I started this post out to debunk Obama’s economic platform. Unfortunately, it ended up taking too long. I’ll post what I’ve got, but his platform is so wrongheaded it would take too long to go through the whole thing.
Details from Obama’s website (with my notes)
Wages are Stagnant as Prices Rise:
While wages remain flat, the costs of basic necessities are increasing.
The cost of in-state college tuition has grown 35 percent over the past
five years. Health care costs have risen four times faster than wages
over the past six years. And the personal savings rate is now the
lowest it’s been since the Great Depression.
Obama’s cherry-picking here. He’s picked the two highest-inflation things he can find to pick on.
Tax Cuts for Wealthy Instead of Middle Class:
The Bush tax cuts give those who earn over $1 million dollars a tax cut
nearly 160 times greater than that received by middle-income Americans.
At the same time, this administration has refused to tackle health
care, education and housing in a manner that benefits the middle class.
Obama’s trying to start a class war here by pitting the middle class against the rich. The only reason the tax cut is bigger is because they make more money.
Barack Obama and Joe Biden’s Plan
Jumpstart the Economy
- Enact a Windfall Profits Tax to Provide a $1,000 Emergency Energy Rebate to American Families:Barack
Obama and Joe Biden will enact a windfall profits tax on excessive oil
company profits to give American families an immediate $1,000 emergency
energy rebate to help families pay rising bills. This relief would be a
down payment on the Obama-Biden long-term plan to provide middle-class
families with at least $1,000 per year in permanent tax relief.
- Provide $50 billion to Jumpstart the Economy and Prevent 1 Million Americans from Losing Their Jobs:
This relief would include a $25 billion State Growth Fund to prevent
state and local cuts in health, education, housing, and heating
assistance or counterproductive increases in property taxes, tolls or
fees. The Obama-Biden relief plan will also include $25 billion in a
Jobs and Growth Fund to prevent cutbacks in road and bridge maintenance
and fund school repair – all to save more than 1 million jobs in
danger of being cut.
First, the windfall profits tax. If his goal is to jumpstart the economy, diverting about $1 trillion away from private companies into government monopolies (energy companies) isn’t going to jumpstart anything. Also, who gets to define windfall? Finally, when oil prices tank (as they are now), will they give the taxes back? Doubtful.
Second, the $50 billion: where’s the money coming from for this? He talks about balancing the budget and then proposes $50 billion in spending. There’s not much detail in this and so I’m skeptical.
Provide Middle Class Americans Tax Relief
Obama and Biden will cut income taxes by $1,000 for working families to offset the payroll tax they pay.
What, rich people don’t work? That’s pretty ridiculous.
- Provide a Tax Cut for Working Families:
Obama and Biden will restore fairness to the tax code and provide 150
million workers the tax relief they need. Obama and Biden will create a
new “Making Work Pay” tax credit of up to $500 per person, or $1,000
per working family. The “Making Work Pay” tax credit will completely
eliminate income taxes for 10 million Americans.
- This is socialism. Let’s take money from those who are earning it and producing and give it to those who don’t. This gives producing people every incentive not to produce by raising the cost of doing so. It also gives those 10 million an incentive not to work more because doing so would incur an income tax liability.
- Eliminate Income Taxes for Seniors Making Less than $50,000:
Barack Obama will eliminate all income taxation of seniors making less
than $50,000 per year. This proposal will eliminate income taxes for 7
million seniors and provide these seniors with an average savings of
$1,400 each year. Under the Obama-Biden plan, 27 million American
seniors will also not need to file an income tax return.
- That last part is a lie. Everybody has to file a return, even if they don’t make any money. That’s how the IRS knows you didn’t make any money. This is pure pandering to a demographic who doesn’t typically vote with the left.
- Simplify Tax Filings for Middle Class Americans:
Obama and Biden will dramatically simplify tax filings so that millions
of Americans will be able to do their taxes in less than five minutes.
Obama and Biden will ensure that the IRS uses the information it
already gets from banks and employers to give taxpayers the option of
pre-filled tax forms to verify, sign and return. Experts estimate that
the Obama-Biden proposal will save Americans up to 200 million total
hours of work and aggravation and up to $2 billion in tax preparer fees.
- “Pre-filled forms” won’t “dramatically simply tax filings”. Give me a break.
Obama and Biden believe that trade with foreign nations should strengthen the
American economy and create more American jobs. He will stand firm
against agreements that undermine our economic security.
- Fight for Fair Trade:
Obama and Biden will fight for a trade policy that opens up foreign
markets to support good American jobs. They will use trade agreements
to spread good labor and environmental standards around the world and
stand firm against agreements like the Central American Free Trade
Agreement that fail to live up to those important benchmarks. Obama and
Biden will also pressure the World Trade Organization to enforce trade
agreements and stop countries from continuing unfair government
subsidies to foreign exporters and nontariff barriers on U.S. exports.
