Obama’s Bubble

History has taught us that bubbles occasionally occur and always break.  Probably the earliest well remembered one was the tulip bulb mania that peaked and crashed in 1637.  Of late, right here at home we have experienced the dot.com frenzy and crash that buried tech stocks along with a load of temporary millionaires.  The cheap money that was available to counteract that bust and the follow-on 9/11 attack bequeathed us the housing bubble.  That situation peaked in 2007 and when it grenaded, the resulting financial Tsunami gathered up individuals, banks, and governments across the earth.  The fleeting euphoria and lasting pain that accompany financial bubbles reaches far and wide.

Now at the beginning of 2010, a political bubble is bursting.  Political bubbles have occurred when charismatic leader rides into office by creating great expectations through sloganeering – Huey Long’s “Every Man a King” or Castro’s “26 de Julio.”  The new leader comes into office on a wave of wonderful promises and great expectations.  When the promises start to be broken and the expectations remain unmet, the bubble will deflate.  We are in the process of observing this with the Obama Presidency.  Unfortunately this political bubble may include some very severe financial consequences as it deflates or bursts.

Campaigning on a platform of “Hope and Change,” an appealing young black man with a winning smile and sparkling eyes had perfect timing and a wind at his back.  The housing bubble was bursting and fear was rampant.  Americans were sick of reckless spending, weary of wars, and disgusted with congressional buffoonery.  Job losses were ratcheting up to dangerous levels and the stock markets were tanking to half their prior values in a year.  He promised many things and led us to believe he would create order out of chaos, surpluses out of deficits, peace out of war, cooperation out of partisanship, transparency out of opacity, and racial harmony in our time.  His youthful energy and appeal added to strong advocacy of his positions overpowered his opposition which was weakened by being considered by many no change at all. 

President Obama’s approval ratings since inauguration have slid faster and farther than any previous occupant of the office.  In a year he has gone from inspirational new leader to an angry scold who blames all his problems on George Bush, banks, insurance companies, Congress, The Supreme Court, and the American people.  His problems stem more from his own broken promises and naive, rudderless leadership than from other sources.  He has become a second Jimmy Carter faster than Carter himself became so.  Carter has continued his race to the bottom and has a great head start, but Obama may yet beat him there.

Obama promised America that he would stop wasteful spending – going over the budget “line by line” and vetoing any bill with earmarks.  That promise was shattered within a month when he rammed through the stimulus bill costing $787 Billion.  This bill was basically nothing but earmarks disguised as a “recovery act”.  The Omnibus Bill passed shortly thereafter contained around 9000 earmarks.  Strike one.

The pleasant vision of a post-racial uniter in the oval office swayed a lot of votes Obama’s way.  Voters ignored his previous close ties and friendship with the hateful Jeremiah Wright, but what happens when a black pal of his gets arrested in Cambridge? Within hours, not knowing any of the facts, the President states that the police “acted stupidly”.  Meanwhile 3 white Navy Seals are being ruined for punching a terrorist while a real terrorist who happens to be black gets a lawyer and Miranda Rights after attempting to blow up an airliner.  Events like these don’t enhance unity of any kind.

Many times, at least 8 on video, Mr.  Obama promised total transparency in the development of health care legislation.  Once elected he abdicated to the House and Senate; eschewing his duties to lead the process.  What resulted were bills over 2000 pages long hammered out by congressmen, special interests and lawyers behind closed doors in a frenzied effort to ram something – anything – through before the American people caught on.  Even now as the public is soundly against it, Obama, Pelosi and Reid are scheming to slip a bill through the reconciliation keyhole while they have the votes and inertia to do so.  This has embittered the majority of Americans who pay even the least attention.

Obama’s job as Commander in Chief of the Armed forces is to protect the country from and against all enemies foreign and domestic.   There is a small minority of Muslims in the world that have made it clear that they wish to turn the world back to the 7th century and destroy western civilization as we know it.  We try to avoid tarring all Muslims with this vile brush, but we have to wake up and realize that we are at war with a couple million savages.  These are barbaric beings that lust for the blood of those they hate and will stop at nothing, stoop to any depth of depravity, and glory in the act of personal suicide to murder and maim innocents of all ages.  Our President and his Attorney General have decided to treat these barbaric murdering dregs like purse snatchers.  They have defanged our interrogation teams, publicized their methods, and threatened to prosecute some for past activities.  This is most definitely NOT protecting our country and its people.   

Keynesian economics has proven an abject failure in the US in the ‘30s and in Japan yet today, but Obama and his circle of economic advisors think borrowing from China and squandering funds on government projects and employees will reverse the present situation.  These people, with very little real world private sector experience between them either slept through their economics classes, or Paul Krugman was the professor.  Massive government spending does not create jobs, it just buys votes from the fortunate few who get paid for building useless windmills or studying pig manure. 

Whatever happened to “working across the aisle” – the promise of a new bipartisan way of governing? What Obama inspired (dragooned?) legislation has passed the House or Senate has done so with very few or no republican votes.  His massive health care proposal got stopped in its tracks because of one republican senate vote in Massachusetts.  If Obama and his party were really working with instead of against Republicans, there would be more evidence of bipartisan support.  That promise was a canard.

“What we have here – is a failure to communicate.”  Cool Hand Luke said it and now the electorate is shouting it.  One of the most able public speakers of our time is fast foundering on the rocks and shoals of governance.  He has squandered his public perception of the giver of hope and the deliverer of change.  His policies have alienated millions while his radical ideas have frightened even more.  Having seen the polls and failed to obtain his desired results in Copenhagen, Virginia, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Congress, he delivers his first State of the Union Address.  The silver tongued Obama of campaign days has morphed into a bitter, angry, frustrated demagogue.  He blames all on others, scolds the Justices with untrue accusations, demands yet more dangerous spending and insists that Congress pass his highly unpopular health plan.  For over an hour, he more reminded us of a fish out of water than the leader of the free world.  The bubble has burst.


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