Thursday, November 1, 2012

Today’s mental workout for Political Thursdays is the very last one before America decides. We are going to end the speculation once and for all. We are not completely sure, but perhaps all the mainstream media has been patiently waiting to see our endorsement. Maybe our 12,000 subscribers could tip the election one way or the other. Well we can only dream, just kidding, no need for that kind of power over here, what do you take us for, politicians! In honor of our real fair and balanced system over here, unlike that other network whose name escapes us, we are going to make a case for both candidates, then let you decide for yourself. Ok, perhaps we’ve poked much more fun out of the contender, but come on, he provided so much great material. Make a plan to thrive regardless of who holds the presidency, the country still has huge structural and fundamental challenges to overcome that goes far beyond the commander-in-chief’s control.

A case for Romney

Romney has been a successful business leader throughout his career in addition to a Governorship in Massachusetts. He also managed the Winter Olympics successfully giving him a depth of experience in various leadership roles in both the private and public sector. Romney does have a track record of reaching across the aisle, that will certainly help with congress. Even though Romney had to move to the far right to gain the Republican nomination, all signs point to a moderate Romney presidency. Romney will probably have creative ideas to jump start the economy through new business initiatives and incentives. No doubt Romney will ensure we have the most efficient government in history, probably run like a business. Whether you think government should be run like a business is another matter for another day, but consider the effects of Hurricane Sandy, there are strong reasons to have adequate government resources. Romney is likely to decrease corporate taxes and perhaps personal taxes too across the board. He will probably hope to bridge the severe budget shortfall through emphasis on business innovation and attracting capital off the sidelines by deregulation. He’s promised 12 million new good jobs, so that could drastically increase the taxable base. Romney will probably impact the severe federal deficit by eliminating waste in numerous federal programs by privatizing certain agencies for increased efficiency. Let’s face it Romney doesn’t really have a solid core, perhaps he can manage to please every segment of the electorate at some point over four years.

A case for Obama

President Obama finally laid out his agenda for a second term, why he delayed until two weeks before the election, we’ll never know, anyhow better late than never. Obama is promising he’ll be a force to be reckoned with in his second term. He’s betting the GOP will be forced to meet him at the table with no more obstructionist politics. Obama will push the agenda for healthcare, alternative energy, women’s rights, same-sex marriage and other progressive ideals. Obama has promised to work on education, finding ways to reduce cost and offer more opportunities to those who can’t afford it. He hopes to adopt innovation to ensure America’s competiveness in the 21st century. We certainly have our work cut out for us! The president will also promote innovation in government and private enterprise hoping to re-build the national infrastructure. Obama will probably allow the Bush tax cuts to expire on the wealthiest Americans to bring in some serious revenue. The president hopes to provide incentives for small business owners to gain access to capital, he also wants to entice corporations to hire more American workers through tax breaks. Obama appears prepared to tackle the giant elephant in the room, immigration, there’s bound to be some kind of compromise from both parties that involves enhanced border enforcement. In a second term, Obama has probably learned a great deal about how Washington works, divided government with collaboration seems to be what the people want.


So do we continue on the same Obama path with positive signs of recovery or is time for change? Big decision indeed, perhaps a defining moment in the nation’s history. Was four years enough to recover from the biggest impact on the economy since the Great Depression? Was four years enough to deal with the huge financial mess that took the better part of a decade to pile up? Was four years enough to deal with structural changes in the nation’s employment that displaced 8 million jobs, threatening to wipe out some vital industries? Even the most optimistic neutral would agree it was a bridge too far. The more important factor is to measure whether we are headed in the right direction. Are the trends pointing to sustainable recovery? Most independent pundits would agree that progress is being made, though not nearly fast enough for some people. Do we hand the keys of the White House back to the GOP? Did what transpire under the Bush-Cheney regime effectively banish the GOP for at least eight years? Can we trust the GOP with control of the White House and Congress? Can we trust a party that invaded Iraq under false pretenses and allowed billions of dollars to go unaccounted for overseas? Can we trust a party that authorized a bailout for those reckless corporations, who were supposedly too big to fail? What is the definition of madness? Have we seen enough from the GOP to suggest that anything will change besides promoting a different set of rules for those at the very top? Have we seen enough from the GOP to suggest they care about the immigration problem? Have we seen enough from the GOP to suggest they care about women's equality and progressive issues? There are indeed historically defining decisions to be made at the voting booth. Speaking of voting rights, which party appears to be suppressing the vote. Which party appears monolithic? Which party appears obstructive instead of constructive? The decision is yours, I hope you enjoyed your political mental workout, may the best man win!