Sunday, April 12, 2009

Obama grandstanding while Rome burns

You might have heard from the President that an historic opportunity exists today to refinance your mortgage. Rates are low, the sun is shining, and the green shoots of recovery are just around the corner.

In extensive prepared remarks, the most powerful man on earth took a break from puppy-choosing to inform the American people of the following:
"So the main message that we want to send today is, there are 7 to 9 million people across the country who right now could be taking advantage of lower mortgage rates. That is money in their pocket. And we estimate that the average family can get anywhere from $1,600 to $2,000 a year in savings by taking advantage of these various mortgage programs that have been put in place."
Let's take the high side of President Obama's numbers. 9 million people * $2000 equals 18 billion dollars in annual savings.

So in the midst of the biggest financial crisis of the past eighty years, the President of the United States just expended a precious media outreach opportunity to talk about a program with a maximum impact of about 3/2000ths of the annual American economy of $13 trillion. I hate to be so cavalier with billions, but that's not even a drop in the bucket.

This is insane.

Meanwhile public and steath bailouts such as a $300 billion loan guarantee to Citibank go undiscussed by the President. The increasingly dubious and never-ending AIG bailout has still not been adequately explained to the public by any public official, much less the President.

Talk about seriously misplaced priorities.

I know that Obama has only been in office about eighty days. I know that he's dealing with dozens, if not hundreds, of critical activities. But by any rational measure, the financial crisis is #1 on his list -- and probably #2,3,4,5 and 6 as well. It's that important.

So far he's blowing it. Come on, Mr. Obama. I voted for you because I expected better than this. If I wanted a crony-supporting, opaque, denial-ridden bailout of giant financial companies at the expense of the taxpayer and the common man, I could have voted for a Republican.

The American people deserve better than being patronized on the one hand and pillaged on the other. May we please have more change and less hope?

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