When I looked at the title of Time magazine's recent opinion piece "Why Obama's Not a Lock", I thought I would read something interesting. I didn't. What I read was Joe Klein's dedication to beating up on the GOP and their policies. You have to read to the very end to see "He could lose if he keeps playing on the Republican field — deficits — rather than in the arena preferred by most Americans: the sputtering economy. He needs some big, new, easy-to-understand economic initiatives."(source)
As I read this piece of tripe, I couldn't help but roll my eyes at the. Using the original "Why Obama's Not a Lock" as the template, I will give you the real reasons "Why Obama's not a Lock".
We'll look at this one line: "Romney refuses to take credit for his greatest accomplishment as governor of Massachusetts — a universal health care plan that works." Really? Works? How long will RomneyCare work if it costs too much to run?
An analysis from the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation found that state spending on health care reform grew from $1.04 billion in 2006 to about $1.75 billion in 2010. Over the next 10 years, RomneyCare will likely cost $2 billion more than predicted. sourceMassachusetts lawmakers will have to raise taxes to pay for it. The higher the taxes, the less likely companies will think about locating there. Not only that, those taxes make it more likely companies will think about relocating. It's not just company CEO's that think that way. Higher income families (not trust fund kids) make these decisions too. They might think about moving to states that don't have state income taxes, like New Yorkers are doing now. source
If he think's "works" as in, people like it. If the enrollment numbers are any indication, people don't like it. If doctor participation is another indication, then it still doesn't work. Wait times? Not working. Lower emergency room visits? Those visits actually went up, so no, not working.
ObamaCare will fail in the same way. Maybe Joe Klein doesn't know that 1372 waivers have been given, with half of them going towards union plans.(source) Maybe Joe Klein wants to have the same budget busting single payer system that Britain has (source).
This leads us to Joe Klein's next and actually only argument.
He could lose if he keeps playing on the Republican field — deficits — rather than in the arena preferred by most Americans: the sputtering economy.Apparently, Joe Klein doesn't believe that our national debt is a big deal.
Well, it is. The amount of interest that the US has paid during the month of April.
The Interest information is provided to the Congressional Budget Office for their statistical analysis.
Bureau of the Public Debt
Debt Accounting Branch
Congressional Budget Report
Monthly Interest on the Public Debt
Monthly SF 224 Reporting (20X0550)
Interest Accounting 224 20X0550 (01)
Interest Accounting 224 20X0550 (02)
Department of Defense 224 20X0550 (05)
Total Monthly SF 224 Reporting (20X0550)
December's interest payments amounted to $104,700,174,845.03 alone and $244,476,372,569.22 has been paid since October 2010.
I don't know if Joe Klein has a a credit card or not, but the amount of interest paid on credit adds up. It also makes paying down the premium, what you owe, difficult. Especially when $330 Billion was spent and only took in $289.5 Billion for April alone.(source) That leaves a $40.5 Billion gap.
Not only that, the US could default on its loans, which could, as Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said:
Joe Klein may think its OK to tell your creditors "I'm broke and I'm filing bankruptcy", but nations can't do that. People and politicians, like Joe Klein, who believe that the government should provide services, that is not outlined in the US Constitution - Article I - Section 8 - Powers of Congress, to it citizenry (student loans, healthcare, unemployment, and retirement) must think that its OK to:
- The Treasury would be forced to default on legal obligations of the United States, causing catastrophic damage to the economy, potentially much more harmful than the effects of the financial crisis of 2008 and 2009.
- A default would impose a substantial tax on all Americans. Because Treasuries represent the benchmark borrowing rate for all other sectors, default would raise all borrowing costs. Interest rates for state and local government, corporate and consumer borrowing, including home mortgage interest, would all rise sharply. Equity prices and home values would decline, reducing retirement savings and hurting the economic security of all Americans, leading to reductions in spending and investment, which would cause job losses and business failures on a significant scale.
- Default would have prolonged and far-reaching negative consequences on the safe-haven status of Treasuries and the dollar’s dominant role in the international financial system, causing further increases in interest rates and reducing the willingness of investors here and around the world to invest in the United States.
- Payments on a broad range of benefits and other U.S. obligations would be discontinued, limited, or adversely affected, including:
- U.S. military salaries and retirement benefits;
- Social Security and Medicare benefits;
- veterans’ benefits;
- federal civil service salaries and retirement benefits;
- individual and corporate tax refunds;
- unemployment benefits to states;
- defense vendor payments;
- interest and principal payments on Treasury bonds and other securities;
- student loan payments;
- Medicaid payments to states; and
- payments necessary to keep government facilities open.source
- pass laws in direct violation of the Constitution,
- spend other people's money instead of reducing taxes, and
- win over likely voters in the form of a bribes
This brings us to the economy and Obama's track record.
Americans were told that the stimulus package would keep unemployment below 8%, but if it wasn't passed, unemployment would rise to 9% before 2010. (source) Beginning in 2009, the percentage of unemployed was 7.6%. You can see the results of how well the unemployed fared with this stimulus.
- January 2009 - 7.6%
- February 2009 - 8.1%
- March 2009 - 8.5%
- April 2009 - 8.9%
- May 2009 - 9.4%
- June 2009 - 9.5%
- July 2009 - 9.4%
- August 2009 - 9.7%
- September 2009 - 9.8%
- October 2009 - 10.2%
- November 2009 - 10%
- December 2009 - 10%
- January 2010 - 9.7%
- February 2010 - 9.7%
- March 2010 - 9.7%
- April 2010 - 9.9%
- May 2010 - 9.7%
- June 2010 - 9.5%
- July 2010 - 9.5%
- August 2010 - 9.6%
- September 2010 - 9.6%
- October 2010 - 9.6%
- November 2010 - 9.8%
- December 2010 - 9.4%
- January 2011 - 9%
- February 2011 - 8.9%
- March 2011 - 8.8%
- April 2011 - 9% (source)
Right from the start, Obama hasn't made wise economic policies. His environmental "green jobs" initiative and high speed rail scheme will not add jobs. These policies will cost the taxpayers more than they are worth. Inflation is tearing at everyone's wallet, making stocking our refrigerators and pantries that much more expensive. The US dollar is so weak, that once third world nations are looking to replace it with the Yuan.
On environmental policy, Obama isn't helping matters. From the push for cap and trade, an anti oil stance, to the EPA's regulation of green houses, energy costs are on the rise and its the lower to middle class that suffers the most. (source)
To paraphrase Joe Klein, these are the reasons why he's not likely to be re-elected: we prefer Presidents who believe in freer markets, affordable energy, and that government does not have the solution to everyone's problem over those who think that the government is the "be all and the end all" solution to everything. He is definitely not a lock.