29 October 2009

"In This Fix"

A reader emails ranting and raving over this post, and insists that the economic mess is Obama's fault:
If only the U.S.A. had elected John McCain, we wouldn't be in this mess. Mr. Obama's tax and spend ways have landed us in this fix.
For the record, we "landed in this fix" in September of last year, two months before Barack Obama was elected, when the Republican administration was still in charge. As to how John McCain would have approached the economic crisis, here is what I said in my presidential endorsement last year:
By his own admission, the Republican candidate, John McCain, isn't the man the United States needs to tackle this economic crisis. His limited knowledge of American economics was on full display earlier this month when ... the Senator from Arizona "suspended" his campaign and flew to Washington in hopes of working with congressional leaders on a bail out package. There, in full view of the American public, McCain came across as erratic and unknowledgable - two traits the U.S. and world economies cannot afford as we navigate the rough seas of the next four years.

Barack Obama, on the other hand, kept a cool head, remained calm and steady, offered up solid proposals to get our financial house in order, and at the same time presented a blunt assessment of the situation that was refreshing in its honesty: The recession has only just started and is bound to get pretty painful before it gets better. Obama's cool-headedness is the perfect prescription to help keep the markets steady and America's spirits high. (Over the past month, the markets tanked every time President Bush put himself on television to discuss the crisis. Imagine what those markets would do with the bumbling and indecisive McCain in the White House!)
I stand by that argument. The election of Barack Obama and the resulting economic measures he instituted brought us back from the precipice. While I believe more should have been done, there is no denying that what he did pulled us back from the abyss. A McCain presidency more than likely would have led to higher unemployment and a depression-like stock market collapse. Every American should shudder at the thought.