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HonestChieffan
06-15-2011, 06:25 PM
The Obama Hiatus
The Administration takes a two-year holiday from its own agenda.

President Obama's re-election machine is already running full bore, but has his entire Administration also decamped for the campaign trail? We ask because the towering ambitions of Mr. Obama's first two years have suddenly gone into abeyance in his third, apparently to be deferred until years five through eight. The White House is more or less conceding that it doesn't have a chance of winning a second term unless his major policies go on hiatus.

This holiday from committing liberal history began in December with the White House-GOP deal that extended the Bush tax rates through the 2012 election and added a payroll tax cut on employees to 4.2% from 6.2%. These proposals came from the same Democrats who only months earlier had increased payroll taxes to finance their health-care bill and routinely claim that tax rates don't matter to the private economy. But then, 9.1% joblessness and 1.8% growth have a way of concentrating the political mind.

Next came the much-ballyhooed White House scrub for "excessive" regulation, even as hundreds of new rules mandated by the legislation of the first two years continue to be written and to slow business investment. But at least the rule review persuaded the Environmental Protection Agency to stop treating dairy farm milk spills as if they were Gulf oil leaks. That should help next year in Wisconsin.

Picking up the vacation pace, this week the EPA delayed by two months the carbon regulations that it wants to impose, even as it resists bipartisan attempts on Capitol Hill to kill them altogether. Next up may be a delay in pending regulations meant to harm coal-fired power, before opponents gather enough votes to kill them. The EPA has already yanked an entire rule that would have forced thousands of businesses to install new industrial boilers.

Maybe the White House should short-circuit all this by dispatching EPA administrator Lisa Jackson to an undisclosed location through November 2012.

Also this week, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission voted—five to zero—to delay by six months the derivatives swap rules that were due this month under the Dodd-Frank financial re-regulation. The alphabet soup of financial regulators will eventually add tens of thousands of pages to the Federal Register, but for now they are conceding that the derivatives market isn't the calamity they claimed it was in the rush to pass the bill.


Then there's health care. Over the last year, the Health and Human Services Department has granted at least 1,372 temporary waivers to ObamaCare mandates, most notably for price controls on private insurance companies. Many have gone to Democratic allies like unions, but many more went to ordinary businesses and even states. HHS has already given a pass to Nevada, New Hampshire and Maine, and another dozen or so have applied or are expected to ask for exemptions.

This is less political favoritism than a panicked, ad hoc bid to minimize pre-election insurance disruptions that can be attributed to a law that is still widely reviled. If the law isn't enforced, maybe voters will forget it passed. In its New Hampshire reprieve, HHS admitted that ObamaCare would "destabilize the individual market," though it neglected to mention that this is what ObamaCare is meant to do. Just not yet.

By the way, this waiver process isn't in the law's statutory language. HHS has simply created it via regulation. In other words, the health bureaucracy knew the rules they were writing would be destructive and have created a political safety valve. They have even found a way to override ObamaCare's cuts to the Medicare Advantage program that were counted as "savings" to make the health bill look less spendthrift. Medicare Advantage offers insurance choices to one in four seniors and is popular in, well, Florida, so seniors also get a two-year reprieve.

Why aren't liberals deploring this betrayal of their programs? Perhaps because even they can't ignore reality forever. Mr. Obama's epic fiscal binge, waves of new industrial policy and the political allocation of credit haven't created the boom they promised. If business can now be persuaded that the government assault is over and start to invest again so the economy improves enough for Mr. Obama to win a second term, then a two-year delay in fulfilling their dreams is well worth it.

Liberals figure that as long as Mr. Obama can be re-elected next year on another hope-and-change platform, it will be too late to hope to change anything and he can then return to his legacy project of building a tax and entitlement state on the European model. The economy may benefit from Mr. Obama's temporary amnesty, but the real lesson of this hiatus from liberalism is that it should be shut down permanently.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303848104576385620186823528.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEADTop

Direckshun
06-15-2011, 07:47 PM
Two programs were major planks of Obama's that he's been unable to get much movement: energy and education.

There have been a ton of other things, but there were three major planks, along with two wars and the recession that Bush was kind enough to leave us with:

1. healthcare
2. energy
3. education

Regarding the three planks, healthcare spent up virtually all the President's political capital in the first two years, but represents the efforts of 100 years of attempts at healthcare reform.

The stimulus package contained significant parts addressing the other two issues. That's not enough, but it's something.

The goal of the Obama administration was the goal of what the Republican Party has been for the past however long: cap and trade. That's what the tri-lateral talks were focused on, that's what FOUR of the current Republican POTUS candidates espoused (Romney, Gingrich, Pawlenty, Huntsman).

But then it's something Obama and the Big Bad Democrats want to do, so now cap and trade is no longer any form of energy reform for the GOP. The party makes it blasphemy, and all four candidates reverse themselves. The GOP pulled out of the trilateral talks, and have control of the House and can filibuster everything they want in the Senate. This stops energy reform dead in its tracks.

So... what do you want Obama to do?

