By: Wayne Brown
In the past three years, the United States of America has become a stagnant pond and as time passes, the algae steadily grows over the surface slowly shutting out precious sunlight from anything that dwells beneath that surface. The life is slowly being choked out of America just as the pond scum slowly chokes the life from a simple farm pond. We, the citizens, are standing idly by watching the process play out but not really understanding it to the point that we are willing to take action. Time is precious and actions are necessary if we are to turn this situation around and once again find our centerline as a democratic republic. 2012 may be our last opportunity.
The actions of Obama and his democrat-dominated Congress of 2008, set into motion a fog which blinds those looking for a way out. The over-the-top stimulus package which was consequently and selectively wasted away managed to almost completely evade any trickle-effect in the economy. To Obama and his crowd, this should not be a surprise but an affirmation that “trickle-down” economics does not work as the democrats have contended for years. Instead, they argue, it was just not enough to turn the tide. It was more money than most of the countries of this world will ever see but it was not enough to stem the tide. Bad analysis leads to bad conclusions and this is a classic example of that fact.
The enormous amount of stimulus money was the first warning shot that business people throughout America heard loud and clear. The downstream burden of that debt load on the American taxpayer was very clear to those who work the business world each day. Rather than acting as a stimulus, the package actually had the opposite effect…it struck fear in the hearts of taxpayers and consumers and caused people to wonder what their future might hold in terms of financial stability. The tide of recession was apparent as consumers pulled back in fear allowing the economy to become even more depressed at the retail levels.
The rush to pass Obama-Care by democrats superseded everything except stimulus spending and it left the American businessman standing in a fog so thick that all bets were off in terms of business growth and investment. As a result, large amounts of capital were sidelined in anticipation of the confusion that Obama’s policies and actions were bringing to the marketplace. Companies withdrew and the job market shrunk even more. Hiring all but came to a standstill with only seasonal and government-created jobs populating the numbers on a monthly basis. Basically, the system fell into limbo with the understanding that it would remain such as long as Obama was in the White House.
Of course President Obama did not see it that way and continued to work to make the government the center of the universe and all things to all people. Spending and growth by and of the federal government was seen by this president as the “rescue factor” for the American people. Obama fanned this flame with every fiber of his being while at the same time continuing to suppress any recovery of the private sector…instead he looked for ways to choke it down even more.
For three long years we, as a country, have been on this hard economic road watching our country slowly shrink into a debt load we can never repay; watching our government operate with an open checkbook and no semblance of a functional budget; watching the government take greater control in every aspect of our daily lives. During all of this, Obama has looked upon the result and measured progress…a progress of growing government intervention into both the private sector and the private lives of all Americans. As this has played out, the private sector has continued to remain stagnant and in a temporary holding pattern stifled by an uncertainty on the future of taxation and the impact of healthcare in the employment sector for future jobs. Given those concerns, Obama still refuses to make the moves necessary to unleash the private sector from its chained existence and pull this economy out from the death spiral it is certainly in.
The president keeps repeating the mantra that he has a plan that will allow America to get better; to return to the days of yore when America was strong. He claims that his plan will build an American economy that will last…permanence like we have never seen. He hints at tax cuts in exchange for investment but the tradeoff on the part of American business is not good enough and much too vague in terms of details. The shadow of Obama-Care looms heavy over anything else the president offers in the way of ideas yet he stubbornly refuses to go back or even question for his legacy is so invested in his creation of government-run nationalized medicine and redistribution of wealth.
The president does not share concern for our military and our national defense as he places it first in line to be hacked-up by the mandatory spending cuts generated by the failure of Obama’s commission to identify specific areas to be trimmed from future spending. The single element which gives us a voice in the world will be significantly reduced in size and join the ranks of other programs like NASA as it is neutered down to size. Of course the counter argument is that the military will now be a smaller, more nimble force equipped with the latest in technology for any future conflicts. History has shown us that technology alone does not win wars or decide conflicts. Wars are won by boots on the ground and sustaining that capability to put boots on the ground on more than one front of conflict.
With the downsizing of the military, the president and Congress are basically tossing away future flexibility to deal with more than one problem at a time. Those who would oppose us in the world will be watching quite closely for weakness and opportunity. The secret to having boots on the ground is not to wait until you need them before you train them. America, the last bastion of a strong military, is headed downhill and Obama is driving the bus. The shame of it all is that these cuts will not result in a reduction of debt for our elected leaders will find other ways to spend the money before it can be recovered into the coffers and applied to the debt load.
Talking-heads throughout the media speculate on the economic future of the country and wonder what it is going to take to bring it back to an acceptable level.. Some believe, like Obama, that the feat can only be accomplished by growing the federal government and the continued level of high-end spending without budgetary restrictions. Sadly, that fix has not gained any real traction in the past three years primarily because it does nothing to address the concerns of the private sector as it relates to the economy. It also ignores the inevitable crash of the dollar on the world market as the U.S. debt to asset ratio moves into negative territory. For now, the financial misery taking place in Europe is all that is slowing the downfall of the dollar on the world market.
