Thursday, January 28, 2010
President Barack Obama strutted in front of Congress and the nation last night to give his State of the Union address. This time his undeniable oratorical skills simply could not save him from the facts that have become clear in his first full year in office, facts that now have his speeches sounding more and more like skips on a broken record.
Let's start by taking a look at what his programs have actually done over the past year, and see what he said last night. Directly because of the programs and initiatives launched by the Obama administration, our unemployment rate has soared past the 10% mark for the first time in decades and our national debt has been set on course to triple over the next decade.
But what is Obama suggesting that we do as we move into his vision of the future? Spend more, go further into debt, reward cronyism and failed industries. Barack Obama and the Democrats in Congress wish to throw massive amounts of good money after excessive and irresponsible amounts of bad.
The President proposed in his speech last night to "take $30 billion of the money Wall Street banks have repaid and use it to help community banks give small businesses the credit they need to stay afloat." So we taxpayers, who did not want to do it in the first place, loaned money to banks. It was repaid, but now we lend that same money back out to banks? So what exactly is going to have been "repaid"?
Why again did I lend money to banks in the first place? Do you know why? To save the financial system from collapse? Really? And why do we taxpayers need to prop up any business that cannot succeed on the strength of it's own hard work, value, worth, and entrepreneurial skills? Businesses large and small have gone under for centuries. Why do we have to save some now with taxpayer dollars?
Next the President said "We can put Americans to work today building the infrastructure of tomorrow...There's no reason Europe or China should have the fastest trains, or the new factories that manufacture clean energy products." Really? Why not? What does having the fastest trains in the world have to do with anything at all? If China has a train that goes 200 miles per hour, why do we need one that goes 250?
Has the President even bothered to look at every single study of mass transit in this country? All the studies show that the vast majority of these mass transit systems: buses, trains, trolleys, etc go without ridership for the majority of the day. It is only during certain peak hours that ridership is full. But the trains and buses run all day and night long, running up massive fuel, maintenance, and labor costs. And the vast majority of the public doesn't use these systems on any regular basis at all. Those are the facts.
Why do we need to build new manufacturing plants for business? If a business wants a new plant, and will benefit economically from it's construction, then why doesn't it just build one itself?
Obama then finally spoke a truth, but he spoke it in typically veiled fashion: "The only way to move to full employment is to lay a new foundation for long-term economic growth, and finally address the problems that America's families have confronted for years." Well, first of all, that is not exactly truth. There will never be "full employment", whatever that means. But we get the idea and the goal of creating as many decent jobs for as many people who actually want to and are able to work.
The only proven way to create long-term sustainable jobs that will make a real difference in the lives of the greatest amount of people is to get government out of the way and allow private industry to flourish with minimal restraints. Keep taxes as low as possible across the board, and keep regulation to reasonable levels that are not a result of partisan political studies or a knee-jerk overreaction to occasional errors.
But what Obama and the Democrats want to do is what is known as 'picking the winners', making the decisions as to which businesses and industries are worthwhile and valuable and worth investing in and then forcing Americans to live with their decisions. Rather than leaving the business community alone to develop products and services and allow the American dollar-paying public to decide based on their own desires.
Obama played the scare tactic by mentioning that Germany and China and India were not waiting to pour money into 'clean energy' because "they want those jobs." Which jobs is he talking about? You mean the jobs that they are creating by the pouring in of all that money? Why would Obama possibly compare what the U.S. should do to what these nations are doing? Because they are socialist (Germany), communist (China), or corrupt quasi-socialist economic (India) nations, that's why.
Obama also continues to be shameless in his attempts to embarrass Republicans into 'going over to the Dark Side' and joining with the Democrats in making these changes. He once again mentioned that "saying no" and disagreeing continuously is not a policy idea. The fact is that individual Republican lawmakers and the Republican Party leadership have put forth numerous ideas, only to be ignored or slapped down every time by the Democratic Party-controlled congress.
Republican Party politicans in Congress and the Senate have, in fact, no obligation to blindly follow the President and fall in lock-step with the Democrats to pass laws and bills and enact policies that they know will only hurt America in the long run. They are absolutely supposed to attempt to "say no" to the President and disagree with him when he is wrong, which is on almost every issue.
Republican politicians need to not only continue to stand up to the Obama policies strongly and vocally when warranted, but in fact need to more fully and substantively embrace traditional American ideals and programs which support these ideas themselves, or many will find themselves tossed out of their own offices in the coming primary elections.
Barack Obama's vision for America is nothing short of full-blown socialism. The complete destruction of the capitalist system that elevated the United States to the greatest economic levels in the history of the world and kept us there for more than a century. The reason is simple: the power and control that comes with running a state-controlled economy and a central government.
He will play all of the usual race-baiting and class-warfare games to make this happen, implying or directly saying that those who don't go along are racist or want babies to starve or the elderly to go without medical care. He will use a mass media that has become slowly and surely and almost completely infected by individuals with the same political and social beliefs as his over the last few decades.
He further called for an "investment in the skills and education of our people." What exactly does that mean? There was a time when the American educational system was the envy of the world. What changed all that? What changed it was these very liberal ideals invading the classroom and shifting our students attention away from important learning skills to forced cultural sensitivity.
For generations, American students have been historically and socially indoctrinated in the classroom far more than they have been educated. Because some couldn't or wouldn't keep up, everyone was forced to drag back to their level. And the teaching and enforcing of morality and discipline? Forget about it. If Obama wants to improve the American educational system, he needs to get the government out of the classrooms.
Finally, Obama continued to pour it on for his outrageously enormous takeover of what is already the greatest health-care system that the world has ever known, despite the fact that the large majority of the American public doesn't want any part of a government-run system. Health-care needs responsible reform, not a comprehensive government takeover and the accompanying massive cost to the tax-paying public, as Obama and the Dems are trying to force down our throats.
Right now what Obama and the Democrats have been doing for a year and continue to plan towards the future is the insinuation of the government into effective or direct control of every major facet of our lives. The only way to stop this suicidal power-grab is to reverse the political fortunes of the country as soon as possible, before things get too bad to ever reverse.
As the brilliant economist Thomas Sowell has so perfectly put it "human beings have their own individual preferences, values, plans, and wills all of which can conflict with and even thwart the goals of social experiments." What Obama and the Democrats are advocating is what Sowell calls an "open-ended demand", one that calls for "ever-expanding government bureaucracies with ever-expanding budgets and powers."
We Americans have certainly been getting exactly what Barack Obama promised in his campaign: Change. While I personally did not vote for him, I have a hard time believing that most of those who did so were thinking about fundamentally changing the United States of America from a nation built upon the God-given rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness into a socialist nation that stifles liberty and replaces the pursuit of happiness with your acceptance of whatever the government deems oughta be what you think happiness should entail.
One of today's great scholars, Dinesh D'Souza, a legal immigrant who became a White House policy advocate, stated "America represents a new way of being human and thus presents a radical challenge to the world." In describing "American exceptionalism", D'Souza called it the idea that "Americans have throughout their history held that they are special: that their country has been blessed by God, that the American system is unique, that Americans are not like people everywhere else."
If all of the polls taken in recent months are telling the truth, then the American public is starting to wake up to the fact that Obama and the Democrats are steering us away, far away, from our founding and established ideals and that very "American exceptionalism" that we have always cherished. With the continuing of God's blessings on our special experiment in democracy we can begin to remove them from office as has been happening already all across the country, reverse the damaging course upon which they have set us, and begin to reclaim our national greatness and prosperity.