Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Seven Trillion Dollar Man

Yesterday, Barack Hussein Obama, Jr. gave his much anticipated news conference concerning his plan to deliver us from the economic crisis. Obama described the current economic situation as historic and proposed a stimulus package that would shock the market. BO displayed his economic acumen by describing the "stimulus package" as "big." No numbers, no cogent and enlightened plan, just the usual BO tap dance and fashion show. All form and no substance. This should come as no surprise. The song and dance routine won him the election, promising his voters a lifetime supply of cotton candy and appealing to their sense of cool. The bailout plan from the left is estimated at a total cost of Seven Trillion Dollars, an amount exceeding all the money spent in Iraq and representing a deficit far exceeding any amount up to now. Apparently, deficits don't matter anymore, so long as the maniacal spending comes from the democrat left. How the U.S. dollar will survive this orgy of debt and subsequent currency devaluation is anyone's guess. I'm anticipating a dollar disaster when that bubble pops. Already the spin masters are making excuse for Obama's flip flop on a major campaign promise: to end the Bush tax cuts early. Apparently, the messiah is not quite up to the task of economic reform in the manner that was promised on the "talk is cheap" campaign trail.

Well, so far we seem to have a really cool socialist who is bent on implementing a third Clinton term. This is laughable. BO attacked McCain during the campaign by associating him with a Bush third term. How ironic is it that Hillary, soon to be Secretary of State, once described Obama's foreign policy as irresponsible and naive. The rest of his appointees seem to be Clinton retreads. The next four years will certainly provide plenty of material for comedians and critics.

However, what is not humorous are the oppressive effects of BO's proposed policies. Currently, Congress is contemplating a bailout of the big three auto manufacturers. Aside from the folly associated with the waste of tax revenue, the most disturbing development is government's encroachment on liberty. If the bailout takes place, the control of private enterprise will be subsumed to the coercive power of the state on a level never before seen in this republic. And, of course, the authoritarian man-child Obama fully supports this. Obama has stated plainly that the auto makers will be beholden to him and his regime. As a consequence of accepting bailout money, the auto makers will be required to submit to Congressional dictates concerning the direction and objectives that the industry will pursue. This means that Congress will be directing the big three manufacturers on matters concerning what kinds of cars to produce. The implications of this are astounding. How long will this republic survive under central planning of this magnitude? We are witnessing the nationalization of our banking system and the planned nationalization of the auto industry. And, at the head of it all is the Omniscient Administrator, Barack Hussein Obama, Jr. We see Obama's antecedent in the current Treasury Secretary. Paulson has been granted arbitrary powers of authority in the bailout bill. His duty is to ensure the economic welfare of our citizens. This legislation far surpasses the language of the Constitution. But, Constitutional matters seem to be of little import in these "desperate" economic times. Our liberties are being peddled away under the guise of crisis. The democrats in congress and the incoming administration play the act of the fear monger in order to extend and coalesce their power. If the auto industry becomes the vassal of the Obama aristocracy, who will then be immune from servitude?

Here is the full text of the bailout bill:
The new administration describes the free market as an entity to be shocked into submission. The hubris of this attitude is patent. Their view is that the free market must be brought under the control of the state and harnessed by the enlightened aristocracy. Obamabots chanted about change and hope, voted for an image and now only receive the tired, worn, and discredited slogans of the socialist left. There is nothing new or novel in this. Obama is merely Marx in an expensive suit and Malcom X without the spectacles.

"These unhappy times call for the building of plans that rest upon the forgotten, the unorganized but the indispensable units of economic power, for plans like those of 1917 that build from the bottom up and not from the top down, that put their faith once more in the forgotten man at the bottom of the economic pyramid." (Franklin Roosevelt, 1932)

Sound familiar? So much for Change, for new and fresh ideas.

Update: Here's a link to the facts and figures on the mind boggling bailout numbers! And, for all you Obamabots, here's the New York Times article! Also, you can still access the Congressional document above by clicking the link just below the preview window.

15 comments:

Jeremy Hore said...

War in iraq is sitting close to six hundred billion. So i'm not sure how you justify that comment.

mpc said...

John,

I'm seeing a progression in your posts that has me genuinely concerned about your mental well-being. I'm not being snarky here, on the contrary I'm very serious. Please, for the sake of the people that love you, talk to a therapist.

