Obama’s policies—a cure for an ailing nation or a set-up for extinction?
If your experience has been anything like mine, you’ve been involved in many discussions about the future of America.
During gatherings, topics center on the uncertainty over America’s future.
Questions to this day often revolve around one central theme:
Will Obama’s health, economic, and defense policies drive America to ruin?
Over thirty years ago, as an young adult investor who benefited from the late-seventies Carter-era inflation by buying double-digit interest bearing Certificates of Deposit and trading commodities (especially, precious metals during the Hunt Brothers’ attempt to corner the silver market), I’ve been disappointed with America’s lack of significant action to correct wrongs that have only grown more massive during my adult life.
Instead of paying off our debts, our government–Democrats AND Republicans–have squandered taxpayers’ hard-earned money. (Yes, the “hard-earned” may be cliché, but for most Americans, making a living still requires a lot of hard work!)
In the early eighties while The Great Communicator began his campaign to strengthen our nation’s defense the justification to spend billions of taxpayer dollars was “Trickle Down Theory.” In hindsight, not only was there no trickle, the administration built historic levels of debt. Meanwhile, during the early eighties, the Midwest–the industrial center of our country where “Made in America” reigned supreme–became the rust belt. Midwestern families were barely scraping by while President Reagan’s home state of California was experiencing an unprecedented boom (homes bought for five digits were easily selling for six). Highly qualified candidates with PhDs in the Midwest couldn’t manage to get bank teller positions; even after sending 500 resumes!
One could make the political argument that Reagan’s policies, like Bush’s policies drained the nation of capital. But it’s not as easy as pointing the finger.
What one administration accomplishes appears to be made worse by the next administration, which undoubtedly tries to make things better. Bush tried to make things right after 911. We know now, he and his advisors fell woefully short in anticipating the full scope of the war effort.
Today, we have a young, educated, and energetic president who has taken hold of a great nation and is firing up our engines. His mission is ambitious and historic as it covers a wide swath of much-neglected areas this country needs to act on to become strong once again.
Will Obama’s policies work?
He’s surely taking a gamble with unprecedented debt. Only time will tell as he focuses on …
- improving our nation’s aging infrastructure–something sorely needed. This will create jobs and increase the greatest source of our nation’s revenue–taxes paid by employed workers.
- repairing America’s reputation of strength and dignity by finishing a job started in the previous administration. Although the costs are high, he is taking steps to make our world safer place while restoring America’s reputation in the world.
- improving America’s rank in healthcare around the world. Quality healthcare eludes many Americans and steps are being taken to ensure we improve our mortality rates above that of a third-world country.
Will the Unites States experience inflation?
Yes, as in the seventies, we will experience inflation. Our leveraged dollar will continue to decline until we begin strengthening it by reducing our debt.
Despite what they say, both Democrats and Republicans have failed to manage effectively our nation’s wealth over the years. Catering to special and self-serving interests, our nation’s leaders as a whole have failed as fiduciaries of our nation’s trust and finances.
It is my hope that despite the exuberant growth of our markets during much of 2009, that we have learned the hard lessons and will apply them to keep inflation in the single digits as our economy starts to recover.
According to the economists, reducing our debt to strengthen our dollar and keep inflation in check will require raising interest rates and even taxes.
Like anyone else, I don’t want any more of my money used for foolish spending. We need to focus on reducing our debt and then on reducing our taxes. California raised taxes several years earlier from the ranges of 6% and 7% to 8%. This was a “temporary” measure. This time we received a “temporary” tax increase of 18%. In Los Angeles County, our taxes jumped from 8.25% to 9.75%. This means every Californian pays close to a 10% tax on our taxable purchases! Californians are fleeing the Golden State because they say: It costs too much!
Americans don’t mind a temporary tax to fix something. What we do mind is when our nation’s leaders continue spending our money with no care in the world except to retain office and stature, while driving our country further into debt.
Let’s fix our mess. Then let’s reduce our debt. And then let’s reduce our taxes.
Perhaps, Obama’s policies will be the major levels of domestic action needed to shake our country into sweeping reform. Maybe (and finally) this administration will be the sparkplug to completely restart America’s engine. With any luck at all, we may trade in the old patchwork-policy yet loop-holed-ridden clunker that America was and emerge anew!
As Reagan once said: Much can be achieved if people don’t worry about who [and which party] receives the credit.
Let representatives of the major parties work together. Let us see not a Democrat or a Republican but rather the bond that held us together when our nation was threatened during 9-11. This divisiveness is a waste of energy and resources. The only gain here is media attention on those who strive to focus on our differences. SHAME. We need to move forward as one to make America strong once more. We can only accomplish what we need to do, TOGETHER.
And when America emerges again, watch out world!
Start your engines!
The lean green powerful machine will be wearing red, white, and blue!
Brenda Avadian, MA
Caretaker of The American Dream
Founder, TADWU.us and TheCaregiversVoice.com
Politically (and Registered) Independent