Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Barack Obama's Vision

This is exceptionally short entry just to add my voice to the overwhelming approval the President has received for his speech last night. Barack Obama did a masterful job. He was articulate and inspiring. One poll I saw this morning on MSNBC indicated his post speech approval rating jumped to 80%.

Taking a step back and looking at the scope of his vision for America, I cannot disagree with him on anything. He has my support on every single proposal.

Of course the devil is in the details and those details will take do time to develop. And Obama still runs the risk that Nancy Pelosi will circumvent his vision and replace it with a pale partisan version of her own.

Already there is one rather horrific note to indicate politics as usual will actually hold sway in Washington. Obama "promised" that "next year" there would be "no earmarks in the omnibus spending bill." He cleverly omitted that promise for this year's bill. The Pelosi authored spending bill being introduced tomorrow contains over 8,000 pork laden earmarks, some so stupefyingly wasteful they defy belief.

As I said, the devil is in the details.

Unfortunately, I heard absolutely nothing from Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal to inspire me. His bizarre partisan pandering seemed small, petty and out of place. He did not represent the Republican Party well. But Jindal was just the sideshow, Obama was the star.


Lee said...

“It comes down to an honest and fundamental disagreement about the proper role of government,” he said. “We oppose the national Democrats’ view that says the way to strengthen our country is to increase dependence on government. We believe the way to strengthen our country is to restrain spending in Washington, to empower individuals and small businesses to grow our economy and create jobs.”

As per usual, I read the transcripts afterwards, as I believe words are more important then the reading. Curiosity got me so I found a video of his address. Not a good performance, add to that he was following one of the best teleprompter speakers. So that comparison was vast.

At this point the Republican party does need to have some fundamentals to hope to build on and move forward.

Lee said...

"I found a video of his address." <--note 'his' refers to Governor Jindal

shoo said...

I found reason to fundamentally disagree with Obama on everything. He said he wasn't for bigger governement (the Big Lie), and then proceeded to lay out all the ways government will become even more involved in our lives. He proposed expanding government at every turn, and never once suggested anyplace government should do less.

We can all agree that education and healthcare are important, and should be available to all. That is not to say government should provide it. Do we really want all hospitals to be like VA hospitals? Do we all want to be on Medicare? Our government schools have become a national disgrace with lowering standards and results even while spending, adjusted for inflation, has dramatically increased.

Where are the shining examples of government efficiency that leads you to believe it is remotely possible that government will do a better job than the private sector in any of these things?

The words are the easy part. Who can be against wonderful things for everyone? But the devil is not really in the details. The real problem is that government, by its very monopolistic and bureaucratic nature is incapable of excellence. As long as we look to government for solutions to our problems, we are bound to be disappointed. Eerily, when government fails, the solution is always ever more government, and there are plenty of people out there cheering it every step of the way.

This is not to say there isn't a role for government. What government does is set up the rules: when the rules are good ones, we get good results. When they are bad ones, we get bad results. Look at the differences in the market for food (which is cheap and plentiful), and healthcare (which is very expensive). Food isn't less necessary than healthcare: in fact it is far more so! Grocers aren't any less "greedy" than healthcare providers (in fact they are probably more so). If you want to understand why these markets are so different, look at the ways that government has interferred in the market place and the different rules it has imposed on them.

the WIZARD, fkap said...

Lee, You make an excellent point. Many people have noted that Jindal's speech read much better than the live delivery.

shoo, You make excellent points, most of which I agree. But, Obama continues to promise bipartisanship. For sure he completely failed to deliver on the stimulus, but I place 90% of the blame on Pelosi and Reid.

If Obama fails to deliver on the promises of his speech (not in a failure to achieve each goal, but in failing to work with Republicans and forge a solid and workable compromise), he will never have the credibility he needs.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me......

MadMike said...

Wizard the fact remains that Republicans such as Shoo continue to pout and whine, but they can't come up with any alternatives. The country is in the worst shape in history and it is because of Republican leadership.

The right continues to whimper and moan about "nationalization" but look what happened under deregulation? The rich got much richer and everyone else got much poorer. Of course this is the Republican mantra: rob from the poor and middle class and give it to the rich. That is exactly what happened.

As to the so-called earmarks they are evenly divided between dems and pugs and Obama had nothing to do with it until he signed it and I am glad he did. Our country suffered greatly and was deprived of basic human services under Republican leadership. It is time now to fix that and put people back to work. Regardless I warrant you and I will disagree about what is needed and what is not.

Obama gives us hope which we desperately need. He also provides strong leadership, something we have missed for the last eight long years. As to Pelosi I guarantee she won't buck Obama; not if she wants to get her job.

Lee said...

MadMike your entire first paragraph is just factually wrong. On page 138 Obama's budget you find the administration has based all of its revenue projections on the Gross Domestic Product shrinking by only 1.2 percent this year, and growing 3.2 percent next year.

Consider that from 1929 to 1933 the GDP declined by almost half and unemployment jumped from 3.3 percent to 24.9 percent.

Worst shape in History? incorrect. Because of Republican Leadership? incorrect, no matter how bad you paint the Bush + Republican Congress, the Democratic leadership has done more to worsen our shape in the last 100 days.

Republicans do have alternatives. Cut taxes and reduce spending. Shame they did not do that back when they had Obama's current situation. At least they seem to have awoke. I just hope it is for real this time.

The achievers got richer and the lazy got poorer. Nationalization or Socalism will punish the achievers and spread the poverty all over. And you call that Hope?

Lee said...

Mad Mike more on the other point your clearly wrong on.

This is the Alternative plan you said they did not have.

I'm awaiting your retraction.

Will "take no prisoners" Hart said...

40% of the earmarks in this Omnibus bill are for Republicans. Clearly, there's enough blame/shame to go around.

Lee said...

By all means Will, lets blame everyone who voted FOR this destructive bill.

shoo said...

40% of the earmarks are for Republicans? I find that pretty hard to believe. Besides, there are no earmarks. Obama said their weren't. You are not saying he lied, are you Will?

But yes, the 3 Republicans who voted for this bill deserve some special shame. I will definitely be supporting some primary opponents to keep them out of the Senate when they come up for re-election.