If you won't do that then at least consider a 'cooling off' period in which you just take a break from politics for a little while. Now is the perfect time; you can return to saving the world from the evil Obama administration after he's taken office.

Sincerely,
Mike

PS - To be more specific, what most concerns me is the number of symptoms on this page that you are displaying in your writing.

Justin said...

"The bailout plan from the left is estimated at a total cost of Seven Billion Dollars, an amount exceeding all the money spent in Iraq and representing a deficit far exceeding any amount up to now."

John, i don't know what figure you meant, but it is not 7 billion. The bailout Bush proposed was 700+ billion, so before you try to push the "7 billion dollar bailout" on Obama and scream foul, check your facts. If you meant 7 Trillion, wow, could you please direct me to some links explaining the 7 trillion dollar bailout and Obama's involvement? Thanks.

John said...

Jeremy and Justin,

Thanks for the correction on the number. I did indeed mean 7 trillion not 7 billion. Also, I added a link to the bottom of the post which details all the facts and figures.

MPC,

I love posting comments like yours. It's evident to everyone when you make comments like this that you've got nothing substantive to say. I get a really big laugh out of stuff like this!

Tami: Blog Administrator said...

funny how none on the left ever address the actual issue at hand. speaks volumes. just empty accusations and name calling...how typical.

satiate said...

I'm curious to read what kind of economic plan you'd propose if you were in Obama's position. This comment is not meant to be sarcastic, but you seem to know a lot about an area that I don't know much about and I'd like to hear what you would propose in this situation? Thanks for posting!

M. Fess said...

Long time reader, first time poster. Just had a thought or two I wanted to share.

I want to say that I value this blog as a source for the opinions and thoughts from people who are elsewhere from me in the political spectrum. As an Obama supporter it's very easy to get caught up in joy and hope that this man will lead this country to better times. Unhinging supporters/critics can grow close-minded and unable to perceive argumentative information from the opposition as being legitimate. This blog helps me keep an open mind about all sides of the situation.

I think a large chunk of the American public could use a source of the opposing opinion. It keeps people grounded, you know? I'm still an Obama supporter, but I understand that the man is not by any means perfect. There are definitely some supporters on both sides that are completely carried away by their love or distaste for a political figure, be it Sarah Palin or Barack Obama. Neither of them are evil in my humble opinion.

Anyway, I'm not here to pose an argument or anything. I just wanted to say that I think this blog has value and should be read by Republicans, Democrats, and Independents alike. People who disagree with you shouldn't see your writings as an attack. Rather, I see it as just another piece of the political puzzle.

Seems like a lot of people put a lot of work into this blog. Just wanted to say thank you and that I enjoy reading it.

-mf

JB 88 said...

I really enjoy John's posts. Yes, sometimes they do come across like a vein is about to explode in John's forehead, but the passion is admirable and something I can relate to. The cadence is catchy most times, the language is calculated; seemingly advanced. I love reading John's interaction with his critics...it's orchestrated in a way that some can't comprehend if they tried. That's entertainment!
What I wish would change are the 'absolute' statements that tend to follow in the posts. Be it from lefties or righties, the 'you ALWAYS...' or 'left wingers NEVER...' or 'NO ONE on the right...' or 'funny how NONE ON THE LEFT EVER address the actual issue at hand...'
I have read many opposing posts on this blog that respectfully address the actual issues at hand. It's this divisive language that is one of the barriers to compromise.
John, thank you for at least acknowledging a correction when necessary. Keep writing, my Brother!
Tami, I know you have received the most horrible unimaginable messages since you started this blog. I personally have never sent anything negative, profane, etc. It seems your anger at the haters really does cloud your view of others who really come here for healthy debate. I don't know you, I'm no authority on you, so I hope I am wrong. And I am ready to be wrong! Am I?
Like John, I like facts. I simply do not believe most statements starting with 'no one on the left (or right)...' - no matter how the sentence ends. So when people make such statements it leads me to believe they, in fact, are the ones not addressing the issue.
I would love to see the Republican party unite and solidify (especially over the next 4 years), and I think awarenenss of labels and prejudice in language are important in this effort. So, as unpopular as this notion will be to some, I stand by it. Compromise.
Like it or not, a solely ultra-conservative party will have a really tough time winning the White House in 2012. So, wouldn't it behoove us all to find what platforms we can stand together on? And if that's possible for the Republican party, isn't it then possible as fellow Americans?

marilyn said...

