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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Fact Check: SOTU And Obama Speaking Out Of Both Sides Of His Mouth

In Barack Obama's State of the Union Address he mentioned the word invest or investments 11 times at a rough count and in fairness a couple of those keywords were used in relation to other countries investments.

The rest of those mentions were talk of spending more tax payer money when out debt is at $14 trillion already. In fairness again, he did mention once in relation to investments the words "paid for".

With that said, contradicting headlines today show one specific portion of the SOTU speech to be completely intellectually dishonest.

We are living with a legacy of deficit-spending that began almost a decade ago. And in the wake of the financial crisis, some of that was necessary to keep credit flowing, save jobs, and put money in people’s pockets.

But now that the worst of the recession is over, we have to confront the fact that our government spends more than it takes in. That is not sustainable. Every day, families sacrifice to live within their means. They deserve a government that does the same.

Let us start with the fact that over the last two years Barack Obama and a Democratically controlled House of Representatives and Democratically controlled Senate has raised our national debt from approximately $10.6 trillion to $14 trillion.

(Image from CBS News article titled "National Debt Tops $14 Trillion")

Make no mistake, Bush started Tarp and signed the initial bailouts, so he should take his fair share of the blame when it comes to spending like a drunken sailor and rasing out national debt.

The 2009 Budget is on Bush and the Democratically controlled House and Senate, the 2010 Budget and the 2011 Budget are all on Obama.

Bush vs Obama graph comparisons found here.

Obama has expanded the problem with massive spending on more bailouts, a trillion dollar healthcare law, a stimulus program, earmarks and countless other spending when we were already debt ridden and did not and do not have the money to spend, so Obama borrowed more, spent more and this has continued and still is continuing.

Yet he says he wants to invest more aka spend more while out of the other side of his mouth he proposes a "freeze annual domestic spending for the next five years."

Obama said and I quote "we have to confront the fact that our government spends more than it takes in. That is not sustainable. Every day, families sacrifice to live within their means. They deserve a government that does the same."

Has that not been the point conservatives have been making over the last two years as Obama, Pelosi and Reid merrily went on a spending spree using American taxpayers as their own personal credit cards or atm machines?

Obama also claimed "worst of the recession is over."

Then I see today's headlines:

Outside D.C., a grim housing market originally titled "Home prices fall in nearly all major cities, heightening fears of double dip."

In that Wapo piece we see the following information.

- housing prices, compared year-over-year, have declined nationally for six consecutive months.

-nine major cities have dipped to new lows, the report shows. They are Atlanta, Charlotte, Chicago, Detroit, Las Vegas, Miami, Portland, Ore., Seattle and Tampa.

-On a year-over-year basis,the 20-city price index fell 1.6 percent in November.

The next headline is from the Hill, with even more disturbing news:

CBO: Deficit widened to $1.5 trillion this year

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office made it official on Wednesday morning: America's free fall into debt is accelerating.

The budget deficit is now estimated to have widened this year to $1.5 trillion, the CBO said. That compares to a budget deficit of $1.3 trillion for the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30.

The increase in the deficit would bring it to 9.8 percent of gross domestic product, the CBO said, following deficits of 10 percent and 8.9 percent during the previous two years. The CBO notes those are the largest deficit levels since the end of World War II.

The CBO's projections assume that current laws remain unchanged. If the nation continues on its current path, the CBO said, the total national debt will rise from 40 percent of GDP in 2008 to 70 percent by the end of 2011, reaching 77 percent of GDP by 2021.

You can see a summary at the CBO's Director's blog and you can see the entire report from the CBO, with graphs and explanations at the Congressional Budget Office's website.

It is not pretty and it belies Obama's words completely.

The Associated Press has also done some fact checking on Obama's speech and where I chose one small portion to start with, Calvin Woodard from the AP, delves into other aspects and comments by Obama during his SOTU address.

FACT CHECK: Obama and his imbalanced ledger

That article deals with Obama's statements on healthcare savings, earmarks, medical malpractice reform, high speed rail transportation, the recommendations by the bipartisan Fiscal Commission, Social Security,and Iran.

After quoting each of Obama's statements from the SOTU address, the AP goes on to provide the facts instead of the Obama spin.

Read the entire thing to see how Obama truly spoke out of both sides of his mouth on each topic listed above.

I do not know what reality Barack Obama lives in, but it is not the same one that every day Americans live in, which is part of the reason the focus group came down so hard on him immediately after his speech.