Tuesday, December 07, 2010

President Obama: Man of the People? Captive of the Ruling Elite? Political Genius? Or All Three?

After President Bush tripled the size of federal government, shredded the Constitution, our civil liberties, our global reputation, and millions of lives, worldwide, Americans finally had enough.

Then, seemingly out of nowhere, Barack Obama, almost a messiah-like figure, emerged on the scene, and surprisingly, without too much trouble from the GOP, won the election. It seemed too good to be true.

On the one hand, the wars continue, the secrecy continues, the lies continue, the torture continues, Wall Street continues to triumph, the rich continue to get richer... and now President Obama gave into the GOP's blatant terror tactics and agreed to extend the Bush-era tax cuts for two more years. Why? In order to prevent the GOP from forcing a tax increase on all income levels and to keep them from preventing the extension of jobless benefits. So, even though the deal still has to be approved by the House and Senate, President Obama gave into the little terrorists despite the fact that 60% of Americans do not want tax cuts extended for those making over $250,000 per year.

However, on the other hand, what if President Obama decided to fight the GOP?  More than likely, he would not have won the concessions from the GOP that are extraordinarily important to the people suffering right now.
As part of the deal, expiring unemployment benefits for millions of Americans will be extended for 13 months. Just as importantly, there is now a real prospect that the Senate will act on repeal of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy and ratification of the START treaty before this month's lame duck session ends.
There's also a longer term calculation at work. Note that the deal also includes a reduction in the Social Security payroll tax and an expansion of the earned income tax credit and the college tuition tax credit. This is on top of the extension in unemployment benefits. These measures have one thing in common: They are stimulative in nature. (So, for that matter, is the fact that middle class Americans won't face a tax hike -- something that would have happened had Obama balked at the deal and played a long-term game of chicken with the GOP).

Below Senator Al Franken gives a great speech.  During the speech he said that the IRS published a study analyzing the tax returns of the wealthiest 400 Americans. As their "income rose an average of $81 million -- in a single year", they paid an average effective tax rate of little over 16%.


Anonymous,  01:38  

You forgot weak and stupid.

Roth's stepchild 15:51  

I understand why people see Obama as weak, but I think that's the farthest thing from the truth. And I KNOW he is not stupid. I've decided to remain very skeptical, but also to give Obama the benefit of the doubt. I believe he is doing what he thinks is in the best interest of the country, right or wrong, considering his limited options...and they are limited considering the united front of the GOP and their terrorist demands.

If anything, President Obama is proving his strength when he gives into the GOP because he KNOWS that people will see that as weak, yet he does it anyway because he really believes that's better than fighting the GOP and ending up with NOTHING, therefore making even more people suffer.

cubby,  14:24  

Dude, Obama is worse than Bush. He's the one turning our country into a police state

Anonymous,  15:02  

Obama's so hot in that picture.

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