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Thursday, November 1, 2012

My final argument to vote for Romney

For someone that has been following the presidential election campaigns since the end of 2011, I'm exhausted.  It has been a long, brutal campaign season.  Combine that with the fact that never before had I been so passionate about politics and I admire those people that are in the trenches like this day in and day out.  It is truly a battle and one that I'm hoping will yield victory for Romney on Tuesday.  With that in mind, I'm going to be make my final appeal to anyone who may still be undecided or still harbor a seed of doubt for Romney and/or still aren't very thrilled about Obama.  From my standpoint, there are a myriad of reasons to vote for Romney over Obama.  Many of those I've gone into on this blog.  Frankly, I feel I've said just about all I needed to say about the election.  The problem with most of it is high minded and those not  having a hyper focus on politics this past year will probably not be interested enough in them.  So this last appeal is on a very base idea:  Who is going to do better at turning this country around?  Obviously, you know my answer...

If I were to boil it down to a single line it'd be this:

Romney can deliver the recovery this nation needs while Obama cannot.

That's as simple as it gets.  But let's break this down...

Why can Romney deliver?
Look past the "out of touch rich guy" image that's common among media outlets.  Look past the accusations of flip flopping.  Disregard Big Bird, binders, and bayonets for a moment.  Instead, look at what Romney has actually done:

Bain Capital:  He ran a very successful venture capital business - which, by the way, without venture capital firms, most of the businesses you have today would not exist.  Venture capital firms invest money to new business ventures that grow jobs.  They work on salvaging failing businesses.  Sure, they fail at times and people do lose their jobs, but Romney's overall record at Bain capital was very successful.  He has proven experience within the economy, probably more so than any other president or presidential candidate in recent memory, and was successful at it.  Knowing how our capitalist economy works and how to get it going again is something we sorely need.

2002 Winter Olympics:  He turned around an event that almost didn't happen because it was going bankrupt and was riddled with corruption.  And it became one of the best and most memorable Olympiads in recent history (Who can forget the powerful performance of the Star Spangled Banner by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir while an actual flag that survived the World Trade Center was honored?).  This shows he knows how to make internal adjustments toward recovery and be successful at it even when there's a lot on the line.  

Governor of Massachusetts:  Massachusetts is one of the bluest states in the country.  The fact that a Republican could even be elected in a state with a legislature that's 87% Democrat is an achievement in itself.  Yet, even despite this, Romney was able to reach across the aisle (he had to), in order to get things done.  He had his priorities in order:  straighten up the fiscal mess, then push for healthcare reform.   And again, he did this all while having a ridiculously lopsided Democrat legislative majority.  This shows he has executive governmental experience (something I think all presidents should have) as well as an ability to work with "the other side" to get things done.  This is an extremely valuable skill to have.  Presidents that are able to do this have shown to be outstanding leaders.

Conclusion
This is all stuff he's done.  His resume speaks for itself. Tune out the social issue fearmongering for a moment (women's health, abortion, etc.).   Romney is a moderate rooted in conservative principles.  He, including Paul Ryan, are not going to push any radical social issue agendas.  They have no intent and will be far busier working on righting the country's fiscal ship.  Do they have a plan? You bet they do.  Don't be fooled into believing they don't.  They've been talking about the plan, reducing taxes and easing the regulatory burden, as the vehicle for economic growth.

Romney has the experience and a proven track record to do what this country needs.  You rarely get candidates more qualified than this where their skillset matches almost perfectly with what our country needs.

