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Why the Radical Right is Responsible for the Duration of the Current Recession

Updated on September 2, 2010

Many people have been blaming President Obama both for the current recession and for not be able to turn it around. Blaming him for the recession itself is either deliberately disingenuous or genuinely stupid, so I’ll leave that aside. It’s true that the downturn is lasting for rather a long time into Mr. Obama’s presidency, and it sure seems like he ought to have been able to do something about it by now, doesn’t it? Except he’s not only struggling against an economic downturn. He’s also struggling against the Radical Right, who are doing their best to ensure that the recession lasts. How are they doing this? Let me explain.

Don't You Believe It!

Disagreement with the Radical Right does not mean hatred for America, no matter how hard they try to make it seem so. Don't let them bully you.
Disagreement with the Radical Right does not mean hatred for America, no matter how hard they try to make it seem so. Don't let them bully you.

Set the Wayback Machine to 1938

Wait, 1938? Yes. Indulge me in a bit of history.

Many people believe that World War Two pulled the US out of its depression. It did, but not for the reason most folks think.

When the US finally got into WWII in '41, suddenly a nation which had its people standing in bread lines was able to raise an incredibly powerful army and navy, train, equip, and feed its servicemen, send them to fight across the globe, and triumph against aggressive expansionist regimes that had a huge head start. The resources to do this did not just magically appear. They were already there in 1938, but were not being used. Why? Because people weren't confident that their efforts to get those resources and refine/make products out of them would pay off.

There was a depression, remember? Most people had very little money. Most of the folks who had any extra weren’t spending it; they were saving it for fear that they’d lose their jobs. Where were they saving it? Not in a bank; a lot of folks’ savings accounts vanished when the stock market crashed about a decade ago. Nobody trusted banks. So folks kept their spare money at home: in a jar, or in the mattress, or wherever. They weren’t banking their money, that is, they weren’t making their money available to folks who needed loans. They weren’t investing their money, that is, providing it as capital to businessmen who might have wanted to expand their businesses. The people weren’t confident that their invested or banked money wouldn’t simply vanish.

Then Pearl Harbor happened and the US got into WWII.

The war effort made it so that anyone who made machinery, clothing, food, you name it, would have a customer (the US government) who needed to buy their stuff. That gave people the confidence to risk their money to expand their own businesses or help someone else expand theirs. The government needed to buy uniforms, machinery, weapons, vehicles, and food for our soldiers. Those things are made out of raw materials: cotton, steel, rubber, copper, petroleum, wheat, milk, you name it. So manufacturers of finished goods had a customer (the government) they could count on. Producers of raw materials had customers (manufacturers) who needed their products. All of the above needed workers to either get the resources or turn them into finished products. These needs would continue to exist for as long as the war dragged on. That is, a businessman could be confident that as long as the US was fighting Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan, someone will buy his products. And that, combined with the fact that the US escaped any major war destruction at home, is why WWII drove an economic recovery for the US.

Confidence is what makes recovery possible.

Where the Money Came From

This is how the Government paid for the war materiel: War Bonds, aka, Deficit Spending
This is how the Government paid for the war materiel: War Bonds, aka, Deficit Spending

But Why Wasn’t There Another Crash After the War?

Well, the US was undamaged, as I mentioned, but Europe and Japan were in shambles. Those markets still needed stuff: stuff to rebuild with, and stuff to eat, wear, and enjoy while they were rebuilding. The US still had its manufacturing base. All it had to do was re-tool for consumer goods instead of war materiel, and the US became the suppliers to a newly stable world.

There was also a huge postwar public works program that employed thousands of Americans all across the continent. It was big government at its finest, and it, too, was paid for in large part with money from government bonds. I bet you're very familiar with it. It's called the interstate highway system.

Plus, the US did not disarm after WWII as it did after WWI. It still had the Red Menace of Communism to stave off. So not only is most of the world buying US-made consumer goods, the government is still buying weapons of war (though not as quickly). Couple those two factors together, and investors can be very confident that their investments will pay off: there are customers both at home and abroad who will buy their products.

There was also a deliberate effort to get people to consume more than they needed after the war, and boy did it work!

Buy, Baby, Buy!

So Where Did Our Confidence Go?

We sure had a lot of it back in the 90s, remember? It seemed like there was no place to go but up. The government even had a budget surplus for the first time in a really long time! It was a lot like the 1920s, in fact.

The economy started to stall toward the end of the 1990s, when investors started to realize that many of the stocks that had climbed so quickly were over-valued. The market was starting to correct itself when the 9/11 attacks happened. Which was a lot like another attack, in 1941.

Well, Where’s My Wartime Economic Expansion, Darnit!?

Why didn’t the war that the 9/11 attacks provoked usher in a new age of economic expansion? Wow, what a complicated question. One reason might be that it will, but it hasn’t happened yet. The war isn’t over after all, and the US didn’t really start enjoying its new era of peace and prosperity until the world stabilized after V-J Day. So the duration of the war (and concurrent global instability) is one factor. Another reason might be that when the US was attacked, the US didn’t go to war. Or perhaps I should say, “The US didn’t go to war.”

The US Marines went to war. The US went to the mall.

