don’t much care what it is.

But more important is the notion that Limbaugh thinks Obama “inherited” a great situation from Bush. Even for the most unhinged right-wing loon, this is just amazing.

For one thing, the unemployment rate wasn’t 5.7%; it was 7.6% and climbing fast. For another, Obama would have loved to have kept the AAA credit rating, and would have had Limbaugh’s buddies in Congress not trashed it.

But in the bigger picture, 2009 wasn’t that long ago, and if the right really wants to talk about what Obama “inherited,” I suspect that would be fine with the White House.

After all, following eight years of spectacular Republican failures, Obama took office when the nation was in freefall. Arguably no president in American history started his first day with a list like this: the Great Recession, two deadly wars, a jobs crisis, a massive deficit and budget mess, crushing debt, a health care system in shambles, a climate crisis, an ineffective energy policy, an equally ineffective immigration policy, a housing crisis, the U.S. auto industry on the verge of collapse, a mess at Gitmo, a severely tarnished global reputation, an executive branch damaged by corruption, incompetence, and mismanagement, and an angry, deeply divided electorate.

It was, by most measures, the worst national conditions ever faced by a newly-elected president.

Limbaugh wants his minions to believe Bush bequeathed a healthy, prosperous nation. That’s insane.

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.