Not much on education yet. But a ton of effort was put into reforming healthcare, a ton of failed effort went into reforming energy, two wars and the initiation of perhaps a third, plus firing more drones at Pakistan and Yemen. And of course, there's always a recession to avert. So I'll give Obama a pass on this subject so long as it's on the agenda within a few years.

Jaric
06-15-2011, 08:16 PM
Two programs were major planks of Obama's that he's been unable to get much movement: energy and education.

There have been a ton of other things, but there were three major planks, along with two wars and the recession that Bush was kind enough to leave us with:

1. healthcare
2. energy
3. education

Regarding the three planks, healthcare spent up virtually all the President's political capital in the first two years, but represents the efforts of 100 years of attempts at healthcare reform.

The stimulus package contained significant parts addressing the other two issues. That's not enough, but it's something.

The goal of the Obama administration was the goal of what the Republican Party has been for the past however long: cap and trade. That's what the tri-lateral talks were focused on, that's what FOUR of the current Republican POTUS candidates espoused (Romney, Gingrich, Pawlenty, Huntsman).

But then it's something Obama and the Big Bad Democrats want to do, so now cap and trade is no longer any form of energy reform for the GOP. The party makes it blasphemy, and all four candidates reverse themselves. The GOP pulled out of the trilateral talks, and have control of the House and can filibuster everything they want in the Senate. This stops energy reform dead in its tracks.

So... what do you want Obama to do?

Not much on education yet. But a ton of effort was put into reforming healthcare, a ton of failed effort went into reforming energy, two wars and the initiation of perhaps a third, plus firing more drones at Pakistan and Yemen. And of course, there's always a recession to avert. So I'll give Obama a pass on this subject so long as it's on the agenda within a few years.
Nothing.

I'd be perfectly happy if he spent the rest of this term playing golf and turned the keys over to someone who can actually drive the bus in the right direction.

petegz28
06-15-2011, 08:18 PM
Two programs were major planks of Obama's that he's been unable to get much movement: energy and education.

There have been a ton of other things, but there were three major planks, along with two wars and the recession that Bush was kind enough to leave us with:

1. healthcare
2. energy
3. education

Regarding the three planks, healthcare spent up virtually all the President's political capital in the first two years, but represents the efforts of 100 years of attempts at healthcare reform.

The stimulus package contained significant parts addressing the other two issues. That's not enough, but it's something.

The goal of the Obama administration was the goal of what the Republican Party has been for the past however long: cap and trade. That's what the tri-lateral talks were focused on, that's what FOUR of the current Republican POTUS candidates espoused (Romney, Gingrich, Pawlenty, Huntsman).

But then it's something Obama and the Big Bad Democrats want to do, so now cap and trade is no longer any form of energy reform for the GOP. The party makes it blasphemy, and all four candidates reverse themselves. The GOP pulled out of the trilateral talks, and have control of the House and can filibuster everything they want in the Senate. This stops energy reform dead in its tracks.

So... what do you want Obama to do?

Not much on education yet. But a ton of effort was put into reforming healthcare, a ton of failed effort went into reforming energy, two wars and the initiation of perhaps a third, plus firing more drones at Pakistan and Yemen. And of course, there's always a recession to avert. So I'll give Obama a pass on this subject so long as it's on the agenda within a few years.

So Obama has gotten us into a 3rd war in Libya, has gas up to high level and unemployment sugred past the 8% cap he promised. Oh yea, he has spent and amazing amount of money while doing it.

petegz28
06-15-2011, 08:19 PM
In other words, Direckshun is still blaming Bush for Obama's failures

Jaric
06-15-2011, 08:20 PM
In other words, Direckshun is still blaming Bush for Obama's failures

It worked in 2008.

:shrug:

NewChief
06-15-2011, 08:24 PM
He spent his political capital on health care, and he failed miserably with meaningful reform while letting his opponents paint him as a socialist for his corporatist policies. FAIL.

Education. FAIL.

Energy. FAIL.

Foreign Policy. FAIL.

Civil Liberties. FAIL.

Yeah. He pretty much has sucked it up, and most of us liberals will admit it. Not that I think I'd be much happier with the direction that McCain/Palin would have taken us.

Jaric
06-15-2011, 08:29 PM
He spent his political capital on health care, and he failed miserably with meaningful reform while letting his opponents paint him as a socialist for his corporatist policies. FAIL.

Education. FAIL.

Energy. FAIL.

Foreign Policy. FAIL.

Civil Liberties. FAIL.

Yeah. He pretty much has sucked it up, and most of us liberals will admit it. Not that I think I'd be much happier with the direction that McCain/Palin would have taken us.
The only positive thing I could say about the bolded part would be that we likely wouldn't have this monstrosity of a health care bill. That's about the only upside and that doesn't mean we wouldn't have some other disastrous legislation to deal with.

petegz28
06-15-2011, 08:30 PM
He spent his political capital on health care, and he failed miserably with meaningful reform while letting his opponents paint him as a socialist for his corporatist policies. FAIL.

Education. FAIL.

Energy. FAIL.

Foreign Policy. FAIL.