I agree whole heartedly with mpc!
Against my better judgement I decided to see what "dear" John was talking about lately. It's always good for a big laugh. I thought maybe he had given up since most of the commentators on his last piece gave him such a hard time. It seems as though John is intent upon blaming all of our economic woes on Mr. Obama and anybody else that looks like a Democrat to him. Mr. Obama isn't even president yet. Excuse me John but weren't Republican president Bush and all of his cronies at the helm when this economic crises was taking shape. Mr. Obama has said that the future is going to be rough. Anybody even you should be able to see that. Money has to be spent to put people back to work and ensure that our economy doesn't go down the tubes. Would you rather that our leaders sit by idly while more thousands of hard working Americans lose their jobs and all they have worked for. Have you thought about what McCain and Palin might be doing now. I suspect that John McCain would have to rearrange some of his campaign promises under the present circumstances. Mr. Obama is making some very wise and well thought out choices for his cabinet. Things have changed a lot, even since he was elected overwhelmingly on November 4. There are a lot of hard choices that will have to be made; but thank God we now have someone who is preparing to make some tough decisions. Bush has been virtually invisible in the last couple of months. I believe that Mr. Obama will prove to us that he has the ability to be a great leader That takes more than just experience. He will be a president who is willing to listen humbly and wisely to those who have the kind of experienced advice that is needed at this time.
But don't despair John. Maybe you can think of a way to compare him to some other horrific person. Let's see? You've already used Hitler and Stalin. You've, also, made his name sound like a bad smell and the name of a terrible dictator. You haven't tried comparing him to the "Butcher of the Balkans" yet have you? Now that would be a real feat! I might even be afraid of your "sharp sword" then. OOOOOOOOOO!

sherlockman said...

The issues of the federal deficit and the national debt are very important (even though Dick Cheney said early in the Bush presidency that "deficits don't matter"). I don't quite see in the discussion how we are to conclude that Obama is the $7 trillion man from waht may hve been said yesterday -- maybe I missed the reference. Are we talking about President Bush who has added nearly $4B to the national debt in his years in office and if left unchanged will increase the debt to about $6B more than it was in 2001 (after President Clinton actually succeeded in lowering it for a few years). (see http://www.cedarcomm.com/~stevelm1/usdebt.htm).

Realize that most of the budgets that led to recent/near-future increases in the national debt were supported by John McCain, though in 2001, he was one of two Senate Republicans who voted again the Bush taxcuts saying "I cannot in good conscience support a tax cut in which so many of the benefits go to the most fortunate among us at the expense of middle-class Americans who most need tax relief." (google it) Guess he didn't want to share the wealth with the well-to-do at that time.


I think the irony of this discussion is that by all accounts, a McCain/Palin administration appeared (and this was before the current financial problems) to be working to increase deficits through increase tax breaks to individuals and corporations -- Did I miss Sarah Palin speaking about about how this might increase the deficit and why that was such as bad thing? Please point us to place where Palin showed us her commitment to lowering the deficit in the past.

I am hugely opposed to deficits for a number of reasons, but there are times (war and economic recession/depression) where they may be justified. Perhaps those who participate in this blog can actually focus on merits/demerits of various policy options, including those made by the President- Elect.

If the Governor of Alaska actually has something to say, perhaps it can be cited here.

As ever, glad the moderator allows many different views to be published here. Hope everybody has a great Thanksgiving!

Joe said...

I wonder: what course of action do you believe would be the wisest in the current economic situation?

I mean, I understand where your frustration is coming from. I experienced something very similar as we began the Iraq war. I felt--and was very vocal--that the decision was very unwise. But watched my country's leaders make it anyway. Then I had to sit by and watch the results of that decision decimated the people of Iraq. I watched as our attempts to create democracy instead created insurgency and strife.

I can only assume that you, John, feel similarly. You see an administration coming to power that is very different from your own world-view. You believe that the actions about to be taken are folly, that is evident. You fear that the worst will happen. In short: you act out of the same love of country that we all do and cannot comprehend why someone would see things differently.

