Some pundits described Obama’s State of the Union address tonight as “conciliatory.” I’m not sure I understand the sentiment behind the perspective. I would have characterized the President’s remarks, in the wake of the election, almost as cliché, or maybe non-descript, and maybe more aptly as an introduction to Marco Rubio.
Not that he didn’t say anything. He just didn’t say anything new. Maybe that really is the most important, and most historic, point of Obama’s reelection. The understated point is – he’s no longer the first black president. If the country is in a stalemate, Obama still is the King.
One thing I don’t understand is how Obama thinks the US is going to do anything about global warming. I am a tree hugger, so don’t misunderstand, we should do more for our environment. But, what I mean is this. The accounts I see by the scientists he places trust in seems to indicate we’ve already passed the point of no return. By the time earthly inhabitants actually react, no matter how quickly, the ocean is going to rise quite a bit. And one part of the equation that we have little or no control over is perhaps the biggest factor. China’s rapidly advancing modernization is contributing as much or more to global warming than we are. Are they ready to step up and sacrifice their economic progress over the problem? Hold your breath – especially if you’re near one of their coal burning electric plants.
Obama wants to raise minimum to $9.00 an hour in order to lift those folks out of poverty, and to subsequently tie minimum wage to the cost of living. I agree in principle, but I don’t think it’s a functional equation. Raise minimum wage, inflations starts, etc. etc. etc., vicious cycle. He continues to suggest more taxes on those “who can afford to pay more,” but I think that’s just part of the vicious cycle that ends when “you eventually run out of someone else’s money.”
I continue to say that there needs to be a fundamental change in taxing, or regulating, big business so that there is a fundamental shift in the overall distribution of wealth – worldwide. It seems to me that’s where Obama lacks the intestinal fortitude, or brawn, or sincerity, to make the real difference in affecting a fair living wage for every one who works. He doesn’t really want to get into a fight with corporations in countries he has no jurisdiction over.
The president raised the first red flag with comments related to the perennial “white elephant” in the room of Obamacare – genetic profiling, genetic engineering, and eugenics. He lauded the investments in genomic research, mentioned the ostensibly favorable health results, but placed much more emphasis on the economic returns. This is the war of the 21st century because when money becomes more important that human rights, and having the right to make independent health decisions, and the freedom to drink as much coca-cola as you want, the result will essentially be holocaust.
He further underscored his inappropriate focus, although obscured in another context, when he stated that “being a man isn’t about being able to conceive children.” Some people know that Obama is one in a string of US Presidents who did not conceive their own children. They were in fact a product of selective test tube engineering. This is an issue that should already be on the table, especially in light of Obamacare, instead of slipping through the cracks in the floor under the table.
And the President continues to shift focus from good government to anarchy in other ways. He seems to think that deceptive propaganda, like that mentioned above, and flagrant disregard for legitimate process of making law, is a good way to build character and “reduce gun violence.” He says, “they deserve a vote,” referring to the victims of gun violence and their families. He wants to push legislation affecting gun control that is fundamentally unconstitutional. Those folks already get to vote. If He, and they, want to change the Constitution, there is a process for that. It requires time for thought, and consensus, and well thought wisdom, and for ratification by the states. They would also get their vote then. Congress doesn’t have authority to change the Constitution. Fly by night, knee jerk reaction, histrionic, hurry don’t think, deceptive anarchy, really isn’t the kind of example that builds character and peace.
ON MARK RUBIO’S RESPONSE
There’s no doubt in my mind, Mark Rubio and the Republican party are two lame ducks made for each other. I found his rebuttal to be racist, delusional, and cut-throat. He is a true republican.
Rubio’s first problem is that he wants to open the doors for the rest of his extended family to stay in the United States illegally. Well, I’m not in favor of letting my Irish kinfolks immigrate to this country with no quotas or a legitimate process either. If I said I was, I’d be called a racist too.
True to republican form, Rubio exhibited his love of the small business sacred cow, while ignoring some other pertinent facts. He noted that Obamacare has actually caused some larger businesses to cut out insurance for their employees. And, he seems to think that “less” government will result in hiring more employees and help to expand the middle class. I guess that’s right. There definitely would be more small business owners in the middle class if they have plenty of illegal immigrants working for them who are relegated to what is essentially a slave caste – while they sit in the back of the bus waiting for citizenship. And, as long a small business owners don’t have to provide insurance or a living wage for people who are citizens – that will likely insure that more small business owners are lifted into the middle class also.
Small business owner have been up in arms for 40 years. I can’t blame them in a way, but I hate to tell you this – the small business golden age is over. The big box, fast highway, modern construction, assembly line retailers are here, and they ain’t going away. There are a few small businesses that will survive because they are intrinsically local.
Never-the-less, small businesses are going to have to meet a higher standard if this country is to maintain its integrity and principles. Yeah, yeah, I get it. It’s going to be tougher than ever to make a small business work in the future, and believe me I would like as much you to be my own boss and own my own successful business.
The real crux of the problem actually does go back to more government regulation, but again, it has to be in the right places. It is unconscionable that with so much efficiency in big business, with all the advances, that we still have about the same rate of poverty as hundreds of years ago. It doesn’t make sense. The trouble is that big businesses have become a sort of monopoly that prevents the benefits of efficiency from reaching the workers who deserve to share in the spoils. Monopolies are where governments are supposed to step in and see to it that the fundamental redistribution of wealth mentioned above actually takes place.
© 2013 – Jim Casey
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