The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Monday, January 23, 2012


Presdient Obama will give his state of the Union address tomorrow night. Before he does, let’s consider a few hypotheticals. What if, over his three years as president …

  • Obama had taken steps that reduced the 6.8 percent unemployment, to say, 6.0 percent.

  • Gasoline prices had risen 20 percent from $1.68/gal in January, 2009 to a modest $2.00/gal today.

  • Household income had remained steady.

  • The public debt was under control and increased by only one billion dollars per day.

  • Bi-partisan legislation was formulated to address the severe problems facing entitlements.

The President would mention those things tomorrow night, would use them as campaign themes, and would be easily and effortlessly be re-elected later this year. He would be praised by the media and given grudging respect by his opposition. He would be unbeatable in November.

But reality is somewhat different:

  • Unemployment has increased from 6.8 to 8.5 percent, with the real number closer to 11 percent (if we count those who’ve simply stopped looking). Private sector job growth is stagnant and the President insists on demonizing those who are best able to create private sector jobs.

  • Gasoline is now $3.39/gal, an increase of 102 percent. To put things into perspective, the increase over the eight years of the previous president was about 20 percent. In addition, newly minted FDA regulations and a reduction in domestic oil production and acquisition (think: the Keystone pipeline) has caused annual electric bills to increase to a record $1,420 today.

  • Median household income has dropped by 7 percent. Instead of recommended strategies to improve that dismal number, the President suggests that taxing the “1 percent“ and thereby remedying “income inequality” will somehow provide a fix. He never explains how.

  • Public debt increases at $4 billion per day, and at the same time, the President continues to advocate even more spending.

  • Nothing has been done to change entitlements, and those who have had the political courage to propose changes have been demonized by the President as "unamerican."

When President Obama speaks tomorrow night, listen carefully. Will he take responsibility for his dismal economic record, or will he blame others—the congress, the “rich,” the demon Republicans, the circumstances? Will he adapt his approach and take a more realistic view of our economic problems, or will he plow forward, ignoring his failures? Will he reach out to the opposition party or will he blame them for his administration’s incompetence? We’ll see.