I warned you that Obama, once elected, would govern as a hard, extreme leftist and many of you scoffed. I warned that his radicalism would get heavily implemented because of the perfect storm of his charisma, a liberal Congress, and the media that had become a spin doctor for his policies.
But even I wouldn't have expected that Obama would have so quickly done so much that, long-term, will hurt our country:
- A $787 billion first-installment spending spree using your money, designed to make people (already strapped) to buy stuff on credit. He warns that more big rounds of government spending sprees using your money are coming.
Obama seems unaware of the negative consequences of his spending. For example, in extending unemployment checks to more than a year(!), every one of my career counseling clients who are unemployed say things like, 'Good, now I won't have to look for a job until a year from now."--the opposite of what's needed: putting more people to work. Thus, you and I are paying to encourage people to not look for work, just as welfare checks did.
- A second phenomenally expensive set of bank bailouts, after the first (initiated by George Bush) has been a failure: the TARP assets have already lost half their value and banks have refused to say where the other TARP money has gone. Consensus is that another TRILLION-PLUS of your money will be spent to buy more bad assets. Why? So people and businesses can buy more on credit?! With few exceptions, we should not be buying more than we can afford to buy for cash. Corporations are figuring out how they can be redesignated as banks so they can join the bailout conga line and cash in on the bailout bonanza. And the Obama administration is even talking about nationalizing the banks. Karl Marx is smiling in his grave. Adam Smith and Ayn Rand are grimacing.
- Calls for large increases in the amount of regulation. Do we never learn? From Prohibition to ERISA, HIPAA to Sarbanes-Oxley, attempts at heavy regulation have proven bizarrely expensive, metastasizing government programs have proven to be failures, certainly not cost-effective uses of your and my tax dollars. The SEC had 530 Bernie Madoffs, all ignored. The FDA knew about the Peanut Corp of America's salmonella-infested factory and never bothered to force the company to improve or get shut down.
It is impossible to police a nation's behavior. The wisest approach is to make greater efforts, cradle to grave, public and private, to educate people of the primacy of ethics: in parenting education, preschool through graduate school, and in public service messages (See this blog post for more on how to create an ethical America.) Prevention is our best chance; policing ethics can never work well enough to justify the cost.
- Now Obama will spend many billions more of your money to bail out people who bought a more house than they could comfortably afford. What will that do? People who CAN afford to pay their mortgages will say they can't so they can cash in on the government handout--with you and I paying for it. Most ironic, that means that renters (who of course pay taxes) will be subsidizing overspending homeowners, including those who fabricate their need for a bailout.
- The Bush administration gave billions of your money to the automakers to straighten themselves out. The Obama administration said, "Send us your improvement plans and if we like them, we'll give you many more billions. What have the car companies proposed? Trim a few models and lay off workers who had no cars to build anyway. That doesn't change the fact that American cars are the same inferior vehicles they long have been--Why do you think so many U.S. lawmakers drive Toyotas and Hondas, not Chevys and Fords. And even the vaunted savior, the electric Chevy Volt, will cost $40,000 versus a Toyota Prius' $22,000. Toyotas are known for reliability while American cars are known for breaking down (by design--A mechanic told me that U.S. car parts are made to last shorter than are Toyota parts.) Would YOU buy an American car? Do you think Obama's giving billions more of your money to implement the above plan will make the public buy a Chevy, Ford, or Chrysler over a Toyota or Honda? Would YOU, especially with U.S. carmakers on the brink of bankruptcy? Even if the government bailout did enable U.S. auto corporations to survive, is it worth taking your tax dollars to do so?
Forty-seven percent of voters voted against Obama but he has broken his promise: He is not even close to governing using principles from both left and right of center. Consistent with his background that the media refused to focus on, Obama is, as I predicted, governing as a hard Leftist, so much more so than anyone could have conceived of as possible in a U.S. president. I do believe that Obama will turn America into a third-world nation, perhaps even before our children grow up.