Economy

Amazing Transformation Of Presidential Campaign Of 2012: From Barack Obama’s Economic Record To Protection Of Medicare!

The last 72 hours have been unbelievable, the best stroke of luck possible for President Barack Obama and the Democrats!

It looked as if the issue of the campaign would be the economy, which Mitt Romney was trying to make it for the past few months.

Instead, it is the Paul Ryan plan for transforming Medicare to a voucher system over ten years that has become the issue of the campaign, and it is an issue which Barack Obama can use effectively against Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan.

It is already evident that Mitt Romney knows the whole campaign has been upended by his unwise choice of a lightning rod, Paul Ryan, who is being eviscerated by media investigations of his contradictions and hypocrisy on so many issues!

But Mitt Romney is stuck with his choice, and will pay dearly for it, as many Republican leaders privately admit, but not for attribution!

It is very likely that the election has been lost for Mitt Romney, and won for Barack Obama, simply on the blunder that Mitt Romney, a cautious person politically, committed by going for a controversial running mate, rather than a much safer candidate such as former Governor Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota or Senator Rob Portman of Ohio. There would have been far less to criticize and attack on either of these political leaders, had they been chosen to be the Vice Presidential candidate!

One can be sure that, secretly, both Pawlenty and Portman are glad they are not part of a sinking ship, although both will profess support for Romney all the way to the bitter end!

And the likelihood is growing that the Republican Party will suffer by losses of seats in either or both houses of Congress, and possibly lose control of the House of Representatives, because of the “coattail” effect of having a heavy weight at the top of their ticket in November!

Republican Governors Rave About Improved Economy, But Mitt Romney Wants Them NOT To Claim So!

An interesting development as we see Republican Governors raving about their improved economies, but causing grief for Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney in doing so!

Florida Governor Rick Scott, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder, Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, and Ohio Governor John Kasich all have been boasting about their states’ economies vastly improving.

The fact that all of these states except Florida have an unemployment rate BELOW the national average is a PLUS for President Barack Obama, although, of course, these GOP Governors will not give him any credit!

But by them pointing out their improved economies, it hurts the cause of Mitt Romney, who is trying to make a campaign simply on the economy, ignoring everything else, such as foreign policy, the future of the Supreme Court, and many social issues.

Romney seems to think that he will be able to focus on what he wants only, but that will certainly not be the case as the Obama campaign zeroes in on other issues, and as the three Presidential debates and one Vice Presidential debate arrive on the scene in September and October!

Seven Factors Which Could Defeat Barack Obama In 2012

Despite all of the evidence that Barack Obama has a great advantage for re-election in 2012, there certainly are factors which could lead to his defeat.

These include:

If the economy has another backslide of notable proportions, and gasoline prices continue to rise.

If a war breaks out in the Middle East or elsewhere, and the President is seen as handling the foreign crisis poorly.

If the Republican attempt in many states to limit the vote by discriminatory voter registration legislation succeeds in cutting voter registration and participation down dramatically.

If the enthusiasm of voters for Barack Obama is toned down, because of disillusionment that he has not been able to solve all of the problems he faced upon taking office.

If the effects of the growth of SuperPACS, encouraged by the Citizens United Case of the Supreme Court in 2010, are able to propagandize enough with less informed voters who react to negative commercials.

If a major political scandal erupts that undermines faith in the President’s leadership, with the opposition already starting to blame Obama for the Secret Service scandal.

And finally, the issue of race, as electing the first African American President is a path breaker and milestone, but re-electing would be an even more path breaking milestone, with the constant reference to race by right wing extremists, conservatives, and a majority of Republican officeholders, all designed to instill fear, panic, and conspiracy theories into the heads of white working class voters in Pennsylvania and the Midwest.

So there is no guarantee, and six months is an eternity in American politics!

Important To Remember: Elections Are About The FUTURE, Not The Past!

In the midst of all the heated debate about who is best to be our President in the future, one point is often forgotten.

That is the reality that elections are about the FUTURE, not the past!

The past is always full of negative, as well as positive, developments, with, of course, the negative somehow easier to recall, since most human beings remember negative over positive.

So the issue of 2012 is not the high unemployment rate, which the opposition Republicans have no solutions for.

