President Obama stumped for Robin Carnahan (D Cand-MO) in my home town of Kansas City and took some cheap shots at Republicans on Thursday. The President suggested that Republicans were incapable of running the American economy and suggested once again that the previous administration is to blame for the record deficits.
Obama, in colorful rhetoric, said he inherited a $1.3 trillion deficit when he took office and is baffled that Republicans bemoan his administration’s spending.
“It is a little odd getting lectures on sobriety from folks that spent like drunken sailors for the last decade,” said Obama.
Some of Obama’s harshest remarks for Republicans came as he likened them to irresponsible teenagers. “These folks drove the economy into a ditch,” Obama began. “And they want the keys back and you gotta say the same thing to them you say to a teenager, ‘you can’t have the keys back because you don’t know how to drive’.”
Well, Mr. Obama, the Republicans may not know how to drive, but you and the Democrats in Congress don’t know how to walk. If we’re comparing spending to drinking, then the Democrats have alcohol poisoning.
Clearly, the Republicans spent a lot of time spending money the government did not have. Part of this was the War on TerrorIslamic Extremism and the Iraq War, but they also failed to reform Social Security and massively expanded the Department of Education and Medicare programs. President Bush did not veto a spending bill until the Democrats took over Congress in 2007.
That Democrat-controlled Congress, by the way, is who gave us the $1.3 trillion deficit that the President keeps saying he “inherited”. That budget that was passed while President Obama was serving in the Senate. That Democrat-controlled Congress was seated when the economy began to falter. That Democrat-controlled Congress was seated when the TARP bailout was made into law. The President’s disingenuous criticism of large deficits inherited after he took office rings so hollow one has to wonder how he could even make the accusation with a straight face?
Further, there is absolutely no evidence that anything the Democrats in Congress and the President have done since he took office almost 18 months ago has done anything to help our economy rebound. The Administration’s “Stimulus” program has largely been used to shore-up various states’ badly-managed balance sheets and bail-out politically-connected businesses like General Motors. The C.A.R.S. program merely shifted sales to an earlier period, helping the 3rd quarter of 2009 but eating into 4th quarter sales. When the housing credit ended, so did the up-tick in housing sales.
Time after time after time, government incentives to do things that are politically popular (instead of economically sound) have merely shifted demand instead of jump-starting the economy.
Add to this the looming tax increases resulting from the expiration of the “Bush Tax Cuts” the Democrats hate so much. When small businessmen and corporate managers see that their tax rates are about to rise dramatically, what incentive do they have to increase capital investment (and hence, employment) in the United States? That’s an easy financial decision, even for a first-year Women’s Studies major taking Introduction to Business as an elective. The United States already has one of the most punishing tax codes in the world, so it would be financially stupid in most cases to invest here when tax rates are going up in the U.S. but not going up in much of the rest of the world.
In order to pay for the Democrat’s spending programs, however, the Federal Government must raise taxes. The Democrats are locked on this course: They passed their Health Care Takeover, and now they have to figure out a way to pay for it. Deficit spending is clearly politically unpopular, so taxes must rise. Most of those taxes will be on the wealthiest Americans (who already pay the lions-share of taxes, but who’s counting?), but other Americans will soon feel the pinch. As taxes rise, personal and corporate spending will decrease, further hampering the already dubious recovery.
The President wants Americans to believe that he and the Democrats will be better able to manage the economy than the Republicans. So far, they’ve shown they don’t know the first thing about business or economics. They’ve done such a poor job that the White House has had to “fight the criticism” that the Democrats are anti-business.
The Republicans spent a lot of money that the government simply couldn’t afford to spend. That’s not an indictment of their economic intelligence, as the President would have us believe, but at their budgetary management capabilities. However, if the Republicans “spent like drunken sailors,” then the Democrats are spending like a teenaged girl with Daddy’s credit card.
We heard the Democrats promise to control spending in 2006. They spent more. We heard the President and the Democrats promise it again in 2008, and deficits have reached record proportioins. Now in 2010 the President and the Democrats are once again promising to control spending.
We’ve heard it from you and your Democrat cronies before, Mr. President. Your license is suspended. It’s time to let someone else take the wheel.