Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Just Who IS In Charge?

President Obama is scheduled to give his State of the Union address tonight. I will probably watch, but I'm not sure why. He is not in control of the economy. He wants everyone to think he is. He talks like he is. The reality is different.

If Obama were really in control then careless posturing by Sen. Chris Dodd about privitizing banks wouldn't send stocks into a tailspin.

If Obama were in control they wouldn't have passed an enormous spending bill so complex that no one was able to read it before having to vote on it.

If Obama were in control his administration wouldn't feel the need to respond to criticism from Rick Santelli.

If Obama were in control he wouldn't have to hit the road to drum up support for his programs. The press would be doing it for him.

If Obama were in control he wouldn't have been caught off guard by so many of his cabinet picks being sunk by various corruption charges.

If Obama were in control we would not have so many Democratic members of Congress under investigation for various corruption scandals.

But the fact of the matter is either that the Obama who we voted into office in November is NOT the Obama who took office, or he is completely unable to do his job. Neither one is acceptable.

But the fact of the matter is this: there is no one clear voice from Washington calling the shots. There is no clear leadership. Obama is going one way, while Pelosi, Reid, Dodd, and Schumer are going their own ways. Tim Geithner is falling flat.

It's almost as if none of these people have met to come up with any coordinated plan. No one is in control of the message. It's almost as if they are purposely trying to break the economy down further.

I'm not one of those conspiracy theorists who believes that they're doing this on purpose in order to keep us scared enough to accept further hidden social restructuring (even Schumer was surprised by some of the provisions in the stimulus bill and vowed to roll them back). The thought has crossed my mind, but 2010 is not that far away. If they don't want to get thrown out of office they need to show clear progress by then. They would be foolish to dig themselves too deep of a hole.

But if they don't get their act together that is precisely what they will do. And they can ignore or belittle Santelli as much as they like, but they're failing to recognize what he started. Yes, HE may be a former commodities trader--a so-called poster boy for everything that went wrong with the economy--but his frustration is universal. There are a lot of people who are upset with how things are going and what the Administration is doing about it.

I am one of them. I am NOT a commodities trader. I'm a business systems analyst. I bought a house three years ago right before the top of the bubble. I had mortgage brokers encouraging me to buy bigger houses, but I knew what I could afford. I didn't bite. I didn't gamble on an adjustable rate mortgage to get more house. I knew what my budget was, and I knew how much of a house payment I could handle. I paid 20% down.

I save close to 15% of my income each year. I pay my taxes without complaint. I do not carry a balance on my credit cards. I live within my means. In short, I am responsible.

And I've had it with the government propping up all the irresponsible people. Because of all the irresponsible people I'll be losing my job soon. I am not happy about that. I am not happy to see nearly $800 billion dollars--only about 10-20% of which is actual stimulus--added to the public debt in my name, while the bulk of it is actually to appease Democrat supporters and advance socialistic agendas. Frankly, the mortgage rescue is the least of my concerns.

I'm concerned about a government that seems to have lost its mind. I'm concerned about an administration that can't control its message or its people. I'm concerned about a future that not even the people who sold us this stimulus mess will go on record saying will get better soon.

And that's probably why I don't want to listen to Obama tonight. I'm already depressed. I don't need to feel any worse.

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