Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Obama craps on supporters in attempt to impress wingnuts

I get a lot of spam email from Obama and the Organizing for America people asking me to do this or that or donate, as I'm sure a lot of you do as well. Most of the time I skim it to see what they're saying but the one I found in my inbox today really rubbed me the wrong way. It began with Obama's announcement that he was freezing the pay of nearly all non-military federal government employees for two years in an effort to cut the deficit.

There are lots of reasons why this is a horribly dumb idea and I could write snarky rhetorical questions until my fingers fall off but I don't have time to properly vent so we'll summarize:
1. In the end it means nothing. It's a drop in the bucket (something like 0.05% of federal spending).

2. Economically it's the exact opposite of what they should be (and claim to be) doing...creating jobs and consumer spending. Claiming that governments need to cinch their belts just like families do is a nice soundbite but horrible economic policy. Totally different ballgames.

3. Politically it's dumb. Once again, Obama is negotiating against himself before the negotiations actually begin. Dude, please stop. Every time you offer your hand in good faith they stab you with a fork. It's not happening. If you had to do this why not as part of some deal where the tax cuts for the richest of the rich are allowed to expire or unemployment benefits are extended? At least we would have something to show for it.

4. You're shitting on the people that supported you. Federal employees are typically Democratic voters because usually Democrats don't try to pull shit like this. Not to mention the unions. The number of Democratic votes in the 2010 election was pretty close to the same as it was in 2006 but huge numbers of people that voted for you in 2008 stayed home. Are they going to be there in 2012? Maybe address a few more of their concerns.

5. Don't send your supporters bullshit emails asking them to carry your water on crap like this.
A decade of irresponsible spending led to a projected $1.3 trillion deficit that President Obama inherited upon taking office -- putting America on an unsustainable fiscal course.

From Day One, this administration's top focus has been growing the economy and putting Americans back to work -- and that will never change.

The economy is growing again, yet all across America families and businesses have been tightening their belts. The President knows their government must do the same.

Yesterday, he announced a proposal to freeze pay for non-military federal employees for two years -- a plan that will lead to $60 billion in savings over 10 years. It's one of many tough choices the President has made to cut costs in the upcoming budget to begin to put our nation's fiscal house in order. And it follows directly from this administration's dedication to stretching federal dollars and reining in the long-term deficit.

Now, if you listen to some talk radio hosts or a few of the talking heads on cable news, you'll hear a very different assessment of our fiscal policies. These voices ignore the irresponsibility of the past while pinning the blame for "reckless spending" solely on this administration. It would make a good fairy tale if it weren't so dangerously untrue.

But these voices -- as loud as they are -- are spreading bunk. Cutting costs and spending responsibly has been a cornerstone of this administration's record. And we need your help to get the truth out there.
I'm supposed to write a letter to editor talking about what a great move this is? Hell no.

No shit they're attacking you with lies...IT'S WHAT THEY DO! They're going to do it if you freeze everybody salaries or whether you don't. You know it's not actually having any real effect on the deficit and certainly not compared to the impact of extending tax cuts for the rich or continuing to send cargo planes of cash over to Iraq and Afghanistan. So, why do it? How come middle-class federal employees have to "tighten their belts" while asking the rich to make some sort of sacrifice is off-limits.

The 3rd quarter of this year just happened to be Corporate America's most profitable quarter ever. Ever! Yet, the corporate taxes are killing our ability to compete or something. Wall Street bankers are deciding it's ok to start "swaggering" again (which apparently means renting dwarfs for bachelor parties?) but, dammit, those struggling rich people need to be able to spend more and with those progressive income tax rates who even wants to make money any more? Won't anyone think of the trickle-down effects for the dwarves???

Anyway, no, Obama, I won't be writing any letters celebrating your commitment to fiscal responsibility as long as that commitment only asks struggling working (and currently non-working) class people to sacrifice and not those that can actually afford it.

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