Remember on the campaign trail when John McCain said the fundamentals of our economy are strong? Remember how liberals, Democrats, and everyone in the media condemned him as “out of touch” after he said these words? Remember how pundits consistently declared that this was the cause of the GOP ticket’s downfall?
President Obama, in a meeting with Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, insisted that “every investor can have absolute confidence in the soundness of investments in the United States.” Don’t get me wrong, I would much rather hear optimism spew out of the First Vocal Cords than his recent perpetual pessimism, but how can he say this right now when the economy is anything but sound?
Since January, more than one million people have lost their jobs, the unemployment rate has jumped an entire half of a percent, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average is still down nearly 18%. Despite the past four days of blue chip gains, investors are still scared to throw any large amounts of money into the stock market because of Obama’s impending tax policies. (I am sure Obama will gladly take credit for those gains, despite what he said about it being nothing more than a tracking poll two weeks ago.)
What President Obama is doing, and I don’t really blame him for it, is lying about the security of our economy in order to gain additional security.
Consider China’s recent worry over United States Treasury Bonds, and the threat they pose to the United States and her allies. Their capitalistic tendencies notwithstanding, China represents an antithetical posture to many American ideologies, political and social. To make matters worse, we are heavily in debt to them. If they were to cease purchasing US Bonds, our recession would turn into a depression overnight. China, whose recent economic recovery has astonished many, would dominate the world stage and America would become economically subservient.
Obama is announcing his confidence in the American economy, despite the signs screaming at people to abandon ship, in order to reinforce the assurances he gave to China. If he does not sound confident in his own country, foreign countries will pull their investments out. If he lies about our economy and says it is “fundamentally sound,” foreign countries will continue to invest, and we will be permitted to prolong our economic hegemony a little longer.
The good part is, this may work. Confidence from the top is almost always a good thing and it could help stimulate our own economy from within. The bad part is, we may become so complacent in our power and economic recovery that we will once again forget what got us to that point. President Obama pledged to reduce the deficit in half. If he does not make good on this promise and America continues to spend beyond its means, the recession we are currently in will be nothing compared to when every foreign country comes demanding restitution on their investments.
Obama could have been optimistic from the beginning of his presidency, and he probably could have saved investors a lot of worry; but he needed to instill fear into the American people in order to enable his socialistic stimulus package. The irony he has created for himself is with all his profligate spending plans, he now faces a much more difficult task in reducing the deficit by even a quarter.
McCain understood that in order to reassure Americans you must be optimistic; he understood that fear in the economy is a downward spiral. It was for these reasons that he said fundamentals of our economy were sound. Meanwhile, Obama, liberals, Democrats, and the media politicized Americans’ economic fear for their own agenda. Obama rebuked McCain in a debate for his remarks, and now he says the same thing out of national self-preservation.
“If we are keeping focused on all of the fundamentally sound aspects of our economy, all the outstanding companies, workers, all of the innovation and dynamism in this economy then we’re going to get through this. I’m very confident about that.” -Barack Obama, March 13, 2009 after meeting with Former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker