Queen Michelle

August 5, 2010

The Obamas are on vacation again.  That’s what, 7? 8?  this summer. This time, however, they’ve gone on separate trips. Both at public expense.

Michelle’s trip is getting all the press.  It’s not because she only took Sasha, or that she was gone on Barack’s birthday.    It’s that she’s treating it as an official visit.  And I’m paying.  So are you.

When I take a vacation, I travel coach, or I drive.  I take overnight flights to avoid hotel bills.  I stay at Choice hotels because they have comfortable beds and a simple (free) breakfast without charging me for nice lobbies.  When I travel on business, I do the same, saving my employer at every turn.

Not so with Michelle.  She’s taking Air Force 2 to Spain, at a cost of almost $150k.  While she’s there, she, her friends and the secret service will occupy some 60 or 70 rooms, at $2500 each a night (around $70k total). Add food, incidentials and souveniers, that’s a lot of stimulus that didn’t stay in the country.

And Barack?  He took Bo the dog back to Chicago.  Birthday fundraiser dinner with “friends”.  Of course Oprah was there.

Makes me wonder.  It’s not proper.  Even when they’re together, they’re separate.  We saw that in the campaign, especially the convention.  If I didn’t know better, she’s punishing him, spending “his” money, and since she’s right, he doesn’t say anything, but simply slips off for a weekend with the buds (or the girlfriend?).

It’s not enough our country is going down the toilet and our emperor seems powerless to stop it, but his personal life is starting to look shaky, and we’re paying for that as well.


An Economic Wasteland

March 8, 2010

According to an article in todays UK Telegraph, Obama’s legacy is likely not to be change for the better, but long-term economic turmoil. The “audacity” of Obama’s hope is not met with any kind of ability to act on the ideas to create positive results.

Almost 10% of the workforce – 15Million Americans – are unemployed and looking for work.  Perhaps another 10% have given up trying and are not counted in the official numbers.  According to the article, about a quarter of the black people in Chicago are both unemployed and frustrated that their man is not able to solve the problem for “his own people.”

Whole areas of the country, especially the former industrial belt, have become instead ‘industrial wastelands.’  In Newark and Baltimore, drug-dealing is the principal commercial activity.

The much vaunted Stimulus bill has done little to stem the loss of jobs.  Looking closely, we see that most of the jobs went to large companies that had been inefficient spenders in the past.    Most of the cash disbursed went “to further the re-election prospects of many congressmen, not to do good for the country.” In other words, the cash was spent to keep the newly-minted Democrat majority in power.

Hefler says that “For a land without a welfare state, America starts to do an effective impersonation of a country with one.”

Americans are unhappy with their government and their President.  They are concerned – angry – that so much money was wasted so fast with so little effect.  It’s perhaps what’s wrong with the health care bill – people don’t trust it to do what Congress says it will do, but rather just another opportunity to waste more money by diverting tax revenues to favored contributors, while the multi-trillion dollar debt keeps pilling up.

Without a significant change right away, there is no good end in sight.