This is What We do When Faced with a Real Threat

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Do With Less? Rationing!? Big Government won WWII....But we might get dirty...We no longer like to think about this kind of image.More conservation means lower fuel prices for everyone, but the Right pooh-poohs conservationism.Carpools = less demand + more supply = lower prices. Even right-wing economists can't disagree with that.The Right sent a confusing message when in power: we're going to war, but you can go about your lives as usual.
Do With Less? Rationing!? Big Government won WWII.
Do With Less? Rationing!? Big Government won WWII.
...But we might get dirty...
...But we might get dirty...
We no longer like to think about this kind of image.
We no longer like to think about this kind of image.
More conservation means lower fuel prices for everyone, but the Right pooh-poohs conservationism.
More conservation means lower fuel prices for everyone, but the Right pooh-poohs conservationism.
Carpools = less demand + more supply = lower prices. Even right-wing economists can't disagree with that.
Carpools = less demand + more supply = lower prices. Even right-wing economists can't disagree with that.
The Right sent a confusing message when in power: we're going to war, but you can go about your lives as usual.
The Right sent a confusing message when in power: we're going to war, but you can go about your lives as usual.

Rather than call on Americans to do something crazy like making sacrifices to help the war effort, our President encouraged us to go shopping: to continue with our lives as if nothing had changed. And sure, that seems logical. To change my behavior because of the terrorists would be to hand the terrorists a victory, right? Except the activities of the terrorists provoked a war, and to win a war, the country needs to focus its resources on winning that war. During WWII, the government rationed gasoline and other essential resources. The government encouraged everyone to grow Victory Gardens and not to travel unnecessarily. The government encouraged meatless days, and implemented recycling programs to conserve resources. But during the war in Afghanistan, the government did none of the above, and our President actually called on us to do our duty by continuing to use up resources like there’s no tomorrow.

I Thought Dissent Was Patriotic?

When the Center and the Left object to the Radical Right's scare tactics, the Radical Right often throws a slogan from the Bush years back at them. "We thought that dissent was patriotic," they say, trying to make it look as if the Center and the Left were trying to suppress honest political debate.

Of course dissent is patriotic. Absolutely it is. If our government is doing something wrong, it is our duty as citizens to speak out and try to correct the government's course. The government is meant to work for us, right? But I want to draw a distinction between dissent and sedition.

Of course, the Radical Right will say, "I see: it's dissent when you disagree with us, and sedition when we disagree with you. Typical." Nothing could be farther from the truth.

Dissent looks like this: "What the President is proposing will be bad for America, and that's why you should vote against him in the next election."

Sedition looks like this: "The President hates America and is deliberately trying to destroy it, and that's why you should prepare for armed resistance against the government."

See the difference? One attacks the president's policies and advocates replacing the President by Constitutional means: by voting him out of office. The other maligns the President's character, incites fear, and advocates a more violent means of regime change.

Next time you see a sign, bumper sticker, or t-shirt that says, "It's time to water the tree," ask the person behind that slogan which tree they mean to water, and what they mean to water it with.

You’d think that continued economic activity would drive a recovery, right? Except long about 2006/07, we realized that many of the (completely unregulated) investments that had created our current wealth were actually worthless after all. This caused a downturn big enough to take with it not only many people’s investments but also some pretty huge corporations. What did the government do in response? Well, after the 1929 crash, the government created the Securities and Exchange Commission and the FDIC to make sure such a crash wouldn’t happen again. After the housing bubble burst, the government basically rewarded the folks who created the bubble in the first place, and did absolutely nothing to ensure another similar crisis would not happen in the future.

Now practically nobody has any cash, practically nobody can get a loan, and absolutely nobody has the confidence that if they invest their money, they will see a payoff.

So, How is This the Right’s Fault, Again?

Yes, I’m coming to that. I’ve drawn a lot of parallels between the War on Terror and WWII for a reason. During WWII, we all agreed that the combined threat of Imperial Japan and Nazi Germany was an existential threat to the US; that is, if Germany and Japan won the war, that would be the end of the US as we knew it. Our leaders understood that, and in spite of many rancorous political disagreements (and yes, there were many rancorous political disagreements even during WWII) were able to make hard choices to get the war won as quickly as possible.

But as for this current conflict, nobody in power really believes that Al Qaida poses an existential threat to the US. Oh, they’re a threat to our peace of mind and to our individual lives, no question. But they’re not going to be able to invade the US and take over. Nobody in their right mind thinks that. Understanding that Al Qaida isn’t an existential threat, our leaders capitalized on the people’s fear of Al Qaida to further their own agenda rather than encourage the people to be brave, make sacrifices, and triumph over the threat. And then the term limits ran out and a new President took office.

Obama won the presidency by a large margin both in the Electoral College and in the popular vote. He inherited a lot of problems, but what president doesn’t? From the beginning, President Obama started work to solve some of them, and to restore the confidence of the American people (confidence, remember, is key to recovery).

But there are forces working against him.

Wait…Is This Going to be Some Kind of Conspiracy Theory Rant?

No, not at all. The forces arrayed against President Obama’s efforts to restore America’s confidence aren’t operating in secret. They’re right out in the open. They’re the Birthers, who are trying to get people to think the President was born in a foreign country (Hawaii is US state, folks) and be afraid of some undefined plot to destroy America. They’re the Death Panelers, who are trying to frighten Americans with lies about government operatives coming around to euthanize their grandparents. They’re the bigots who are trying to dupe us into believing that the President is a Muslim (as if it mattered one way or the other), and scare us into thinking he wants to implement Sharia law in the US. They're the fools who argue that President Obama wants the terrorists to win. They’re the members of Congress who vow to undo every one of President Obama’s economic initiatives—even those that have already become law by act of congress. Everyone who has parroted the rhetoric that President Obama wants to destroy America is complicit in this campaign to undermine the confidence of the American people.

