Obama’s Economic Policy: Shovels Needed

President Obama and two goons on his “Jobs Council” board got one hell of a laugh out of the president’s, “Shovel-ready was not as shovel-ready as we expected” comment on Monday. You can watch the big yukyuk here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sy8jlsAdN-k though I must warn that overexposure to this bit of video may result in unbridled rage.

It’s interesting to me that Obama didn’t simply reference his comments from his Oct 2010 interview with The New York Times in which he admitted, “there’s no such thing as shovel-ready projects when it comes to public works.” The president’s 2010 admission came after months of campaigning to raise support for his stimulus plan during which so-called shovel-ready jobs in the public sector were billed as the lifeline that would save the economy. The 2010 admission also made it clear that Obama’s promises of jobs resulting from his massive stimulus plan were nothing more than empty claims designed to garner support for the bill. If this were not the case one might think he would have looked into the existence of said jobs before promising them to America’s unemployed.  

Obama made no mention of his 2010 admission this past Monday. Instead, he’s right back to at least implying that shovel-ready public sector jobs are a reality and that the administration made a mere miscalculation in the readiness of the projects. As the video shows it was absolutely hilarious.

It’s becoming quite clear that Obama is simply not concerned with the US economy. Time and time again Obama has shown that he’s only concerned with the economy in as much as he needs to keep up appearances in order to keep the politically ignorant behind him. Many claim that Obama simply doesn’t know how to tackle the nation’s economic issues. I can’t give Obama that benefit of the doubt as I’m a “big picture” type of person.

In looking at the “big picture” here it may be worth mentioning that no one in their right mind expects the president to understand all the inner workings of every aspect of governing the nation. As ridiculously complicated as we’ve allowed our system to become, that individual will never exist. What America does expect is a leader who will appoint experienced, competent council chairs who will use their expertise to brief and advise the president. So far in the economic column Obama has all zeros.

Just Monday Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers chairman Austan Goolsbee announced he would be following in his predecessor’s footsteps and leave his position to return to teaching. Goolsbee’s announcement was just the latest of this administration’s economic advisors to resign. Now either these advisors and in most cases lifelong friends of Obama, disagree with the direction Obama’s economic policies are taking us or they simply reach a point at which they accept the fact that their teaching careers have not prepared them for their appointment. Either way the failure is Obama’s. Rather than handing out appointments to those who helped him get elected he should be focusing on the job he was elected to do. He should be seeking BUSINESS experienced, dedicated individuals to focus on the major economic issues that affect the stability of the nation. At this point I think it’s safe to say he should be looking for some new school of thought in this area as the current approach is not working. Instead, we’re almost guaranteed more of the same with economic academics who have never had to meet a payroll or have any relevent economic experience. As always, our president is concerning himself with political paybacks and his enormously expensive agenda.

Another part of “the big picture” is Obama’s actions before, during and after the passing of his stimulus plan. Leading up to the vote Obama attempted to openly purchase support for the stimulus with sweetheart deals for congressional fence sitters. This whole thing was astounding to me as I felt as if I were witnessing a felony being committed and no one cared. Obama also attempted to scare the country into supporting his plan claiming on the day of the vote that if the package were not passed that day the world would see an economic apocalypse by the following week. Well fortunately we averted total collapse by passing the bill with NO republican support. However, who can forget the odd behavior of our president as immediately following the vote he took off for a three-day weekend without even sticking around long enough to sign the legislation. Was Obama testing the financial gods or did he know we actually had a few more days until economic armageddon? Or, was it a big lie he used to help finance his agenda?

And while we’re on the subject, what about ZERO bipartisan support on Obama’s stimulus? It’s not unlike most jobs and economic policy legislation we’ve seen kicked around the halls of congress the past couple of years. Democrats are taking advantage of their radically leftist president and their Senate majority to ensure all their utopian Euro-socialist policies are adopted. This leaves us in a situation where basically only one angel of attack has been explored in tackling the economy. Despite this fact and after two and a half years, the president and congressional Democrats seem unwilling to admit their failure and entertain the possibility of another course of action. One in which out of control federal spending is leashed and drastically reduced accompanied with growth stimulating tax reductions.

In examining “the big picture” you must also consider where all of Obama’s stimulus spending is actually going. Unfortunately as is the case with so many things created in Washington, I doubt there’s a man or woman alive who can account for all of the federal spending tied to economic stimulation. However, a quick search of stimulus spending returns enough results to explain why there were no jobs created. Quite simply, job creation was not the intent.

There was the $6 billion slated to the “green” conversion of federal buildings. Another $2 billion for an Illinois power plant that the Department of Energy had defunded the previous year stating that the near-zero emissions coal plant was inefficient. There was another billion dumped into the 2010 census which was already projected to come in at $3 billion over budget. There were stimulus dollars for swine odor research in Iowa, a tunnel under a Florida highway for turtle and gator crossing and studies on the methane emissions of dairy cows. Bill Gates and Microsoft received $11 million to build a bridge linking two sections of their Seattle campus. Hollywood movie producers received nearly $250 million in tax breaks to buy film. We paid for a Wake Forrest University Baptist Medical Center study called “Monkeys getting high for science”, as well as a study on the labor distributions within ant colonies. There was stimulus money for signs making motorists aware that the construction they’re driving through was paid for by the stimulus as well as new mile markers to replace metric markers that had been installed in anticipation of a national conversion to the metric system that never happened. We paid for new windows in a Mount St. Helen’s welcome center that has been empty for years and for which no plans have been made to reopen. There was $6.5 million given to a debris removal contractor that was at the time the focus of three federal probes for “questionable billing” practices as well as another $1.2 million to research marketing video games to the elderly. There was the $7.3 million that went to two San Antonio fire stations for which the city had the money and had even hired a contractor prior to the stimulus. After the stimulus the project was significantly delayed resulting in layoffs with the contractor hired before the stimulus and increasing the cost of the project by over $2 million.

The list literally goes on and on with nothing in sight that one might consider stimulating to the economy or conducive to job creation. Honestly when one looks at where Obama’s stimulus was spent, how it was spent and when it was spent, it’s hard to find one stimulus recipient that could have possibly brought about the end of the financial world as we know it had they not received their Obama-bucks. It’s even harder to find a recipient that made any positive effect to the economy with their free money.

If you look at Obama’s economic apathy as he jets down to Puerto Rico to stage a show for Puerto Rican American voters and jokes about his broken promises, it’s clear this man couldn’t care less what the American economy does as long as he remains in a position to continue spending us into economic collapse. All this while bringing us ever closer to that utopian “global level playing field” which is in fact Obama’s agenda.    

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