September 12, 2009

Obama: Something Old, Something New

Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue. So goes the wedding saying. There's an interesting parallel with President Obama right now.

Something Old: There is old school Democrat dogma in Obama's latest venture into international affairs. Specifically with respect to trade, the President is reverting to Democrat protectionist trade policy.

In one of his first major decisions on trade policy, President Obama opted Friday to impose a tariff on tires from China, a move that fulfills his campaign promise to "crack down" on imports that unfairly undermine American workers but risks angering the nation's second-largest trading partner.

That China doesn't play fair is nothing new. That getting a better deal from them in terms of how they trade with America is necessary is a given. But during the primaries in 2008, President Obama threatened to renegotiate the NAFTA agreement with Canada and Mexico. This is simply reverting to protectionist form. Trade barriers harm everyone involved, and they are not the way to solve the puzzle of Chinese trade problems.

Something New: Trying to slip ACORN under the radar and into the census process seemed to be working until the expose on ACORN by Big Government’s James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles caused the census bureau to sever ties with the organization. Underhanded means of garnering fraudulent votes is not new. Being so brazen about it, while seemingly reeking of desperation, is definitely new. More on this to follow, here and probably everywhere - except the mainstream media.

Something Borrowed: The budget deficit for the current fiscal year hit $1.38 trillion as of August. Enough said.

Something Blue: In trying to find a middle ground path to pass his health care reform vision, Obama appears to have verbally made concessions to Blue Dog Democrats.

On health care, Obama’s willingness to forgo the public option is sure to anger his party’s liberal base. But some administration officials welcome a showdown with liberal lawmakers if they argue they would rather have no health care law than an incremental one. The confrontation would allow Obama to show he is willing to stare down his own party to get things done.

“We have been saying all along that the most important part of this debate is not the public option, but rather ensuring choice and competition,” an aide said. “There are lots of different ways to get there.”

A temporary concession, but one nonetheless. Whether it helps remains to be seen. Especially in light of the 9/12 march today. Let's hope that march goes very well. The irony of the wedding motif is that it is becoming more and more apparent that the honeymoon period is long over.

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