THIS WEEK'S INTRODUCTORY EDITORIAL COMMENT: "It's
the economy, stupid!" was the political slogan which focused attention on
Bill Clinton in his presidential campaign, brought him votes and made him the
president. Now, some 18 years after that election, beyond all of our other
problems, the need for that slogan again confronts us; "It's still the economy,"
and the word "stupid" still applies -- this administration just doesn't get it.
Our apprentice president and his equally incompetent treasury secretary are
more dedicated to spending than to wisely managing our nation's economy.
Even Susan Estrich, devout Obama loyalist, said last week: "Absent a major
war, it's always the economy, stupid." In 1816, Founding Father Thomas
Jefferson spoke about government spending and long term indebtedness:
"The principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name
of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale." Those words of
wisdom should be observed by our government leaders in the budget battles
now going on in Washington. But the principles upon which this nation was
founded seem to be forgotten or ignored by an administration imposing a "tax
and spend" theory of government on the American people. We'll have more to
say on on this subject in today's posting, which follows.
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A DEPARTURE FROM TRADITIONAL MORAL VALUES,
AND AN ECONOMY RAMPANT AND OUT OF CONTROL;
IS THIS WHAT WE WANT FOR AMERICA?
Last week we went through nail-biting, round the clock days of speculation
as to whether the government would be shut down when another temporary
budget-fix expired. And within less than an hour of the deadline, yet another
temporary patch was agreed upon, and those hundrds of thousand "non-
essential" government employees were not suspended, and the national parks
stayed open for tourists -- all hailed by Mr. Obama as a great achievement.
The debate, and the ultimate compromise decision, embodied two important
factors: moral issues and the economy. President Obama has been clear on
moral issues, throughout his campaign and during his two years in office: he
has sided with the homosexuals on the issue of gay "marriage," and intends
to repeal DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act. And he is equally firm on the
abortion issue, and has drawn a line in cement, not in sand, that federal funds
will not be with-held from Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion
provider. Earlier, House Speaker John Boehner expressed his views on this
issue: "When human life takes a back seat to other priorities - personal
comforts, economics - freedom is diminished...we have a moral
obligation to defend the defenseless. And nothing is more defenseless,
or more innocent, or more pure, than an unborn baby...there is no cause
more noble than the defense of human life. There is no mission more
critical. No debate more urgent." Speaking to this point, Randall Terry, a
Democrat candidate for president, said: "Planned Parenthood is the single
largest killer of unborn babies in America. President Obama is the most
powerful supporter of child killing in the Western Hemisphere. Let us
pray that Mr. Boehner has the moral compass and the courage to obey
his own words and protect the unborn from the forces of evil. God is
watching him ...and so are we." In the harsh partisan debate on the issue,
Senate Majority Leader Reid, and former House Speaker Pelosi, falsely
tried to turn this moral issue into an attack on women's health.
But the frontal issue is the economy, and the facts are overwhelming.
The focus of the debate on the economy is on the national debt. A basic fact
is that the largest one year increase in the national debt in the history of our
nation occurred during the first year of he Obama presidency. Beyond that,
the total picture is that under Obama, the debt has grown from $10.7 trillion
to $14.6 trillion, and current Obama administration projections indicate that
the debt will increase by $6.5 trillion during Obama's first term. At the end
of 2008, under George Bush, the national debt stood at 63% of our Gross
Domestic Product (GDP). Today it is at 97% -- and headed higher.
And there is the matter of the national debt ceiling, currently at $14.28 trillion.
It is projected that in next month -- May -- the debt will be at $14.3 trillion.
Naturally, Mr. Obama wants the debt ceiling lifted -- it has, in fact, been
adjusted some 40 times since 1980. The Republican view is not to raise the
debt ceiling without some meaningful reductions in spending.
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Let's pause right here and try to understand how big a trillion really is.
The word "trillion" introduces a new dimension in financial disccussions. Try
entering it into your handy calculator. It consists of a number -- use a 1 --
followed by 12 zeros. Or look at it this way: a second is a very small measure
of time. So small that there are 60 of them in just 1 minute. Then consider this
fact that a million seconds would pass in 12 days. Then consider that a billion
seconds would pass in 31 years. Now consider that it would take 31,688
years for a trillion seconds to pass. Relate those statistics to dollars and you
are talking about a lot of money! For one further step toward understanding
just how big a trillion really is, use this link to see an important 3 minute video:
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As for the public's views on the economy -- the latest Rasmussen poll shows
that 53% expect the economy to get worse, while 25% expect it to get better,
with 74% feeling we are going in the wrong direction, and 24% thinking we
are on the right track. And the most recent Pew Research Report shows that
59% disapprove of the way Obama is handling the economy.
To wrap up this discussion, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan
(R-Wis.), who is responsible for drafting the House budget proposals, said:
“It all comes down to this: Either you fix this problem now where you
can guarantee people who’ve already organized their lives around
these programs get what they have coming to them -- or you pick the
President’s path, which is do nothing, punt, duck, kick the can down
the road, and then we have a debt crisis and then its pain for everybody.”