The Financial Case For Barack Obama
Well, this is interesting. The United States election day is tomorrow, although many states have had early voting (I’d never heard of that before) so some votes have already been cast. It seems that even with the great divide in positions between Democrats and Republicans, liberals and conservatives, when all is said and done people are saying they’re basing their opinions on the economy and who they believe can do the most good at “turning things around.”
Of course that’s a misnomer because folks, things have already been turned around. I actually wrote about it almost 2 months ago here in a post titled 5 Reasons America Is Better Off Now That 4 Years Ago. That post got very little response, even though I shared it in multiple places. It seems that there are short memories of just how bad things were when President Obama took office.
In the spirit of national media and people deciding (or not, as my local newspaper, the Syracuse Post Standard wussed out on making a decision) who they support or recommend for president, and since this site does discuss financial news and commentary, I’ve decided that Top Finance Blog needed to take a position and give an endorsement. It is in that vein that Top Finance Blog endorses President Barack Obama for another 4 year term as president. And now, let’s talk about why, only using financial issues in the discussion.
First, a quick highlight on my previous post, since it seems it didn’t get much viewership the first time around; here are the 6 points (the article said 5 but in the article I acknowledged there was a 6th point), as quickly and easily as I can denote them:
1. Stopped Job Losses
2. Stopped unemployment from falling and got it back up to where it was when he took office
3. Bank closures stemmed
4. Housing market is in recovery
5. Health care for “all”
6. Stock market is booming
You can read the post at the link above if you want more details on all of these. Suffice it to say, I thought those were pertinent enough.
A brilliant move was deciding to save the automobile industry and, though I give this one grudgingly, the banking system. The other candidate said that he’d have let those auto companies fail; now he’s claiming credit for their turnaround. I think we know bull when we see it. As for the banks, I think they got themselves into major problems but I also believe that since the banks were all international conglomerates that if we’d let them fail we’d have crushed the world economy, and in the tenuous state it’s still in that would have been disastrous.
It was the Obama Administration that stepped in and basically stopped the criminal robo-signing processes of banks in trying to push through as many foreclosures as possible during the worst of the housing crisis, and it was that same administration that was able to obtain forgiveness and work on pushing through legislation so that most people had a chance to renegotiate the terms of their mortgages and save their homes. It wasn’t perfect, but the alternative would have crushed this country; how many more homeless did we need?
The credit card industry was out of control, and under the Obama Administration’s leadership, new legislation was pushed through to bring protections to consumers. When the banks tried an end around with fees even more legislation shut that down.
People love to say that the deficit grew at record numbers under President Obama, without giving him credit for spending less than any president in history, with only a 2.3% increase in spending during his 4 years in office.
The complaint is that he wants to raise taxes on everyone and that part might be true in some fashion. We all now know that if you don’t have health care coverage you’re going to pay a tax penalty, but it’s really not all that much money if you decide not to have coverage. However, the majority of us don’t have households of more than $250,000 a year in income and let’s be truthful with ourselves, most of the people he’s trying to raise taxes on aren’t creating jobs to begin with, which is the argument against raising taxes.
If we didn’t have major corporations getting refunds on their taxes when they make billions and millionaires paying less of a percentage of taxes than the average American, some of our deficit issues might have already been solved. It’s amazing that the rich have been able to convince to many wannabes that if they pay more taxes it’s going to hurt “the common man”; President Truman used to call that “the big lie”.
Finally, let’s talk war and its financial implications. The President brought the troops back from Iraq and has said troops will come back from Afghanistan in 2014. That will save a lot of money and help the economy greatly. His opponent has said we pulled out of Iraq too soon and won’t give a commitment on whether or when we should pull out of Afghanistan. Frankly, for someone who believes the U.S. should only be concerned about itself that doesn’t sound all that fiscally responsible.
Also, as someone who made his money killing jobs rather than creating them, someone whose home state, the one he was governor of, and the one that has the highest population of people with same same religion as his not have the state’s largest newspaper endorsing him, it’s incredible that so many have been conned into thinking that he’s the better financial choice for America.
I think President Barack Obama has done what he could in the face of crushing odds and drastic opposition to anything he’s proposed and succeeded mightily. No, it’s not perfect, and things could be better. But one man alone can’t consistently pull off miracles; omnipotence isn’t happening here If former President Bush II got four more years by putting us in two wars and killing the surplus, President Obama deserves 4 more years for accomplishing what he did.
And there you are; let the debate begin… unless you’re not voting, in which case you don’t get a say in the matter. So please get out and vote; tomorrow, back to our regularly scheduled program.