How can an entrepreneur be confident that he can take a government contract to rebuild a road, repair a bridge, or create new infrastructure if he fears that the next Congress will take away the funds that were going to pay him? How can in investor be confident enough to buy stock in that entrepreneur’s company if he fears that the company will go under when the government reneges on its contract? How can a consumer (or a pension manager) feel confident investing in a mutual fund if there’s nothing to stop the big banks from making their portfolios vanish into thin air (again)? And how can anyone feel confident that anything is safe if they believe the right-wing pundits’ fearmongering rhetoric that Obama wants to take all their stuff? More to the point, how can the GOP hope to win the next election unless they make people frightened of what will (but actually won't) happen if they lose?

It’s Not About Reality; It’s About Our Perception of Reality

The Right is deliberately trying to undermine the American people’s confidence in the future. Without confidence, recovery is impossible. The Right understands this, and so they have been seizing on everything that could be made to seem a little bit scary, twisting it to seem truly terrifying, inflating its importance, and trying to make it the President’s fault. Further, the Right is also distancing itself from its own responsibility in creating the downturn in the first place, hoping that we’ll all forget how we got to where we are, and decide that we ought to go back to more of the same. They’re trying to scare us into trusting them, just as they tried (with success, I might add) to scare us into letting them do pretty much anything they wanted to under the last President. But the most important thing to take away from this article is this: the Right wants the downturn to last, at least until November. The Right wants for you to stay unemployed, and they want to scare you into blaming the Left. It’s already working. We’re collectively scared to invest or to loan out what money we have, which is keeping the economy from seeing any real recovery. Until we can regain our confidence in ourselves (and ignore the people who are trying to frighten us), we will not see a real recovery. And that suits the Right-wing fearmongers just fine.

But the Right-wing fearmongers have forgotten something: "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." Don’t be afraid. 


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    • DTR0005 profile image

      Doug Robinson 7 years ago from Midwest

      You broke some sweat on defending this one, but I applaud you - your research and analytics are commendable. I am not certain that the Center Right and the Left Left are that far apart on their goals - they both, I have to believe, want the best for our country. And the Far Left has their share of wingnut, however, the Far Right, the TeaPartiers, I fear, have lost their minds. I have never seen a more poorly-educated, bigoted, and narrow minded group of people command so much power in my lifetime. I am more than a little concerned.

    • prettydarkhorse profile image

      prettydarkhorse 7 years ago from US

      Thanks for this education. Nice explanation. And it answered all my thoughts. This hub is beautiful, smiles, Maita

    • Jeff Berndt profile image

      Jeff Berndt 7 years ago from Southeast Michigan

      "If you had invested in a fund that tracks the Dow at the beginning of March '09, just 6 weeks after Obama took office, your investment would have gained nearly 50% by now. Not bad for a little over a year and a half."

      Not bad, indeed. This is an important statistic, and if more people knew it, more people would realize that the economy is in fact recovering, in spite of the right's fearmongering and naysaying.

      Though it kinda puts a pin in my theory that the fearmongering and naysaying are successfully preventing recovery...

      Oh, who cares? I'm happy to be wrong about that.

    • I am DB Cooper profile image

      I am DB Cooper 7 years ago from Whereabouts unknown at this time

      Wow, you really summed up the political and economic climate quite well with this. The policies of the left absolutely are working. Even TARP funds, which most voters think was a big handout to the banks, has been nearly repaid in its entirety and the government expect to make a $16 billion profit off the banks from it. If you had invested in a fund that tracks the Dow at the beginning of March '09, just 6 weeks after Obama took office, your investment would have gained nearly 50% by now. Not bad for a little over a year and a half. Jobs always lag behind the economy, because companies are not going to go out and hire a bunch of new employees just because the stock market gained 100 points. They need to see sustained stability and growth before they expand the workforce. They are seeing that now. In a year I think we'll see much better unemployment numbers.

      The timing of this is unfair, because Republicans are poised to take back Congress next week. They'll get credit from voters for the turnaround even though it's happening RIGHT NOW as a result of policies from those on the left and moderates. By allowing the far right to take prominent seats in Congress, we're setting ourselves up for more poor policies that created the financial meltdown in the first place.

    • OpinionDuck profile image

      OpinionDuck 7 years ago

      bye bye

    • Jeff Berndt profile image

      Jeff Berndt 7 years ago from Southeast Michigan



    • OpinionDuck profile image

      OpinionDuck 7 years ago


      Again you make my point.

    • Jeff Berndt profile image

      Jeff Berndt 7 years ago from Southeast Michigan

      I'm not surprised.

    • OpinionDuck profile image

      OpinionDuck 7 years ago


      My reply is that you haven't read my hubs, and your comment was ambiguous and vague without a point of reference.

      Have a nice day.

    • tom hellert profile image

      tom hellert 7 years ago from home


      Fearmongering who were the ones that had to pass it ealthcare without reading it? or else motherwise old people and and grandmothers will die- NO wait- thats why they voted for it so they would know what was in it...

