Saturday, August 16, 2008

Obama's Wheel of Fortune

From what I have read (and depending on who's doing the reporting), Barack Obama has promised between $800 billion and $1-1/2 trillion in new Federal spending. This is for all his new programs and promises on health care insurance, preschool and higher education, tax giveaways to those who don't pay taxes, green energy programs, short-term and permanent stimulus programs, and other giveaways for individuals, families and seniors that are just too numerous to mention. A week doesn't go by that he doesn't promise another government giveaway.

At the same time, he plans to increase the tax rolls by reversing tax cuts for the rich, increasing capital gains and dividend taxes, ending expenses for the War in Iraq, instituting a windfall profits tax, and other things. Estimates for those gains in the Federal coffers are between $250 billion and $500 billion (Again, it depends on who is doing the accounting). Anyway you shake it, there appears to be a shortfall of at least $300 billion and as much as 1-1/4 trillion dollars between what Obama has promised to spend and any new tax income. Of course, Obama and his team would tell you otherwise. That's because they like use the time-honored political mathematic's technique called: the best case scenario. In that "scenario" everything is perfect. There are no unforeseen problems and all estimates are always spot on. Nothing such as a "government overrun" or a "tax shortfall" is ever in a politician's "best case scenario". Of course, the best case scenario has "never, ever been achieved" by any new government program or programs.

Obama is truly the political equivalent of Pat Sajak on the game show called "The Wheel of Fortune". The only difference is that the "bankrupt" space on his wheel is hidden. When the players, the taxpayers, land on that space, it's the Federal Government and the overtaxed businesses and those with high incomes that lose. But, eventually, everyone will lose because taxes will have to be raised to offset the loss of tax revenues. The rich will stay rich and, maybe, move their money offshore to take advantage of a friendlier business and taxation environments. Business will suffer and, ultimately, they will pay less taxes and hire less people. Maybe, too, lay people off. This truly is a game show where no one wins and everyone loses.

There are some that call Obama the "One" or the Messiah. Maybe he "is" capable of Messianic feats. Perhaps, like the parable and the miracle of "The Loaves and the Fishes", he can keep giving money away without the income to support it. Wouldn't that be a true miracle! But, in reality, I see a guy who is just promising anything to get into office. The chances of him doing everything that he says are probably slim. But, if he did, you better hope that he is a miracle worker.

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