President Obama has called for a
“New Era of Responsibility.”
I like the sound of that. It has a nice ring. I am beginning to wonder, however, if he and I subscribe to different definitions of the word “responsibility”. I would expect that as President of the United States, Mr. Obama would see the need to lead this effort by example, not just by words. He was off to a good start here, announcing a freeze in pay for White House aides making more than $100,000.
“Families are tightening their belts, and so should Washington,” the president said.
But where was he on the OUTRAGEOUS pay hike that his friendly Democrat-controlled congress just voted for themselves? (I haven’t seen the vote tally on this; I’ve heard that some Republicans voted for it too, but the congress does indeed have a HUGE Democrat majority and they are essentially calling the shots). He had no problem calling out Wall Street on bonuses, but I don’t recall him saying anything about congress, and I have been paying attention. If I’m wrong, please TELL ME. I would truly be delighted to learn that he spoke out against this.
And then there is the the lovely economic “stimulus” bill that he is so anxious to have passed. This has already made it through the House, ironically, with a partisan vote. Partisan on the passing side, that is: ONLY Democrats voted for it. The Bipartisan vote was against it: all Republicans, as well as some Democrats. Why would anyone vote against it, though? Listening to Mr. Obama and the media, there is no time to lose! This bill is the only hope for rejuvenating our economy and we must act now! So why did members of both parties vote against it? Because IT IS IRRESPONSIBLE. It is estimated that only 12 cents on the dollar will actually go toward real economic stimulus as this bill stands. So, we the taxpayers, in the present economy, are being asked to go along with a “stimulus” bill that is 88% non-stimulating? And, the backers of this so called stimulus themselves don’t have a clue as to how many jobs it would supposedly create. So what exactly does the majority of this bill consist of then? PORK and government GROWING apparatus. In fact, It was very well put by Rush when he said that this bill would be more accurately named PORKULUS. How can this be deemed responsible and necessary right now…ever? The fact is that Obama and the Democrats in congress are using the current economic crisis to push through an extremely liberal agenda, under the guise of stimulus, that they know they wouldn’t be able to get away with ordinarily. In November, Obama’s current Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel, actually said:
“You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that is an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.”
(See the Heritage Foundation to learn why government spending does not stimulate economic growth.)
Check these out for more on the “stimulus:”
During the same press conference that President Obama called for pay freezes, he said that
The [new] rules on lobbyists are tighter “than under any other administration in history.”
Again, that sounds great, but it seems that Mr. Obama has since learned that his own rhetoric is too good for reality. Obama was actually violating his own new rules on Day 1. After several “waivers” had already been handed out for appointees who apparently shouldn’t be subject to the new rules, on Monday we learned that Tom Daschle, Obama’s nominee for Secretary of Health and Human Services, too is a problem.
Obama has also taken to nominating tax cheats to his administration. This is like
a slap in the face to all tax paying Americans.
Mr. Obama and the Democrats in congress have been lecturing the country for months now on the importance of everyone “paying their fair share.”
How is it responsible then…
to nominate and defend appointees who have failed to pay tens of thousands of dollars in taxes? First it was Tim Geithner, who has since been confirmed as Obama’s Treasury Secretary, which means that ironically the IRS will actually be under his stewardship. Then it was Tom Daschle, with well over $100,000 in unpaid taxes. In both cases, the “mistakes” were unintentional, with Geithner actually blaming Turbo Tax at one point. Not likely. Even so, the average American tax payers of the hoi polloi could have their wages garnished for this, a lean put on their house, or even be thrown in jail. When asked on Monday if he still supported Daschle for a position in his cabinet, Obama responded:
I have a friend, a single mother supporting two young children on a teacher’s salary, who owes some back taxes. For her, it really was a mistake. After a divorce she was left with her ex-husband’s significant credit card debt which she then settled with the company. She later found out that if you settle debt for less than the full value, it is counted as income. I know, it’s a stupid rule…if someone settles debt because they can’t afford to pay it, then how are they supposed to pay an extra sum in taxes? In any case, she ended up owing an extra $5,000 in taxes, which she did not have (again, she didn’t earn any extra money…she simply settled a debt-thank you cruel tax code). She is now working to pay it off, and the IRS has become a thorn in her side, threatening to confiscate assets. My friend’s problem really was a mistake, and a much smaller infringement than Geithner’s or Daschle’s, yet neither one of them has to worry about repercussions from the IRS…they paid up in full when this all came to light (they could afford to…the reason they hadn’t paid the taxes before is because they didn’t want to), and they have the full backing of the President of the United States on their side.
The last issue I will address, that simply cannot be ignored is the repealing of the Mexico City Policy, which was one Obama’s first acts as president. By doing this Obama has made it legal for U.S. taxpayer dollars to fund abortions in other countries. I would ask President Obama,
How is it responsible to enact policies that promote irresponsibility, to send the message that choices can be made but consequences can be avoided?
During his campaign Obama actually stated that he would teach his daughters about responsibility, but if they make a mistake he wouldn’t want them to be punished with a baby. Enough said.
And so I wonder if we are just to be lectured by our president on RESPONSIBILITY, or if he is ever going to start leading by example.
***Since writing this, Tom Daschle has withdrawn his name for consideration. This from CNN:
The Obama administration had stood by his side, and fellow Democrats lined up behind him, but Daschle’s problems, coupled with other nominees’ issues, gave critics ammunition to question President Obama’s call for a “new era of responsibility.” The president said Tuesday he accepts Daschle’s decision “with sadness and regret.”