When President Obama lectures the nation about “fairness” and “middle-class values” in his State of the Union address this evening, Americans ought to consider how dismissive his policies have been of those values, and how unfair they have been to middle-class families.
Above all else, hardworking, middle-class Americans want to ensure a better life for their children. They want to know if they work hard, play by the rules, and live within their means, that those defining middle-class values will be rewarded.
For the last three years, those values have only been punished. Set aside the president’s words, and look at his actions.
President Obama has plunged American families $4 trillion deeper into debt. He has taken that money from the people who earned it — and their children — and given it to people whose mistakes created the economic crisis in the first place.
Three years into Obamanomics, with millions of jobs lost and businesses shuttered, who exactly has benefited?
The big banks that plunged the world into financial crisis are bigger than ever. Government-backed mortgage lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which spurred banks to make those reckless loans, went untouched in the Wall Street reform bill and instead received over $180 billion in taxpayer bailouts. Auto companies so poorly run that they lost money on every car they sold were seized by the federal government, given billions of taxpayer dollars, and handed over to political cronies in the bargain. Green-energy company Solyndra was given $500 million of taxpayer money before it went bankrupt, not due to its technological innovativeness, but because it was politically connected to the Obama campaign.
The hundreds of billions of dollars the president directed to his political cronies could have, if left in the real economy, launched new enterprises and created thousands of new jobs. As it is, though, the American economy, and the middle class families who sustain it, have nothing to show for the president’s so-called “investments.”
Then there’s Obamacare, which robbed $500 billion from the already failing Medicare program to force millions of middle class families from their insurance onto government-rationed care. Obama promised insurance premiums would go down, but the Kaiser Family Foundation found the average employer-based premium for a family increased 9 percent, or $1,303, in 2011. Rates are expected to double over the next 10 years.
Despite these repeated insults to working men and women who diligently send their taxes to Washington only to watch them be foolishly wasted away, Obama continues to insist that big government is good for the middle class. He says it’s not right and it’s not fair that the wealthy are making more money while the poor and middle class are having a harder time than ever climbing up the economic ladder.
But what is really holding them back?
Lousy schools. Exploding health-care costs. Rampant dependency and family breakdown. Companies that can no longer offer jobs in the United States because it’s become too expensive to operate here. Smothering regulations. Untapped energy resources and blocked shovel-ready projects like the Keystone Pipeline.
But what do all of those things — things that once worked and now do not — have in common? Government.
Over the last two generations, for the first time in our history, the federal government seized control of our education system, our health-care system, our financial system, our housing industry, our transportation system, our energy industry, our taxes, our welfare state, and our economic regulations.
Big government is what got us into this mess. The president believes only even bigger government can get us out. But the last three years have shown — once again — that it won’t.
Middle-class families know better. They know that Barack Obama’s Washington is at war with the values they live by, the values they instill in their children. They know that for three years under President Obama, middle class families who have worked, played by the rules, and lived within their means have only been forced to bail out the people who don’t.
The president wants us to believe that we need big government to protect the middle class. The truth is that we need to protect the middle class from big government.
There’s a simple question that middle-class families should ask themselves that reveals the true state of our union. Are you better off than you were $4 trillion ago?