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Saturday, April 16, 2011

Visions of America

After speechifying VP Joe Biden into a restful sleep on Wednesday, President Obama began what Bill Kristol at the Weekly Standard has dubbed Obama's Orwellian Deficit Reduction Tour to "Discuss his Vision for Bringing Down our Deficit Based on Shared Responsibility and Shared Prosperity".  This plan, of course is a plan that looks pretty much like his big spending 2012 budget proposal, except with more tax increases added in.   Obama proposes to appoint a commission to tackle future deficit reductions, despite having already had a deficit commission whose recommendations the President has chosen to ignore.

What the President refuses to acknowledge publicly is that raising taxes on the rich cannot close the deficit.  While he seeks to raise tax rates for those making $250,000 per year, if we took everyone who makes at least $100,000 per year and taxed them at 100%, that would only add $1.5 trillion in revenue.  Our current year deficit is $1.6 trillion.  So either he knows that the deficit cannot be taxed away on the rich & he fully intends to raise taxes on the middle class too or he just doesn't really care about the deficit & is in campaign mode.
Note the scalpel

I personally believe he doesn't care and is simply campaigning.  Others have different opinions.  Here's Ace's take,
On the policy stuff, and on reading the mood of the electorate -- I don't know if he's a bad politician so much as a radical true-believing red-diaper baby lefty who is simply convinced that Socialism = Prosperity.
I think it's just that he's a true believer. This guy was part of the expressly socialist New Party, after all. Not that your media will tell you that.
What I find bizarre is that he is pulling out old Hillary Clinton lines for his current plan.  Here's Clinton from the 2007 Presidential campaign trail,
It's time for a new beginning, for an end to government of the few, by the few and for the few, time to reject the idea of an ‘on your own’ society and to replace it with shared responsibility for shared prosperity.
As both Clinton and Obama use the phrase, it conjures up more than a hint of Marxist rhetoric.  Add in the recent Senate Democrats 2012 budget proposal, which the Dems have deemed, "The People's Budget" and it begins to feel as if the Communist propaganda machine is back in full swing.

Obama spoke up for his vision of America, but it's a vision of an America I don't recognize.  In his America, our founding document is a mutable, permeable list of everchanging concepts, while entitlement programs put in place during the 20th century are a rock solid part of the landscape that can never be changed or amended.

He promotes Shared Prosperity, but what he means is that those who he decides, have too much must start handing it over to those who have too little.  Everything you possess and earn flows from the government.  When they allow you to keep some of your income, that is considered government spending.

Shared Responsibility means that those who already pay the majority of the bills, should pay even more of their 'fair share'.  This is done in the name of 'Fairness' in Obama's America.

In my America, every boy and girl grows up believing in his/her heart that they can achieve the American dream and find success in life if they have the proper motivation and drive.  Our 'shared prosperity' does not flow from the government, but from ourselves.  William Safire writing in response to communist atheism, said,
What a perversion of truth. The religious spirit, not some class struggling, brought forth Mosaic moral commandments and nurtured mankind's ethical sense. The stern Calvinists enshrined the "work ethic" underlying capitalism, which helped produce the shared prosperity that the world's largest atheistic society so bitterly envies.
No matter what advantages or disadvantages we may have, our ultimate success rests upon ourselves.  Yet as we succeed, that success cause a ripple effect across our society that benefits the many.

In my America, labor unions and capitalism work hand in hand to spread the wealth in a way that should make even the most diehard communist envious.  Paul Brian writes in Introduction to 19th-Century Socialism
The twin pressures of market competition and labor organization meant, on average, that--despite the misery prevalent in many quarters and the chaos created by periodic "busts," the majority of workers during the second half of the the 19th Century were better off than their parents.
In the America I know, it's not rich vs. poor or black vs white or man vs woman; it's United We Stand & Divided We Fall.   How can we ever achieve a true shared prosperity when we cannot even share our thoughts and ideas without a relentless attack?  Our shared responsibility is not a government mandate, but should govern our actions. 

The people's budget will be whichever final plan is passed by congress and signed by the President.  Rather than a partisan plan, it will be the framework for the America we will live in tomorrow.  Capitalism or socialism - which will it be?  Which vision of America will we follow?

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