The issue is which party and which candidate is best equipped to make a better future, and in that, it is clear that the Republicans see the future as one without all of the social safety net programs of the New Deal and Great Society, which despite criticisms, have worked very well, made for a stronger middle class, alleviated poverty, and given the masses, who are not born to or inherit wealth, to have a belief in the “American Dream” and a faith and hope in a better future.

If such faith and hope is dashed by wiping out the virtues of the New Deal and Great Society, then what is to prevent violence, bloodshed, and revolution against the ruling economic class? By softening the worse aspects of unbridled capitalism and giving people dignity and consideration, whether young, old, poor, or disabled, we have a safety valve that allows all of us to coexist in society, with the elite rich still holding on to most of what they have!

The price of higher taxation actually protects the elite rich from troubles they would not wish to see occur!

So the better, more dignified future is definitely with Barack Obama, and this is not even considering his many accomplishments, which are often forgotten, but will be emphasized as the campaign of 2012 continues, so that voters do not go to vote with the thought that nothing good has been accomplished in the worst economic conditions since the Great Depression!

And do not forget that foreign and national security policy only adds to the credentials of Barack Obama, as compared to all his potential opponents, with the one exception of Jon Huntsman! But the Republican Party seems suicidal in nature, not smart enough to give Barack Obama a really competent opponent as his rival. So this is another of the many positives about Barack Obama that will be emphasized as the campaign develops!

Obama Still At 49 Percent In Public Opinion Polls Despite Pessimism About Economy: Why Is That So?

President Barack Obama remains popular in the nation, despite the high unemployment rate and the gloomy prognosis about the economic future.

In the latest poll, he stands at 49 percent, a high rating considering the economic situation, and never really has been lower than 47 percent, while his predecessors in office often rated much lower, particularly when economic times were tough.

The question is why this is so!

Part of it is the simple fact that the American people like the President and believe he cares about them.

But also, when the American public looks at the choices offered by the Republican opposition in the Presidential race, they are not enthusiastic, as who is there to be excited about?

There are no thrilling, dynamic candidates who inspire people, and most of the candidates are seen as extreme in their views, and the American people as a whole do not like extremes.

So even with a poor economy, Obama is in good stead as the Presidential battle of the GOP develops for 2012!

The Republican Lies About The Obama Economic Record!

The Republican Presidential debate in New Hampshire last night demonstrated the GOP ability to lie and deceive gullible voters!

You would think that Barack Obama walked into the Presidency in good economic times, and that George W. Bush left him a positive legacy!

Of course, George W. Bush left the worst economy to his successor of any President since Herbert Hoover left the Great Depression to Franklin D. Roosevelt!

The facts are as follows:

1. The economy has come out of the depths it was in in 2009, although the level of economic growth has slowed up in recent months.
2. Over 2 million private sector jobs have been added in the past 15 months, not enough certainly, but compared to the 750,000 jobs a month being lost at the end of the Bush Presidency and the early months of the Obama Presidency, it is certainly a good sign.
3. The stock market has improved, whereby half of the lost household wealth has been regained.
4. The auto industry has revived from its low point, when we almost lost the entire domestic auto market, which would have led to far worse conditions in the Midwest and South, where most of the auto factories are located.
5. Housing is the big area of lack of improvement, with home prices and home construction still declining. Of course, the nation’s leading banks are major culprits in this regard, refusing to give mortgage loans and trying to foreclose illegally on many properties!

The point is that there is no magic potion by government and the private sector to restore the economy quickly, and the Republicans have come up with no strategy or plan to create jobs or revive the economy, deciding that just attacking President Obama is enough.

And cutting taxes and spending is just the old Herbert Hoover concept, which only made the Great Depression worse!

Do we really want to go back to Herbert Hoover, as Tim Pawlenty proposes, and to believe that miraculously there will be five percent growth annually for the next decade?

It is time to put up or shut up, meaning that the GOP leadership in Congress must stop talking and attacking, and start producing results in cooperation with President Obama, instead of just working to undermine him and making the economy worse!

Americans And Economic Reality: Emotion And Lack Of Knowledge Wins Out Over Rationality! :(

The American people are poorly informed about major policy issues, as shown in public opinion polls, and many of them tend to vote, therefore, on emotion and instinct, rather than knowledge and reality.