      As for the Birth cert- I have seen several videos on the " unusual aspects of his "certificate of live birth" there were several changes made to those copies on his web site and the "nonpartisan sites you listed" things like the NEW names of the HawaiianDept of Health replacing honalulu which was the case at the time of his birth-There was no specific reference to the state- it was only honalulu o during the time... a bc number was placed in the upper right instead of State of hawaii would have been during the time of his birth, again on the typical BC of the time the origin of birth for the parents is not put on the BC where his mother AND Father are reputed to be American born- I have never heard this before- THE NEW FAKE BC even says REVISION DATE IN THE LOWER LEFT HAND CORNER- THAT MEANS IT HAS BEEN DOCTORED

      HRS 380-13b- the b means this is the second revision...SO you believe a second revision that is entirely different with added information compared to the BC of the time.... Did you know a subset of hawaiian law indicates this is legal if they feel the safety of the person could be in jeopardy- as per HS 338-17-7(5)it is legal to change it if they believe that the the persons life is in danger- "WHY?" Why would it be in danger?

      Why if the informatiion on the REAL cert supports his birth in the US HOW WOULD THE EXPOSURE OF THIS CERT- CHANGE his security IF he indeed was born in the USA.

      The addition of rge country of origin labels in the lower right corner- not typical for the time he was born.

      Dr Fukimo, of the Hawaian govt-said she has NEVER VIEWED THE bc yet the lamestream media said she did- More lies to protect this "president". Fukimo then changed her tune and said to reflect that she did NOT see the BC but saw there was an entry about it...THATS A BIG CHANGE IN STORY...nOW SHE WON'T ADMIT IF THE NEW COPY IS A REPLACEMENT OR not- sO UNLESS YOU WENT IN & DUG THROUGH THE HAWAIIAN HALL OF JUSTICE RECORDS- yOU SAW A FAKE- since noone has seen the original in what 40+yrs sORRY TO BURST UYOUR BUBBLE HERE JB, I AM TRULY SORRY you support a myth a facade of truth.. I understand your unhappiness Did you know the security paper is not properly represented on the copy of the cert? it seems the security backing paper is missing around certain areas of text and the border implies a fake also supported by inconsistancies in the borders

      heres a good video showing you the issues and how it was done- i reviewed your video please check out mine....

      I looked at the two "unbiased sites and saw nothing but articles indicating the EXACT opposite I read some of their pages and articles and saw they were left of center indeed...

      Sorry just my opinions and facts And sorry for the length...

      Your PAL


    • Jeff Berndt profile image

      Jeff Berndt 7 years ago from Southeast Michigan

      "to blame the right just shows signs of hate for the right,"

      Nope, I don't hate the right. What I hate is the fearmongering, obstructionism, and false witness from the radical arm of the right.

      As for the birth certificate, the first link I provided was from the nonpartisan, the second from the nonpartisan Here's the last one I'll provide, from

      To provide even further evidence (which you will probably also ignore) would be an exercise in futility.

      Overy, have you got evidence to back up your claim that Obama went to college on a so-called "foreign student" scholarship? And that "we" paid for it? It seems unlikely that a taxpayer-funded scholarship program for non-citizens even exists, let alone that a US citizen was able somehow to get such a scholarship.

    • eovery profile image

      eovery 7 years ago from MIddle of the Boondocks of Iowa

      Well since Obama was born in Hawaii, It appears that must have lied on his application when he went to college on a foreign student scholarship, where we paid for his education. This just proves that one way or the other he is a liar, a thief and cannot be trusted.

      Keep on hubbing!

    • tom hellert profile image

      tom hellert 7 years ago from home


      yes E he does put an eloquent spin on his lefty view-

      He is right we can go over policy back and forth till next election-point V counterpoint-But if it is the birth certificate he wants me to believe in he should furnish me a link to the effect I can trust- not the Huff Puff post or another far leftaccount-

      i would gladly look at it...

      Maybe there is proof out there from a REAL source...

      Well Jeff if you could oblidge i would not shun the gesture.


    • eovery profile image

      eovery 7 years ago from MIddle of the Boondocks of Iowa

      Jeff, Nice written piece. I can tell you are a well educated person.

      Jeff, after the Korean conflict and Vietnam war, there was down turns in the economy. To say you expect a big upturn after Iraq and Afghanistan, to me is a big error. And then to blame the right just shows signs of hate for the right, and nothing towards the facts. You have greatly errored, but you do write well.

      Keep on hubbing!

    • Jeff Berndt profile image

      Jeff Berndt 7 years ago from Southeast Michigan

      Tom, the fact that you refuse to accept the fact that Barack Obama was born in Hawaii (a US state) tells me that you will ignore any facts that conflict with your idea of what is and is not real. This being the case, the act of engaging in further discussion with you would be an exercise in futility.

      I can understand disagreeing about whether a given policy is a good idea or not; you're entitled to your own opinion. But you're not entitled to your own facts. If you want to engage in further discussion, come back when you can tell the difference between what is real and what is imaginary.

    • tom hellert profile image

      tom hellert 7 years ago from home


      please forgive me for not believing fact please forgive me for not seeing or hearing anything about an independant search and examination on the alleged US birth certificate- your barry released a CERTIFICATION OF LIVE BIRTH, which is NOT a BIRTH CERTIFICATE (a.k.a. CertifiCATE of Birth).Because- a CERTIFICATION OF LIVE BIRTH, is NOT a BIRTH CERTIFICATE. No real need to continue on this, because of this fact-a REAL TRUE BC was NOT viewed or the alleged-supposed “fact-checking”."As for the birth certificate I nor anyone else has really seen any ”PROOF" STILL.