American business began sidelining money when the housing bubble collapsed in late 2008. That effort continued as Obama took office and immediately launched into Stimulus and Obama-Care. Billions if not trillions of dollars currently lay idle awaiting conditions conducive to the private sector business investors, the true “sustainers” of the American economy. This is not collusion nor is it a conspiracy on the part of American business. It is more logical that any of that. It is a learned business behavior which recognizes the factors which affect five year plans, employment levels, profits, and the overall ability to exist. You see, unlike the government guarantees handed-out during the sub-prime mortgage disaster created by the federal government, there are no safety nets or guarantees to save an American business man from his own stupidity.
There are rules which have been proven time and again to be accurate and correct when it comes to investment and timing. For now, the future is so foggy under this administration with regard to taxation and costs of employment that most business heads will not take the risk with their capital. In effect, the private sector in America is saying that it intends to change nothing with regard to its approach to the marketplace and the economy until this administration leaves office. Should Obama gain another four year term, the future of the economy is definitely locked on a downhill run to a stagnant death. There will be no significant economic improvement until the Obama Administration is out of the White House.
Our focus on a staggering economic mess, high unemployment, and an ever-growing federal government detract our focus as citizens from the attacks by this administration on the framework of our government, the Constitution and its associated documents. Never in our history has our form and process of government been so under attack by a presidential officeholder. This administration openly takes actions in defiance of the Constitution and sadly too few Americans seem to notice or care even though these efforts can only result in a loss of liberty and freedom on their part down the road. Basically the whole exercise is a measure of how much the American citizen will tolerate before raising significant objection. Unfortunately, the apathy present in our population today sends a loud and clear message back to Obama that says Americans are not really paying attention; do not place significant value on the Constitution or constitutional governance; and really are more concerned with what the government can provide to and for them…a rather selfish and self-centered society teetering on the edge of disaster.
Never in the history of this country has our values and our form of government been under such attack. Never in our history has a sound understanding and appreciation of our Constitution been more sorely needed. America, as the melting pot of the world population, has finally lost sight of that foundation and those values that established this country as the land of freedom and opportunity. Now, we seem to have an entitlement population more focused on government-assistance and intervention than any other aspect in their daily lives. Without the will of the people to be free, America cannot sustain itself as a democratic republic. We have reached a period in which more than 70% of the federal budget sustains entitlement programs and those receiving government benefits are doing so at a level per capita that exceeds the net average per capita income of working Americans. No amount of taxation will offset this level of spending in our country. We have finally created our own doom…the lack of fiscal responsibility and the current administration has taken it heights never even imagined.
As stated earlier in this perspective, America is in an economic and governmental fog at the present which will continue for the duration of Obama’s time in office. Over that time, the fog will only get thicker and the ability of American business to navigate through it will become impossible. We do not have the answers and the clear direction which we need to take as a country to return to our roots but one fact is evident…that process will not take place under the direction of the Obama Administration. In fact, the opposite will take place…we will wander further and further from our centerline.
The United States is devoid of leadership at the present in all respects. Our president has shown no propensity to lead, to unite, or even compromise to the extent of gaining consensus. His actions differ from his words in almost every case. We have a legislative branch made up of career politicians more concerned about their own wealth and power than any other aspect of the American society. We have Supreme Court justices willing to advise countries such as Egypt to look some place other than America for a constitutional model for their new government and more than willing to legislate laws from the bench as opposed to applying the Constitution. We have a dysfunctional and heavily corrupt group of politicians taking six-figure salaries and absurd lifetime benefits for accomplishing nothing more than letting the fox continue to raid the hen-house, and we have a public too apathetic to see what a pathetic situation we have in Washington. There is much that is beyond our scope of control that is wrong in Washington but one thing is still within our reach…who we send there to represent and work for us, the citizens of the United States. We can cast our vote and we can send them home to think.
2012 is an opportunity for those in America who hold the Constitution in high esteem to make every effort to return to that orientation in our government and its processes. It is an opportunity to change the direction of the federal government which is on trend to have grown by 50% in size by the time that Obama finishes a second term in office. It is a time when we, as voters, weigh in on the growth of our national debt which is on track to more than double by the end of a second Obama office term; It is a time when we, as voters, send a message loud and clear that we support the Constitution, the system of checks and balances in the various branches of our government, and a healthy private business sector which is not constrained by an out-of-control government attempting to be the center of the American universe. It is a time when we speak loud and clear that we, as citizens, want to gain control of government spending and manage down our debt load as a country. Those steps start with a clear decision about who we want and do not need in the White House. We may not be certain yet as to whom America wants in the office but the fact is quite clear that as a nation we do not need and cannot sustain four more years of the direction which Obama is leading this country.
©Copyright WBrown2012. All Rights Reserved
7 February 2012