So, here's what I did when faced with the unchangeable reality of the Iraq War: I analyzed the situation--we had made a mess and now were going to have to clean it up. We were dealing with an insurgency and we had to fight it like one.

I have not been nor am I now a "cut-and-run" liberal. I believe that we should support Iraq as long as the Iraqi people deem necessary. If they decide that it is time for them to stand on their own two feet then we should pack up and leave--no sooner.

It was important to stay the course for the time being. I disagree with the President about what I believe are a series of major human rights, economic, tactical and foreign policy decisions but I bow to his right to command. But I similarly exercise my right to speak freely, especially when I disagree with my government.

So I ask you John: what course of action should we take? Where should we go? And I'm not trying to be an asshole here. I'm trying to get some useful dialogue going.

You advocate small spending governments and, believe it or not, so do I. You advocate low-taxing governments and so do I. You advocate privately-controlled industry and so do I. But with the reality of the economy I'm not sure that government non-action is appropriate.

I don't think that the Big 3 should be bailed out. Particularly because they have so long resisted the--in my mind--very apparent need to meet consumer demand for a sustainably-based automotive industry.

I am wary of the bailouts of the banking and home mortgage industries in this country.

I am also very concerned about our increasingly volatile downward-trending--about to be recessionary--economy.

But what do we do? Ben Bernanke--conservatively-appointed liberelly-approved--persuaded the liberal-leaning congress to pass a huge bailout plan. So, the plan to get out of this mess is to spend more money? Is to spend money on the very people who got us into this mess? Wall Street? The financial sector?

I'm unsure because the political reality is something so different than my political ideals: big-spending, high-taxing government vying for control of private sectors.

However, realistically I believe that the Fed and the treasury department need to take the bull by the horns here. This is not a time for political ideology, it is a time for economic action. Homeowners need support as they face shrinking or stagnant income and rising home costs. This might mean either stimulus to the economy in the form of government programs which drive up wage, relief from mortgages by buying up bad debt or keeping income in the hands of the consumer base by lowering taxes. Or one could try some combination of the three.

I am not an economist, I merely balance the books at a small business. But my sense is that since the bubble has begun to collapse both the Bush and soon Obama administrations are doing everything they can to try and correct the situation. I just happen to think that the forthrightness that President-elect Obama is using is more re-assuring to the American people. And in times of economic uncertainty that is important.

So that's my two cents. I would be interested in hearing how you would propose we remove ourselves from the economic morass. Is there something that you think would be more effective course of action than the current?

John said...

Satiate, et al.,

Thank you for your interesting comments. As a conservative republican (a classical liberal) I feel that the answer to our economic predicament lies in lessening the tax burden and limiting the role of federal government.

"Any man of energy and initiative in this country can get what he wants out of life. But when initiative is crippled by legislation or by a tax system which denies him the right to receive a reasonable share of his earnings, then he will no longer exert himself and the country will be deprived of the energy on which its continued greatness depends." (Andrew William Mellon, Treasury Secretary)

This is the basis of supply side economics. The emphasis is on the producer and not on the consumer. This is the theory of trickle down economics as opposed to Obama's "bottom up" theory. Bottom up economics is not new, it's as old as FDR and begins with the birth of socialism. High taxes and increased spending result in out of control deficits and decreases in productivity. The result for the middle class is, as we are seeing now, layoffs, a deflating stock market, and the devaluation of the dollar (just to name a few). If you study economic history you will find that cutting taxes for small business produces increased revenue to the federal government and a higher standard of living for everyone. The conservative wing of the republican party espouses liberty and prosperity. The new radical left, embodied in Obama, espouses centralized control, the coalescence of power, and ultimately oppression. It's tough to find middle ground with that.