      SO that being said I am not sure what you haveseen but not the media had seen-

      Now to his alleged “accomplishments”

      I’ll just go through your points and not his true accomplishments-

      1. This accomplishment dooms us to higher taxes because any tax cuts will never be "covered " unless their is an offset when every economist knows lower tax lead to more revenue to the US government because people spend more ala carter -tax boy and Reagan- tax revenue raiser. So that measure was not helpful unless the Congress- (all parties) are forced to get rid of their PORK which will never be done so- this accomplishment is really the death blow to potential economic growth….

      2. CC Bill of rights- theCredit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure Act (CARD) passed looks good overall but when any industry is fettered – they will punisj who with this those of us who pay debts – higher fees more restrictions some lower income folks won’t be able to get credit cards- guess what will be coming back annual fees and shorter grace periods. So this victory will not be without the consequence of issues for good users.

      3) Expanded "the Small Business Administration's loan and micro-loan programs. This is SBA’s primary and most flexible loan program, with financing guaranteed for a variety of general business purposes. It is designed for start-up and existing small businesses, and is delivered through commercial lending institutions. WOW, now there is another government program that lets people who MAY NOT be able to pay money back get loans.. where have I heard this before… hhmmm oh yea the banking reforms passed by the Barney Frank types hello this is WHAT MADE THE HOUSING MELT DOWN-

      “Those that don’t learn from history are forced to repeat it … that’s GREAT accomplishment.

      4) Premium proof for percentages of patient care, This is not so bad but this will require insurance companies to keep more records and provide this to people- I GUARANTEE IT that premiums will go up to “COVER” the cost-if you don’t pay for it up front you’ll get it in “administrative costs”. If the government has to police it guess what they will charge you and me to do so…Thanks for m ore government administrative taxes, or it will put the insurance companies oiut of business- but that’s what lil BaRRY wants.

      5) Increased the Veterans Administration budget to recruit and retain more mental health professionals. Like I said I agree with a couple things…

      6) Began removing combat brigades from Iraq. That was bound to happen HE was not the REAsoN HE was the benefactor and does NOT GET CREDIT for it-you cant put the cherry on a pie and get credit for baking it

      7) Made U.S. military aid to Pakistan conditional on anti-terror efforts.

      8) Created a real National Infrastructure Protection Plan. Union vote patronization for votes- plain and simple union workers do not do a better job than non-union workers. THIS IS A BLATANT UNION A$$ kiss. I believe the bridges and highways need work, but open it up to non union bidders and get a better price for same quality work.

      9) Reduced subsidies to private student lenders and protected student borrowers. Reduce subsides so… less money to lend or the lenders have to fire people OR BETTER YET MORE GOVERNMENT UNION JOBS I can see it now….More union jobs- restructure the loans (then don’t allow republicans to borrow mone)y- follow the money!!!

      10) Expanded Pell grants for low-income students.- *clap clap clap* finally I think this might be good if it does not seem to only help future teachers and therefore future UNION members- If the grants are usable by non-teachers as well I have no issue with it honestly I have not seen the specifics of this point.

      As for vitriol I am sure you were very cordial and supportive of GW Bush right the “Vitriol” I heard shouted and drooled out by THE LEFT wAS unmitigated and ridiculous FOR NINE F---ing YEARS. Boy your memory sure was short only 18 months on that huh… So don’t get on your soap box to preach about candor and understanding to the president- “People in Glass houses should not lecture about throwing stones” especially when the lefties are still throwing them at “W:… YOU have had 2 years to fix a 4.5 % unemployment and guess what your side has fixed it up to 10% and has not done anything to make it better. Go back to Obama .com and get more “accomplishments” so I can knockem out some more unless you would like to agree to vehemently disagree and we shall part as acquaintances in disagreement.

      Your Pal TH

      sorry its sooo long

    • Jeff Berndt profile image

      Jeff Berndt 7 years ago from Southeast Michigan

      Okay, you asked a couple questions worth answering, so here you go.

      "How can you equate WWII with this war on terror"

      I haven't 'equated' them, I compared them. There's a difference; look it up. Further, there are many many differences, some of which are pointed out in the article above. Perhaps you didn't actually read the whole thing?

      "I Ask what has [President Obama] done to help America?"

      1) Adopted the economic substance doctrine, a policy that states that tax changes must have significant economic justification, as a federal law.

      2) Established a credit card bill of rights.

      3) Expanded "the Small Business Administration's loan and micro-loan programs.

      4) Required health plans to disclose how much of the premium goes to patient care.

      5) Increased the Veterans Administration budget to recruit and retain more mental health professionals.

      6) Began removing combat brigades from Iraq.

      7) Made U.S. military aid to Pakistan conditional on anti-terror efforts.

      8) Created a real National Infrastructure Protection Plan.

      9) Reduced subsidies to private student lenders and protected student borrowers.

      10) Expanded Pell grants for low-income students.

      Etcetera. That's ten things the President has done to help America. Ten out of 122. I'm not really sure how a National Infrastructure Protection plan, or any of his accomplishments thus far, are going to destroy America. Perhaps you can explain?

      Look, the problem I have with the folks (like you) who are just yammering about Obama wanting to destroy America is not that they disagree with his policies. (Heck, most of the time, they don't even know what his policies are, they just assume that if Obama wants to do it, it's by definition bad.) The problem I have is that instead of arguing against a given policy (by explaining why it's bad to create a National Infrastructure Protection plan, for example), they say that Obama is trying to destroy America. Not that his policies are misguided or won't work, but that they're deliberately designed to wreck the country. Pure vitriol, and not worth an iota of respect.