- Ah, fair vs free. The question is, fair to whom? Should we keep lousy production jobs in the US and make sure blue collar workers keep the same low-pay, high-work jobs or should we offshore those jobs and allow those workers to take better jobs? Obama says keep them in the low-pay jobs. That way, they can rely on the government.
- Amend the North American Free Trade Agreement:
Obama and Biden believe that NAFTA and its potential were oversold to
the American people. They will work with the leaders of Canada and
Mexico to fix NAFTA so that it works for American workers.
- What does that mean? Could that be less specific? I’m pretty sure “works for American workers” means “protectionist”.
- Improve Transition Assistance:
To help all workers adapt to a rapidly changing economy, Obama and
Biden will update the existing system of Trade Adjustment Assistance by
extending it to service industries, creating flexible education
accounts to help workers retrain, and providing retraining assistance
for workers in sectors of the economy vulnerable to dislocation before
they lose their jobs.
- This is a good idea.
- End Tax Breaks for Companies that Send Jobs Overseas:
Barack Obama and Joe Biden believe that companies should not get
billions of dollars in tax deductions for moving their operations
overseas. Obama and Biden will also fight to ensure that public
contracts are awarded to companies that are committed to American
- Why do companies send jobs overseas? Because they need to cut costs. I don’t think the solution is raising costs on companies who need to cut costs to survive. Obama has this idea that corporations are evil and trying to hurt workers. He has no concept that layoffs are hard on managers as well as employees. We cannot elect somebody who hates the drivers of our economies (businesses). Who does he think provides jobs to workers? Oh that’s right…the government.
- Reward Companies that Support American Workers:
Barack Obama introduced the Patriot Employer Act of 2007 with Senators
Richard Durbin (D-IL) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) to reward companies that
create good jobs with good benefits for American workers. The
legislation would provide a tax credit to companies that maintain or
increase the number of full-time workers in America relative to those
outside the US; maintain their corporate headquarters in America if it
has ever been in America; pay decent wages; prepare workers for
retirement; provide health insurance; and support employees who serve
in the military.
- Pretty much the same as above.
Invest in the Manufacturing Sector and Create 5 Million New Green Jobs
- Invest in our Next Generation Innovators and Job Creators:
Obama and Biden will create an Advanced Manufacturing Fund to identify
and invest in the most compelling advanced manufacturing strategies.
The Fund will have a peer-review selection and award process based on
the Michigan 21st Century Jobs Fund, a state-level initiative that has
awarded over $125 million to Michigan businesses with the most
innovative proposals to create new products and new jobs in the state.
- This sounds good, as long as the government doesn’t maintain an interest in any businesses.
- Double Funding for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership:
The Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) works with manufacturers
across the country to improve efficiency, implement new technology and
strengthen company growth. This highly-successful program has engaged
in more than 350,000 projects across the country and in 2006 alone,
helped create and protect over 50,000 jobs. But despite this success,
funding for MEP has been slashed by the Bush administration. Barack
Obama and Joe Biden will double funding for the MEP so its training
centers can continue to bolster the competitiveness of U.S.
- Right, Obama’s concerned about efficiency in the manufacturing sector. Then he supports unions. What is he, a literature major?
- Invest In A Clean Energy Economy And Create 5 Million New Green Jobs:
Obama and Biden will invest $150 billion over 10 years to advance the
next generation of biofuels and fuel infrastructure, accelerate the
commercialization of plug-in hybrids, promote development of commercial
scale renewable energy, invest in low emissions coal plants, and begin
transition to a new digital electricity grid. The plan will also invest
in America’s highly-skilled manufacturing workforce and manufacturing
centers to ensure that American workers have the skills and tools they
need to pioneer the first wave of green technologies that will be in
high demand throughout the world.
- This would involve tripling the existing number of jobs in this sectcor. Not likely. Also, $150 billion divided by 5 million is $30,000. Does Obama really think $30,000 per person OVER 10 YEARS is a “good job with good benefits”? Moron.
- Create New Job Training Programs for Clean Technologies:
The Obama-Biden plan will increase funding for federal workforce
training programs and direct these programs to incorporate green
technologies training, such as advanced manufacturing and
weatherization training, into their efforts to help Americans find and
retain stable, high-paying jobs. Obama and Biden will also create an
energy-focused youth jobs program to invest in disconnected and
- High paying? See above.
- Boost the Renewable Energy Sector and Create New Jobs:
The Obama-Biden plan will create new federal policies, and expand
existing ones, that have been proven to create new American jobs. Obama
and Biden will create a federal Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) that
will require 25 percent of American electricity be derived from
renewable sources by 2025, which has the potential to create hundreds
of thousands of new jobs on its own. Obama and Biden will also extend
the Production Tax Credit, a credit used successfully by American
farmers and investors to increase renewable energy production and
create new local jobs.
- See above above.