Mr. Obama had two themes for his campaign in 2008: Hope and Change. This post will discuss his 2008 message (Hope and Change – Act 1) and look at what he did and allowed Congress to do during his watch in pursuit of “Hope” and “Change”.
The last line of Mr. Obama’s speech at the 2008 Democratic Convention was, “And I will restore our moral standing so that America is once more the last, best hope for all who are called to the cause of freedom, who long for lives of peace, and who yearn for a better future.” This was the conclusion of Act One.
Just to remind you, here are some more excerpts from his Convention Speech with parenthetical remarks of mine to point how he performed in Act 2, carrying out his promises:
“We measure progress by how many people can find a job that pays the mortgage; whether you can put away a little extra money at the end of each month so that you can someday watch your child receive her diploma. We measure progress in the 23 million new jobs that were created when Bill Clinton was president – when the average American family saw its income go up $7,500 instead of down $2,000 like it has under George Bush.” (selectively chosen statistics to blame others “The bureau, which doesn’t compile statistics on “family” income, reported that per capita income rose during Mr. Bush’s two terms, from $29,159 to $32,632 (using 2005 dollar values as a base). During Mr. Obama’s 15 months in office, per capita income has dropped nearly 1 percent to $32,343.”)
“We measure the strength of our economy not by the number of billionaires we have or the profits of the Fortune 500, but by whether someone with a good idea can take a risk and start a business, or whether the waitress who lives on tips can take a day off to look after a sick kid without losing her job – an economy that honors the dignity of work.” (actually, Mr. Obama is now measuring the strength of our economy in terms of unemployment figures using new rules to make the public believe that fewer people are unemployed than when he took office)
“The fundamentals we use to measure economic strength are whether we are living up to that fundamental promise that has made this country great – a promise that is the only reason I am standing here tonight.” (he never explained any details of that promise)
“Unlike John McCain, I will stop giving tax breaks to corporations that ship our jobs overseas, and I will start giving them to companies that create good jobs right here in America.” (The jobs “created and saved” that Mr. Obama constantly lists do not account for those lost. the number he should discuss is net job gain or loss. For example, ABC News on January 23rd of this year reported, “Since Obama took office in January 2009, when the economy was still shedding jobs en masse, there has been a net loss of 1.7 million jobs.”)
“I will eliminate capital gains taxes for the small businesses and the startups that will create the high-wage, high-tech jobs of tomorrow.” (Instead, in his recent State of the Union speech he proposed raising the Capital Gains tax from 15% to 30% because that would hit his bogeymen, ‘the rich’, hardest.)
“I will cut taxes – cut taxes – for 95 percent of all working families. Because in an economy like this, the last thing we should do is raise taxes on the middle class.” (According to the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, “In contrast, middle-class families who have either invested in securities or built small businesses typically must sell a large portion of their investment at the peak of their savings, in order to pay for a large expense like retirement, a child’s education, or the purchase of a home. At that time, these investors have no choice but to pay tax on their capital gains.” So by doubling the Capital gains tax, Mr. Obama do what to “95% of all working families.?)
“And for the sake of our economy, our security, and the future of our planet, I will set a clear goal as president: in ten years, we will finally end our dependence on oil from the Middle East.” “Now is the time to end this addiction, and to understand that drilling is a stopgap measure, not a long-term solution. Not even close.” (We are only 3 years toward Mr. Obama’s 10 year goal, but if you look at the price of gas, you might think we are more, not less, dependent on “Oil from the Middle East.” The day Mr. Obama was inaugurated, the National average for regular gas was $1.85 and 3 years later it was $3.55.)
“As president, I will tap our natural gas reserves, invest in clean coal technology, and find ways to safely harness nuclear power. I’ll help our auto companies retool, so that the fuel-efficient cars of the future are built right here in America. I’ll make it easier for the American people to afford these new cars. And I’ll invest $150 billion over the next decade in affordable, renewable sources of energy – wind power and solar power and the next generation of bio-fuels; an investment that will lead to new industries and five million new jobs that pay well and can’t ever be outsourced.” (I’m not sure I need to comment on this fantasy. “Five Million new jobs”? How does this square with the 1.7 million net jobs lost in Mr. Obama’s first three years? Invest in Solar power like Solyndra?)
“As commander in chief, I will never hesitate to defend this nation, but I will only send our troops into harm’s way with a clear mission and a sacred commitment to give them the equipment they need in battle and the care and benefits they deserve when they come home. I will end this war in Iraq responsibly, and finish the fight against al-Qaida and the Taliban in Afghanistan. I will rebuild our military to meet future conflicts. But I will also renew the tough, direct diplomacy that can prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. I will build new partnerships to defeat the threats of the 21st century: terrorism and nuclear proliferation; poverty and genocide; climate change and disease.” (Mr. Obama may well have achieved some successes here, like the capture/killing of Osama Bin Laden and the withdrawal of many of our troops from Iraq. He failed, however, to take advantage of his success with Bin Laden to extract himself and the US military from the Afghanistan conflict. He is also proposing to cut vital Military programs to balance his budget rather than working to make the military more efficient by changing purchasing and contracting systems that are huge and inefficient and whose current beneficiaries make large campaign contributions. His “tough, direct diplomacy that can prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons” seems to have only encouraged Iran. )
Either Mr. Obama was too naive to understand that he could not deliver on all these promised changes or he intentionally tried to deceive the voters who had “hope” those goals could be met. If the Liberal Press is correct, that Mr. Obama is one of the smartest men alive, it must therefore conclude that he knew he could not perform and was intentionally deceiving the public. If that is the case, Mr. Obama does not deserve our trust and should be removed from office in 2012. If Mr. Obama was just naive, the Liberal Press must conclude that Mr. Obama is not so smart after all and has failed because he is not smart enough for the job. Either way, in spite of his ‘soaring rhetoric’ and promises of Hope and Change, Mr. Obama has not earned a second term. He has not earned the Trust of the people, nor has he delivered on his promises. To the contrary, he has deceived those who believed in him.
Do you feel deceived? Do you think he deserves another 4 years? If so, why?