      "As for the birth certificate i have not seen any PROOF"

      And again with the birth certificate. I have to wonder, what to your mind would be proof?

      " staffers have now seen, touched, examined and photographed the original birth certificate. We conclude that it meets all of the requirements from the State Department for proving U.S. citizenship. Claims that the document lacks a raised seal or a signature are false. We have posted high-resolution photographs of the document as "supporting documents" to this article. Our conclusion: Obama was born in the U.S.A. just as he has always said."

      If your words had not already led me to believe that you are the worst kind of partisan scoundrel, I would expect your apology forthwith. As it stands, I fully expect that you'll find some illogical reason not to accept the proof I've provided.

    • tom hellert profile image

      tom hellert 7 years ago from home

      Funny JB,

      Your manchild in the WhiteHouse is the debt monger he has accumulated more cebt in 18 months than the firsyt 40 presidents How can you equate WWII with this war on terror in 1945 we did not really have the greatest fighting force in the world back especially when the JAPS pearl Harored us and when they did they crippled the pacific fleet we had 3 and 1/2 air craft carriers af ter PH. After 9-11 we STILL HAD THE GREATTEST FIGHTING FORCE ON THE PLANET thats how its different-and how long were the Russians in Afganistan? a5 20 years? and they got their butts kicked and quit in shame and defeat- we are winning slowly but surely...

      SECONDLY ALL HIS CAMPAIGN PROMISES DO NOTHING but DESTROY AMERICA W\SO AGAin JEFf I Ask what has he done to help America like most liberals you run froim that question... because he has only done MAYBE 2 hings to HELP AMERICA

      As for the birth certificate i have not seen any PROOF- so what someone photoshopped a sign- so that means its not true- I have not seen a credible picture or proof of the REAL BC of BHO- if he is from HI then why cant they just show it hmm best way to shut all of us up just do it...

      but they cant wHY because then we would know the truth and if it is PROVEN OTHERWISE



    • Jeff Berndt profile image

      Jeff Berndt 7 years ago from Southeast Michigan

      "there was no reason to RETOOL all the industries [for the war on terror] to RE-CREATE the Military as was needed for WWII." A short-sighted attitude, and one that might explain why we're still engaged in Afghanistan almost ten years later when our involvement in WWII from Pearl Harbor to V-J Day took only a little less than 4 years.

      "going to the mall to push the economy was a better idea to Keep the American way , American confidence, and economy going in the correct direction-" If by 'the correct direction' you mean 'further and further into debt,' then your conclusion works, but mate, I fear your compass is broken.

      "what has [Obama] done to put confidence into the US?"

      For a start, he's delivered on 122 of his campaign promises (a better success rate than most other presidents) in spite of the efforts of the NOP.

      "As for his birth certificate if he was born in Hawaii why hasn’t anyone seen the real birth certificate..."

      This is where I stop pretending that you're someone worth arguing with, you willfully ignorant person.

    • tom hellert profile image

      tom hellert 7 years ago from home



      A nice history lesson but the 1930-1940’s America was a lot different like you said after WWI the military was dismantled so ALL the US had to retool- in the 80s-90’s we had a large army protecting THE WORLD from the commies and other idiot dictators SO – there was no reason to RETOOL all the industries to

      RE-CREATE the Military as was needed for WWII.

      - On 9-11 we had a fully functional ,\military and going to the mall to push the economy was a better idea to Keep the American way , American confidence, and economy going in the correct direction- UP or at least NOT DOWN- Look what happened there –it was trending down- SO Obama rams through his Radical Socialist agenda and that is what it is – You can’t argue that – HIS LEFTIST agenda is more socialist than Sweden or “New” Russia style government on the good American people. On this point – owning the car companies, mandatory government healthcare, Cap and Trade is next, then we will be ordered not to eat sugary foods fatty foods…. Lets not even start on the BS that is global warming the biggest HOAX EVER. I have several hubs on this and over the past few months all we have seen is more and more proof of HOW the LEFT, Al Gore and lefty scientists have LIED TO ALL OF US repeatedly.

      You said- “President Obama’s efforts to restore America’s confidence”, what has he done to put confidence into the US? I’ll answer for to you


      He CONSTANTLY TALKS THE US DOWN, every chance he gets -Does he even like the US?- I am back now so I will have to make a hub about all his anti American comments very Un-Presidential of this usurper in the White House. As for his birth certificate if he was born in Hawaii why hasn’t anyone seen the real birth certificate – if you need mine- I can GET IT for you no problem- WHY CAN’T HE??? Better yet why WON’T HE???????? If it walks like and quacks like a duck has feathers and a bill….

      UNDERMINE THE PRESIDENT – WHAT THE HELL DID YOUR LEFTY COMMY PALS DO TO GEORGE BUSH FOR 8 F-CKING YEARS????? Constantly undermined every little thing – each sentence he spoke, his accent facial features etc… at least he wasn’t chained to a teleprompter- and AN “A**H0**” for Destroying America with his psuedo-socialist policies Obama has done the job FOR SURE Just like Carter it will take a strong Conservative type to have to fix in 2 years and every election before the next presidential one-WE THE PEOPLE have to Choose wisely meaning Tea Partiers and Conservatives.

