Time for an employee evaluation

By Roger Hedgecock

Suppose your company was on the rocks four years ago. Suppose you had hired a charismatic, inexperienced newcomer with impressive oratorical skills, passionate commitment and sweeping promises to lead the company back to prosperity.

Suppose it’s now time to evaluate that executive’s performance during his first four years to determine whether to renew his employment contract.

Applying standard executive evaluation criteria, you should rate performance against promise, leadership, team building, dedication to the job, overcoming obstacles, accepting consequences of, and learning from, mistakes and sharing credit for success.

The U.S. was on the rocks four years ago and, in the election of 2008, the country turned to just such a charismatic, inexperienced leader full of hope and change who promised by the end of his first term, to cut the deficit in half, to lower the unemployment rate to 5.5 percent, to create a new economy based on millions of “green jobs” and to stop the Bush wars.

All these promises were greeted with acclaim by voters scared and made poorer by the recession Obama inherited. To our dismay, these promises have not been kept. Most people are not better off than they were in January 2009 and the wars drag on.

The annual budget deficit is still adding more than $1 trillion every year to the national debt, and Obama’s 10-year budget forecast predicts trillion-dollar deficits each and every one of those 10 coming years with no end to this folly short of national bankruptcy.

Obama has spent $5 trillion more in the last four years than the government took in. That’s $4 billion in new debt every day! What did we get for more debt than it took to win World War II?

Only last month did the unemployment rate miraculously decline to the 7.8 percent rate it was when he was sworn in on Jan. 20, 2009. Twenty-three million Americans remain unemployed or underemployed, wages are stagnant and household median wealth has melted 39 percent since the “recovery” started

Hundreds of billions of dollars we didn’t have were invested in new green energy companies (85 percent of them with ties to Obama campaign contributors), too many of which have gone bankrupt throwing thousands of American out of work. The Obama investors got their money out, the workers lost everything. Solar panels are now almost all coming from China where those green jobs went.

And Obama is still criticizing Bain Capital?

There’s much bragging about “saving the auto industry.” The Obama-directed bankruptcy of GM left senior citizen bond and shareholders with nothing, but gave control of the company to the United Auto Workers union. Since then, GM has invested most of its money in new plants in China.

And Obama is still criticizing Bain Capital?

Worse, Obama continues to blame his predecessor for the failure of the very policies Obama promised would cure the economy of the devastation brought on by the evil Bush.

Part of the problem, as Obama described to Barbara Walters early in his term, is, “I think there’s laziness in me.” To Andrea Mitchell’s shock, John Sununu described Obama as “lazy and detached.” So it seems.

Obama just won’t stay on the job. He has turned Air Force One into a commercial airliner, attending more fundraisers than the last six presidents put together. He has boasted of telling Michelle on Saturdays that he is going to the Oval Office to work when he’s really going there to watch “Homeland” reruns. His golf outings have set a new presidential record.

More recently, Obama complained to a pizza delivery guy in Vegas that preparing for the last debate was “a drag.” Watching his performance in that debate was a drag for liberals. Bill Maher wondered if the president had used his million-dollar campaign contribution to “buy weed.”

Then there’s the foreign policy debacle.

Seems now it was the incessant bragging about killing Osama bin Laden, and not some Internet video, that stimulated al-Qaida to prove they were still around with the 9/11 attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, which killed our ambassador.

In retaliation, Obama mega-contributor movie mogul Harvey Weinstein is releasing a new brag film about killing bin Laden two days before the election. Ambassadors beware.

Everywhere in the world, America is disrespected and in retreat. Our military is worn out from incessant war, and announced budget cuts will embolden every ambitious nation, until lately held in check by potential U.S. action, to expand their power. Think China versus Japan, Iran versus Israel.

It seems that bowing to foreign leaders, vowing to listen to their gripes and demands and encouraging the overthrow of friendly leaders has not made us any safer than when Jimmy Carter tried this approach in the ‘70s and got the Iranian hostage crisis in response.

What will be the reply to Obama’s weakness? A mushroom cloud over Tel Aviv?

Just like most Americans can remember Ronald Reagan’s ‘80s as years of prosperity brought on by lowering tax rates, restricting government interference in the economy and encouraging rather than demonizing business, so too can most Americans remember when peace through strength defeated the Soviet Union without firing a shot.

No politician likes to be reminded that they work for us and not the other way around.

Obama clearly doesn’t want you to look too closely at his many failures and come to the conclusion that we can do better.

But if this were an employee evaluation based on the kind of criteria common to jobs you and I hold, the employer would be looking to do better, much better.



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