Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Obama's Budget Arrives With A Thud

Clearly, President Obama is deaf to the pleas from the American people. Clearly, President Obama is a far left ideologue who lacks an ability to step up and lead the country into better economic days. The budget submitted Monday was soundly criticized by both the left and the right sides of the political aisle. Normally, this might indicate a solid, moderate approach - pleasing neither side to the expense of the other - but in this case it simply means President Obama failed. Big time.

The numbers man in the House of Representatives, Rep Paul Ryan, summed it up:

“It would be better doing nothing than if we were to actually pass this budget—for the sake of our economy, for the sake of our future, and for the sake of jobs,” said a clearly fired-up Ryan.

This is essentially what Obama did - he punted. Instead of beginning to tackle the issues that must be tackled to steady the economy - reforming Social Security, Medicare, for example - and he completely ignored the recommendations from his own deficit commission.

And from the Senate: “This is not an I-got-the-message budget. It’s unserious, and it’s irresponsible. We need to look for ways to preserve what’s good that does not put us on a path to bankruptcy. That was the challenge of this budget. The administration failed the test,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R.-Ky.) on Monday.

It is the same old, same old. It is the very type of smoke and mirrors that Obama claimed he would not be resorting to as he completed this disgraceful stack of papers.

Obama’s budget also includes a $1.6 trillion tax hike on families and small businesses, just two months after agreeing to keep taxes at current levels. The President would increase income taxes by $919 billion, hike the death tax by $118 billion, and raise the transportation tax by $435 billion.

How stupid would you feel if you were Erskine Bowles or Alan Simpson or any of the other members of the deficit commission? They were used as cover for a president with no clue what else to do - just call together a commission and let them shoulder the burden of finding a way forward for a while. And, it is obvious he had no intention of actually following the way they suggest.

This was written of Mr. Bowles' reaction to the proposed budget:

Erskine Bowles, the Democratic chairman of the fiscal commission, said the White House budget request goes ‘nowhere near where they will have to go to resolve our fiscal nightmare.’

Suspicions that Team Obama intends to tax and regulate their way to carrying out their ideology were proven correct - the oil and gas drilling industry will be held to billions in new taxes and fees plus a permitting process that will triple in length, further slowing drilling.

Now it is up to the Republican majority in the House of Representatives to do the real work of serious economic reform for recovery. Let's hope they have the stomach for it.

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