      Following "your" logic if the American people don’t feel confident in the president things won’t get bettter--- then I guess things got worse because the American people were told for 8 years by the DeMs how bad Bush and the country were so-

      I guess it really was the lefts fault (like I have always said) for the downturn AND NOT Bush or at least if I follow your “TWISTED LOGIC “ that’s what happened- you can’t have it both ways-but i guess logic does not matter if your a liberal Obama voter



    • Jeff Berndt profile image

      Jeff Berndt 7 years ago from Southeast Michigan

      "i would recommend intelligence, read my hubs."

      After having read a few of them, two words come to mind when I read the above comment: "juxtaposition" and "incongruous."

    • OpinionDuck profile image

      OpinionDuck 7 years ago


      i would recommend intelligence, read my hubs.

    • Jeff Berndt profile image

      Jeff Berndt 7 years ago from Southeast Michigan

      Hi, OpinionDuck,

      Leaving aside your flawed analysis of the current recession, I'd like to know what exactly in the article is incorrect about WWII? The government didn't ration meat and gasoline? Didn't encourage victory gardens? Didn't borrow money to fight it? It's history, mate. Look it up.

      Terrorists cannot turn the US "into an Israel-type atmosphere." Only US citizens can do that, by giving in to fear.

      "It is rather cavalier thinking on your part that you don't consider them as a major threat to this country." I never said they weren't a threat, I said they weren't an /existential/ threat. They cannot overthrow the US. They can kill some of our citizens, and they can scare the rest, but they can't overthrow or conquer the US. If we give in to fear, as you (and the right wing) would have us do, then yes, our country will be forever changed, and the fearmongers will have the blame.

      I recommend courage over fear. Try it some time.

    • OpinionDuck profile image

      OpinionDuck 7 years ago

      Twenty months into his administration, and the unemployment rate is around 10%, while the employment in the public sector is going up and up.

      For two years before he became president, barack Obama didn't accomplish anything as a Senator. He spent that time on the road pandering for votes. He was totally unaware of the impending economic meltdown, or he was hiding that fact from the public, at least until after the election. Unfortunately for him, the melt down came early.

      Congress, neither the pre Presidential Election, or the winners of the 2008 election handled the meltdown with any competence, they just threw money at the problem. The threw over one and a half trillion dollars at it, and the private sector is still without jobs.

      The proof is in the results, and there are no results, none that are beneficial.

      By the way your account of WWII is not factual or correct.

      And terrorists can do more damage in the US than the countries we fought against in any of the wars. Because they can turn this country into an Israel type atmosphere. These terrorists have no country, no uniformed army, and they don't adhere to the Geneva Convention. It took only nineteen terrorists to kill over three thousand people and destroy billions of dollars of property and business. It is rather cavalier thinking on your part that you don't consider them as a major threat to this country.

      As the pressure is eased off of these terrorists in the Middle East they will then be emboldened to become more active in this country.


    • JOE BARNETT profile image

      JOE BARNETT 7 years ago

      very good! it stands to reason that all requirements to become president had been thoroughly checked by election and he was approved and then the MAJORITY voted for him. These people as you say want to create fear with stories of booger men. They want you to think that "they" only know and speak the truth. It has been proven over and over about the place of his birth. it's comical watching them. They have reached a level of incredibility in there desperate foaming at the mouth attempts to disway logical thinking. he will say two plus two equals 4 and they will say it doesn't because his daddy was a muslim(laughable).then we say " ok then what does it equal, and they say his wife is bad 'cause she ate ice cream.this is disturbing behavior and embarrasing to watch grown,educated men and women stoop to such a level. only the uninformed ,the unintelligent and or the racist will adhere to this non-sense. something very interesting that i found that speaks directly to this was proverbs 11-23. read it, it will make you go hmmm. maybe,and probably they want rid of obama for fear of karma! good and true hub

    • rebekahELLE profile image

      rebekahELLE 7 years ago from Tampa Bay

      It's very nice to read some logical, informative, factual commentary. excellent hub. facebooked, tweeted and shared it. good stuff.

    • profile image

      kkalmes 7 years ago

      Hello Jeff, excellent read, chocked full of information that any sane person could relish. Confidence in our President is key to recovery, If I have said it once I have said it a zillion times... confidence in others is harder, but as you point out a necessary quantum leap.

      thumbs up and awesome because we don't have an excellent rating.

    • starvagrant profile image

      starvagrant 7 years ago from Missouri

      A few comments:

      1) Corporate earnings reports are fine. Unemployment continues to hover at nearly 10%.

      2) Irag most certainly fulfilled an agenda. Many businesses like Halliburton were rewarded huge sums for no-bid contract work that they then subcontracted to lesser firms at mere fractions of their sums. Thus, Halliburton gained a great deal of money just for being politically connected. There's a word for this. It's called corruption.

      3) The attempt to portray Obama as some sort of un-American is a bit pathetic. What the far right actually dislike is that Obama is the most liberal president in decades. I guess who's un-American depends a great deal on who gets to decide what "American" is.

      4) Whether or not you are liberal, conservative, or middle of the road, you have to admit there hasn't been a 8 year Republican president that hasn't ended their term in disaster for some. Dubya has his recession, Reagen had the savings and loan crisis, and Nixon had Watergate. Why do people trust the Republican party with their money? It seems to me that Republicans only chime the bell of fiscal responsibility when Democrats are in charge. The Republican economic model has a serious flaw. It assumes that tax cuts will always spur rational and well considered investments. How many crises will it take to discredit this model? So long as people keep saying it, I guess people will keep believing it.

