A blog by Jacob
The problem: Our federal government has maxed out its credit cards.
Obama’s solution: Get more credit cards, and don’t negotiate with the Republicans about alternatives.
Republican’s solution: Go ahead and get more credit cards, but only if you reduce how much the government is spending.
I noticed that some of my payroll taxes were a little higher this month. Yes, in spite of President Obama’s promise not to raise taxes. Since I budget, a decrease in my take home pay requires me to cut some of my budget categories. So I’ll be spending a little less on entertainment, personal care, travel, groceries, and hobbies. Yes, when taxes go up, my spending goes down, dollar per dollar. And that is how the economy is struggling to improve.
It seems that there is a war on the rich. President Obama wants to raise taxes on the rich. Occupy Wall Street was willing to camp in their own poop in order to protest the rich. Even the latest Batman Rises movie had an apathetic theme about the rich. But who are these people that so many people are so ready to hate? A couple of the names from the Forbes 400 list:
President Obama wants to spend taxpayer money (to the tune of $8,000,000,000) on Amtrak to improve and expand the American passenger rail system. I hope the money is spent well, because right now there are seious problems with traveling by train.
Suppose I wanted to travel from Denver to Salt Lake City. There is a route, the California Zephyr, that travels once a day between these two cities. I would have to leave Denver at 8am, to arrive in Salt Lake City 15 hours later at 11pm. I would also have to pay $65 dollars to do so.
In comparison, I can drive at 25 mpg and at $2.50/gallon gas from Denver to Salt Lake City, 545 miles, for $55 and only take about 8 hours to drive that.
Even better, I can find a $49 flight on Southwest that will get me to Salt Lake in only an hour and a half.
Why would I want to spend more money and more time traveling by train, when I can travel faster and cheaper by both car and plane?
Recently, Obama signed a request for the Environmental Protection Agency to allow California and other states to be able to pass their own, stricter laws on car emissions. This would allow California to demand that automakers create more fuel-efficient cars for sale in California.
While I support the idea of creating a cleaner environment and reducing our dependency on foreign fuel, I think this is a bad move in this economy for two reasons.
First, this would give single states too much power over the U.S. economy. Auto makers cannot simply create a version of their product lines for California–they would have to drastically revise their products for the entire country. This gives California too much power and leverage over the entire U.S. economy, which is currently very delicate.
Secondly, requiring automakers to research and develop more fuel-efficient cars would place additional burdens on a fragile auto industry. Just last fall, the U.S. auto industry asked the U.S. government for a $25 Billion bailout. Placing further restrictions upon the American automakers will only cause them more trouble, to the point where they will need even more bailout money.
I want a cleaner environment, but I don’t think it is worth the cost of bankrupting the auto-industry, possibly causing the loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs. Creating tougher environmental regulations may be a good thing, but only on the federal level, and only when the economic conditions can support additional auto industry restrictions.
Obama’s request for these regulatory changes is careless and irresponsible. The number one problem in America today is the economy. But instead of working to correct the economy, Obama is trying to please too many special interests, which is instead causing further harm to the economy. It seems like Obama is trying harder to polish his democratic public image than he is to fix a failing economy.
Obama’s first day as President-Elect has already brought international tests. Today, Russia announced that it was going to deploy missiles near Poland in response to a US missle defense shield installation there. It is no cooincidence or mistake that this announcement was made the day after the election. Additionally, Russia scrapped plans to disassemble some of its cold-war-era nukes.