Why can't Obama deliver?
Much like looking past Romney's "out of touch" image, look past the cool guy, celebrity status image Obama has cultivated.  Sounds like he'd be great to have hang out at a party.  But running the most powerful nation in the world is not a party.  Instead, let's look at his resume and what he's done:

Obamacare:  The goal of Obamacare was to reduce health care costs.  Yet data has shown it to have the opposite effect:  increasing healthcare costs.  Many small businesses cannot afford to hire more employees (less job growth). Some have gone out of business due to Obamacare's regulations.  It's also loaded with hidden taxes - not to mention the mandate tax - that will effectively place more fiscal burden on the middle class than alleviate it.  And on top of all that, it's estimated to cost taxpayers at least $200 billion a year once fully implemented.  This was happening at a time when the country was still reeling from the 2008 meltdown.  This shows us two things.  One, is that he's implemented legislation that is doing the opposite of its intent, revealing a lack of capitalist economic understanding.  Second, it shows his priorities being questionable.  While enjoying full Democratic control of Congress, he used it to push this costly healthcare reform instead of first getting our economy in order.  

The stimulus:  The government took about $800-900 billion and "invested" it back into our economy (in comparison, Bush 43's stimulus was only about $40-50 billion).  It was intended to create more jobs and get the economy going.  The problem, however, is that it didn't quite work out that way.  The economy, which was already starting to begin a natural recovery period, not only did not get the intended jump start, it flat-lined and has been that way ever since.  Large investments were made into green energy companies, many of which have since filed for bankruptcy (Solyndra being the most famous).  The stimulus, many don't realize, was a massive redistribution effort and the primary tool of those like Obama who believe in "spreading the wealth".  That's what this stimulus was:  He took hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars and had his government give it to whomever they thought deserve it.  It resulted in tepid growth at best and negative growth at worst.  This highlights how government is not the way to stimulate growth because they are, in reality, not economic experts.  They're not good at "spreading the wealth" effectively or efficiently.  For a stimulus on this level to only yield tepid results, and even regressive results, and for this to be the go to tool for a redistributionist like Obama, then it just shows that we can expect more of this down the road.  We might not be so lucky next time as they push for even bigger stimulus which will make things even worse.

The deficit:  Obama had a goal to reduce the "unpatriotic" (his words) deficit accrued by George W. Bush by 50%.  Instead, he's increased it by roughly 50%.  He's acquired more debt in 4 years than Bush 43 did in 8.  People like to blame Bush for the economy, which indeed was bad when Obama took office.  Yet, if Obama was at least marginally effective at accomplishing his goal, then the rate of that our deficit increased every year should have decreased instead of increased.  So while we can blame Bush for having a terrible economy in 2009, blaming him for our deficit increasing faster over the next 3-4 years is disingenuous.  The bottom line is Obama only did not deliver, he did nearly the exact opposite of what he intended.  This points to someone following a philosophy that you can spend your way out of debt.  Yet, as the numbers reveal, that you in fact can't keep spending money to get out of debt.  It just creates more debt.  If you need more proof that it doesn't work, just look at Europe.  They, like Obama, believe they can spend their way out of their rising debt.  It's not working out that well for them either.

Conclusion
These three pieces show a president that had his chance to affect recovery.  He tried what he thought worked - and it didn't.  He has shown repeatedly during this 2012 campaign that he either does not understand how our capitalist economy works or is disdainful of it and therefore rejects its principles.  He also hasn't given any new ideas to fix the problem.  He's given goals, such as creating x amount of jobs, but how does he plan to do that?  He's tried what he thought would work, and it didn't - and it cost us dearly.  The only thing we have left to assume is that he'll try the same thing again and hope it'll work this time.  But we've seen how it worked out before and it's far too big of a gamble to go further into debt by utilizing a strategy that has historically failed time and again.

I'm sure Obama could eventually learn from his mistakes, but that's what having decades of experience is for.  A president receiving on the job training has just been too costly and will be.  And frankly, if there's one job in the whole world where experience and an impeccable resume matter the most, it'd be becoming the leader of the free world.



Recap

When you compare the two by what they've done.  When you look at the results, you see a challenger with decades of successful experience in fixing fiscally troubled entities (both business and government) with a plan that has proven to be successful in the past (his tax cuts are quite similar to Reagan's which lead to economic boom) vs an incumbent who's tried things his way, has not succeeded, and has no different plan moving forward.  Recovery is needed now.  The risk of giving Obama a chance to "get it right this time" is too great.  It's time to bring in a pro.  The choice seems pretty clear to me.