Obama also accountable for U.S. debt, says Courtland resident

Published 11:13 am Friday, October 25, 2013

A recent quote from our president on the day the government shutdown ended: “The American people are completely fed up with Washington,” Obama said in stern remarks at the White House, just hours after signing a last-minute measure from Congress that headed off the threat that the nation would default on its debts.

Thank you Tidewater News for publishing last week another quote from that same person, then Senator Obama, who said in 2006, “The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our government’s reckless fiscal policies. Over the past five years, our federal debt has increased by $3.5 trillion to $8.6 trillion. That is ‘trillion’ with a ‘T.’ That is money that we have borrowed from the Social Security trust fund, borrowed from China and Japan, borrowed from American taxpayers.” So said Senator Obama.

In 2006 he continued, “This year, the federal government will spend $220 billion on interest. That is more money to pay interest on our national debt than we’ll spend on Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program. That is more money to pay interest on our debt this year than we will spend on education, homeland security, transportation and veterans benefits combined. It is more money in one year than we are likely to spend to rebuild the devastated gulf coast in a way that honors the best of America. Increasing America’s debt weakens us domestically and internationally.

“Leadership means that ‘the buck stops here.’ Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better. I therefore intend to oppose the effort to increase America’s debt limit.” This is what he said in 2006. That was Senator Obama.

Those of us who try to keep up with things political remember these words. The problem is that in 2006, when he was a member of Congress, he was blaming President George Bush. Since Obama was elected in 2008 and again in 2012, his policies have continued to put us deeper and deeper in debt, from the $8.6 trillion he criticized to now some $17 trillion and growing by millions of dollars each hour. Of course he blames Congress, easily forgetting that he was a member of Congress when many of those financial decisions were made. Of course he blames Congress because they pass the spending bills. Of course he blames Congress. He blames Congress now that he is president. His nature is to blame others. I wonder how he can sleep at night – how he can look his daughters in the eye knowing that their generation, his own children and their children and yours and mine, will have to deal with this massive and growing and unsustainable debt.

I remember going to what we called “cowboy and Indian” western movies when I was a youngster here in Franklin. In those movies, invariably when an Indian felt cheated or shortchanged or lied to by a white person, he would say something like. “Me think him speak with forked tongue.” I remember Lyndon Johnson telling me that he, ”Would not send American boys to Asia to fight a war which ought to be fought by Asian boys.” Within one year I was in Vietnam. Two years ago Obama said, “If you like your present insurance you can keep it. If you like your present doctor, you can keep him (or her).” I think history is showing that he also speaks with forked tongue. And we see the same thing played out over and over again, almost daily on television every time the president speaks.

I wrote in this paper last year that re-electing him would be like the Titanic backing up and hitting the iceberg again. I just hope that those of you who were responsible for the fact that the great community organizer is in charge once again can look through your fogged up binoculars and see the iceberg looming dead ahead. Obama himself said, quoting Truman, “Leadership means that ‘the buck stops here.’ Instead (said Senator Obama), Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren.”

ASH CUTCHIN  is a resident of Courtland.