I received a nasty message earlier today from someone who seemed to take angry exception to my support for President Obama. I'm still not sure why my support of any particular candidate should have engendered such vitriol on the part of someone I have never and likely will never meet. After all, I don't take exception to his supporting his particular candidate of choice; I may not agree with that choice, but neither would I treat him with such venomous disrespect because of it. People CAN disagree and still be civil about it, you know.
Anyway, part of the message read as follows: "What has Barack Obama done for you? He has raised your taxes, ruined the credit rating of your country and signed into law a socialistic healthcare bill that he is exempt from. He has embarrassed the United States by bowing to an Arab king. He has led us into the largest national debt in history. He has spent more money than every president before him...COMBINED! Tell me again what has he done to help you?"
I felt obliged to send him the following response:
Well, since you brought it up...
• My taxes have actually gone DOWN since Obama has been in office, thanks to some of the legislation he has enacted. His stimulus package - much maligned by the anti-Obama crowd - included $300 billion in middle class tax cuts (one of the largest in history) which has been beneficial to those of us who fall into that middle class designation. Unlike President Bush's 2001 tax cuts, which went to the wealthiest 2.2 percent, President Obama's tax cuts overwhelmingly benefit working and middle class families -- in fact, 95 percent of all Americans.
• Regarding the country's credit rating downgrade: There's plenty of blame to go around - yes, including the current administration - but the truth remains that the situation which ultimately resulted in that downgrade began under the previous administration and was exacerbated by Congress (particualrly Boehner and his boneheads) deciding to make everything about political victories and thereby proving its own inability to function for the greater good.
• Anybody who has taken the time to actually READ the Affordable Heathcare Act (as opposed to relying on the Goebbels-like propaganda served up by Faux News) knows that it is NOT socialism; socialism has no private companies of any sort.
As was pointed out by a letter to the editor published this week in the newspaper I work at, the Affordable Healthcare Act will require better insurance rates and require everyone to purchase insurance from private companies or be subject to fine. Thus, the Act is actually a STIMULUS to private business: companies will more than make up for the lower rates by greatly increased numbers of customers. Coverage will be provided by PRIVATE insurance companies, as it is not provided in socialized medicine. People who cannot afford to pay all the premiums will be eligible for government assistance. Medicare and Medicaid will continue much as they already are.
To quote the aforementioned letter writer: "Whether we like the Affordable Healthcare Act or not, it is our responsibility to get the facts right. And one of the most basic facts is that it is an American way of doing things through private business and not some socialist scheme."
• Having spent some time in other parts of the world when I was in the military, I can tell you that bowing in that part of the world is simply a traditional way of greeting, much as a handshake is here at home. People make such a fuss over "The Bow," but seem to conveniently forget that big wet kiss GWB planted on an Arab leader when he was in office. And even THAT was not nearly as embarrassing for the U.S. as the idiotic statement Romney made about Britain during the recent London Olympics!
• That "largest national debt" you mention actually has its origins in a needless war started by Obama's predecessor, the same fellow who squandered the budget surplus left to him by HIS predecessor.
• It is really, truly time for the myth about "Big Spender Obama" to die. The myth is disproven by the record. Obama didn't campaign to increase government spending, but inheriting what was in the final quarter of 2008 an annualized contraction of 9 percent of GDP, he opted for a stimulus. That accounts for much of the spending; but even taking the stimulus into account, federal spending is rising at the slowest pace since Dwight Eisenhower brought the Korean War to an end in the 1950s. In fiscal 2013 — the final budget of Obama’s first term — spending is scheduled to fall 1.3 percent to $3.58 trillion.
So what has Obama done to help me?
He's given me a tax break that helps better enable me to pay my bills and put food on my family's table.
He's signed into law an act to make healthcare more affordable for everyone - that's you and me, Bubba.
He approved the action that took out Osama bin Laden - Mission REALLY Accomplished this time!
And - perhaps best of all, as far as I'm concerned - he's helped remove the bitter taste of the previous eight years under one of the WORST presidents in the country's history, and made me feel that the America I grew up believing in has not yet perished from the face of the earth.
On the other hand, what has Romney done for me? Well, other than giving me a good belly laugh almost every time he's opened his mouth lately...
Shortly after shooting my response off to my critic, I received the following in reply: "What an eloquent way to say 'Blame Bush.'"
Well, if the shoe fits...
In : Opinion