That is certainly true about the economy. Of course, economic conditions are terrible, with growing numbers of foreclosures, and slow job creation. So people listen to propaganda that if nothing had been done by government in the past 21 months, that somehow, magically, the economy would have recovered!

That is totally preposterous, of course! The belief of many is that the government bailing out the banks, insurance companies and the auto industry is a major ripoff, that will cost taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars, which is totally wrong, as much of it has been repaid, and the government will actually make a profit on it, despite all the propaganda!

The belief that the economic stimulus package is a failure is also a myth, as it has clearly prevented a horrible economy from becoming an even worse situation, known as the Great Depression Number Two, with much higher unemployment than the nearly ten percent we have now!

The belief that taxes have gone up is another myth, as everyone received a tax cut on their withholding, instead of an actual check from the government, but it is still a tax cut!

The fact that unemployment compensation and food stamps exist to help those in trouble is blamed for higher deficits, but is the alternative to have people starving and homeless without any income or food at all? The use of such safety nets is expected when unemployment surges!

The economic reality is that you cannot reverse damage done by the Republicans overnight! It will take YEARS, no matter if the Republicans or the Democrats control the national government, but the threat is that it will become much worse if the stated intentions of the Tea Party Movement and the Republican Party are actually put into play!

It is a certainty that if they follow through and somehow are able to overcome President Obama’s veto, which fortunately seems unlikely, that the economy will be FAR WORSE than it is now, by the time of the 2012 Presidential Election!

If that is so, the GOP will be thrown out, and again we will be on the merry go round of blame–and Barack Obama will be able to make the GOP the enemy as Harry Truman did in 1948 and Bill Clinton did in 1996!

But meanwhile, because of the refusal of the American people to understand economic reality, and to allow emotion and lack of knowledge to overcome rationality, more and more people of all backgrounds will suffer under the collapsed economy that was on its way to recovery BEFORE the midterm elections of 2010! 🙁

Barack Obama At Eight Months In Office: Time Of Troubles And Turmoil

President Obama was everywhere this Sunday morning, appearing on five taped shows (from Friday) to explain his health care plan, the Afghan war, the economy, and the flu virus threat.

Obama has hit a rough patch in all of these areas. The honeymoon is over, but of course, it was bound to end in any case.

Criticism is rampant on the left and the right on these issues. At a time of such economic hardship and the growing fear of terrorism at home with the recent revelations of plans to attack the NYC train transportation system, the President is facing harsh attacks on both extremes of the political spectrum.

The fear of growing costs for health care reform at a time when unemployment continues to rise makes any action on this issue highly questionable that it will succeed. The growing debate on increase of troops in Afghanistan places the President more with his domestic GOP critics than with his Democratic supporters, an example being Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin of Michigan, who has made it clear that we should not send more troops there, even though Obama today pointed out that it was from Afghanistan where Al Quaeda struck on September 11. Obama seems to be on a tightrope on this issue, not yet willing to agree to increased troops, but not hinting that he will change course either.

The H1N1 virus threat also plagues many Americans, and the reality that vaccine will not be available for awhile, and one can not be certain that when it is available, that it will work and not cause more grief than protection for American citizens.

Obama backed away from backing President Jimmy Carter on the issue of racism causing a lot of the problems and division that now exists in America, the only statement he could be expected to make. Still, it is troubling that we are allowing so much attention to be drawn to those who promote hate and controversy for their own aggrandizement, so why does Time Magazine have to put an outrageous picture of Glenn Beck on the cover of its magazine this coming week? All this does is feed the paranoia and insanity that he and other talk show hosts represent.

So basically, it is reality that Barack Obama in in very difficult circumstances at eight months in office, but yet his public opinion rating remains in the mid to high 50s, despite all of the attacks and criticisms.

One thing is for certain: We live in challenging times, and constant turmoil will continue as we try to face the many difficult issues this country faces. We can only pray that we do not see a resort to violence and bloodshed because of the poisonous environment that we find ourselves in.

As Barack Obama said, Franklin D. Roosvevelt and Ronald Reagan also faced vitriol and wild extremist reactions because they represented fundamental change, and that he understood that is occurring again because he is involved in similar actions, and there will be predictably negative responses as in the past.

Obama called for civility and decency in political discourse, but unfortunately, that seems extremely unlikely. 🙁