Line-by-line Deconstruction of the Op-ed Obama Wrote in This Morning's Washington PostShare
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The Action Americans Need
By Barack Obama
Thursday, February 5, 2009; A17
By now, it's clear to everyone that we have inherited an economic crisis as deep and dire as any since the days of the Great Depression. ME (IN CAPS): THE DATA doesn’t support this claim; interest, inflation, unemployment, GPD growth, were not the same back then. This crises is really unlike any we’ve ever seen. Mortgage-backed securities didn’t even exist as they do today, Fannie and Freddie weren‘t even unviable tissue masses back then.
POTUS: Millions of jobs that Americans relied on just a year ago are gone; millions more of the nest eggs families worked so hard to build have vanished. People everywhere are worried about what tomorrow will bring. SO LET‘S EXPLOIT THIS CRISES BY MAKING A WISHLIST OF LIBERAL SPECIAL INTERESTS FROM THE LAST 30 YEARS, THROW IN SOME PHONY TAX CUTS AND TITLE IT A STIMULUS PACKAGE? -Seriously folks, if that’s what this bill really is, wouldn’t you be mad to find out about it later after they picked your pocket to pay for it? LEARN THE FACTS.
What Americans expect from Washington is action that matches the urgency they feel in their daily lives -- action that's swift, bold and wise enough for us to climb out of this crisis. IF YOU CAN ONLY CHOOSE ONE OF THE THREE -SWIFT, BOLD OR WISE- WHICH IS BEST? WHAT’S THAT LINE ABOUT FOOLS RUSH IN?
Because each day we wait to begin the work of turning our economy around, more people lose their jobs, their savings and their homes. And if nothing is done, this recession might linger for years. AND IF THE GOVERNMENT DOES NOTHING THIS RECESSION MIGHT ALSO LINGER FOR YEARS.
Our economy will lose 5 million more jobs. ABSOLUTELY A MADE UP NUMBER PULLED FROM THIN AIR.HASN”T HE ADJUSTED THIS NUMBER UP IN THE SAME PROPORTION TO HOW MUCH THE SUPPORT OF THIS BILL HAS GONE DOWN. Unemployment will approach double digits. Our nation will sink deeper into a crisis that, at some point, we may not be able to reverse. WHAT DOES THIS ACTUALLY MEAN? EVERYTHING WILL BECOME WORTHLESS? THE END OF AMERICA? THAT’S WHAT WILL HAPPEN IF HIS WISHLIST DOESN‘T GET PASSED?
That's why I feel such a sense of urgency about the recovery plan before Congress. With it, we will create or save more than 3 million jobs over the next two years, WHICH IS IT; CREATE OR SAVE? -OR IS THIS JUST ANOTHER NUMBER OUT OF THIN AIR? that’s audacity. Here in Michigan we have a governor who has made the same types of job creation promises. Guess how we’re doing? provide immediate tax relief to 95 percent of American workers, WORKERS? WHY DO I GET THE FEELING YOU DON“T THINK PEOPLE EARNING MORE THAN $100,000K WORK? -AND THAT SOME OF THAT TAX RELIEF IS REALLY JUST CUTTING CHECKS TO FOLKS WHO DON”T PAY ANY TAX ALREADY? …ignite spending by businesses and consumers alike, and take steps to strengthen our country for years to come. WHAT IS WRONG WITH HAVING A BILL THAT DOES ONLY THAT? WHAT”S WRONG WITH WAITING ON YOUR WISH LIST AND HAVING YOUR IDEOLOGICAL SPENDING PROPOSALS GO THROUGH THE REGULAR LEGISLATIVE PROCESS? WHY STUFF THEM IN ONE HURRIED BILL AND CALL IT STIMULUS?
This plan is more than a prescription for short-term spending -- it's a strategy for America's long-term growth and opportunity in areas such as renewable energy, health care and education.
LET ME take this last sentence a little at a time;
This plan is more than a prescription for short-term spending -- it's a strategy for America's long-term growth IS THIS A CLEVER WAY OF SAYING THAT THIS ISN”T JUST A ONE-TIME SPENDING BILL AND THAT SOME OF THESE ITEMS ARE BEING BUILT INTO THE ANNUAL BASELINE? -THAT THIS TRILLION DOLLARS IS BEING WRITTEN TO REPEAT IN FUTURE BUDGETS? and opportunity in areas such as renewable energy, WAIT A MINUTE, IS THIS A STIMULUS OR AN ENERGY BILL? health care IS THIS A HEALTH CARE BILL? WITH A LITTLE SOCIALISM SNUCK IN? and education. OR IS THIS AN EDUCATION BILL THAT THROWS EVEN MORE MONEY IN AN EDUCATION SYSTEM THAT GREW DRAMATICALLY UNDER NCLB?
