The Obama Rollercoaster
Perhaps We Could?: The Obama Rollercoaster No One Anticipated
I can already hear the political junkies clamoring for me to abdicate my Hubpage throne. “How could you possibly criticize Obama?! He's only been in office for a year and a half!” However, the threshold of “carte blanche” has surely been passed, and the unsuccessful government spending trial has been seen through. What most don't realize is that many of Obama's policies will not go into effect until 2012 (i.e. most of the provisions of his health care bill). This is uniquely (and quietly) juxtaposed against his fervent call for “change”, which is exactly what the country will have left over once all of his tax rates are implemented (Perhaps that's what he was referencing?).
The current economic downturn has seen a noticeable recovery, though not to the degree he promised. Unemployment still stands at about 9.5%, a slight improvement from the 10.3% in October 2009. While this author acknowledges that the initial unemployment rates were attained under Obama, the past year and a half has seen much political posturing from his Oval Office. Obama has mostly dodged questions concerning our rate of debt, expounding that government jobs are vital to the stability and health of our country. However, the government is only responsible for roughly 30% of national jobs, as the 70% remaining are produced by the private sector. Many have argued this is a possible purview for Obama's socialistic economic orthodoxy. Perhaps, but bear in mind his bail-out packages did go to the private sector in an attempt to re-ignite a car industry drunk with nostalgia and several banks that exploited Obama's generosity and naivete. Bank credit is still thawing, though not enough to fully stimulate the private sector. Entrepreneurs and small-business owners thrive on the ability to procure loans; it's the lifeblood of new and expanding enterprises.
One private sphere in particular, the oil industry, has been wrongly connected to the Obama administration. The BP calamity has less to do with Obama than his own party. Democrats, and especially those who are environmentally-extreme, have banned the oil industry from drilling on our coasts (while other countries such as China had access to our oil reserves). Obama had attempted to rectify this back in March, by introducing legislation that would have opened up the east coast and gulf of Mexico, where it had been estimated as much as 3.5 billion barrels of oil could be extracted. In fact, the US Department on the Interior has estimated there are 134 billion barrels of oil untapped in the United States. While Obama is now taking a hard-lined approach against the entire oil industry, he should consider allowing oil corporations to drill closer to sea level. It would allow the government to regulate activity better (as the activity can be seen easier), and be safer for the environment. As a nation, our best defense against foreign enemies is becoming more self-sustaining. While we exhaust our oil resources, working on alternative sources of energy can eventually lead us to relying on one monolithic power to satisfy our energy needs; us!
Overall, Obama's grade so far is a C-. I have decided not to explore the health care bill, since most of it has not been set in place yet. While Obama has been active in the Executive Office, his health care legislation may go beyond that and threaten the constitutional rights of this nation's citizens. I am hesitant to full subscribe to that notion, since there is time for the bill to be altered by amendments, which is one further reason to allow the health care debate to simmer for now. Obama's stimulus plans have not come through as suggested by him. Instead, it has only pushed the aggregate economy, which is desperate for a good heave. As far as his handling of the current BP crisis, it must be stated that Obama did not cause it (and Bush didn't cause Katrina either!). Obama's waffling between oil industry and the environment, white-collar and blue-collar is becoming unbecoming for him. Obama needs to be more shrewd with his approach, and stick with one universal stance on a topic. His political chameleon must be tamed, or else he will risk alienating the entire country.
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