“Over the last decade, we have spent a trillion dollars on war, at a time of rising debt and hard economic times. Now, we must invest in America’s greatest resource—our people. We must unleash innovation that creates new jobs and industries, while living within our means. We must rebuild our infrastructure and find new and clean sources of energy. … America, it is time to focus on nation-building here at home.”—President Obama, June 22, 2011
Wednesday night, President Obama implied the money our country has put into our war in Afghanistan was both misappropriated and a major component of our current debt crisis. He then used his decision to end his surge in troop levels as a justification for a surge in domestic stimulus spending.
It’s true that we spent a trillion dollars over a decade taking out the organization responsible for 9/11 and a dictator who did much, much more than Muammar Gaddafi ever threatened to. It’s also true that Obama spent nearly $1 trillion in a single bill immediately upon taking office. Aside from www.Recovery.gov, what does he have to show for it?
His decision to withdraw one third of our troops in Afghanistan just in time for the summer 2012 campaign season shouldn’t surprise anyone. He’s ignored the dire warnings about our catastrophic debt levels. Why wouldn’t he ignore his generals too?
Thursday morning the Labor Department announced that initial claims for state unemployment benefits rose 9,000 to 429,000 last week. That’s the eleventh week in a row initial claims have been above the 400,000 mark.
The Federal Reserve said Wednesday that our gross domestic product (GDP) will at most rise 2.9% in 2011. It’s still a sunnier projection than most independent economists have given, and it’s the second time the Fed has revised its forecast downward this year.
Obama says he wants to “nation-build” here at home, but so far his policies have only nation-destroyed. Using a troop reduction that will shave a measly $7 billion in expenditures off the national spreadsheet to call for another round of drunken spending and a shot at clean energy is simply dirty politics, straight up.
The Congressional Budget Office released new projections Wednesday showing that by 2021, debt held by the public will exceed 100% of the GDP. It could be upwards of 190% by 2035. At some point within 25 years, we’ll find ourselves in the same boat as Greece—and the lifejackets will all be missing.
To remedy this, Senate Democrats (slogan: budget-free 782 days and counting!) unveiled an economic growth package that includes infrastructure spending, job training programs, research and development, and clean energy incentives. Given that they’re hoping for a different result than the 10.1% unemployment rate achieved by stimulus 1.0, is it safe to assume they forgot to include those things the first time?
It’s getting to the point that when Obama demands we live within our means, I’m starting to think he’s talking about the average unemployment rate during his administration: 9.4%.
With our country deep under water, the national treasure spender was off to a reelection fund-raiser Thursday on Broadway. How appropriate. The showboat presidency drifts on.