America's Gorbachev

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Looks as if
the USA is starting to look at lot like the old USSR. If you remember
back to the 1980’s, the Soviet Union was in crisis. Their military
was losing in Afghanistan, their economy imploding, and even life
spans were in decline. Just like us now. Obviously, things are not
going too well.

So, what is
our response? Our best and brightest elite in DC are doing everything
within their power to maintain the status quo. So to please the
lobbyists who elected them, they are embarking on a spending spree
of trillions, yes, trillions of dollars.

We are told
that all will be well if they just keep on doing what they have
been doing. But doing what they have been doing got us to this crisis
in the first place. So just maintaining course is not an answer,
and certainly speeding up is not much of a good idea either.

But look at
some of the facts on the ground. In the last few months the best
congress that money can buy has approved a 700 billion bailout to
Wall Street, while the FED has disbursed trillions of dollars to
whom? Well, we still don’t know. Meanwhile, the largest defense
budget was passed, no actually rubber stamped by congress to fund
one unpopular war (Iraq) and to escalate another hopeless war (Afghanistan).

We are told
first that "the sky is falling" (bailout phase one), and
then "trust us" (bailout phase two), to the mantra now,
we must "save the economy" (bailout phase three).

Yet, all that
has happened so far is that we have saved such icons as Bear Stearns,
AIG, and Citigroup so they can continue to operate with the same
corruption, greed, and hubris that has already failed them. Then,
we the people (read taxpayers) get to foot the bill.

It is said
that they are "too big to fail," and thus deserving of
our largess. When they make profits, well they keep them. When the
lose money, hey, we pay for it. This is simply the most egregious
version of "heads I win, tails you lose," that’s ever
been seen. Yet, we the American people have really had no say in
the matter.

No, you say,
it can’t be that bad. No it can’t, not yet anyway. Meanwhile it
is now GM, Ford and Chrysler who have come cap in hand to DC. Why?
Well, they are too big to fail too! Gee, what’s wrong with this?
Maybe the problem is we have too many firms that are too big to
fail. Maybe the solution is to not have firms that can hold us hostage
in the first place.

I for one think
a bit of a reality check is in order. Our enlightened government
needs to borrow 3 billion dollars a day to keep the USSA afloat.
By next year this may be much more. Yet, where is this money going
to come from? Will these generous foreigners keep buying what will
soon be worthless paper (treasuries) just to keep us afloat?

What about
the American people? Can they continue to remain passive while their
children and grandchildren are bankrupted? I don’t think so.

So it looks
like Barack the Blessed will inherit a sinking ship. Sure, we have
Captain Bush and his merry regime to thank, but the fact is, we
are in more trouble than even the "enlightened one" can
handle.

Meanwhile,
Obama has chosen the same best and the brightest who have gotten
us into this mess in the first place. Larry Summers, Joe Biden,
Rahm Emanuel, Robert Rubin, and others are of the same gang who
clamored to repeal the Glass-Steagal act, and deregulate Wall Street.
The same who helped to pave the wave to consolidation of the media,
so we are now left with different versions of Pravda, mouthpieces
for the mainstream, but not of the mainstream.

What can Obama
do? Not much really. He will construct the largest most extravagant
‘roads’ in history, all paved by good intentions. He will get as
many people back to work as he can. He will surely fail. For the
market will eventually re-assert itself. All the incentives in the
world cannot make bad loans become good, or obsolete cars to be
sold, or create productive jobs by mandate.

Obama is presiding
over the meltdown of an unsustainable economic and political system.
He like Gorbachev before him, will believe he can reform the status
quo from within. Well, that is like trying to raise the Titanic
for a second voyage. It is costly and unworkable. Sure, it is possible
that some things will actually succeed in the short term. And, I
hope that Obama makes some good decisions for the American people.

But the writing
is on the wall. The world seems to be acting now as if the US is
no longer calling the shots. Whether in Latin America where they
are now holding summits that include Cuba, and excludes America.
Or in Asia, where Japan, China and South Korea now hold summits
without US involvement, they have decided to get on without us.

At least Obama
will put a smiley face on bad policies, and he represents something
new and a bit fresh. Since Obama will most likely be President for
two terms, I imagine he will do much to repair the damage of his
predecessor. He may even be at times popular, and respected.

Yet, like the
Soviet Union under Gorbachev, he only has the desire to adjust direction,
and he doesn’t have the power to reverse course. But like those
before him from both parties, they really believe that they know
what they are doing, and in the ultimate arrogance, believe that
they are the source of solutions to our current problems.

The fact, as
Reagan so eloquently spoke is "that Government is the problem."
Almost every major predicament and disaster befalling the country
is due to our federal government. The only reason the country can
carry on so long is that there are still pockets of freedom left
to create wealth and relate to the world without having to shoot
them first.

Our health
care and defense industries weigh heavily on us now and in the future.
The corrupt self-serving elite in New York have been instrumental
in running the world’s largest Ponzi scheme, while the SEC sleeps.
They now have Madoff as their poster boy. Then there is Rumsfeld
and company enabling the embezzlement of billions of taxpayer dollars
into no-bid contracts for Iraq. These are simply the symptoms of
a sick patient, who has been systematically harmed by government
policies.

When we see
the scandal surrounding the Governor of Illinois, and his efforts
to sell Obama’s Senate seat, we are shocked. Really? Maybe he is
par for the course. Certainly Obama’s chief of staff Rahm Emanuel
knew what was going on? Maybe even Barack the Blessed himself, God
forbid.

There is only
one solution to our many problems. We need to regain the sovereignty
of the country back. That means close down Washington DC. Let the
states have the power and money, let control back where it belongs
— locally. Let there be competitive state-run solutions to our problems,
not the one-size-fits-all mandate from DC.

Maybe he can
see us through the turmoil in a way where the country sees its dignity
returned. If by the next election we are out of Iraq and Guantanamo
is closed, at least we can say we are a country of some ideals,
again. Sure, it may not happen, or Obama will get us into even more
quagmires like Sudan, Somalia, or Pakistan. But at least we have
Obama, hey we’ve got perestroika, we are changing. Or may I should
call him Gorbama? Or maybe Obamachev?

Right about
now its time to say God Bless America, and hope there really is
a God, and that now, he is on actually our side.

January
10, 2009

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