This is something many of us predicted. All of a sudden Obama declares the economy is not as dire as feared. I just thought he would wait long enough to believably give credit to the stimulus bill.
Confronting misgivings, even in his own party, President Barack Obama mounted a stout defense of his blueprint to overhaul the economy Thursday, declaring the national crisis is “not as bad as we think” and his plans will speed recovery.
Challenged to provide encouragement as the nation’s “confidence builder in chief,” Obama said Americans shouldn’t be whipsawed by bursts of either bad or good news and he was “highly optimistic” about the long term.
The president’s proposals for major health care, energy and education changes in the midst of economic hard times faced skepticism from both Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill, as senators questioned his budget outlook and the deficits it envisions in the middle of the next decade.
But Obama, speaking to top executives of the Business Roundtable, expressed an optimistic vision and called for patience.
Richard Parsons, chairman of beleaguered Citigroup Inc., asked if Obama could offer some help in a national battle “between confidence and fear.”
“A smidgen of good news and suddenly everything is doing great. A little bit of bad news and ooohh , we’re down on the dumps,” Obama said. “And I am obviously an object of this constantly varying assessment. I am the object in chief of this varying assessment.”
“I don’t think things are ever as good as they say, or ever as bad as they say,” Obama added. “Things two years ago were not as good as we thought because there were a lot of underlying weaknesses in the economy. They’re not as bad as we think they are now.” So after declaring a catastrophe that we might never be able to recover from, and driving the market down to basement levels, and scaring the public into swallowing a record spendulus bill that will cost their children and grandchildren dearly and accepting government takeover of additional parts of the private sector he gets all Emily Litella on us. “Never mind.”
Most of us knew exactly what was going on. He talked down the economy and talked up the crisis for several reasons:
— to create an atmosphere that would allow the spendulus bill to be passed
— to build up the crisis to fever pitch so that it could fully be taken advantage of in an effort to pass more big government legislation like healthcare
— to create the impression that the economy is absolutely as bad as it could possibly be so that when any progress was seen it would be viewed as a recovery in comparison and that any recovery would be hailed as nothing short of miraculous, no matter how anemic
This strategy was calculated. It was deceitful. It was manipulative. It was opportunistic. It was un-presidential. And unless tax paying American citizens speak up it will be effective. The media that downplayed, and sometimes just completely ignored, good economic news during the Bush years, will do the opposite for the Obamessiah. I don’t know if Americans will fall for it or not. I don’t think the American people are that stupid, but I worry that they may be that uninformed and uninterested.
The Republicans who stood in unity and opposition to the Generational Theft Act of 2009 (aka Spendulus) are to be applauded. The three senators who drank the Obama Kool Aid can now officially be recognized as the suckers they are. And just think, the Obama administration did all this in less than two months in office and still had time to insult our closest ally. I don’t even want to contemplate what might happen over the next two to four years. I guess it all depends on whether or not people realize they’ve been duped in time.
Update: I thought I would get a lot of comments from Obama followers questioning my theory that Obama was happy to run the economy into the ground because that way anything in comparison would look like a big improvement. Instead I got a commenter giving me a link to a blog post which proves my point better than anything I could ever say. From the blog post by “OD.”
On March 3rd Obama suggested that the stocks may be undervalued right now and present a good buying opportunity. If the Republicans had only stopped whining and listening to Jim Cramer and instead listened to Obama they could’ve made some money:
Date S&P 500 Dow
March 3, 2008 696.33 6,726.02
March 12, 2008 750.74 7,170.06
If only they listened, the Republicans could’ve been 6% richer based on the Dow or almost 8% based on the S&P.
Where is the Republican whining now ?
I am not familiar with this blog, but I think the post was intended as stated, rather than as satire or parody. I am not surprised by it, but am surprised they are openly admitting it. So, no one should have complained when the Dow Jones Industrial went from 9635 to 6569 since November 4 when Obama was elected. That was a 32% loss, but since Obama was not yet in office we can just look at what has happened since January 20th. In less than 2 months the Dow went from 8281 to 6569 — over a 20% loss. No one should have complained about that either though because in the past week the Dow regained some of that. When you hit rock bottom there is no place to go but up. Run the economy into the ground then tell everyone when the Dow regains a bit that they should be happy. They shouldn’t complain that it went from 8281 to 7170 in two months, since it could be worse — we could still be at 6569. Bow down at the alter of Obama and give thanks.
Update II: Falze provides the following:
“They’re not as bad as we think they are now.”
If he believes THAT, then why did he say THESE:
“Americans know that our economic recovery will take years — not months.” – Jan 31.
“I will tell you in terms of what is alarming right now is how fast the economy has been deteriorating…It keeps me up at night and it gets me up.” – Feb 3.
“If we do not move swiftly to sign the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act into law, an economy that is already in crisis will be faced with catastrophe.” – Feb 5. (what he meant was that he had to move extremely slowly to Denver to sign it)
“If we drag our feet and fail to act, this crisis will turn into a catastrophe. We’ll continue to get devastating job reports like today’s month after month, year after year.” – Feb 6.
“And our nation will sink into a crisis that at some point we may be unable to reverse.” – Feb 9.
“…this is not your ordinary, run-of-the-mill recession. We are going through the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.” – Feb 9.
“My administration inherited a deficit of over $1 trillion, but because we also inherited the most profound economic emergency since the Great Depression…Those are deficits that could turn a crisis into a catastrophe.” – Feb 9. (of course he voted FOR the budgets that gave us the previous deficit and then doubled down on that deficit)
“And the fact of the matter is, is that we are in not just an ordinary recession.” – Feb 10
“…the greatest economic crisis we’ve seen in decades.” – Feb 20.
“We are in the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression…” – Oct 7.