Saturday, December 11, 2010

President Obama: What Are You Doing?

Let me start by saying that I like the job President Obama has been doing. Naturally he's done a few things I disagree with (some rather deeply), but overall I think he's doing a good job, and he's certainly a vast improvement over the last administration in every possible way. Further, in the face of the most belligerent, unpatriotic party politics in living memory (that's YOU Republican Party), he has kept cool and not descended to their level. Of course, we all know the opposition he faces from some Republicans and Tea Partiers is so vehement because of his skin color rather than his policies. And all that with two wars and the worst economy since the Depression. Talk about grace under pressure.

While I'm glad he hasn't descended to the level of the Republicans, at some point the gloves have to come off or you're just being a wimp. When the Republicans threatened to be do nothings unless the Bush tax cuts were extended, I think it was time to call their bluff. The Republicans' position is essentially that 'tax cuts for billionaires' is the most important issue in America today. More important than keeping people from losing their houses. More important than jobs. More important than military spending to support our troops. More important than cutting the deficit. More important than every other bit of business America needs to deal with.

Frankly, I think there are enough people who would be disgusted by this position that the Republicans would have to cave in or they would quickly find themselves the focus of the American people's anger. Another possibility is that a few sensible Republicans would break ranks to do the job they were elected to do. In either case, we would would get what we need done without giving in to the demands of congresspeople paying back their wealthy backers so they have campaign dough for the next election.

Even if I accept the idea of deals being cut to get legislation through, the Republican tax cuts are spending (or cutting revenue) by a gagillion times what Obama wants to spend for the unemployment extensions. Just how exactly how is this a compromise? Sounds like he's giving up a lot more than he's getting. That's being a sucker, not compromising. If I wanted this kind of policy-making, I may as well have voted for McCain!

I guess I'm just lost as to what he's trying to accomplish here.

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