Posted by Joseph Knippenberg
You can ready my (barely) two cents’ worth contribution to the discussion here.
Joe: Amen to your comments. And the disaffected social-values opposition (with or without a now-chastened Doug Kmiec?) are being joined by the "Tea Party" opponents of spend-and-SPEND-and-tax. Look for Obama's revenue projections to fall short - and actual deficits increase - as wealth-creating (read: tax paying) entrepreneurs refuse to feed the beast. And we all DO remember that even the $1.75Tril deficit is a fiction, because the Feds alone have the power to declare borrowed money (in the form of transfers from the Social Security Trust Fund) "revenue". That same financial reporting gimmickry would land the CEO and CFO of a publicly-traded company in the pokey for violating Sarbanes-Oxley. The real planned deficit is easily north of $2Tril, and will climb.
To give the devil his due: The Obama administration at least put the Iraq and Afghanistan war costs IN the budget, which the Bush administration never did. Tip o' the hat to Obama for doing *that* right.
Joe's comments are fine, even if more focused on the social issues than most Americans, even the social conservative ones, are right now. But look at the other comments by these political scientists...wow...Prof. Gillespie has a sensible thing or two to say, but even from her comment one catches the distinct whiff of DENIAL, and in the other comments, it's overpowering.
No president would have handled a transition in such a situation as Obama's had thrust upon him without some shakiness and difficulty, but the signs of his first fifty days really are frightening in terms of competence and (for conservatives and non-squishy moderates) in terms of his true ideological colors/blinders. The latter is not exactly a surprise, however.
"Frightening" is the word.
Obama is counting on the economy to excuse or justify all his lurches to the left and to compel his erstwhile supporters to overlook or swallow them. If he were competent in handling the economy, they (unfortunately) might. But I (as yet) see little evidence of competence, though his people will work hard to present the more or less ordinary movements of the economic cycle as evidence of that.
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