Monday, 07 September 2009

Obama's Hot Air Balloon Collapses

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Ralph ReilandWhat we’re seeing with Obama’s plummeting poll numbers is a quick case of buyer’s remorse.

More broadly, Gallup reports that conservatives now outnumber liberals in all 50 states, with more Americans self-identifying themselves as conservative than at any time in the past four years.

Gallup surveys from January 2009, the month of Obama’s inauguration, through June 2009, show that 40 percent of respondents described themselves as conservative — 31 percent “conservative” and 9 percent “very conservative.” Only 21 percent of respondents described themselves as liberal — 16 percent “liberal” and 5 percent “very liberal.”

That two-to-one margin is big news even if the New York Times doesn’t see it as newsworthy. Or to rephrase an old question, if liberalism crashes to the ground and the Times doesn’t report it, does that mean it didn’t happen?

“You know this is important polling news, because the establishment media is pretending it doesn’t exist,” wrote Tom Blumer last month in the Wall Street Journal. “You can’t find a relevant reference to it in searches on ‘Gallup’ at the New York Times, AP.org, the Washington Post, or the LA Times.”
What went wrong for Obama is everything.

It started with the $800 billion non-stimulating stimulus bill, overstuffed with pork by Congressional Democrats. The idea was to give a fast “jolt” to the economy, speedily create millions of jobs, and quickly end the hardships of the unemployed. So important was the speed that legislators didn’t even take the time to read the bill.

Now, half a year after the rushed enactment of the Democrats’ idea of “shovel-ready” stimulation, 90 percent of the money is still stuck in the political pipeline, waiting for politicians to decide which pothole to fix or which nephew to hire, and three million more jobs have been lost since January.

In a recent USA Today/Gallup survey, the majority of respondents say that the stimulus package is having no impact on the economy or making it worse.

What would have worked better and faster at getting people back to work is a cut in personal income taxes — personal consumption expenditures account for most of the spending and job creation in the U.S. economy — and tax cuts for small business, the sector that’s produced 60 to 80 percent of the new jobs per year in the American economy over the past decade.

Instead we got billions in slow-moving pork, more bailouts for bloated state governments and calls from Obama for higher taxes and more federal mandates on businesses that are already struggling to maintain their current levels of employment. Plus Obama’s push for card-check, i.e., unionism without elections, so a grievance chairman and victimology adviser could be assigned to watch over any entrepreneurial type who still has any semblance of self-reliance and independence remaining in his soul.

Then came Obama’s record-smashing federal budget with a deficit now projected at $1.85 trillion, four times larger than George W. Bush’s largest deficit. Plus another trillion or so in projected costs for Obama’s cap-and-trade scheme in order to slow down the “crisis” of global warming, disregarding the fact that things have been cooling down for a decade.

Add the trillions we’re on the hook for in the Troubled Assets Relief Program and the Congressional Budget Office’s estimated price of $1 trillion-plus for Obama’s health reform plan over the next decade and it looks like we’re going to be floating on a massive flood of red ink into a full state of peonage.

Or as Investor’s Business Daily recently put it: “Eventually, the total take by government at all levels will be well over 50 percent of GDP — enough to sink the U.S. economy into a state of semi-permanent stagnation, a socialist stupor.”

And what about the kids and grandma in this collectivist utopia? There won’t be as many.

Obama’s new science czar, John Holdren, declared in his book co-authored with the environmental Cassandra team of Paul Ehrlich and Anne Ehrlich that “compulsory population-control laws, even including laws requiring compulsory abortion, could be sustained under the existing Constitution.” Just put people like Sotomayor on the Supreme Court, the historic figure who couldn’t see anything wrong with throwing out employment tests when too many pale-faced gringos score at the top.

As for Grandma, Obama health advisor Ezekiel Emanuel, Harvard-produced bioethicist and brother of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, explained the “shovel-ready” final solution: No medical treatments for anyone falling short in their required role as “participating citizens,” as defined by the central committee.

Ralph R. Reiland is an associate professor of economics at Robert Morris University in Pittsburgh.