Becker Blog

The world according to Brian Becker

Tied Hands

Posted by Brian Becker on September 19, 2008

No matter how I look at it, whoever is the next president is going to have their hands tied on making good on their policy promises with this financial crisis.

Bush’s legacy is going to include two wars, the largest budget deficit we’ve ever had, and the biggest economic crisis in decades. The next President’s number one problem is going to be fixing the ailing economy, and reducing the deficit. This means that neither Obama’s or McCain’s tax plans are going to be feasible until we are through this crisis. McCain’s plan gives more tax breaks to the rich who are causing this crisis, and will balloon the debt even more, and quite frankly would never be allowed through a Democrat controlled congress. Obama wouldn’t have any problem passing his tax plan, but I’m convinced it won’t until the pressure of the economic crisis subsides because it also increases the deficit. Not as much as McCain’s, but its significant according to independent analysts. Some numeric changes might make it more workable though. Either way, I don’t think either plan will be passed as they are presented today.

The one thing that I think might be brought back up again amidst this crisis is the Iraq war. The Obama camp would be smart to bring it up as a drain on our economy. We spend billions of dollars a month there and with all these financial bailouts in the news, our tax dollars being squandered will be a big issue. If I were Obama, I would laugh every time McCain mentions earmarks as the most egregious abuses of government spending, and point out that every day we spend in more in one week in Iraq than on earmarks in an entire year. Getting out of Iraq should be a priority for whoever is the next President, but we all know McCain is not committed to doing that. Obama should press the issue more.

So if the hands of the next President are tied because of the Bush legacy, the question becomes who do you think is best fit to handle it? The guy who graduated from Columbia and Harvard, was President of the Harvard Law Review, and has demonstrated his intelligence throughout his career, or the guy who finished fourth from the bottom of his class in the Naval academy, doesn’t understand the economy by his own admission, and chose a completely unqualified person to be his successor if he becomes incapacitated in any way during his Presidency? For me the answer is easy. How about you?


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