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A Little about Obama’s 2012 Budget.

February 15, 2011

Oh, how I love the politics of running the country.  At a time when big business is calling “the end of the Recession” while still not hiring, and the middle class is rapidly becoming the working poor, President Obama has released his Budget plan for 2012. 

In the months since the last election in which Republicans took the lead in the House of Representatives (and for some reason that is not clear to anyone who understands how government actually works now have total control over all three branches of government), first came the “compromise”, where Obama gave over $5oo billion in tax cuts to kajillionaires so that he was allowed to spend $56 billion to “let” displaced workers continue to collect unemployment insurance.  Then he named TWO big business corporate superstars to prominent posts in his Administration.  The President has also been on a huge PR campaign where he is basically frolicking around with CEOs in an effort to prove how PRO-BUSINESS he is, which I can only assume is an attempt to make sure he re-election campaign is financed. 

The White House has been telling us all how we should truly feel sympathy for Mr. President because he has to make such tough decisions (I am sobbing into my hankie right now), and so the release of the budget plan for 2012 should truly have come as no surprise.  Any time that the government talks about “tough decisions”, the middle class and the poor should run for cover, because those tough decisions will almost always be decisions that will dramatically affect them and leave the tiny obscenely rich minority who is untouchable further untouched.

The biggest news was that Obama proposes hacking away at the LIHEAP (Low Income Heat Energy Assistance Program) so that thousands of poor families will have to choose between starving or freezing to death.  But don’t worry.  We’ll still be spending about $120 billion in Iraq and Afghanistan, where obviously we do so much good!

Frankly, I find it hard to hide my disappointment with President Obama.  Far from being someone who is really working on behalf of the People, he has focused his attention on making sure that the Rich recover from the Recession unscathed and crossed his fingers hoping that the rest of us would bounce back on our own.   His “solutions” in the proposed budget that address the problems of the struggling working class involve things like work-sharing (where people get to work part-time instead of not at all, but also instead of full-time jobs where the employer has to offer benefits), increasing funding to help temporarily shelter homeless people while cutting funding to programs that help people who are at risk for homelessness, and increasing funding for Federal prisons (I suppose so that homeless people will have someplace to sleep after all?).  And who can forget the increase in funding to push breastfeeding!  That will keep the middle class intact!

There are some proposals in there that I believe are truly necessary.  He DOES want to cut (but not eliminate) subsidies to oil and gas companies, which I am sure you can imagine I would cheer for.  He wants to raise taxes on Wall Street (which I doubt will actually happen) and wants to (slightly) cut defense spending. 

But overall, it is a complete disappointment to those of us who believed we were electing an end to the status quo and were supporting a true leader who would use his position to protect and build the middle class in an effort to restore the American Dream for our children. 

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