So, what would I do? I would suspend capital gains taxes. Can you imagine the inflow of capital resources into business, e.g. new jobs and massive increases in productivity, and the raging bull market that would ensue? As money pours into the stock market, your 401k would soar in value. I would slash income tax, providing millions of families with a true "economic stimulus package" and put the power of choice in their hands. Obama plans to increase taxes, and don't be fooled, that increase will be borne by the middle class too (of which I am a member). This policy is typically oppressive. I know to many this sounds heretical, but I would support the elimination of the income tax. The income tax is the primary reason why a vast majority of households are forced to seek multiple incomes. As far as bail out money, Fanney May and Freddie Mac wouldn't get a dime of it. The auto manufacturers wouldn't see a penny. Where is the bailout for the middle class? Where is the compassionate democratic party? They are busy handing out billions to fat cat executives! Where are the republicans? Apparently, the republican party is too busy sucking up to liberal democrats to do anything effective in congress. By-the-way, I strenuously oppose Bush's immigration policy and support of the "bail out bill." It is a national travesty, a socialization of massive sectors of american economic activity. It represents further federal control and oppressive central planning.

The problems that we face in the housing industry are best resolved by bankruptcy provisions which allow for the restructuring of debt and the terms of contractual obligation. This tinkering by the federal government only deepens the crisis. Frank and Dodd should be serving jail time for their malfeasance in office. Do I blame democrats for this economic disaster? Yes, because that's where the blame lies. Were moderate republicans complicit in this mess? Absolutely, they should be run out of office in tar and feathers.

The conservative republicans are about giving power back to the people. This is accomplished, economically, by cutting taxes and giving you the power to control your money and your destiny. I know what Obama said on the campaign trail. I know he promised to cut taxes for the middle class and to punish the evil rich guy. But, take a deep breath, watch and wait. Talk is cheap. A few promises on the campaign trail don't obliterate 20 years of radical history. The Obama that shows up for work in January won't be the same guy that so many voted for in November (whoever that guy is).

Joe said...

It's a wonderful argument. And, again, idealistically beautiful: A world in which government doesn't tax and small business thrives. But we've just sat through eight years of trickle-down supply-sided economics.

The blame for this crisis does not rest squarely on the shoulders of any one group of the elite. Sure, many are complicit in its occurrence. But as for who to blame, that is a trickier question.

I believe that the solution to this problem is problematic at best. There is no simple way out. Slashing the income tax and capital gains sounds pretty, and would be a wonderful world to live in, but how then does the government pay for our bloated defense budget? What happens to the already decrepit VA system?

Our country, both individuals and government, needs to stop operating in the red like it is a healthy way to go about life.

As an aside: John, it is wonderful to hear you speak constructively and civilly. I wish that you would make a post to the blogs front page that was equal in tone. Also, I think you'd probably find less posts like the one from mpc above.

joecanuck said...

John, John, John

Suspend capital gains taxes, the elimination of the income tax. How would you propose any government be it Democrat or Republican could raise any revenue to pay for common infrastructure systems, the military, home land security, old age security, medicaid and hundreds other necessary programs under those monetary restrictions.

You are right on one point, in economic history cutting taxes does produce increased revenue to the federal government and a higher standard of living for everyone. But that was history, The U.S. is no longer the insular economy of 50 years ago, we are a part of a larger global economy. It is on that global economic stage that the U.S. seems it can no longer compete. It is in large part the legacy costs and self-entitled unionized employees and their high wages that have forced so many companies to outsource jobs to foreign countries just to compete globally.

To your other point. George W. Bush was not the shining beacon of right wing conservatism while in office for two terms that he campaigned under pre-election in 2000. He also was not what Republicans voted for after taking office.

John said...

Some final thoughts:

There is a place for civility, though it has not been warranted until recently. I do enjoy thoughtful comments and an energetic debate.

U.S. businesses find it difficult to compete due to confiscatory tax rates as well as burdensome legacy costs. In fact, we all suffer under an confiscatory system laid on us, in large part, to provide the financial grist necessary to sustain FDR's welfare state. A government limited to its appropriate spheres of authority would have no difficulty functioning without income tax revenues. Reducing the tax burden is not a concept to be relegated to history's trash bin. What must be cast aside are the programs foisted on us by socialsts bent on the destruction of liberty, both economic and political. In fact, to argue that we live in an increasingly complex economic environment is to lend further credence to the notion that the free markets are the only system efficient enough to deal with the complex, real time interactions that take place in a modern economy. Therefore, a less burdensome tax structure must be tailored to maximize the freedom of individuals to interact in a complex economic milieu. Central planning with its concomitant progressive taxation system, proves itself to be woefully inept to deal with the complexities of a modern market, e.g. the current "bail out" debacle.

Remember, the power to tax is only the power to destroy.