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Observing President Obama’s relentlessly reckless approach to our nation’s fiscal integrity is reminiscent of the signature phrase of Mad magazine’s Alfred E. Neuman, “What, me worry?” Obama struck again last week at the G-20 conference in Toronto, urging other nations to follow his Pied Piper lead into deficit-spending hell.
Unlike recent U.S. presidents who recognized and touted this nation as the world’s exemplar for economic growth and prosperity, Obama is turning us into a poster nation for financial irresponsibility. While other nations at the meeting were focusing on deficit reduction, Obama was haplessly urging them to join us in Keynesian spending oblivion.
He told the conference that global economic recovery remains “fragile” and implored the nations’ leaders to continue deficit spending to sustain the “recovery.” The Washington Post reports that Obama’s remarks “tempered the Group of 20’s headline achievement at the summit, a deficit-reduction target that had been pushed by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, the host of the meeting and a fiscal conservative.”
Obama is wholly impervious to the historical record documenting the failure of FDR’s pump-priming during the Depression, which exacerbated rather than ameliorated the economic problems. He is similarly detached from reality concerning the failure of his own policies to stimulate growth of any kind to save his beloved public sector and thus recommends more of the same.
In speech after speech, he takes credit for having launched an economic recovery in the United States and for achieving job growth. Notwithstanding his economic models that stubbornly predict such results, he can point to no empirical evidence to verify his delusional boasts.
It would be bad enough if his economic policies were simply retarding our economic recovery, but they are also accelerating our trip to national bankruptcy. Yet Obama continues to press forward with his foot smashed down on the gas pedal.
Though fiscal sanity would demand that we put the brakes on runaway government spending, Obama wants more of it and is in the process of securing it – not just in the short term but also in perpetuity. Obama launched an array of new spending programs ostensibly billed as temporary – to help “stimulate” the economy – but his latest budget, according to the Heritage Foundation, “would replace this temporary spending with permanent new programs.” As if that should surprise anyone!
Heritage’s latest figures show that federal spending, deficits and debt continue “to grow at a pace not seen since World War II.” This year, the federal government is spending $5,000 more per household than it was just two years ago.
Oh, sure, Obama is also touting his promise to halve the federal deficit by 2013 and saying he means it. “People should learn that lesson about me because next year when I start presenting some very difficult choices to the country, I hope some of these folks who are hollering about deficits and debt step up, because I’m calling their bluff,” he said.
But his theories about deficit reduction might be a bit different from yours and mine. Obama wants us to believe (and apparently can’t help believing himself) that our soaring deficits are the result of “messy and unfair” tax laws. You know the drill: The rich are not paying their fair share. Put aside for now his specious and class-warfare-driven arguments about the rich. The latest data published by Heritage reveal that 90 percent of the rising long-term budget deficits are driven by rising spending and that just 10 percent of the rising deficits are caused by falling revenues. Moreover, the “tax cuts” for those earning more than $250,000 are responsible for just 4 percent of the swing from surpluses to deficits.
Yet after all his newly imposed federal spending programs, Obama will soon unveil the results of his “bipartisan” budget commission and swear he’s going to drastically reduce the deficit – mostly by raising taxes even more. To make the numbers work, even in theory, he’ll have to break – yet again – his promise not to raise taxes “of any kind” on those making less than $250,000. And he’ll expect to be lauded for his stewardship and given a pass for reneging on his pledge. Those who criticize him for his reckless spending, his broken promises and his economically suicidal blueprint to solve our debt and economic problems through higher taxes will be castigated as mere partisans. So predictable. So maddening. So destructive.
In a nutshell, then, Obama’s plan is to spend us into bankruptcy without improving private-sector economic growth, impose national health care and other permanent entitlements to further bankrupt us and suppress the economy, exploit the Gulf oil spill to cram through the further growth-destroying cap-and-trade bill and then revamp the tax code to place even further burdens on income earners and the economy as a whole. What, me worry? Duh! How about you?