August 5, 2008

Obama Flunks Beginning Economics

By Donald G. Mashburn

Many Americans are still wondering just who and what the “real” Barack Obama is. The hazy picture we have of Obama’s past associations and the scary aspects of his emerging economic philosophy lead us to question Obama’s fitness to be president of the United States.

In particular, we have serious questions about the obvious socialistic bent of Obama’s economic positions. His statements indicate that he has little in-depth understanding of economics in the real world, and these create a hazy, out-of-focus picture of the liberal politician who was still in the Illinois state legislature just a bit more than three years ago.

The personal picture includes ugly images of Jeremiah Wright’s hate-filled anti-American, anti-white rants, and Obama’s own description of Wright as pastor, “tutor” and “spiritual advisor” over the 20-year Obama-Wright association.

Obama has since moved away from Wright, but the picture of the real Obama is still out of focus. And it wasn’t helped by the former South Chicago community organizer’s own glib dissembling and shallow non-explanations, and his statement that he could no more disown Wright than he could his own grandmother.

The picture was made murkier by Obama’s efforts to gloss over his associations with unrepentant former terrorist William Ayers, and Obama’s relationship with the money and favor dispenser Tony Rezko.

In the liberal media’s partisan embrace of Obama, these questions have been largely ignored. The same media also have given Obama a free pass on his concept of economics. He has offered few specifics, and the media haven’t pressed for more.

But as some of his ideas of a bigger government and a tax-and-spend economy emerge, we see that underlying his promises of “change” is an almost total lack of understanding of how business and the national economy work. And we now realize that if Obama ever took a course in Beginning Economics, he must have flunked it.

Obama has a glaring lack of experience in the real workaday world most Americans live in. And knowledgeable observers are raising questions about his qualifications to be president of the world’s largest economy, and commander-in-chief of the world’s mightiest military.

His concept of the economy apparently is to increase government spending, tax burdens, and regulation. All this, while talking against free markets and trade.

More disturbing, and scary, is Obama’s economic philosophy as reflected in his comments: “[T]echnology and automation all weaken the position of workers, … and a strong government hand is needed to assure that wealth is distributed more equitably.”

That sounds more like Friedrich Engels or Karl Marx, instead of a candidate for president of the United States. The statement puts Obama on the far left of the economic spectrum and suggests he prefers an outright socialistic system of government over the free enterprise system that made this country great.

But how could he understand the relationship between the economy and jobs, and government policies on taxes and regulation? How could a Southside Chicago lawyer working as a community organizer learn about the workings of business and the outside economic world?

Given the narrow scope of his civil rights lawyering on the Southside of Chicago, and his short time in the Senate, no one could expect Obama to have learned much about business, the national economy, or decision-making at a high level.

His stand on technology and automation is right in line with that of Karl Marx. And Obama’s remark about a strong government being needed to “assure that wealth is distributed more equitably,” is socialistic on its face.

Whose wealth is he talking about? It’s not the government’s wealth! And in a free enterprise system, it’s not the government’s job to redistribute the wealth of its citizens.

Obama’s remarks regarding jobs, technology, and the economy show he lacks understanding of traditional American values, and the capabilities of American workers. Nor does he understand how business works and how jobs get created.

He has no experience with the concept that jobs are created when workers produce things that meet a need. Or that they’re the result of ideas and efforts of individuals – not the state.

Obama apparently does not understand the economics of a free enterprise system, and the presidency of the world’s largest economy is not the place to begin learning.

Democrats Don’t Understand Supply and Demand

by Peter W. Wright

The conclusion is inescapable: the Democrats cannot understand the most basic law of economics, the law of supply and demand. Faced with spiraling fuel costs and a demand to act, the Democrat-controlled Congress cannot or will not act.

Nancy Pelosi claims the idea to drill in protected coastal areas is a “hoax” and is “echoing the demands of big oil.” Ms. Pelosi states a plan to release the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to consumers, and urges oil companies to drill where there’s no oil (my interpretation, based on fact).

Also, Ms. Pelosi wants to leave on her month long vacation without having a vote on plans to increase supply and decrease price. And she claims to be for us.

Back in my formative years, my classmates and I studied subjects like western civilization. This included reading Greek plays and learning about a literary device known as Deus Ex Machina, or God from the Machine. The idea was that the playwright would create a set of impossible circumstances, and then at the end of the play, the situation would be resolved as if by an act of God.

This technique now is the Democrats’ sole hope for progress. Either they hope for some magic technology to save us from, well, circumstances, or they propose solutions that anyone with half a wit would know will not produce the desired result. The conclusion must be that the Democrat “leadership” is either clueless, or they have an ulterior motive. The fact is they barricade the way to a better, safer and more competitive America.

Here’s a guide to the Democrat platform: “We should have a dialogue with the sponsors of terrorism.” How’s that going to work out? “Please stop cutting off our heads.” “No, our religious book exhorts us to cut off your heads.”

Or how about this: The leader of a sovereign nation known to be a sponsor of terrorism which is in a de facto war with us in a neighboring country states his intention to blow Israel and the U.S. off the face of the earth, and the Democrats’ response is, “They’re just kidding.”

“We must raise taxes so the rich pay their fair share.” Well, darn. How has that worked in the past? All data indicate lower taxes increases government receipts and stimulates the economy. Everyone benefits. Increasing taxes reduces receipts and chokes the economy. This is no secret. Why act in a non-productive way?

“It will take ten years to get the first barrel of oil” from drilling on the continental shelf or in ANWR. This is either ignorant or a lie. You be the judge. Oil executives say three to six years depending on the location.

“We have to have fair health care for everyone.” Who doesn’t have health care? No one is turned away in the U.S., regardless of ability to pay. So, you want to have the people who stole our Social Security funds to set up national health care?

People come from all over the world to the U.S. to escape their socialized medicine at home. What don’t the Democrats understand?

“We never should have invaded Iraq.” Why not? Is it OK to let a dictator feed his soccer team to a meat grinder? “Saddam didn’t have weapons of mass destruction.” If gassing the Kurds wasn’t enough, what about the 500 tons of yellow cake uranium we shipped out of Iraq recently? The same yellowcake the Democrat Joseph Wilson said did not exist? Are you all completely unable to understand consequences?

The list goes on and on. William Shakespeare’s “thou dost protest too much” sheds light on Ms. Pelosi and her party’s constant accusations of President Bush and Vice President Cheney as acting to serve “Big Oil,” regardless of whether or not there actually is a “Big Oil.”

Note to Democrats: Increasing supply, or even to appear to be increasing supply, reduces prices. An added benefit is reducing the money we send to people who swear they are our enemies. Either you are for us, or you are against us. Thank you for making your position clear.

Peter W. Wright is a contributor to Right Side News,

Editor’s Note: The views and opinions of contributors are their own, and are not necessarily those of Sage Commentary.