Obama came out fighting and was certainly stronger and looked more involved in this latest debate. With that said, I was listening for more information about what Obama was going to do with another four years and I really did not hear anything except increase the tax burden on those making more money, and it is the fault of others that his agenda has not been successful.
Obama was light on details on how he was going to resurrect the economy, and his website is also void of any plan to get us going again. Here is his website for reference: http://www.barackobama.com/economy?source=primary-nav
On the website are four items that team Obama has outlined to kickstart the economy, unfortunately I am not sure that these will get us back to less than six percent unemployment:
- Rescuing the auto industry – although the US automobile makers are building more cars and seem to be coming back, the government is still owed $27 billion of the $49.5 billion ’loaned’ to GM alone. With Chrysler, the government received back $7.1 billion of the $12.5 billion that it lent. The remaining money owed was converted into a stake of 9.9% equity and received $4.1 billion in the Fiat buyout. However, the government will not receive the remaining $1.3 billion. In all, the US is owed $29.3 billion that many do not believe will be paid back for years, if ever. There are no details how the administration expects to get this money back. One more thing to think about, $30billion of GM’s revenue last year was from China, $1.5 billion in profit. None of that is from product made in the United States; rather it is almost exclusively from China manufacturing.
- Reviving U.S. Manufacturing – The website says that he has added 459,000 jobs since January 2010. I would congratulate his marketing team for not counting all the jobs lost during the first three months of 2010 and back. Although I am happy for 459,000 job seekers, this is less than 2% of the people looking for jobs today. What is the plan to increase more manufacturing jobs? See graph for details from the website:
- Made in America – This is a great goal, the more we make in America the better we all are. However I would love to see the details that will accomplish this. Over the last 40 years we have been shipping jobs overseas for two reasons: labor costs and regulations. We have moved our epicenter for outsourcing from Japan to Taiwan to Korea to Malaysia to China and a little known fact, it is moving to Vietnam. The only way to get those jobs back here is for one of two things to happen; either pay more for goods, or have lower salaries for those making the goods. Again, what is his plan to make this happen?
- Making sure everyone plays by the same rules – This is in relation to Wall Street reform and how we would never have to bail out big banks again. I agree with not bailing out banks again. However, Dodd-Frank did not put everyone on the same playing field nor did it assure us that we would not bail out the big banks again. In fact, it further entrenched the US economy with the big banks, and I can tell you from experience that it has made it almost impossible for regional banks (i.e. Zions Banks) or smaller institutions (credit unions) to make loans they feel are appropriate. The amount of regulation that is put on small banks has been incredible and it has affected their ability make loans. We could do an article on Dodd-Frank alone as I have seen first hand the regulations that have affected smaller institutions as I sit on the board of a local credit union. My question is, what is Obama going to do to release these institutions to underwrite more loans to get the capital to individuals and small businesses that we need to get this economy going?
Promises from politicians are important, but I want to see numbers and a plan to implement them. Romney asked some good questions tonight of Mr. Obama. What I did not hear were credible answers.