Way too much damage has already been done by our previous administration to expect Obama to come in and do too much, too soon. It’s going to take years to recover from what’s not even boiled to its worst point yet. The recession is showing every possible sign at drifting closer to a depression. There is still a war going on and no one has talked about it in months! That war is costing us millions a day (About $341 million, by the way!).
I’ve also had this theory about the baby boomers. They have artificially inflated the price of everything out of affordability for our generation. They presently own the majority of homes & properties in the U.S., so what is going to happen within the next 10 years when they either: a) downsize, b) retire, c) die?
None of us can afford to buy, therefore everything they have is going to decline in value at a rapid-fire pace. And let’s not forget the fact that they are the majority of the population and they are going to flood the health care system, which definitely is not ready for that volume of humans.
I think the best thing that Obama can do is to just try and pick up the pieces in some sort of rational manner, but I don’t think it’s going to be quick and/or easy.
—Derek Kerswell, Unearth
Barack Obama should not have the mindset of “leading” or “saving the world.” Although the United States plays a major influence in world affairs, his main concern must be the United States. Looking at the history books, the American economy roughly has a 20-year pattern of recession. It’s not the easiest task to come into office during the lowest trough of this pattern, but with the right agenda, Obama has the ability to bring the country back to running speed.
His main focus should be the failing economy’s markets and the war in the Middle East. It is very possible to bring the country out of recession by inspiring the American people that it is “O.K.” to spend their money. Spending stimulates the economy; it forces companies to move products more efficiently as they come off the shelves quicker and, as a result, it will create new jobs to keep up with the demand. As for the war, his policy to have a withdrawal timeline is one of the worst ways to approach the situation. We cannot show the world that the almighty United States is on its heels. Whether we like it or not, we are the world leaders, and we must portray that by finishing what we started. The fact is that we are still fighting and our military needs our financial and emotional support until we can safely bring our troops home without consequences of leaving the Middle East in disarray or to fend for themselves.
The odds are most definitely against Obama with the race card and much is expected due to his running platform based on “Change.” As the old saying goes, “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.” My main concern is that he will want or try to change too much; trying to “fix” too many policies, getting in way over his head, and thus “breaking” them which would make the country more vulnerable domestically and abroad.
It sounds a tad Pollyanna-ish, but I’m looking for us to be respected in the world community again by (hopefully) shutting down Gitmo, restoring habeas corpus here, and ending the dark reign of the United States as a torturing nation. Obviously, I want out of Iraq, but I do want to do it with intelligence and pragmatism. The Iraqis seem to think they are a sovereign country right now, but we’ll see about all that. I’m suspicious. I hope that resolving that conflict and restoring some of our human rights luster will give us renewed global political capital to move towards a pre-W./post-W. policy of liberal internationalism. Things are bad in Africa now, particularly in Congo, Somalia, Zimbabwe, and Sudan, and we have to act sooner than later, or we’ll have the blood of another Rwanda on our hands.
I’ve always felt that the way to prevent terrorism is by acting like a good global neighbor to the developing world. Furthermore, I hope that Obama realizes that—oh yeah!—we exist in a hemisphere with many other nations, some of whom (Brazil comes to mind) are emerging as major global players. I’m no fan of the Castro and Chavez regimes (no matter how fetishized they are by fellow liberals) and their suppression of dissent and free expression, but I think we should meet them at a negotiating table and kill them with kindness. Bush has all but ignored Latin American relationships during his presidency, and this is why so many in the Western Hemisphere have been drawn to the blustering of demagogues like Hugo Chavez. No matter how much liberals try to fight it, I believe—as a liberal—that free trade will ultimately come to the South American continent, and we should be a part of that, working with the lesser developed nations to help them scaffold of our success, ending years of exploitative relationships. Same with Africa. I know, pie in the sky, right?
—Lucas Jensen, Venice Is Sinking