Civil Liberties. FAIL.

Yeah. He pretty much has sucked it up, and most of us liberals will admit it. Not that I think I'd be much happier with the direction that McCain/Palin would have taken us.

Don't forget his overly-expensive trips like his 500 person fiasco to London. Dude took a team of chefs with him then turns around and asks rich people how much is enough? Oh, and they 35 vehicles he had shipped over there.

NewChief
06-15-2011, 08:34 PM
Don't forget his overly-expensive trips like his 500 person fiasco to London. Dude took a team of chefs with him then turns around and asks rich people how much is enough? Oh, and they 35 vehicles he had shipped over there.

I don't really give a shit about this (sadly) because that's business as usual. Yes, it would be nice if we didn't have some aristocratic fuckstick that thinks he lives be a different set of rules than the rest of us, but no one is going to rise to the position of POTUS and stay down to earth. It goes with the beast we've created in our political system.

I'd love to get all indignant about it, but I really have to reserve my rage for shitty policies at this point in time (I've become so fucking cynical that I have decreasing amounts of rage and increasing amounts of apathy).

petegz28
06-15-2011, 08:39 PM
I don't really give a shit about this (sadly) because that's business as usual. Yes, it would be nice if we didn't have some aristocratic ****stick that thinks he lives be a different set of rules than the rest of us, but no one is going to rise to the position of POTUS and stay down to earth. It goes with the beast we've created in our political system.

I'd love to get all indignant about it, but I really have to reserve my rage for shitty policies at this point in time (I've become so ****ing cynical that I have decreasing amounts of rage and increasing amounts of apathy).

Nancy Reagan had 3 assistants, I do believe. Michelle has 43. I am sorry but they push the limit. I agree Presidents will do Presidential things but imo, these two act more like royalty.

Bowser
06-15-2011, 08:39 PM
The only positive thing I could say about the bolded part would be that we likely wouldn't have this monstrosity of a health care bill. That's about the only upside and that doesn't mean we wouldn't have some other disastrous legislation to deal with.

And not to mention that anyone with their brain working at a quarter capacity would not want Sarah Palin one good stroke/heart attack away from sitting in the big chair. That's basically why I didn't vote repub in '08.

Jaric
06-15-2011, 08:41 PM
And not to mention that anyone with their brain working at a quarter capacity would not want Sarah Palin one good stroke/heart attack away from sitting in the big chair. That's basically why I didn't vote repub in '08.

While I agree with you, I think the same thing about Joe Biden.

petegz28
06-15-2011, 08:44 PM
I'd have a much better time getting ****ed by Palin than I do Obama

Bowser
06-15-2011, 08:45 PM
While I agree with you, I think the same thing about Joe Biden.

Lesser of two evils. And while we're on that subject, I've grown tired of voting for the lesser of two evils for president. Is it too much to ask that we find a candidate that the majority love and can actually follow through on what the country needs?

Bowser
06-15-2011, 08:46 PM
I'd have a much better time getting ****ed by Palin than I do Obama

NTTIAWWT

notorious
06-15-2011, 08:46 PM
Put a frog in boiling water it will jump out immediately.


Put a frog in water then slowly heat until it boils, the frog will cook to death.




McCain would have slowly heated the water until we cooked to death. Obama boiled it and got our attention.


I hate to say it, but I think Obama is good for this country's long-term good. He woke us up.

NewChief
06-15-2011, 08:49 PM
Lesser of two evils. And while we're on that subject, I've grown tired of voting for the lesser of two evils for president. Is it too much to ask that we find a candidate that the majority love and can actually follow through on what the country needs?

I hate to say it, but I don't see it in the cards for the future. The political "game" has become too entrenched. There's too much money to be made from keeping us all hot and bothered and pissed-off. We could have a saint (and I'm not saying that Obama is one) as the President, and whatever party stood in opposition to him would paint him as the devil with their followers moving in lockstep with them (just like I and others did with Bush and now people are doing with Obama). I don't know what the solution is, but I'm disgusted and tired of it. When a Republican gets back into power, I may enjoy it again (but I hope I don't). I have always said about myself that I'm more of a reactionary/rebel than a status quo. I don't find much power or enjoyment in defending the status quo. I enjoy the hell out of trying to take it down.

petegz28
06-15-2011, 08:52 PM
I hate to say it, but I don't see it in the cards for the future. The political "game" has become too entrenched. There's too much money to be made from keeping us all hot and bothered and pissed-off. We could have a saint (and I'm not saying that Obama is one) as the President, and whatever party stood in opposition to him would paint him as the devil with their followers moving in lockstep with them (just like I and others did with Bush and now people are doing with Obama). I don't know what the solution is, but I'm disgusted and tired of it. When a Republican gets back into power, I may enjoy it again (but I hope I don't). I have always said about myself that I'm more of a reactionary/rebel than a status quo. I don't find much power or enjoyment in defending the status quo. I enjoy the hell out of trying to take it down.

The solution is simple...get rid of political parties. I know several people who vote strictly party politics and I am sure you know some too.

Not the silver bullet but a damn good start.