If you believe the current Republican rhetoric, Obama is the root of all evil and nothing he says or wants can be any good for the country. Speaking specifically about the debt, the way Fox News and the other Republican stalwarts are reporting it, you'd think this was the first time in history that the debt ceiling was a problem. They're also plenty happy to point out that the debt has gone up by 40% since Obama took office. So we need to go back into history a little ways to see the trend here, to shed some light on this hypocrisy. Because that's what it is. If we look at the Carter era onwards, which is the most relevant to most people now, it looks like this: Carter - debt went up from $0.698Tr in 1977 to $0.997Tr in 1981. Up 42% in 4 years. Reagan - debt went up from $0.997Tr in 1981 to $2.857Tr in 1989. Up 186% in 8 years. Debt ceiling increased 6 times: February 1981, June 1982, November 1983, October 1984, August 1986, July 1987. Bush Snr - debt went up from $2.