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OVERBECK: Obama’s designs on American industry
Second term promises government takeover
Recently, I saw a big poster that proclaimed “Keep America Strong — Vote Obama-Biden.” I nearly choked. What am I not getting here?
This strong America that President Obama has created is a nation where now about 100 million citizens get some kind of government help — not including those receiving Social Security and Medicare. Food stamps have soared under Mr. Obama, from 30 million to now 46 million, a jump of more than 50 percent. If you believe that more government dependency leads to prosperity, go ahead and vote for Barack Obama.
We have more than 150 years of energy beneath American soil, more than enough to free us from Arab dictators’ oil and to stop funding megalomaniac Hugo Chavez’s re-election campaigns through the importing of Venezuelan crude. Mr. Obama has stonewalled the Keystone XL pipeline and continues to stifle exploration in the Gulf of Mexico, defying judges’ legal orders. He bans drilling on the federal lands that belong to us all, and his drastic regulations are shutting down coal plants, our top energy source.
Do you think America is strong when we rely on foreign tyrants for the juice to drive our economy? Maybe you feel your family is stronger when you pay soaring prices for electricity, to fill up your tank and to buy groceries and everything else that’s transported by truck. If you think higher costs to pay for a president’s irrational prejudice against any kind of rational energy makes America strong, go ahead and vote for Mr. Obama.
The president assures us incessantly that he has a “laser focus” on job creation. But the only way he can make the unemployment numbers appear lower than 8 percent is by ignoring those who have given up looking for work and counting part-timers as full-timers (and by not counting California at all).
Look around at your family and friends: Who has a great job that he is not afraid of losing? About half the jobs created during the recession are part-time jobs, and if all the workers who have dropped out of the labor market in the past four years were counted, unemployment would be higher than 12 percent. After spending nearly $1 trillion on a stimulus with no discernible improvement, Mr. Obama’s “laser” is burning our economy down. If you think millions of part-time and unemployed workers make America strong, go ahead and vote for Mr. Obama.
Stumping in Colorado in August, Mr. Obama said, “I believe in American workers. I believe in American industry. The American auto industry has come roaring back, and GM is No. 1 again. So now I want to do the same thing with manufacturing jobs. Not just in the auto industry, but in every industry.”
The president is so gung-ho about American business that he thinks he needs to take it over and run it, just like the government swallowed up GM. That he should tout a takeover as one of the two great achievements of his term — “Osama is dead, GM is alive!” — defies the Treasury Department’s recent report to Congress predicting the government’s GM bailout loss at a cool $25 billion.
Mr. Obama is no math whiz, but he’s great at gifting his friends with billions in taxpayer money. According to Investor’s Business Daily, this “entire financial loss suffered by taxpayers is the result of a massive and planned redistribution of wealth from them to the auto unions that form a key part of Obama’s base and re-election drive.”
The government manipulated bankruptcy laws to give $26.5 billion more to the United Auto Workers than it would have received in typical lawful bankruptcy proceedings. That’s more than the entire GM loss. Worse, the feds forced the shutdown of thousands of small auto dealerships, throwing tens of thousands out of work, closures that a TARP inspector general reported to Congress were “unnecessary and political.”
If you think America is stronger when government takes over “every industry” and turns billions of your hard-earned tax dollars into Mr. Obama’s re-election slush fund, by all means, vote for him — he’s promised to give us more of it. If you agree with the president that “the private sector is doing fine,” go ahead and mark that box next to his name.
See you at the polls.
Joy Overbeck is a Colorado journalist and author.
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