The criteria for the best presidential candidate is one having experience, character, an understanding of the problems facing the country, is living family values and will not sacrifice what is best for the country to improve his chances of winning in 2016. Barack Obama is the only candidate meeting this criteria.
He made mistakes early including allowing health care to side-track focusing on the economy, not recognizing the need to build coalitions with the Republican leadership in the House and Senate and failing to capitalize on the work done by the Bowles-Simpson Committee; even though he recognizes the need for a balanced approach to solving our debt problem.
We are better off than we were four years ago. With hindsight we know we were deeply involved in a sub-prime mortgage meltdown that almost brought on a depression. This meltdown was partially brought on by relaxing financial regulations and allowing institutions to get to big to fail.
In November 2008 everything came to a head. Without quick action by the Federal Reserve, during Bush’s term, we indeed would have revisited the 1930’s. Much of the large spending icreases the Republicans complain about resulted from the errors made during the Bush years. Frpm 2000 to 2008 consumer debt increased by 163% as shown by the chart to the left from the Federal Reserve.
The truth is economic hangovers hurt and they take years to correct. The recession officially started in 2008; however, much of our growth in the last decade resulted from excess consumer debt and the housing bubble. We borrowed from our future and are now paying the price.
At the same time, we were involved in a war in Iraq that should never have been. Thanks to Obama we are now out of it. Some will say we left too early. I say we went in too fast. It cost us much in life and treasure, while getting very little in return. In addition, Osama bin Laden is dead and al-qaeda is in disarray.
The President recognizes the need to invest in our future through education and building and repairing infrastructure. The Republicans have blocked every attempt to do so by demanding other programs must be cut while not agreeing to any tax increases on the wealthy.
We have an economic system that is not fairly distributing income. Our “Free Markets” are broken and no one is fixing it. Free markets can be harmed by over regulation by governments. The same markets can be destroyed by over zealous companies controlling markets and destroying free enterprise. The result is economic power becomes concentrated as does income and wealth.
Will a candidate, Republican or Democrat, please step forward and address this issue?