    • PrettyPanther profile image

      PrettyPanther 7 years ago from Oregon

      Jeff, this is outstanding--logical and easy to understand. I particularly like your sidebar on dissent and sedition.

      I've had a difficult time lately coping with the anger and fear coming from the extreme right. I used to be able to take it with a grain of salt, but lately it just really upsets me. We have serious problems in this country and a large segment of the population is all worked up over fabricated issues like where Obama was born, and whether or not he is a secret Muslim.

      So much fear... I have a hard time understanding where it comes from.

    • Jeff Berndt profile image

      Jeff Berndt 7 years ago from Southeast Michigan

      Hi, Comp,

      Thanks for disagreeing with logical arguments. Regarding your points, I submit the following:

      "First, WWII was a slight bit larger than the war in Afghanistan." Oh, there's no question that the war in Afghanistan was nowhere near as big as WWII. Perhaps this led to the overconfidence that allowed our leaders at the time to figure they didn't need to focus all our available resources on destroying Al-Qaida, and diverting a lot of them into a whole nother invasion of a whole nother country, needlessly expanding the scope of the conflict, which brings me to the point about "How this furthers an agenda."

      Our leadership at the time seized on our fears of another attack, pretended that Iraq (which was different and scary, and happened also to be full of oil) was both capable of and planning on attacking the US, and told us that we needed to preemptively invade it to keep ourselves safe from another attack. Many people believed these scare tactics (practically all of those claims have proven to be wrong) and the Radical Right painted anyone who disagreed with the invasion of Iraq not as a mere dissenter but as a traitor who hated America. In the face of this, most of Congress failed in their duty to do what was right for the country. Perhaps they were fooled by the scare tactics about WMDs (for which they might be forgiven), or perhaps they were merely afraid of losing the next election (for which there is no excuse). The so-called broad bipartisan support (at least in Congress--a lot of the people had a lot to say against invading Iraq) was a result of skillful manipulation of our collective fears.

      Conveniently, the Iraq invasion managed to enrich a whole lot friends of the administration who happened to get a whole lot of lucrative government contracts (from which a whole lot of money happens to have gone missing). The last administration didn't deliberately bilk the taxpayers (I'm sure they trusted their friends not to defraud the government) or deliberately got us bogged down in Iraq. I'm sure they thought Iraq would be easy to conquer (we were meant to be greeted as liberators, right?) and once the easy invasion was over, it would be easy to get the oil flowing again, which would both enrich their friends and make for cheap gas for the rest of us. But it didn't work out that way, did it?

      The plan to use our fear of terrorism as an excuse to invade Iraq (and take their resources for the US) backfired. We didn't get our cheap gas (though a lot of friends of the administration did get rich[er]) and the Middle East is even more unstable now than it was before, now that we've kindly removed the regional check on Iran's ambitions.

      As for legislation being "pushed through against the wishes of the American people," well, there's the scare tactics at work again. Ever since the '08 election, the radical right has been fearmongering, trying to convince the public that the President (who was elected by a wide margin, remember) is everything from a secret foreigner to a secret communist and has a hidden agenda to deliberately destroy America. Not that his policies are misguided, mind. The party line is that the President actually /wants/ to wreck the country, and anyone who supports him is a traitor. Be afraid! Vote for us in November, so we can save you from this threat you elected in '08!

      I suggest we try not being afraid, and see how far that takes us.

    • profile image

      Howard Schneider 7 years ago from Parsippany, New Jersey

      You're quite right about the Right trying to scare the electorate. They not only are saying no to everything the Obama Administration tries but they also created the Tea Party movement via Dick Armey, the Koch brothers, and Glenn Beck. It started in opposition to the Healthcare Reform bill and picked up steam as they garnered success. It will work this year but will backfire come 2012. Great Hub.

    • comp3820 profile image

      comp3820 7 years ago from Michigan

      Although you've gone about this in a very skillful way, I'm going to have to disagree with you.

      First, WWII was a slight bit larger than the war in Afghanistan. In WWII, we were waging an all-out war that required the most out of everyone, and that's why war- bonds, rationing, and victory gardens were introduced. While we certainly could have done the same thing in Iraq and Afghanistan, it would be a fraud. The military has the resources it needs to get the job done.

      Second, terrorism isn't anything I agree with. It tends to kill people. While we may never have Sharia law in the US, there is still quite a bit to fear about Al Qaeda. Anyone who tries to gain power by blowing up innocent civilians is our enemy, and if we can track them down, we have every right to wage war against them. How this furthers an agenda, I don't know. Maybe the war has been mismanaged. Maybe it was longer than expected. But it had overwhelming bipartisan support, and wasn't pushed through by the skin of its teeth against the wishes of the American people, like some other legislation I could mention.

      Third, I agree that its all about perception. During the elections, Obama was touted as the saver of the world, but he had no experience to talk about. So, all of a sudden, we all heard that Obama was absolutely great on the economy. That was why he was going to win, and that was why we should all vote for him. Several months later, we were officially declared to be in a recession. At that time, I honestly thought we had been in a recession for months already, because I had been hearing about our bad economy and how Obama was going to save us. What I mean to say is this: The media had a role in worsening the economy by telling us we had a bad economy when we weren't even in a recession. How much of a role, I don't know. But they had a role.

      Anyway, good article, well though out, and well written.