And it's a strategy that will be implemented with unprecedented transparency and accountability, UNPRECEDENTED TRANSPARENCY?!?!?!? THEN WHY ARE YOU TRYING TO PASS IT UNDER THE COVER OF DARKNESS JUST AS THE ACCOUNTING DETAILS ARE STARTING TO SEE THE LIGHT OF DAY?
so Americans know where their tax dollars are going and how they are being spent. HOW BOUT LETTING US?
In recent days, there have been misguided criticisms of this plan that echo the failed theories that helped lead us into this crisis -HERE’S HIS SAME ARGUMENT; ANYONE OPPOSES HIM ARE MISGUIDED BASED ON FLAWED THEORY. WHAT FINANCIAL CRISES WAS EVER SOLVED WITH PORK AND KICKBACKS? - the notion that tax cuts alone will solve all our problems; WHO SAYS THAT? that we can meet our enormous tests with half-steps and piecemeal measures; OR THAT? that we can ignore fundamental challenges such as energy independence ENERGY INDEPENDENCE ISN’T CENTRAL TO STIMULUS, IS IT? WE’VE HAD RECESSIONS WHEN WE WERE ENERGY INDEPENDENT? and the high cost of health care and still expect our economy and our country to thrive. WHY SINGLE OUT HEALTH CARE COSTS? WHY NOT TARGET ALL COSTS?
I reject these theories, and so did the American people when they went to the polls in November and voted resoundingly for change. UM, MR. PRESIDENT. WHEN IN YOUR CAMPAIGN DID YOU SAY YOU WERE GOING TO CRAM ALL OF YOUR SPENDING PLANS INTO ONE TRILLION DOLLAR BILL RUSHED THROUGH AND FULL OF PORK AND KICKBACKS TO SPECIAL INTERESTS? ? They know that we have tried it those ways for too long. SO WE SHOULD GIVE MORE MONEY TO PEOPLE WHO BOUGHT MORE HOUSE THAN THEY CAN AFFORD, And because we have, our health-care costs still rise faster than inflation. Our dependence on foreign oil still threatens our economy and our security. Our children still study in schools that put them at a disadvantage. We've seen the tragic consequences when our bridges crumble and our levees fail. COME ON, PEOPLE. AN ENTIRE PLATFORM CRAMMED INTO ONE BILL? NO PRESIDENT HAS EVER BEEN SO AUDACIOUS!!!
THE NEXT FOUR PARAGRAPHS ARE LIKE A SLEAZY USED CAR SALESMAN TRYING TO GET YOU TO BUY TONIGHT WHEN YOU KNOW YOU OUGHTA SLEEP ON IT.
Every day, our economy gets sicker -- and the time for a remedy that puts Americans back to work, jump-starts our economy and invests in lasting growth is now.
NOW is the time to protect health insurance for the more than 8 million Americans at risk of losing their coverage and to computerize the health-care records of every American within five years, saving billions of dollars and countless lives in the process.
NOW is the time to save billions by making 2 million homes and 75 percent of federal buildings more energy-efficient, and to double our capacity to generate alternative sources of energy within three years.
NOW is the time to give our children every advantage they need to compete by upgrading 10,000 schools with state-of-the-art classrooms, libraries and labs; by training our teachers in math and science; and by bringing the dream of a college education within reach for millions of Americans.
And NOW is the time to create the jobs that remake America for the 21st century by rebuilding aging roads, bridges and levees; designing a smart electrical grid; and connecting every corner of the country to the information superhighway.
ARE YOU PEOPLE SEEING WHAT HE’S DOING?!?! He’s trying to cram a whole year’s worth of initiatives into one bill in his first month? THIS IS MADNESS!
These are the actions Americans expect us to take without delay. They're patient enough to know that our economic recovery will be measured in years, not months. But they have no patience for the same old partisan gridlock that stands in the way of action while our economy continues to slide. WE WON! GIMME MY GOODIES!!!
So we have a choice to make. We can once again let Washington's bad habits stand in the way of progress. Or we can pull together and say that in America, our destiny isn't written for us but by us. WHAT? We can place good ideas ahead of old ideological battles, and a sense of purpose above the same narrow partisanship. THEN WHY AREN’T SOME OF THE OTHER IDEOLOGICAL ITEMS IN THIS BILL? WHY IS IT ALL LIBERALISM?
We can act boldly to turn crisis into opportunity and, together, write the next great chapter in our history and meet the test of our time. WELL, ISN"T THAT SPECIAL?
The writer is president of the United States.